Women know how choice and freedom feel – and we will never give that up | V

To All Those Who Dare Rob Us of Our Bodily Choice, I ask you:

What is it about our bodies that makes you so afraid, so insecure, so cruel and punishing?

Is it their singular autonomy or mere existence?

Is it their capacity for immense and unending pleasure – orgasms that can multiply orgasms inside orgasms? Is it our skin? Is it our desire?

Is it our openness that rattles you and reminds you of where you are closed?

Is it the pure strength of our bodies that allows us to bleed and birth and bend and carry and continue on in spite of all the ways you have reduced us and objectified us, humiliated us and disrespected us and tried to shape us into baby-making machines? Our strength that is inherent and doesn’t need to prove itself or show off or rely on weapons or violence to control and terrorise? Doesn’t need to abolish laws, or lie to become supreme court judges or president or rig the decks when they get there.

Do you know this power? Can you imagine it? A power that comes from respecting life, caring for others before oneself, holding communities together?

Do you think we are naive enough to believe that you are motivated by your care for life when you have shown so little respect for it and us? Instead you spend your days unravelling and resisting all that makes life possible for those mothers and people with babies you claim to protect – fighting against free universal healthcare, parental paid leave and child allowance. Where’s your outrage that the US has the highest maternal mortality rates in the developed world?

Do you think we have forgotten that some of those (Brett Kavanaugh and Clarence Thomas) who are making the most crucial decisions about millions of our bodies and the one (Donald Trump) who chose three of the people on the court currently making these decisions, are men who have been accused of violating other women’s bodies, harassing women’s bodies, humiliating and proudly bragging about grabbing the genitals of women’s bodies?

What is it about our bodies that make you think you have the right to invade them, determine them, control and legislate them, violate and force them to do anything against their will?

Perhaps you mistake our generosity for weakness, our patience for passivity, our vulnerability for fragility.

This might be why you are unable to see that there is no chance in hell that we are ever going back. This is not a law yet and we will never accept this ruling.

Perhaps because you have never known what it is like to have your body controlled by the vindictive anonymous state, to be raped and forced to keep your baby, to be so desperate that you destroy your uterus with a hanger or bleed to death in a back alley, you do not understand that once you have tasted the sweetness of freedom, of choice, once you have come to know your body as your own, once you have freed yourself and felt the expanse of your body, the aliveness in every pore that rises from autonomy, there is no way you will ever give that up. Ever.

And because you do not know this, you do not know how dangerous we are, how organised we are, how willing we are to go any lengths to preserve our freedom.

It’s been 50 years. We have summoned our due. We actually have bank accounts now. We have credit cards and we can buy a house. We can serve on juries. We hold offices and are lawyers. We write for newspapers and we run them. We host TV shows and direct movies. We run hospitals and universities and non-profits and write plays about vaginas and books about fascists and fascism. We can’t be tossed aside.

This is our world now. And these are our bodies. We know what you are up to – this is just the beginning of your diabolical plan to rob us of contraception and marriage equality and civil rights and on and on. This is all part of your desperation to prevent the future that is on the verge of being born – a future where we know our past and begin to reckon with it, a future where we teach critical race theory and the truth about white supremacy and sexism and transphobia.

A future where we care for our Earth and devote our lives to protecting air and water and forests and animals and all living things, a future where people have autonomy over their bodies and wombs and gender and marry who they want to, and don’t get married if they don’t want to, and have babies if they want to, and don’t have babies if they don’t want to. Despite all your lies, strategies and devious ways you are simply never going to stop us.

You have unleashed our fury, our solidarity, our unity.

We know that our future and everything we have fought for is at stake. I am willing to lay my body down for this freedom, for every freedom and I know there are multitudes who will do the same.

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