Anti-Abortion Groups Try to Intimidate Pharmacies Planning to Dispense Abortion Pills

On Feb. 4, anti-abortion groups are organizing a national day of protests targeting pharmacies that have announced they plan to offer abortion pills, including Walgreens, CVS and Rite Aid. The threat comes in response to a recent FDA announcement of a new certification process for brick-and-mortar pharmacies to become eligible to sell the abortion pill mifepristone for the first time.

The anti-abortion movement has a long history of violence against abortion clinics and providers, including blockades, invasions, chemical attacks, arsons, bombings, death threats, shootings, sniper attacks and cold-blooded murder. Violence at abortion clinics increased significantly between 2020 and 2021, particularly for stalking (600 percent), blockades (450 percent), hoax devices/suspicious packages (163 percent), invasions (129 percent) and assault and battery (128 percent).

Two New Lawsuits Challenge State Restrictions on Abortion Pill Access, Arguing Federal Law Preempts State Laws

On Jan. 25, reproductive health advocates filed two federal lawsuits—one in North Carolina and West Virginia—challenging state laws imposing medically unnecessary restrictions on physicians prescribing the abortion pill mifepristone to their patients. Both cases argue that state laws are preempted by U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) rules allowing telemedicine abortion and mailing of mifepristone.

“States cannot substitute their medical and scientific judgments for judgments FDA has made, and doing so undermines not only access to medication, but the country’s entire drug regulation system.”

Are Women’s Rights the Canary in the Coal Mine of a Democracy in Decline?

Today, half of the world’s democratic governments are on the decline. Advocates questioned the correlation between regression on women’s rights and degraded democracies. A New York Times article asserted that such a descent is precisely when “curbs on women’s rights tend to accelerate.” However, that proposition should be considered in reverse.

As we approach the 50th anniversary of the Roe decision and continue to grapple with the new status quo, this much is clear: The tenets of reproductive health, rights and justice—and those of a healthy democracy—are not only inextricably interconnected, but essential to our nation’s promise.

On Cherelle Griner and the Black Lawyer American Dream

Brittney Griner is home, against odds that increasingly seemed too insurmountable. Activists, journalists, athletes and artists, many of them Black women, loudly and persistently called attention to her unjust incarceration. But without a doubt, the lawyer in her family—her wife, Cherelle Griner—is responsible for her homecoming. Her advocacy matches the historical and current reality of the critical importance of Black lawyers to Black liberation.

Texas Ruling on Second Amendment Puts Domestic Abuse Victims at Greater Risk

U.S. District Judge David Counts, who was appointed by former President Donald Trump, ruled last week that banning those under a protective order from possessing a gun infringes on their Second Amendment rights. A domestic violence victim’s risk of death is five times higher if their abuser has access to a firearm.

(This story was originally published by the Texas Tribune.)

Weekend Reading on Women’s Representation: Georgia Considers Ranked-Choice Voting, Not Runoffs; Biden Confirms Most Women Judges in History

Weekend Reading for Women’s Representation is a compilation of stories about women’s representation. 

This week: Feminist icon Dorothy Pitman Hughes was a critical voice for issues of race, class and motherhood; Georgia could save voters and taxpayers time, energy and money with ranked-choice voting, rather than runoffs; South Korea’s new president is trying to end the Gender Equality Ministry; remembering feminist icon Dorothy Pitman Hughes; and more.

New Laws Give Sexual Assault Survivors the Freedom to Share Their Stories

When the Ending Forced Arbitration for Sexual Assault and Harassment Act became law, it was a huge step forward for sexual assault and harassment survivors, restoring their right to pursue their best legal path. And now with the signing of the Speak Out Act, we’ve removed another obstacle for survivors, making it even harder for employers to cover up workplace harassment and assault. 

One in three women—disproportionately women of color—have suffered sexual harassment or assault in the workplace. Coupled together, these new laws are a one-two punch that will help survivors tell their stories. 

‘Journey for Justice’: Immigrants and Advocates Begin 2,200-Mile Pilgrimage Across U.S.-Mexico Border

Journey for Justice: Witness At The Border is an immigration justice pilgrimage made up of people hoping to enter the United States, as well as immigrant rights advocates. With the goal of highlighting injustices along U.S-Mexico border, the journey will cover over 2,000 miles and span over two weeks—from Dec. 2 until Dec. 18, ending on International Migrants Day.

The Debunked ‘Independent State Legislature Theory’ Is on the Supreme Court Docket—With Potentially Disastrous Consequences

In Moore v. Harper, being argued at the Supreme Court on Thursday, the justices will decide whether the North Carolina Supreme Court has the power to strike down the legislature’s illegally gerrymandered congressional map for violating the North Carolina Constitution.

What’s the case all about? Why did the Court take it in the first place? And what is the dubious ‘independent state legislature theory’?