This morning I had the privilege of attending a Planned Parenthood fundraising breakfast in Palo Alto. On the agenda were many important topics concerning women's reproductive rights and sex education, but the most pressing to me was Prop 85, specifically: voting NO on Prop 85. If you aren't familiar with the proposition, please check out the No on 85 website or click on the green button on the upper-left corner of my blog.
One of the speakers, Shelby Knox, and her condom tote.
In a nutshell, Prop 85 is Prop 73 (remember Prop 73?) minus 300 words. Prop. 85 would prohibit abortions for California teens until 48 hours after their parents have been notified. According to a recent poll, anti-choice zealots are ahead (46% support, 43% against). That is much too close for comfort for me personally. If passed IT WILL GO INTO EFFECT in February. It's a constititional amendment and the only way to get rid of it would be to repeal it. Imagine how hard that will be to accomplish if it passes.
Dian Harrison, The Planned Parenthood Golden Gate President and CEO this morning said, "You best believe if this passes, (these groups) will go after birth control next." (Just think if teens had to ask parents' permission to obtain birth control...)
If your daughter came to you and told you she was pregnant, perhaps you'd be supportive and try to help her figure out next steps. But think about teens that live in households with violence, rape, incest or abuse. Prop 85 puts those teens in danger. Passing Prop 85 will not instantly make their family situations better. No law can mandate family communication.
As I sat and listened to the various speakers this morning, I wondered
what I could do to spread the word that this initiative must be
stopped. The easiest thing for me to do on short notice (and in
light of this recent poll) is to use the power of my blog and the
blogosphere to spread the word that people must vote on Tuesday, and
they must vote NO ON 85. And that's exactly what I'm going to do.
Bloggers, I need your help!
As you read these words, I am arranging a conference call with Margaret C. Crosby, Attorney, ACLU. She spoke today and has been pivotal in trying to defeat this initiative. She has worked on women's rights issues for 30 years. If you are interested in listening in, it will take place at 11:00AM tomorrow (friday). She will speak on the initiative (and what she says will chill you to the bone), and then there will be time for a Q & A.
This is an opportunity for you to hear from someone on the No on 85 front lines and to ask her questions. It's an opportunity for you hopefully formulate your own No on 85 stance and blog about it.
It's "citizen journalist time."
Ms. Crosby candidly told me today she was "scared' about the proposition passing. If she's scared, there is a real possibility that Prop 85 will pass. Unless we do something about it.
If you are interested in participating and then blogging about this issue (and I hope you are), please let me know. And please foward this post to any California-based blogger that also might be interested. Just have them contact me at citymama at gmail dot com with the phrase "No on 85 Conference Call" in the subject line," I will get the conference call details to them.
In the meantime, I urge you to email/call/talk to everyone you know who you think might vote no on 85 and tell them to do so. ("Preach to the choir," as someone mentioned today, and get "the choir" out and voting.)
I hope you will help me to defeat this proposition,
P.S. If you live near Redwood City, you can stop by the PP Clinic at 1230 Hopkins to pick up a lawn sign.