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Writer's Block: Le Quatorze Juillet

Happy Bastille Day! Today the French celebrate the event that sparked the French revolution. In honor of our Francophone friends, what is your favorite French thing? Bonus points for answers en français.

Quelle question de merde. Il y a des tas de «choses» françaises, LJ.

Joyeux 14 juillet, quand même.

(Jeanne d'Arc à Orléans)

Oh hay I'm posting

Hi there flist. I've decided that I should post very occasionally just to let you know I'm here and reading. I don't intend to be anti-social or anything; I just rarely do anything interesting enough to write about. Sooo I'll just post videos I like or interesting links or whatever. For my first offering, have a commercialwhore petition from Zatarain's urging Congress to make Mardi Gras a national holiday. C'mon, I know you're all jealous of my four-day weekend! Doooo eeeet.

Jan. 9th, 2007

65 of the 73 state legislators who voted FOR the abortion ban came from districts where a majority of voters REJECTED it at the polls. It would be nice if our elected representatives actually represented us.

Nov. 8th, 2006

Didn't I say this was a great state?!!!

Now that the ban is defeated (for now--it'll be back next time with exceptions and unfortunately it looks like it will pass then), I can say: no love to the Women's Medical Fund of Wisconsin, which first tried to organize its own campaign against the ban inside S.D., as if those of us who actually live here were too dumb or too oppressed or something to do it ourselves. The Campaign for Healthy Families has certainly proven that wrong. After WMF was told in no uncertain terms that we didn't need it meddling in our affairs, its next childish tactic was to call for a boycott of South Dakota and many of its major industries. Mind you, the ban never went into effect--at this time it had merely been passed by the chicken-hearted legislature and signed by the governor. Meanwhile, feminists across the state were working hard to collect enough signatures to have the ban put to a referendum. WMF chose to overlook this effort and preferred to believe that this state is such a conservative backwater that only economic threats would work. They obviously never dreamed that over half of the people whose livelihoods they were threatening were in fact on the same side as they were. I for one was very offended at their haughty declaration that "no self-respecting feminist will want to vacation or do business" in my state--neither I nor the rest of the 55% of South Dakotans who agree with me can very well avoid doing those things, can we? When it became clear that the boycott was having no economic effect anyway, WMF dug its hole even deeper by insisting to the newspaper that they knew S.D. had to be hurting due to their fabulous idea, but just wouldn't admit it. I can't link to that story because it's now in a paid archive, but their tone was both whiny and patronizing. As far as I'm concerned, WMF gives feminists a bad name and should stay OUT of South Dakota politics.

Mar. 26th, 2006

OK, I do have something. I am a South Dakota native. It was a nice place to grow up and I would like to believe it is still a nice place, but as you may know the state legislature recently passed a near-total abortion ban. NO exception is to be made even in cases of rape or incest--only if the woman's life is actually in danger. This ban was passed with the stated intention of forcing the issue all the way to the Supreme Court, which supporters hope will cause Roe v. Wade to be overturned. Currently those of us opposed to the ban are petitioning to have it put to referendum in November. There will probably be no problem gathering the 16,300 or so signatures needed because people from both sides want to know whether South Dakotans in general actually support the ban. At this point it seems likely that if we can get it on the ballot, the ban will be struck down because even those normally opposed to abortion have some qualms about forcing rape and incest victims to carry their aggressors' children to term. You can bet, however, that the state will be the target of some intensive lobbying from religious fundamentalists in coming months, so nothing is certain. If the ban is upheld by a referendum, opponents will then challenge it through the judicial system, and a long and expensive court battle will undoubtedly ensue.

Last week, opponents of the ban formed the South Dakota Campaign for Healthy Families. This group is currently leading the petition effort and would represent the opposition in court if it came to that. They need money!

If you happen to live in SD, you can find information about other ways to help--particularly by soliciting petition signatures at the moment--here.

Now don't ever expect to see it updated. I'm only in it for the groups.


Henriette-Julie de Murat
can't fool the queen

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