The following guest post comes to us via Kelley Dupps, public policy manager for Planned Parenthood Advocates of Arizona.
An end to zero-copay birth control. Millions kicked off their health insurance. Abortion out of reach to a majority of Americans. The Environmental Protection Agency helmed by someone who believes the environment is not worthy of protection. Racists and white nationalists at the highest levels of the executive branch of the federal government. A registry of all Muslims and bans on their entry into our country.
Is this really real life? The Electoral College and incoming administration do not represent a majority of American voters, and yet voters are left with little recourse to stop the runaway Trump train. But this is America (right?), and our liberty to assemble all people who support freedom along with our ability to speak truth to power is the cornerstone of what we’re about — personal responsibility, liberty, and freedom — for everyone. Instead of building a wall, let’s open the door to solidarity and protect the rights endowed by the Constitution.
Emboldened by the election of Donald Trump as president, Republicans in Congress are expected once again to push to end federal funding for Planned Parenthood. They could attach such a measure to legislation to repeal the Affordable Care Act, which President-elect Trump said he would ask Congress to do immediately. A vote to eliminate Planned Parenthood from Medicaid could come as early as January 28; grassroots action is critical to having our voice heard!
Congress has more important work to do — such as investigating Russia’s involvement in influencing the results of the November election and considering Trump’s cabinet nominations — but members are intent on instead wasting their time on yet another Planned Parenthood witch hunt.
Here in Arizona, Republicans are set to target Planned Parenthood — again. For politicians who hate abortion and allegedly want to “prevent” it, comprehensive inclusive health education is their salvation. Educating students with medically accurate and contemporary skills allows them to make their own decisions, graduate from high school, and plan their lives. Comprehensive, inclusive health education is a framework of personal responsibility and liberty to be who you are, be safe, and be healthy.
Planned Parenthood Advocates of Arizona will continue advocating for comprehensive and inclusive health education; primarily by focusing on the repeal of one of Arizona’s most disgraceful, archaic laws. The language used in ARS §15-716, sarcastically referred to as the No Promo Homo or NPH law, uses degrading and shaming language that does nothing to attain educational goals or protect the health or safety of students. Only seven other states — and Russia — have laws similar to Arizona’s No Promo Homo law.
Friends, the struggle is real. We’re facing an anxious and unknown reality. How do we make it through?
- Engage our energy and resources strategically and wisely. Learn how to engage strategically! Sign up for Advocacy 101: Effective Advocacy in Paparazzi Politics!
- Embrace the truth, science, and facts, along with real anecdotes and advocacy from people impacted by policy. Sign up here!
- Empathize and have compassion when advocating; remember, love trumps hate.
The most important thing supporters of Planned Parenthood can do in January is take action — online and offline! We are facing an unprecedented hostile future. Banding together in solidarity with supporters is one way we can combat misinformation and direct assaults on Planned Parenthood.
Here is a smattering of activities happening in January that folks in Arizona can participate in.
It’s important to note that these actions are not limited to women — men, LGBTQ, and gender non-conforming people are encouraged to show up and stand with Planned Parenthood.
January 3: U.S. Congress begins new session
- Tweet: @JeffFlake and @SenJohnMcCain — Don’t Mess With Medicaid!
- Call: Sen. Jeff Flake (202-224-4521) and Sen. John McCain (202-224-2235) — Don’t Mess With Medicaid! Don’t Defund Planned Parenthood!
January 9: Arizona legislature begins new session
- Sign Up: Stand Up! Activists — advocate, respond, and resist in real time! Stand Up! Activists will get personalized resources to embolden their activism in their own communities. Sign up here!
January 13: PPAA hosts Advocacy 101: Effective Advocacy in Paparazzi Politics
- Learn and refine online and offline advocacy skills in an age of paparazzi politics.
- Planned Parenthood Arizona, 4571 N. 15th St., Phoenix 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. Sign up here!
January 14: Phoenix Nasty Women Opening Party
- Nasty Women: Phoenix Unite
- Grand ArtHaus, 1501 S. Grand Ave., downtown Phoenix, 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.
- Exhibition proceeds will benefit Planned Parenthood Arizona
January 20: Inauguration Day
- Peace Vigil, hosted by Safety Pin Nation, Margaret T. Hance Park, Phoenix, 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.
- Nasty Women: Phoenix Unite Dance Performance, Grand ArtHaus, 1501 S. Grand Ave., downtown Phoenix; 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.
January 21: Women’s March
- Phoenix: Arizona State Capitol in Phoenix, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
- Tucson: Armory Park, 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.
- Flagstaff: Flagstaff City Hall, 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.