Women’s reproductive rights have been a hot button issue throughout history. The attack on the right for women to possess full autonomy in making decisions regarding their own bodies is very present in our society today. Though we have seen victories, it’s troubling how many setbacks women still continue to face on this topic. Women are under serious threat of being denied access to safe reproductive services. Furthermore, abortion services are outrageously expensive and public funds in many states cannot be designated to provide safe and affordable abortions. These circumstances are why I chose to join the fight in protecting the rights of women by letting my legislators know that I do not support policies that dictate what women can and cannot do with their bodies and that ultimately create a dangerous health and medical environment for women. Furthermore, I wanted to tangibly support Planned Parenthood because a lack of funding could be detrimental to the accessibility of their services.
I chose to visit Planned Parenthood’s website to do some research on the different ways to advocate for their services. They offer 3 very easy advocacy methods that include: calling your legislator, tweeting at your legislator, or tagging your legislator on Facebook. In all three methods, Planned Parenthood even provides a prewritten script to use when communicating your support of Planned Parenthood to your legislator. Currently, Planned Parenthood is concerned with the GOP’s attempts at repealing the Affordable Care Act, which would leave numerous individuals without health insurance or coverage to receive necessary reproductive health services that are not even related to abortion. In addition to letting my legislators know how I feel about restricting a female’s autonomy, I donated money to Planned Parenthood. Most people who hate Planned Parenthood hate it because it provides abortion services. However, the majority of what Planned Parenthood provides are essential services for women’s’ reproductive health such as birth control, STD screenings, cancer screenings, and even pregnancy care.
The results of this attempt in advocating for the reproductive rights if women are: 1. Oklahoma’s legislators now know I refuse to let this society turn into a nightmarish episode of the Handmaid’s Tale and 2. Planned Parenthood now has some extra funds to provide necessary services to women that absolutely deserve them. I learned from this experience that it is so easy, and so gratifying, to offer support and advocacy to a cause you really care about. Often times people wonder how they can help when they really want to do some positive in the name of a cause they really believe in – donating money may not feel as gratifying as being on the frontlines of something, but ultimately it can really allow for individuals to receive services that are necessary and beneficial to them. A second thing I learned is that it’s actually very easy to call your representatives. I was a bit nervous at first and then I remember they have aides, so they don’t even answer their own phones. So, I will probably start calling every day to voice my cares and concerns because it takes less than five, even three minutes, and your representatives are reminded of what their constituents actually believe in and want.