In a recent attempt to balance the budget after having reduced state revenues by cutting taxes for corporations and the wealthy – the NC legislature voted to eliminate state funding for driver education programs at public schools across the state.
I did not pick up on this when it happened. What with their relentless attacks on poor and minority communities, public education, women’s rights, and voting rights, its really hard to keep track of how systematically this group of legislators is destroying many of the things that I love and respect about North Carolina.
Continue reading NC Legislators Cut Off Nose to Spite Face
There’s no doubt that the topic of abortion is emotionally loaded. Thursday’s (April 23) debate in the NC Senate over House Bill 465 revealed this in spades.
From Rep. Tricia Cotham’s brave disclosure of her own experience of abortion in response to a life-threatening medical complication in her first pregnancy to Rep. Pat McElraft’s story of her nephew and his wife who changed their mind about having an abortion after viewing an ultrasound, emotions were high.
Stories matter. They offer a personal context and a reference point for thinking about the topic of abortion, which is too often discussed in the abstract. However, it does matter how these stories are used in a legislative debate.
Continue reading NC Republican Legislators Reject Facts, Embrace Emotion
A couple of years ago, when my daughter was in seventh grade, I got a notice from her school that I could go and sit in on her first sex education class. I was surprised at how few parents actually showed up and far more of us were parents of girls than boys.
The film they showed was from the 1980s, complete with ginormous pads that are so outdated to look ridiculous to these kids, not to mention the clothes and the hairstyles. I was a teenager in the 1980s and I couldn’t take the film seriously. Not only that, the genders were separated and the girls watched the “girl” film and the boys watched the “boy” film. I thought to myself – they should be watching each other’s films. They must have at least as many questions about what’s happening to their opposite sex friends’ bodies as they do to their own – maybe even more!
Continue reading Safe Sex, Healthy Sex, Sacred Sex