Stonewall National Monument

“I’m designating the Stonewall National Monument as the newest addition to America’s national parks system. Stonewall will be our first national monument to tell the story of the struggle for LGBT rights. I believe our national parks should reflect the full story of our country – the richness and diversity and uniquely American spirit that has always defined us. That we are stronger together. That out of many, we are one.” – President Barack Obama

On June 24, 2016 President Obama designated the site of the Stonewall uprising and birthplace of the modern LGBT civil rights movement the “Stonewall National Monument.” This new monument is a testament to the diversity, inclusiveness, and individual freedom that make America great.

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Fox News’ Megyn Kelly Challenges North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory to Justify Anti-LGBT Law

Megyn Kelly presses NC Governor to explain the rational for the ‘bathroom law.’ I love her insight when she said: “I’ve been in women’s bathrooms my whole life. We don’t have the urinal situation. We got the stalls. We get to go in, we do our business, and like it’s not – we don’t see each other. So why are you concerned about young girls exposing themselves or seeing somebody else exposed in a women’s bathroom?”

Today the Obama administration issued guidance directing public schools to allow transgender students to use bathrooms matching their gender identity. A joint letter from the Departments of Justice and Education went out to schools with guidelines to ensure that “transgender students enjoy a supportive and nondiscriminatory school environment.”

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Study Finds that Anti-Abortion Laws Don’t Reduce The Abortion Rate, Contraceptives Do.

A  study,  published in the medical journal The Lancet, reported that between 1990 and 2014 an average of 56 million abortions took place each year worldwide.

The study, which was done in collaboration with the World Health Organization, concluded that anti-abortion laws do not reduce the number of abortions. In fact, in countries where abortions are illegal the incidence of abortions was estimated to be as high as in countries where it is legal. The study reviewed data from a 25 year period and found that the annual abortion rate in developed nations dropped from 46 to 27 per 1000 women.

The high rate of abortions in less developed countries highlights the need for better access to contraception, including the pill, implants and IUDs, the researchers said.

“In developing countries family planning services do not seem to be keeping up with the increasing desire for smaller families,” explained lead author Gilda Sedgh from the Guttmacher Institute in New York.

“More than 80 percent of unintended pregnancies are experienced by women with an unmet need for modern methods of contraception, and many unwanted pregnancies end in abortion.”

 

This was in large part due to a sharp reduction in Eastern Europe, where the rate fell by more than half as modern contraceptive methods became widely available.

In the developing world, however, the abortion rate remained virtually the same, declining from 39 to 37 per thousand women.

The overall abortion rate in Africa, where the vast majority of abortions are illegal, increased slightly in 2014 compared to the preceeding 24 years to 34 abortions per 1000 women of child bearing age.

“The obvious interpretation is that criminalising abortion does not prevent it but, rather, drives women to seek illegal services or methods,” Diana Greene Foster, a professor at the University of California in San Francisco, said in a comment, also in The Lancet.

Lack of access to contraceptives where abortion is illegal often results in unintended pregnancy and unsafe abortions, she said.

“Such women face an increased risk of maternal mortality, and bear children that they are not ready to care for and often cannot afford,” she added.

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Transgender Man and His Colleagues in North Carolina

In this new ad, Zeke Christopoulos – a transgender man who lives in Asheville, North Carolina – and two of his professional colleagues discuss their concerns about the discriminatory House Bill 2, which knocked down existing non-discrimination protections for LGBT people and banned transgender people from using public restrooms. One of Zeke’s co-workers, Patricia Hickling Beckman, shares her initial reactions to learning Zeke transitioned from female to male, and Zeke explains the absurd possibility of what could happen to him under HB 2 when a transgender man like himself uses a public bathroom.

This video is a joint product of the American Unity Fund, Freedom for All Americans and Equality North Carolina, state and national organizations working toward comprehensive non-discrimination protections for LGBT people in North Carolina and nationwide.

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Oklahoma abortion bill would revoke doctors’ licenses

Honestly, Oklahoma is not on our radar screen to open our medical practice. But I suspect that Oklahoma will loose a lot of doctors –  not to mention the legal aspects.

According to the Star Trubune, Oklahoma is just a signature away from revoking the licenses of most doctors who perform abortions.

Under a bill passed by the legislature last week, doctors who perform abortions — defined in the measure as “unprofessional conduct” — would be barred from obtaining or renewing their medical licenses. The bill would not apply to abortions performed to save a mother’s life, although the bill lacks similar exceptions abortions in cases of rape or incest.

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