Keeping Score: FDA and Justice Dept. Improve Abortion Pill Access; Patty Murray Makes Senate History; Remembering Dorothy Pitman Hughes and Barbara Walters

In every issue of Ms., we track research on our progress in the fight for equality, catalogue can’t-miss quotes from feminist voices and keep tabs on the feminist movement’s many milestones. We’re Keeping Score online, too—in in this biweekly round-up.

This week: two victories for abortion pills from the Biden administration; Patty Murray makes history as the first female Senate pro tem; Brittney Griner released from Russian prison; feminists mourn the loss of Dorothy Pitman Hughes and Barbara Walters; AAPI reporters are drastically underrepresented in news media; the U.S. House of will have twice as many committee chairs named “Mike” (six) as it will have women chairs (three); and more.

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.)

The War on Women Report: Republicans Blame Unmarried Women for Midterm Results; 80% of Pregnancy-Related Deaths Can Be Prevented

U.S. patriarchal authoritarianism is on the rise, and democracy is on the decline. But day after day, we stay vigilant in our goals to dismantle patriarchy at every turn. The fight is far from over. We are watching, and we refuse to go back. This is the War on Women Report.

This month: Brittney Griner is released from a racist and homophobic penal colony; abortion access is still in shambles despite midterm victories; House Speaker Nancy Pelosi plans to step down; three high-profile mass shootings in a matter of weeks; and more.

Media Coverage Misses the Gender Issues at the Heart of Mass Shootings

People think it’s so obvious the shooters are young men that there’s literally no point in saying so. In that sense, ‘gunman’ is internally redundant; everyone knows that ‘man’ follows ‘gun.’ 

As long as men, young and old, have easy access to high-capacity killing machines at the same time their society furnishes them with endless heroic masculine narratives about redemptive violence, the next tragedy is always going to be just around the corner.

The War on Women Report: Anti-Abortion Movement Says It’s ‘Pro-Woman’; Kanye West’s Misogynistic Slurs; Brittney Griner’s Appeal Rejected

U.S. patriarchal authoritarianism is on the rise, and democracy is on the decline. But day after day, we stay vigilant in our goals to dismantle patriarchy at every turn. The fight is far from over. We are watching, and we refuse to go back. This is the War on Women Report.

This month: The anti-abortion movement frames its tactics as “pro-woman,” Kanye West claims Black women are engaging in genocide, the House Committee votes to subpoena Trump, Brittney Griner’s appeal is rejected and more.

It’s Abortion, Stupid: How Dobbs May Have Cost Republicans the Midterms

Will historical trends in midterm elections be uprooted? Will the party in the White House not face devastating losses in Congress? Is it possible that Republican promises to pass legislation that would ban abortion in every U.S. state could, in fact, help Democrats hold on to their majorities in both the House and the Senate?

“Between guns, abortion and the Republicans’ behavior, people will be concerned enough to go to the polls,” said Roger Craver, cofounder of the government watchdog group Common Cause. “And a big turnout will be very important because that’s what will give Democrats the win.”

National Youth Poet Laureate Alyssa Gaines Breaks Down the Realities for Young Women in a Post-Roe World

Young people are taking to the streets to protest, lobbying their elected officials and taking to activism in droves to make abortion accessible for those who need it. National Youth Poet Laureate Alyssa Gaines is using her writing to affirm the need for abortion care and to reach those most impacted by anti-choice legislation.

“It’s my responsibility to reach out and try to connect to those people instead of just writing them off.”

Keeping Score: Rep. Ernst Blocks Birth Control Access Bill; Democrats Urge Biden to Extend Student Loan Pause; Amelia Earhart Statue Unveiled in U.S. Capitol

In every issue of Ms., we track research on our progress in the fight for equality, catalogue can’t-miss quotes from feminist voices and keep tabs on the feminist movement’s many milestones. We’re Keeping Score online, too—in in this biweekly round-up.

This week: Massachusetts bill will strengthen reproductive rights for college students; Justice Alito defends his ruling in the name of “religious liberty”; Rep. Cori Bush introduces legislation for reproductive health services; WNBA star Brittney Griner sentenced to nine years in prison; Hong Kong guarantees space for women on company boards; and more.

We Heart: P!nk’s New Protest Anthem, ‘Irrelevant’

On July 18, the music video for P!nk’s new song, “Irrelevant,” dropped and has since been deemed a ‘protest anthem.’ She explained, “As a woman with an opinion and the fearlessness to voice that opinion, it gets very tiring when the only retort is to tell me how irrelevant I am. I am relevant because I exist and because I am a human being. No one is irrelevant. And no one can take away my voice.”

The proceeds from the new track will be donated to Michelle Obama’s national, nonpartisan voting initiative When We All Vote.

Right Now, Silence Is Not an Option—Diverse Voices Must Shape the Future

The ties that bind us to one another—that transcend race, class, generational divides, language and more—are the stories we share. Every silenced voice and untold story erases a piece of our collective history and identity. 

Communicators shape the future through their influence on how history is documented, preserved and shared. Their words and messages have the potential to spread like wildfire and impact everything from pop culture to policymaking.