Are you aware that, in the Year of Our Lord 2016, we have a radio rap banger about the art of sliding into someone’s Instagram DMs? Yes — I’m talking about sexting.
Sexting on a flip phone was definitely a thing when I was in high school a decade ago, and Hunter Moore’s IsAnyoneUp saga — read that, seriously — began way back in 2010 (the same year that Instagram launched, natch). But here we are, still arguing about how it’s ruining or enhancing The Lives of Women Today.
Journalist Nancy Jo Sales’ new book, American Girls, opens with a story of a middle schooler getting an Instagram message asking for nude pics. The book goes on to argue how this kind of social-media-driven sexualization is the latest and greatest form of female oppression. Point counterpoint: Alana Levinson argued last year in Matter that sexting your platonic female friends can be an empowering and self-affirming act. There are a million sides to the sexting coin!
Sext, don’t sext, whatever — as my mother told me when I informed her, two years after the fact, that I got a tattoo: “Honey, it’s your body.”Speaking of which, here’s what legislators all across the country have been doing this week to show just how much they disagree with my mom:
SHOT: A new Oklahoma law — which was passed by its House last week and awaits (likely) approval from the Senate and governor — would rescind the medical license of any doctor to perform an abortion for any reason but to save the mother’s life, and sentence said doctor to up to three years in prison. This law is, of course, unconstitutional, but remarkable in that it is a blatant middle finger to abortion rights.
SHOT: This week, Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal (R) signed a law approving state funding for crisis pregnancy centers, which you may remember as those organizations that attempt to convince pregnant women to forego abortions.
SHOT: California recently enacted a law that allows pharmacists to prescribe birth control — but an investigation at Broadly indicates that it’s actually pretty damn hard to find one who will give it to you.
SHOT: The California Medical Association is joining forces with the American Civil Liberties Union to sue the Catholic healthcare system Dignity Health, which cited religious reasons for refusing to provide necessary reproductive care to its patients.
SHOT: The newest in male birth control concepts: Tiny beads that act as decoy eggs to distract sperm! That’s some future shit for sure.
Pause. FLEX BREAK:
Alright, back to it.
SHOT: An amendment to the Tennessee state constitution that would give state legislators authority over abortion rights — basically allowing them to outlaw the procedure — is still being contested. While voters approved that amendment in 2014, a federal judge ruled last week that the way those votes were counted was not legit. This week, Tennessee’s Attorney General announced that the state would contest that ruling. Stay tuned.
SHOT: This week, the policy group Progressive Congress hosted a summit to highlight the connection between access to reproductive health care and gender-based economic inequality. Abortion access plays a key role in determining whether a woman will live in poverty, as unplanned pregnancy can have massive impact on a woman’s education and career. According to a recent study, as reported by the Guardian: “[W]omen who carry unwanted pregnancies to term are more likely to live in poverty, while 40 percent surveyed said they had sought abortions for financial reasons.”
SHOT: ATTENTION — URGENT — WE HAVE FOUND A UNICORN: A pro-life piece of legislation that actually makes sense! On Tuesday, the Missouri house passed State Rep. Sheila Solon’s (R) bill that would allow pharmacists to prescribe oral birth control. From The Missouri Times: “Solon pushed the bill as a pro-life effort that could save the state millions of dollars by preventing unwanted pregnancies.”
CHASER: So many shots! Are you drunk now? Definitely don’t text anyone. “You take the word sex, and mix it with texting — it’s called sexting. But when you add drunk texting? The words just don’t make any sense.” This is an unbelievable piece of spoken word techno from the godmother of the sexy selfie, Miss Paris Hilton: