12 min read

The Hot List: Reframing Abortion Edition

Read the cliffnotes below, watch the clips, and take some action. Most of all, reframe how you talk about Abortion (and gender, and reproductive healthcare). Words matter.

5 key takeaways for Reproductive Justice (Hot Tips, Reads, Reactions and Actions)

Reframing Abortion

THE HOT LIST: TOP 5 "What the fuck do I even say?"

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We're all fine. FINE I tell you!

Feeling overwhelmed these days? Who the fuck isn't?
No seriously, give me their number. I have questions...several.

Personally, I am overwhelmed by the state of things. The media sucks and the Times keeps letting me down. Twitter reached Dante's 7th level months ago. I don't fuck with zuck. And LinkedIn, well Uncle Algo and his Bro, 'Rithm add to my daily frustration of living in a world designed by white men.

Sometimes you just need a place to start, which is why I curated this list of resources to reframe how we talk about Abortion.

You can read the cliffnotes below, watch the clips, and take some action. Make sure you sign up for the HOT LIST so you don't miss the ebook release (for free, whenever I manage to finally finish it)!

Most of all, reframe how you talk about Abortion (and gender, and reproductive healthcare). Words matter. Maybe if The Powers That Be and politicians weren't so scared of the word ABORTION we wouldn't be in this not-so-cute Knocked Up-esque mess.

Rhymes with ‘shmashmortion’
Thirty years after Roe v. Wade, is abortion still a dirty word? (Or was it ever?)

So, hop on the Abortion Express Shma-shmortion, back to the land of actual democracy, and escape the land of fucking nonsense: 2023 in the USA. Hopefully we can make it back to choose your own abortion-adventure before the decade is out.

Where do we start?

Start here.

Choose your own adventure...You have to start somewhere!

From Guttmacher.org scotusrestrictionsfb.png

1. Words Matter.


🔥 HOT TIP: Abortion is Healthcare. Healthcare is a human right. We're the only powerful nation to disagree with the UN who says this in multiple ways. Human Rights are guaranteed by the UNHRC.

ACTION: Report the U.S. for Human Rights violations here. (Note: Do this for Capital punishment, police brutality, religious discrimination, issues at our border, and limiting our right to travel, leave and return.)

READ: "Why it Matters When We Call a Thing a Thing" and this brilliant piece, "Rhymes with ‘shmashmortion’" by Helena Andrews for Politico in 2007!

"Why it Matters When We Call a Thing a Thing" by me forThe Good Men Project, Equality Can't Wait

BONUS: I highly suggest following L C De Shay, Reproductive Psychosocial Scientist working on Climate Change & Family Ethnography on LinkedIn. Trust me, they get that words matter. Check out their post: Gender Expansive, Diversity Inclusive Reproductive Terms Glossary

"Scientific research from around the world shows having an abortion is not linked to mental health issues but restricting access is."

ACTION: Practice reframing the narrative. Use this worksheet from Race Forward. It’s a really fun exercise to do with a small group.

Try this: Narrative Pyramid with example of how to reframe the issue. From race forward.org

2. Talk about the impacts on public health. Use science and solid data.

🔥 HOT TIP: Abortion affects mental health, and we're already having multiple mental health crises. 

READ: The facts about abortion and mental health.

"Scientific research from around the world shows having an abortion is not linked to mental health issues but restricting access is."

TAKE ACTION: Use AbortionFinder.org and learn about what your state is doing.

Where Can I Get an Abortion? | U.S. Abortion Clinic Locator
Quickly search the largest directory of trusted abortion providers in the U.S. Updated weekly.

Check out this site for a clinic that still exists.

3. Listen to the Experts

...Especially grassroots orgs and social justice community-led movements.

🔥 HOT TIP: Do not INVENT organizations or found new ones unless you have done the work with others to know what is out there and are sure there is a gap.

READ: Women's Funding Network (WFN) agrees that we need to use existing resources and listen to the experts. Read "The Time is Now" on WFN's blog here.

"[It’s] essential that we understand the infrastructure that already exists. We have a responsibility to ensure that we are not engaging in extractive practices, dropping in unannounced, putting unnecessary stipulations on resources, or leaving if the situation feels insurmountable. Rather, our highest purpose in the current moment is to move flexible, multi-year, general operating support dollars to the field, moving resources quickly and without any strings attached. Rather than creating new initiatives, we must move resources that can resource existing BIPOC, Transgender, and Non-Binary organizations and leadership at scale. These organizations and leaders have the vision, decades-long track record, and relationships with communities on the ground already, and are best placed to advocate for their communities, build power for the long-term, and fight back against current oppressive legislation at the local, state, and federal levels".
The Time is Now
Gender Equity leaders propose five things philanthropy can do right now to deepen their investment in the fight to protect abortion access and bodily autonomy.

"The Time is Now" Women's Funding Network

ACTION: What can you do? Amplify the shit out of the experts and orgs that deserve more funding, support, volunteers etc.

What else can you do? SUBSCRIBE, paid, to support the people doing the work EVERY SINGLE DAY. Jessica Valenti shifter her blog content the day Roe was overturned. Abortion, Every Day. is a consistent AF and reliable, relatable source of the latest shenanigans by someone who is as mad as you are. My fave are her summaries of what the GOP know about our bodies. (Hot Tip: Nothing; they know nothing.)

Why? See the tweet below from Rabbi Ruttenberg. She is always dropping knowledge, deeply relatable (for me, obvi). She is also very intersectional in her teaching and about Black liberation first.

Side note: Want to know more about why I adore her and learn about healing and repair? Read this piece I wrote on reparations and apologizing for the Medium pub Equality Includes You.

You can get pills by mail from Plan C.

Want more experts to follow on social media?
"Feeling lost? Follow these reproductive justice accounts." Promoting access to personal health education and advocacy, one page at a time. Written by Chase DiBenedetto, posted on Mashable, May 6, 2022. You'll find many more in that ebook I am putting out there later this summer. Subscribe to The Hot List so you don't miss it!

BONUS: Even the federal government is relying on grassroots organizations. I am not quite celebrating as much as SMDH.

Even our patriarchal government steals progressive feminist activists' hard work!

How do you feel about this–that Biden's driving to website redirects to the grassroots site abortionfinder.org? Personally, I feel one part great, with a side of equal parts terrified and infuriated.

This administration using one of the biggest losses of civil rights for political clout on social media, is, in a word, gross. Lest we forget, politicians were too fucking scared to say the word ABORTION, because weak language is their M.O. Biden didn't utter the word public until his second State of the Union, AFTER Roe was already overturned.

The amount of unpaid and invisible labor the federal government exploits from people who already do the bulk of said unpaid and invisible labor, while they are forced into labor, to raise more workers...it's all a bit too much for me work to do the mental gymnastics that makes this ok.

4. This is not a "women's issue."

And it's not about sex.

🔥 HOT TIP: It's a privacy and personhood issue, as well as a healthcare and human rights issue...so yeah, it's on everyone.The fight for abortion is not about a fetus or about our choice—it's about all humans being equal and deserving the same level of freedom, care, and opportunity.

No uterus and identify as a cis white guy? No problem. We still need you to give more than one small fuck.

Giving one fuck looks like this: I read a tweet. I remember that day. That was a year ago?!

Giving more than one fuck looks like this: I tweeted. I was shook that day. I have talked about this with other guys more than a few times this year. I am worried for my kids.

READ: Literally, ANYTHING. Do not let this fall to birth-abled bodies. If you struggle to empathize, start here and read this: Imagine if this was your body and we did nothing.

ACTION: These are just a few suggestions on how cis-straight men can be better allies, but this information applies to us all.

First, just show up.

Step it up. Do the work. Unpack your privilege. BE ANTI-RACIST, INTERSECTIONAL, AND LISTEN TO OTHERS.

Pay better. Hire more women/non-binary/gender fluid speakers, writers, creators, and researchers.

Diversify your vendors and vet that they are supporting progress: "people and planet" over profit.

Call a thing the thing.

Tweet from the co-ED of Men 4 Choice...because it's sadly who we need since WE don't have it. If you are a guy, join Men 4 Choice.


5.0 This is the beginning.

It's not the end.

🔥 HOT TIP: If you are not anti-racist, you are not a feminist and you are not "pro-woman."

5.1 We cannot "both sides" this issue.

Pick one, now. Then get out of the way. Step aside and always provide space for WOMEN AND NON-BINARY Black, Latina, Indigenous, and APPI people to LEAD these conversations.

5.2 Listen up, and take it seriously.

Okay, "Not all White Men" (but yeah all white men).

That said, there are some that "get it." The following guys know what's up. Follow their lead.

Why have a white man from England tell us about the latest Abortion SCOTUS debacles? Because John Oliver does not mince words, he does not fuck around.

John Oliver, once again, nails it. This is a white man & ally explaining things all the ways this affects more than just people who give birth and pregnant people, but how it affects our government, centering marginalized communities, especially Black people.

Maybe if a white guy in a suit on a cable entertainment news show says it, we have a fighting chance at getting through to someone new. Don't get your hopes up, though. This is going to get rough.

These good Christians declared war on bodies and made it so people were unable to fight to save their own lives. Many people will die as a result, and plenty already have. Far right Evangelicals are prepared to lose lives over this "battle." Ironic, no?

NOTE: (This is from before June 24th, and was after the SCOTUS Dobbs leak).

5.3 Use your body.

This is a white man & ally paying attention on June 6th, 2022. "Abortion rights protester locks neck to U.S. Supreme Court fence"

The man remained secured to the fence for about 15 minutes until he was removed by authorities. He held up a green bandana with the address of an abortion rights group's website. In a video on the group's Twitter feed, the man identified himself as Guido Reichstadter of Miami and said he was there because Americans' rights were coming under attack."I'm doing this as the first step, kind of like throwing down the gauntlet, the first step in a call to the people of America who support abortion rights - and that's the vast majority of us - to step out of inaction and passivity and sitting back and to enter nonviolent resistance," he said.

5.4 Make more noise.

This is a father who gets it: "A dad climbed a bridge to protest the Supreme Court’s abortion ruling," and he was instantly my hero.

Guido Reichstadter, a father of two, stood on the Frederick Douglass Bridge in D.C. to call on people to do more than passively support abortion rights. "It’s mind-boggling to me that fathers are able to look their daughters in the eye and go about their daily lives while their rights are under attack. …Love is not a noun. It’s a verb. And part of that means stepping out of your comfort and defending the rights of your loved ones when they come under attack." -

5.5. Call out the hypocrisy

No, I don't mean calling me out for sharing 5 white guys for this Hot List instead of centering the voices of activists and those who are at the heart of this fight. I did that on purpose to show you what an absolute Dumpster Fire we are in...and because studies show, people trust white men. So please, don't take my word for it. In fact, listen to another comedian. More proof, you can be funny, tell jokes, all while remaining aware this is a serious fucking problem.

George Carlin is always spot on with his takes on the conservative BULL SHIRT and the hypocrisy of a "Pro-life" GOP. Here is another white man telling the truth: THIS IS about controlling women and other marginalized genders.

Subscribe to The Hot List (or InfoDumpsterFire) and don't miss the adventure.

BONUS ACTION: Be counted.

Add your name, even if it's a bit scary. Donate publically. Be on "the list" and don't be afraid that the government knows you value your right to privacy and body autonomy. The more we stand together, the better!

One small action I took was signing The Times is Now pledge on behalf of my consultancy. As a member for WFN, it's important to show that this is also my business, pun intended.

Yes, people are saying to delete apps about periods and medical records because HIPPA is next. In fact, I told all the teen with a uterus in my life to do just this!

If anything, being nervous to add your name publically to this cause proves even further why this is a healthcare and privacy issue, not a woman's issue.

I say, let them come for privacy in earnest. Let them try and get all our private health records. Then, we can get rid of the Patriot Act and our surveillance state once and for all. Don't believe surveillance is that bad in the U.S.? Think again, and ICYMI, watch this.

If all documents were public domain, the GOP would be screwed; maybe that's just wishful thinking.

It seems unimaginable that HIPPA would not be protected. Then again, I never thought we'd be (gestures with hands) here, yet HERE WE ARE. I guess anything is possible.