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August 4, 2021

Mandy Nolan’s Soapbox: State Womb Alabama

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Mandy Nolan’s Soapbox: State Womb Alabama

Last week I really did have Georgia on my mind. And Alabama. And Ohio. Kentucky and Mississippi. These are the US states lining up to pass ‘heartbeat bills’, which prohibit abortion once a foetal heartbeat can be detected – as early as six weeks into pregnancy. If a woman proceeds, even in another state, it’s a murder charge, which is punishable by life imprisonment or the death penalty.

Alabama, Georgia, and Ohio have already passed these bills. Kentucky and Mississippi are next in line. As are Louisiana and Missouri. Most women don’t even know they’re pregnant at six weeks, especially young women who are not yet familiar with their body’s cycles.

Most young women start their unwanted pregnancies in denial about actually being pregnant at all. For many, it’s not until around 8–10 weeks that we become aware of the changes in our body. I’ve had three abortions – all around 11 weeks. I was just 20 for my first, 24 for my second, and 25 for my third. I have no shame around my choices, because they were mine to make. I got to ‘play God’ in my own life.

Is this why the state hates our choosing so much? Because we as women have the ultimate power? Does it scare men that no matter how much they oppress us, rape us, kill us, that we still have this primal power? We can make life with their semen and then it’s our choice to choose or reject? Is this why so many men keep turning up in our wombs and deciding what should happen there?

This is the ultimate Christian conspiracy: the corporatising of our wombs – like they’re a chain of government-owned drive-through burger bars. There has been a national race in the US to pass new legislation limiting women’s right to abortion. All this began when Trump chose Kavanaugh for the Supreme Court. This was the fifth vote many believed would uphold new limits on abortion. In fact since then, eight states have passed bills in the US to limit the procedure this year alone. Being pregnant via rape or incest is no exception. While the pregnancy incurring ‘harm to mother’s life’ is noted as the only valid legal reason to carry out a termination, many believe that medical practitioners won’t perform abortions at all because of the risk to their personal liberty if challenged.

This law isn’t just limited to the states where the bill has passed; it will impact on women’s right to abortion across the US, and possibly around the world, setting the pro-choice movement back 50 years, back to the era of the coat-hanger in a lonely backroom.

The Christian fundamentalists are winding back the feminist clock, and according to them, the unborn have more rights than women. We are but ovens with legs. The women’s movement has come so far, but in a heartbeat, a foetal heartbeat, we’ve lost. Men have decided that women have no agency over their choices. Our bodies have been legislated. They no longer belong to us. The state will decide.

In America right now it’s men’s ownership over guns… and wombs. The right to bear arms and bear babies.

Australia looks to America for moral guidance. They’re our cultural compass. We emulate their values like some sick co-dependent puppy. America is our cult leader; we suck from the teat of populist thinking. We drink the Kool-Aid. It won’t be long before our alt-right and ultra-conservative parties start trying the same here.

Whether you agree with abortion or not, making a woman’s rights less than a 6-week heartbeat tells us exactly where we stand: back in the margins. On our knees in the dark quiet kitchens of HIS house. In a world where we earn 63 per cent of what men earn, where we have less property, where we are under-represented in government (hence these bills) why have we still got to fight so hard for ownership of the only thing we have: our bodies?

Why are women’s bodies a country still colonised by men’s belief? By Christian soldiers who take no responsibility for the role of their cocks? Those flags of ownership placed into our wombs, making our vaginas their golfing hole.

Feel the shoes in your womb? Start ironing your bonnets, girls, because Handmaid’s Tale wasn’t a dystopian fantasy, it was a documentary. This is not about abortion. This is about who owns us. It’s never been more important to be a feminist. A loud angry militant feminist claiming sovereignty on a womb of her own.


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15 COMMENTS

  1. Mandy, that was one of the most powerful articles you have written, straight from the heart, raw truth. Men give and men take away. What next? A ban on the pill?

    • ” What next? A ban on the pill?” Don’t give ’em any more ideas on how to spread their miserable beliefs and abusive rules..
      I and many, many of my female acquaintances, throughout my lifetime, (75 yo), have chosen to have abortions .
      And that same choice has been made by women going way back in history.
      There are already sadly, too many neglected, abused and unwanted children, born all over the world.
      These Christian Holy rollers have not rushed to take all of those into their care have they?
      Exactly who is going to look after the mothers (who have been denied a choice of abortion) and all the many unwanted children, if they are to be born ?
      Probably wont be the men who made the law.

  2. “I’ve had three abortions”. Obviously never heard of contraception, Mandy. The trouble with pro abortionists is they have already been born and don’t want anyone else to be.

  3. At some 1 million abortions per year in America, 200,000 in UK, about 1000,000 in Australia and God only knows how many more the world over, It is NOT the ultimate Christian conspiracy.

    IT IS very much the case of corporatising of women’s wombs – like they’re a chain of government-owned drive-through burger bars. Especially when you consider there is a market for baby parts.

    How is tearing off limbs of a living human fetus not murder? How is killing over 13 MILLION unborn babies over the last decade not a mass murder? The argument of “my body my choice” would stand up only if the mother chose to terminate herself. Pregnant women are a sacred vessel for carrying new life, not for creating fodder for abortion clinics.

    We rarely talk of the emotional aftermath which affects many women post abortion. My heart goes out to the would be mothers and to the babies who never got the opportunity to be loved and nurtured.

    Unfortunately abortion (for many) has become a form of birth control. It would be preferable to improve our sex education, both at home and at school to help avoid unwanted pregnancy.

    • Victor! Victor! Victor! You are the living embodiment of the villain in Mandy’s story…
      So very sad that you think you are taking the moral high-ground. Instead, you want women to suffer and keep on suffering.

      An unwanted child does not deserve the life they become stuck with because you wouldn’t allow them to be terminated. A mother already struggling with 5 kids should not be forced to have another. A pregnant 50-year-old does not offer an adequate future for the child or herself. A rape victim should not have to bear the term of an evil-spawn-child in her belly nor the damage to her body.

      You can’t possibly know or understand the damage you do to the wellbeing of the woman when she has to carry an unwanted child full term. Early termination is not forgotten or treated lightly as you suggest. Not nearly as lightly as the man who got her pregnant in the first place. Yes it is traumatic and hurtful…. You think adoption is the answer…??? You obviously don’t realise that is 1000 times worse knowing that a child you carried is out there somewhere…

      I solidly believe this is not your decision. You are a man and whatever happens you have no right to determine what a woman does with her body. We women would be equally entitled to charge you for murder when you masturbate… If Australia moves in any way to further restrict abortion or to legislate womens bodies, many more men will have to rely on it for their sexual outlet. Women are not going to lie back and take it this round!

  4. It’s not about who owns us or how much we earn – it’s murder. There are many ways that a woman can prevent conception these days. Let’s educate our women & men on how to avoid unwanted pregnancies & stop the hundreds of thousands of abortions of little Australians in our country. Perhaps we would then have no need for immigration from questionable countries.

    • We aim for robust, but reasonable and intelligent debate, but we get the occasional commentator who tells people to ‘shut the fuck up’ like you did in your comment that wasn’t approved, Roger. The problem isn’t that you ‘said it to a woman’ as you said in your comment, the problem is that personal abuse of anyone is unpleasant, and lowers the tone of comments over all so we don’t approve those kind of remarks. Sometimes swear words make sense in context, but not normally when they are directed at an individual, such as Mandy. The rest of your comment was fine. Do you want us to remove what we considered to be the offensive bits and publish it?

      • Mandy consistently dishes out personal abuse as well as attacking great swathes of people through her identity politics.. That’s her platform.

  5. We could prevent conception if we could stop
    matrimonial rapes. I ought to know. Get real.
    A woman is ‘owned’ by the male. It’s sick &
    it’s the law.

  6. Well said Mandy.

    So what is the political logic behind abolishing abortion. (as there always is one)?
    Has the Annual Single Parent Benefit costs to the US blown out of proportion? (namely the Southern States)

    Does the black community have a higher incidence of unemployment and single parenting?
    Is Racism still a Civil Rights issue in the South?

    Why isn’t birth control for men considered a better option? The reason to incarcerate women for abortion is a greater crime than that conceived.

    A global shunning/embargo of sorts should be directed towards these States and if this law is fully passed should then be challenged as a ‘Crime Against Humanity’.

  7. Wow Mandy you opened a can of worms here! Didn’t know there were so many pro-lifers in the shire! Those pro-lifers can’t expect every women to use birth control. What if they are under 16 or not in a permanent relationship as in the matter of rape/incest.

    What if they are using birth control and are one of the 2% that still fall pregnant. I am one of those. I fell pregnant with 98% working birth control in a ONE night visit with my separated husband! Glad to say I kept that special child!

    Birth control doesn’t always work and a choice to terminate should be up to the individual, not a bunch of lawmakers who are predominately men!

  8. I count myself fortunate that I did not ever have an unwanted pregnancy and so never had the agony of deciding whether to proceed or not.
    I would counsel any woman to try, by every means, to ensure she was not faced with that awful choice. That includes being very selective of her partners. Those men who are unsympathetic and unsupportive of women, who would not support a woman’s right to a safe and supported abortion if she deemed it in the best interests of her own wellbeing and therefore that of the foetus she carries, they are probably partners to avoid.
    None of us should have the right to insist that a woman carries a baby she does not want and especially one that is the result of any sort of force or coercion, which includes incest.
    We should ensure she has the best of counselling, that we as a society offer the support during pregnancy, after the birth and during the childhood years to give mother and child the opportunity to flourish – but the decision should be hers.

  9. Finally I agree Mandy. Not for political or polemic reasons, simply the fact zygot, unborn child is totally dependant on the woman, so logically she has that right over its life as well. It’s not all the badness of men tho, as you say. Abortion preferably is not another form of contraception, for which both sides are responsible. And I’m not sure the States you mention aren’t including rape as an exception.

  10. Another point from reading these posts, it’s the man who gets the woman pregnant. A little thought could be applied here.

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