The Resistbot Podcast

Discussing the fallout from the leaked SCOTUS draft opinion on Roe v. Wade.

Show Notes

✊🤖 Welcome to Episode 28, where we discuss the fallout from the leaked SCOTUS draft opinion over the ongoing fight for abortion rights and reproductive justice. Listen along with our amazing guests Helmi Henkin, the abortion fund link fairy, and Robin Wilson-Beattie, a disability, sexual health, and reproductive educator. This podcast is broadcast live every Sunday on Youtube; please subscribe!

  • (0:00) Intro
  • (0:51) Melanie Introduces the Show
  • (3:36) Conversation with Susan Stutz
  • (5:16) The Draft
  • (13:12) Lousiana Bill
  • (19:18) Interview with Helmi Henkin and Robin Wilson-Beattie
  • (20:56) Robin's upbringing and how she got started in her activism
  • (24:23) How abortions differ for those with disabilities
  • (30:59) How Helmi started her activism
  • (33:09) How abortion bans have made Helmi's work harder
  • (36:10) What abortions looked like for slaves and what we can learn from it
  • (38:46) A message to liberals
  • (45:04) Where to find Robin
  • (45:47) How Helmi Got Her Nickname: The Abortion Fund Link Fairy
  • (48:03) Abortion Funds Document List and
  • (51:36) Petitions
  • (53:57) Where to find Helmi
  • (55:29) Monthly Donors
  • (56:52) Closings
Mentioned on the Air
This Week's Panel
Episode edited by Angel Barrera. If you need a show edited, you can find her on Twitter here!
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Creators & Guests

Melanie Dione
Angel Barrera

What is The Resistbot Podcast?

Season 2 of The Resistbot Podcast, hosted by Melanie Dione, features a different interview every week with an organizer working to create change in their community. We aim to elevate voices without a large platform, focusing on their stories. Our pod is brought to you by the same volunteers behind the Resistbot ( chatbot that's driven over 30 million pieces of correspondence to elected officials since 2017. If you haven't given it a try, pull out your phone and text the word "resist" to the number 50409 to get started. You can text officials from your Mayor to the President, check your voter registration, start your own campaigns, and much more!

Intro: Coming together from
across the United States.

The real issues you don't
hear about elsewhere,

focusing on what matters
to you at your papers.

Welcome to resist bot live.

Melanie: Hey, y'all it's Monday, May 8th.

I'm Melanie Dione.

And this is moderately educated
cat lady live welcome this week.

I don't think there are any surprises
of what we'll be talking about.

So I want you to remember that
resists bot live is live stream.

Every Sunday at 1:00 PM Eastern on
YouTube, because after a long week

of nobody liking our Bumble's working
toward everyone being treated like

human beings is like really close.


So thank you so much for joining us.

If you're listening on a podcast,
you can join the conversation by

using the hashtag live bottle.

On Monday, May 8th, someone leaked
associate's Supreme court justice,

Samuel Alito, 68 page burn book
entry, disguise as a draft opinion.

It alleges that since women didn't have
autonomy in the 17 hundreds, then it's

more or less in the best interest of the
country that we just continue to ride that

train trampling, the rights of anyone who
has a uterus, CIS women, trans men, or

non nonbinary friends, anyone, your body.

Is a political talking
point for our government.

And though the opinion posits that this
logic won't affect freedoms like racial

equality or voting or gay marriage, it's
important to remember the most important

characteristic of Alito and people like
him, the most consistent, I should say.

They're going to lie to violate the
freedom on which this country was founded.

And that's the freedom of religion
because when you get down to the abortion

debate, it always becomes a religious one.

Now as a generation X-er, I don't know
a world without row, and it's sort of

a point of pride for us coming of age
in the nineties was very important for.

My development as a feminist or a
womanist, someone who believes that

everyone should have the rights
that everyone else is entitled to.

So this feels personal, or it makes me
realize that many of us took roles for

granted, even if unintentionally the
most important thing to remember that.

And that we all agree on here is that
democracy is the will of the people

and the people by and large believe
that a woman's bodily autonomy is

of paramount importance over her
reproductive, health and safety.

These are the things that matter.

This is how our country functions,
not just for the, some, for all.

So this week, Fellow gen X-er and
resist bot live, or Stu Susan Stutz.

And I were able to have a one-on-one chat
about how that draft opinion affected

us and also what our responsibilities
are to the generations coming behind us.

So let's take a look at that.

So Susan,

just a couple of gals thinking we were
going to have a relaxing mother's day.

What is this like for you?

And I'm asking this of, oh,
the women in our age group,

because we've always known row.

We've always, this has
always been something that's

synonymous with generation X.

Susan: Call it


Hey, call it wishful thinking.

I think you could even call
it just sheer stupidity, but

I never really ever imagined.

That Roe and Casey would fall.

I it's just, it's always been, I
mean, I was five when the opinion

was entered in 1973 and for all of my
reproductive years, it's been in place

and it's always been a safe guard.

It's always been there and, we've watched.

States, you know, since 1973, almost 1400
separate pieces of legislation have been

proposed and hundreds have been enacted.

And, as I watched that happen
across the country, I genuinely

never believed that RO.

Would fall when the draft
opinion came out last week.

It really, it blew

my mind.

You know, it's still, I'm still trying
to process the prospect of an America

without women having control over
their bodies, having the autonomy,

having that autonomy recognized,

I read.

The 98 page opinion and.

Uh, Lido, who's the author of the draft.

I'm sure our listeners know in, in
68 pages, which is the bulk of the

opinion, the other 30 pages are an index.

He talks about us.

Like we are just some random
part of this problem and he only.

It gives us agency at the very
end, when he talks about how, we're

the majority of the voting base.

And, we can run for office and be the
ones that are enacting legislation or

proposing it, but up until that point,
which is literally the second to the

last page, the actual opinion he doesn't
even really talk about us at all.

Melanie: Let's even talk about how that's
crap, because every week we're seeing.

How district lines are being drawn
in favor of conservative politicians,

conservative talking points.

So for him to throw out there,
well, if women want to do it,

then they can run for office.

When, you know, That you're sitting
on things like the voting rights

acts when we know that these
things are just stalled, you know?


Susan: We can run for office, we can
propose legislation, but when you're

having districts gerrymandered all
across the country, that makes that

argument a little less fruitful.

Or rather a lot less fruitful.

The fact that we're at 2022 and
still do not get to have complete

control over our own bodies.

It's staggering to me that I'm a 53 year
old woman and I'm still not allowed to be

in charge of what I do with my own body.

When you think about.

The legislation and the litigation
around women's reproductive system.

And then you look at the reverse side and
see that there has never been a single

piece of legislation that has waged
a war on men's reproductive systems.

And Alito makes a comment late in
the opinion about how, just because.

Abortion is only possible for women
or childbearing people because

men can't have it mean, it doesn't
mean that it's discriminatory that

a law, you know, forbidding it.

It doesn't make that discriminatory.

And how is that even

Melanie: possible?

There is no law that regulates anything
about men's bodies, nothing whatsoever.

If a man literally wants to get vertebrae
added to his spine so that he can

look taller, he can do that on this.

When we're dealing with certain bad
faith arguments, where do we stop?

Where do we decide?

Because I look at like, we're, we're
both, more or less online we're on

Twitter or Facebook or whatever.

And we'll see these endless debates
that don't really go anywhere.

The people who are.

Pro-abortion pro-choice what,
wherever you fall in this, uh,

what's becoming a spectrum and the
people who are against abortion.

And I refuse to dignify that
position with pro-life because you

don't believe in health care, you
don't believe in paid family leave.

You don't believe in mental
health care, which anyone who has.

Do just the most casual glance at
postpartum care with know that this is

something that is absolutely necessary.

So again, not pro-life, you're
pro legislating women's bodies,

and unfortunately you can often
puff, but women and people who do

not want children are always going
to get an abortion, get abortion.

Th this is, this law does not stop that.

Now what this law will do is create
a more difficult scenario for an

already overtaxed healthcare system.

And I'm seeing, coming out of I'm
using that very loosely because

we're not coming out of COVID.

People are just ignoring it, right?

So we're, we're coming out of
this, this one big healthcare

crisis that we're finding.

Just really getting eyes
on to be perfectly honest,

because it's still terrible.

People are still catching and dying
of COVID, but we're doing this and

creating a completely different health
crisis that does not have to exist

when you're not engaging decent people.

You can't expect like a decent response.

So when we say women will die,
we also have to remember, we're

dealing with the same people who
saw elderly people, poor people.

People with disabilities dying
of COVID and we're like, Hmm.

Some people going die.

I guess all of this is because
we've become too mouthy.

And I guess apparently have too many cats.

I'm sorry.

I've seen the men that you
want me to give up my cat for.

No, thank you.

I'm good.

Like it's just not, it's not worth.

Being appealing to this system,

Susan: it's, uh, it's going to be, as
you said, another healthcare crisis,

because abortion does not go away.

Women have been having abortions for
centuries since they understood minimally

about their body and their reproductive
system, they have taken steps to avoid

being pregnant in terms of the civility
we live within these constructs.

That have been around for hundreds
of years, women were chattel.

We were property up until the 20th
century and not even the early part.

It's the 20th century.

You know, it was well into the 20th
century when we were no longer considered

property and chattel and, we're entitled.

To our opinions, we're entitled
to advocate for ourselves.

And what's really disgusting about that.

Part of this is when men advocate for
themselves, when they take a firm position

with stern wording and an attitude.

They're just being men when you and I do
it and we stand up and we say, no, we're

not going to take this crap anymore.

We don't fit into that.

Well, women are feminine and
nice and you know, some of us

just aren't feminine and nice.

Some of us want to be seen as individuals

Melanie: the dangling carrot, if you're
nice enough, I'll let you have this.


I don't want to be nice.

I want.


When somebody tramples on me, I want to
kick ass and I'm not going to not do that.

To ingratiate myself to the person
trying to harm me, hurt me, roll back.

What's mine.

Where do we stand as
like you're 53, I'm 45.

This doesn't affect us as
much on a personal level of.

Individual bodies you're buying my body.

We're kind of on the tail end of that.

Well, let's think about it just from the
standpoint of, if we do, if, if one of us

were to actually get pregnant at our age,
the things that we would have to consider

Susan: the things that we
would have to consider 100%.

And I get to look at that from a
very personal, very privileged lens.

I've got a lot of options open to me
and going back to the opinion, that's

one of the things, that's mentioned
in here Alito actually set talks

about how there are avenues open to
women, in terms of birth control and

family planning and things like that.


Just disregards entirely the privilege
that comes along with those options and

how not everybody has the same access.

Melanie: We just don't.


And going back to bad faith
because I'm from what is it?

48th in education, Louisiana.

And our legislature definitely
showed where that feeling comes

in because they're not, it's not.

Um, a and a trigger state.

So I'm in one of those states where if
Roe gets repealed, that's it that's done.

I mean, Louisiana, but there
was a new bill yesterday.

That's not only coming for
abortion, but also abortion pills,

IUD I, an IUD, which I have.

They want you to be charged with as
the low, as the bill is written right

now could get you charged with murder.

It's not about life.

It's not it's about creating a
subservient class and they're

going to do it with women.

They're gonna do it with poor people.

They're gonna do it with
black and brown people.

We just talked about what was going on
with what they're doing with unhoused.

And how they're trying to create basically
another enslave class with, on house

people by forcing them into community
service for just living for just existing.

So this is not going to be, this
is something that we are going

to have to continue to fight.

And most generation X women
do have this attachment to,

to role because it's amazing.

So many things possible, even if I look
at it, just from the standpoint of black

women, what it's done for teen pregnancy,
where we have girls who would've been

knocked out of contention for anything
able to pursue education, we have the

most rapidly growing higher education.

Demographic is women.

And if I'm not mistaken, Because
not unrelated to the privileges, the

opportunities that role offered, right.

Being able to have some kind of choice
and not just letting life happen to you.


We love kids, kids, a great society
is, they're very wonderful part

of our society, but as a parent,
and I'm sure you can agree.

This is something you want to do
if you don't really want to do it

Susan: 100%.

I, there are several women in my life
who have always known that children

were not in the cards for them.

And, that's something that they've
recognized about themselves and,

that's got its own set of problems
because people cannot accept that

a childbearing individual would not
want to have a child control face.

Melanie: Assaults happen.

Also birth control is I don't want to
leave this out because this, and it, it

circulates on social media, but we also
have to explain that, we have some big

folks in the United States of America
and birth control has a weight limit.


I believe the pill, the abortion
pill has a weight limit of 155

birth control pill has last.

I recall one 19.

Wow in a country where our average
weight is our biggest size.

This is where right back at
controlling women's bodies

and keeping women subservient.

Because again, we've gotten
too overeducated in mouthy.

Susan: We've gotten overeducated and
mouthy, and we've finally decided

that we're not going to sit back
and take it and just let you know,

the men in glass houses decide what
happens to us and for us and about us.

And I say this out loud as much
for myself as for anybody else.

Don't give up

Melanie: this isn't the end.

So before we let you go through.

What is it that you want our folks to
walk away from after this conversation?

Susan: that's very easy to be discouraged.

It's not a.

Until it's over and it's not, there are
still going to be states where this is

permitted for a lot of us will have to
turn our attention to the fundraising.

You're still going to have a section
of the population that is privileged

again, and is going to be able to
pick up and go to another state

easily to get the healthcare that they
need and make no mistake about it.

Abortion is health.

For anybody who says it's
not, that's not true.

It is absolutely healthcare
and it's necessary healthcare.

But you're going to have people who don't
have the money to go somewhere else.

I know for me, A lot of it is going
to be dipping into my pocket and, and

trying to help those that I can, because

Melanie: I can, that's exactly
how I was like, yeah, I'm mama.

Now I have the purse and this is right.

This is how we, you know, it's, it's
the same as when we help our kids,

adults though, they may be, and, and
this will, it'll be a lot of mamas

and daddies and everyone in between
aunties, uncles, whoever opens up.

For people who need this care,
there's so much about generational,

fighting and all of that.

But this is really one of those
things as a gen X-er I think this

is something that we really, this is
ours and we really need to, this is

not the time to fall back on that.

Thank you so much, Susan.

I'm so glad that you were able to join
us on and let's, let's talk about how

this was supposed to be our weekend off.

Can always go back to that again.

So thank you.

Thank you for taking the time,
because this is very important.

This is

Susan: hugely important to me.

It always has been it's, you know, I
was not politically aware growing up,

but women's reproductive rights were
instilled in me at a very young age.

And so it's something
I've always believed in.

Melanie: Right.

Even when I didn't have political
leanings, I knew that my body was not for.

Yes, people's decision-making
so thank you so much, Susan.

My pleasure.

Our favorite question here at resist
bot live is who's doing the work.

Whenever policy impacts people.

There's always the people who
stand up and answer the call and

point us in the direction to go.

Especially when it comes down
to protecting our freedom.

I was able to talk to Helmi Henkin, also
known as the abortion fund link ferry

and Robin Wilson, Beattie, a veteran in.

Sexual and reproductive rights, not
only for women, but also people with

disabilities, they were able to talk to
us about not only what the work looked

like before, but also what they're doing
now to prepare us for what lies ahead.

So let's listen in to that.

Our focus this week and every week
is always on who's doing the work.

So when that draft opinion
came out, there were people who

absolutely sprung into action.

One of those people was Helmi Henkin.

Hi, Helmi welcome.

Helmi: Thanks for having me.

Melanie: Thank you for joining us.

I thank you again, also for joining us
on our wonderful Twitter space Tuesday.

Let's talk a bit about what role
looks like or what this work look

like before Monday and then after.

But before we do that, we have one other
guest and that is Robin Wilson Beattie.

Hi Robin.

Robin: Hi.

Well, thank you for inviting
me and it's nice to be here.

Melanie: Thank you so much.

Thank you both so much for joining us.

I'm going to start with you.

Actually, Robin, many of us knew
what was coming down the road,

especially someone like you who
works in reproductive justice.

It's not, it wasn't necessarily a surprise
that the draft was coming or that the

opinion would be what we saw, but.

Some of the language, the timing,
all of those things were, were

jarring and throw us off balance.

So I'd like to talk a bit first
about what you were preparing for.

And once you knew basically what
is what's coming in terms of row in

how the Supreme court is going to.

Rule, even if they adjust the opinion,
what does that look for you now?

What was it like then?

And what does that look like for you now?

Robin: Just in the past week, like you'd

mentioned earlier, I'm also gen X.

I did listen to my elders talking
about what happened when somebody got.

As they call it.


you got pregnant, what options there
were, or the lack of options basically,

and what happened, but how I kind of
got an inkling about how people were

focused and how the Christian right.

Was focused on reproductive
eliminating reproductive rights.

I grew up in the south in
Arkansas and little rock I used.

Babysit because lived in the same
neighborhood as a, it was a upper

middle-class neighborhood full
of doctors, lawyers, engineers.

I babysat for all of them, of
many of them were in groups

like co focus on the family.

These, early Christian, political, like
centered rights groups, you know, as

a teenager, Babysitting, listening to
these views and stuff, but also seeing

how people they were organizing and
how they were getting together and

getting money together to fight, against
things like birth control and abortion.


How you can get, who can get access to
birth control and also sex ed from a

teenager, I knew that there were forces
out there of people who were, they

were getting together and doing what
they can can to fight these rights.

But I also learned that
there is money behind.

As well from there, I remember
going, it was called March for

women's lives back in 1991.

I'm freshmen college.

I remember like the saying
of Bush, stay out of mine.

We're talking about daddy, not
from, but I would say in the last

decade, that for me, like the.

Siren has gone off.

I am solutions-based and focused
on, okay, this is what happens.

What are we going to do now?

But I also realized like the hypocrisy
though, when it came to birth control or

controlling birth with disability, because
that's what I do is I talk about all

things in the intersection of disability.

Sexuality and reproductive health,
people with disabilities are pressured

into having abortions because God forbid
that you have, maybe that is stabled.

also, and if you think of the eugenics
movement, people that are considered by

government and desirable for reproducing
are, basically stripped of the.

You deuce in the south, thinking
about black women were targeted for

that, you know, that they had that
phrase, Mississippi appendectomy,

and then talking about an abortion
here because getting a certification

in sex and sexual health education
and getting that cert certification,

one of our projects was kind of.

Some kind of action plan.

This is when you know, the thing, the
laws were coming out, more laws were

coming out around heartbeat, like
saying heartbeat loss, but basically

an organized way of how we raise the
funds to financially be able to support

them to come here in order to come.

I live in California now I
wasn't Atlanta, but now I'm here.

So that was the other thing, because
I know what it's like to have to

have an abortion in a heartbeat.


If you are pregnant with a disability
being pressured into having an abortion,

I was pressured very heavily by them
and also just other people are like, oh,

uh, well, yeah, well I'm
against abortion, but you

didn't need to be pregnant anyway.

You'd be like, basically,
you've got enough on your plate.

And I have a kid, I had my
abortion after I had my child.

So, because I knew what pregnancy.

And I knew the kind of support that
I needed, and I was not going to

have that at that time, but I also
realized the impact of the, these

draconian laws around abortion.


But you had to sit there and wait 48
hours after you first go to the clinic

and they make you look at a sign of.

And you're supposed to be able
to opt, not to be able to see

it, like, or have it turned away.

But the doctor that was doing was pretty
cruel and he was like, oh, I'm sorry.

I forgot.

You said that.

Melanie: I just want to reiterate
to people right now that when we're

talking about this, when we talk about
abortion, when we talk about access,

when we talk about body autonomy, what
people are not recognizing is not only

is this, like on the one hand we have.

Our rights to, to have abortion, but also
our right to decide that we do want to

have kids in and in the event that we're,
we're not as, as you put the language,

they use desirable, desirable parents
who gets to who gets to be a parent who

gets to be a mom or, and I just want to.

Read this quote from all of our friends by
Lissa Thompson, who, uh, is friend of the

show who has, who's doing great work with
the century foundation and the quote, the

century foundation released a statement
at the core reproductive rights are

disability rights, disability, justice,
and reproductive justice are centered

on bodily autonomy, individual choice.

And decision-making and advancing
disability and advancing

disability, economic justice.

We must send to reproductive justice
and ensure access to healthcare for

all including access to abortions.

This was, uh, co-written by
Rebecca Vallas, Kimberly max

stead and Vanessa Thompson.

But I want to ask you one more
question, Robin, when we're talking

about where we are now in this
work, not only in this post draft.

And again, a draft don't think if
you have a, if you have an abortion

scheduled, don't forget to get it.

Like don't, don't feel
like you can't get it.

Not, this is not the law.

You need to get it.

Now, when we're talking about this post
draft, fever that we're in right now,

and then combining that with autonomy,
autonomy as what does that look like?

The combination of the two.

What does that look
like for you right now?


me, autonomy is, you know, basically, um,
being able to have the choice of whether I

want to have a kid or whether I don't want
to have a kid, you know, we're often we're

fighting, for autonomy over our bodies
and our lives and being supported in

the rights to make decisions that affect

our body.

I want to ask one more question when
you are not only for yourself, but

also when you're educating other
people who need abortions or educating

service providers, what's the thing
that you think people need to remember

most when servicing people with
disabilities, especially and right

now we're talking in the, um, in the.

Realm of abortion, uh, in health care.

What is the thing that you want?

You want everyone to walk away
from this conversation with

regarding abortion care for people
with disabilities, abortion care

Robin: needs to be assessable.

Do you realize that it lacks access?

I was my own abortion experience.

I could not, I went to, an abortion
clinic, you know, your typical, okay.

This is what we do, basically.

Where the whole lobby is full of
people because of my disability.

They were scared and
they, they wouldn't do it.

My disability.

Compounded this, I went
through that two day period.

And when I came back to get the
abortion, they were like, they

couldn't, they weren't able to
make it, I guess, accessible.

As in like even being able to,
I guess, access the table or the

equipment or anything like that.

But not only that, they were
just, they, for some of my.

It terrified them.

And so they were like, we can't do this.

We can't do the abortion.

I had to have it done in a hospital
and finding a doctor in a hospital

that would do the abortion.

And then I had to go, I went, I
had to go through my insurance.

I thank God I had health
insurance, but, and so.

But they'd only had one
abortion doctor listed

Melanie: about what we have and our
state three, there are three abortion

providers in the state of Louisiana that
it's on its own special sauce right now.

And, um, we're going to get
into that a little bit later.

I want to pivot a little bit to help me.

Hey Helmi.

So I want, I, we talked about it
in the space, but I'd like for

you to talk a little bit now.

Similar because like, you know,
Robin and I, when it comes down

to abortion, we're all salts.

We've, you know, this is all, this
is something where, what 20, 20 plus

years as when, probably closer to
30, because my, my awareness and my

approach choice, I remember the first
paper I wrote about being pro-choice.

I was like, And my parents were furious,
but you know, you're, you're a bit

younger than us, but still in this, and
in this world where we're like by the,

by now we expected we're 50 years in.

We expected even to not have
to deal with this at all.

So let's talk about what that's
like for you as a younger person who

has only, ever known a world with.

What would it look what
the work look like for you?

You kind of how you sprang into it and
what it's looked like for you in the last.

Helmi: Yeah.

So I feel like on one hand I grew
up in the bay area of California,

which is a liberal bubble.

We had completely
comprehensive sex education.

They included the nearest place
to get an abortion in that.

And then I moved to Tuscaloosa, Alabama
for college, which is where I started my.

Retro activism.

I first got plugged in to
reproductive justice activism

through being a clinic escort at
the abortion clinic in Tuscaloosa,

which is one of three in the state.

And that led to opportunities to co-found
an abortion fund and then become.

Leader of that clinic escort group.

I also had opportunities to canvas
around different rep related issues.

For example, there was a
constitutional amendment that

passed when I was living in Alabama.

That makes abortion outlawed without
exceptions when Roe is overturned.

I feel like in terms of my experience
as an activists, I've only known this

world where abortion is constantly
under attack, where abortion has been

systematically, stripped away access
has been stripped away for decades.

People know about row.

There was another Supreme court case
called planned parenthood versus Casey.

And essentially what that decision did
is it created this undue burden standard.

So abortion restrictions are okay.

As long as it doesn't provide an
undue burden to the pregnant person.

And so, as you can imagine, anti-abortion
legislators took that and ran with it.

And so in the majority of the
country, we've been living in

a post reality for so long.

I've learned a lot from people who are
older than me, Abortion funders, clinic,

escorts, advocates, activists who have
entered this work in various points.

Since Roe was decided, even since before
that where the landscape of rights has

looked different, the, you know, the
courts, decisions have looked different.

So, but in my experience as
an activist, it's only been.

Gotten worse and worse in the
states that I have lived in.

So in Alabama, you know, we had
that constitutional amendment.

And then in 2019, we had that
very high profile ban that

got blocked by the courts.

And then for grad school, I moved to St.

Louis, Missouri and Missouri
in 2019 had its own ban.

But in Missouri, abortion
is essentially inaccessible.

There's one clinic in St.


But through all the different
they're called targeted regulation

of abortion provider laws that
has closed all the other clinics.

And, like Robin was saying, we
do have a 72 hour waiting period.

You have that state mandated counseling,
the mandated ultrasound, you have to.

The two pelvic exams before you can
have an abortion, the same person

who does your counseling, the same
provider has to do your abortion.

Like they've just made
it as hard as possible.

So that one clinic essentially refers as
many patients as possible to Illinois.


Louis is about 20 minutes
away from Illinois.

You just cross, cross the
Mississippi river and Illinois.

A reproductive health act, which
basically removed most of their trap laws.

And so planned parenthood
has a location there.

There's an independent clinic in
granite city called hope clinic.

And so why not just drive 20 more
minutes where you can have your

abortion in one day, you don't have
this fear-mongering counseling.

You don't have these in basically.

Requirements to get your
abortion, then have to come to Ms.

B in Missouri and have to
go through all of this.

Um, but you know, in Alabama
it was the same thing.

I really don't think about when you need
an abortion and you live in the states.

It's not just the cost of the procedure.

It's figuring out how
you're going to get there.


You need lodging a lot of times,
depending on, you know, how far away

you're traveling from or how many days
your procedure takes, you need childcare.

You need to take time off work.

There's all these additional costs
in addition to the financial costs

and all these additional barriers
that people have to navigate.

So through my activism, Clinic
escorting abortion funding, canvassing.

I feel like I've become really
intimately familiar with how these

intersectional oppressive systems impact
and create these barriers for people.

And it's just strengthened my
commitment to dismantle these

barriers in any way I can,

Melanie: because you have to look at
the reason, the rationale behind it.

Like what is, what is the end game?

And abortion is not.

Abortion have

Robin: been around since people
figured out about pregnancy

Melanie: and

Robin: we can, you know,

Melanie: we can talk, get into it, go in.

Robin: One of the things, um, I
shared an article, but, something

that slaves, used was, co.

Which is an extract.

I have this, you can get it on
Amazon to have, in order to have.

Because not wanting to have a child
that is born into slavery, there

been all kinds of remedies and things
that people have talked about for

centuries, black, blue cohosh, combine
it with vitamin C, in terms of like

the slaves who you want to talk about.

No body autonomy.

Melanie: If you do.

Take this upon yourself to
terminate this pregnancy.

What does that mean if you're found out?

Robin: Yeah, exactly.

And so, and so there was a plant that,
basically that's supposed to counteract

the masters and stuff would make them
try to make them take so that the

cotton root wouldn't do it to work.

But what I've started doing, like
the past 10 years has been gathering

all the various different methods.

How to, you know, basically get in an
abortion, the outside of this health,

the medical setting, if they're
gonna eliminate that, like how can

we take matters into our own hands?

Women have, shared this kind of
knowledge with each other, for,

millennials, especially after getting
pregnant after experiencing, what

it was like to get an abortion.

You know, the south and you know, and this
was in, like in Atlanta and, Atlanta is a

big city, it's in Georgia and those laws.

but I also found out too, though,
if you have money and all this

other things, like you can get it
in the hospital billed as a DNC.

And that's how my abortion

Melanie: was built.

I'm glad you mentioned that because
when we talk about this opinion, this

draft opinion, this coming opinion,
however you want to look at it.

It's not going to stop
women from having abortions.

Oh no.

Before row after row with people
who do not want to be pregnant will

stop themselves from being pregnant.

The only thing that.

Is standing in the way of his
people being able to do this safely.

And these B states there are 13 states
that have trigger laws that when,

if Roe is overturned, they're locked
and loaded with, you know, absolute

bans on abortion, full stop I'm in
new Orleans where we do whatever

we want, but the rest of Louisiana.

Very much a red state.

So one of the refrains that I always
have time to call to task is our

lovely liberal friends who likes to
say things like they're so great.

They means, they mean they mean so well,
but who loves to say things like we

should stop sending funding to red states.

Can you shut up with that?

I don't, I don't.

I usually try to be nicer, but.

Just shut up.

Helmi: That's one of
my soap boxes for sure.

Robin: Yeah.

I live here now in the bay area.

I love talking about how this is a
bubble and you cannot look at, you know,

what the culture is around abortion
and sex ed and all of that here.

And compare the re and think the
rest of the country is like that.

That's not how it works.


Melanie: you, you have those few
pockets and yes, there are those

states and that is the majority of
the, the, the condensed population.

But when you start spreading out,
that's not everybody's reality.

And it's definitely every blue
state is really a red state.

That's lucky enough to
have a couple of large.


Helmi: like California, for example, has
by number the most Republicans, like in

terms of numbers, Democrats in certain
more red states, more Democrats voted

for Biden then for then in California
or, you know, something like that.

But one thing I also try and
stress is these people in red.

They don't deserve the IM the consequences
of the policies enacted by their

oppressors, by saying we should succeed
or, they deserve a plague or whatever

natural disasters, or we should boycott.

It's just further punishing those who
are already being punished, which is

low-income people, black and brown people,
which, you know, are the majority of black

people in this country with the south.

So I, I, abortion is my soap
box, but also getting into.

Blue state liberals about they need
to keep themselves out of their

Robin: route

Melanie: is, yeah, I love it because
that's, that's the absolute truth.

These are, these are people who
live, where they live and there's

an immense amount of privilege.


Helmi: thing that people don't
realize is people are very focused

at the federal level and that's true.

And it's true that the Supreme court.

Super conserved now.

And Trump packed the lower courts with
a bunch of judges that are anti-abortion

and are gonna rubber stamp, whatever
abortion restrictions come their way.

But at the state level,
this has been happening.


It's not just at the federal level
share, they could have passed whatever

the women's health protection act or
codifying Roe or something of that nature.

But, Republican super majorities,
you know, the state level have

been working for decades and
are working overtime right now.

I, you know, for example, in
Louisiana the abortion restriction

that went to the Supreme court, in
June versus Russo assigned into.

into law, by a democratic governor.

Yeah, I agree that a lot of this
conversation that I've seen and the

discourse that I've seen after this
draft has been people who maybe haven't

been paying attention, who are talking
about 2016 and 2020 and stuff like that.


Trump had a huge impact in terms of
the courts, but also at the state

level, this has been happening.

Melanie: And I want to our, our eye in
the sky, our wonderful producer angel

brought out of a very important thing.

I'm in, you know, they're, they're
trying to make abortion a felony and

she pointed out what can't felons do?

They can't vote.

In the we're not being
engaged in good faith.

That has to be called out.

That has to be addressed.

It has to be reiterated.

And sometimes it's exhausting when
you're wherever, whether it's in personal

conversation, on social media, wherever
where you feel like a broken record,

where you're just arguing and correcting
people, but somebody has to speak truth to

power, but it's, it's so mired down just
the agenda that they want to regulate.

Uteruses when we, because when
we're dealing with this, we're

not only talking about CIS women.

We're also talking about trans
men who still have uteruses.

There's a different method of engagement.

When we're talking about what healthcare
looks like for trans men, which is

going to be another show because.

You know, I love going to the source.

So we're, we're going to have to talk to
trans men about what this looks like for

them, what this, cause that's something
that we still have yet to tap into what

these restrictions are going to look like.

For them.

And so before we go any further,
I want to thank you Robin and give

you the opportunity to let us know.

I like to ask everyone.

We have, obviously the, uh, the abortion
issue is on all of our plates, but I'd

love for you to talk about what else you
have your eye on and what organizations

that you would like to shout out that
you think our audience should know about.

Robin: I on, you know, several things
because I feel like they're all related.

And one of my causes is education.

And people having access to
education and being able to

have access to have education.

And, but, um, also.

But in underserved areas like rural
the rural America, we're talking

about like the south or whatever.

And you know, a lot of, there
are a lot of black people who

live in rural areas in the south.

The organization that I support
the buffaloes

get is for children.

Of color to get scholar ships,
to help them and, education,

which could be trade school.

It can be to help you get your tools for
trade school, or something that's at that,

or, it can go towards college grad school.

That is an organization
that is dear to my heart.

And one that I wholeheartedly

Melanie: support.

Thank you.

And one more thing.

Can you let the folks know.

Uh, you can find me on Twitter,

Robin: I'm at sex abled and,
um, you can find me there.

Um, Instagram, I'm not quite as
active, but on Robin L WB, but

Twitter and you can find me on there.

I think I kind of have,

Melanie: yeah, I know I do.

So don't feel bad.

Don't feel bad.

You're in good company with, um,
at the very least me and Christine.

On there.

So thank you so much, Robin, and
cannot wait to have you back.

Robin: I can't wait to come back much.

Melanie: So Helmi.

Can we talk a bit about your nickname?

I love it.

The abortion link fairy.

Helmi: I've been involved in repro
activism since 2016 in various roles.

Like I was saying, and in my current
season of my life, I'm not affiliated

with a particular organization, but
one thing I've been doing my whole

time in the rep pro realm is whenever
I see an article, particularly on

Twitter, I'm on Instagram and Facebook,
but Twitter is my that's my realm.

Whenever I'd seen an article about.

Abortion relating to a specific state.

I would be like anyone interested
in promoting abortion access

in state should donate to funds
username, and then the link.

And so I've been doing this for
years and I had it all on a little

note on my phone and I also had a
thread that I made with more of.

Consolidated resources for a bunch
of states after Amy Coney Barrett

was confirmed that I would share
on more national articles, but in

September I asked my followers, if
it would be helpful for them to.

If I made it into a document, my little
notes up with all the different states.

And they said, yes.

And so I made it into a document.

So since September, I've been able to
copy paste my little state things, but

then also when it's a national one,
Which I feel like has been increasing,

in the news I can promote my document.

So on Monday night I was just on Twitter.

Scrolling, met gala,
looks like everyone else.

And I saw the political article
about the draft leaking and I

immediately went into their prize
and I replied with my document.

And then if I saw replies going
viral, I would reply to all

those, Replies with my document.

And I immediately went on tweet limit.

My document just went viral by itself.

And so that's what abortion
donation link ferry refers to is.

I'm very extremely online.

And I would, I'm always the first
to actually promote resources in

these replies because, I learned that
there's a lot of well-meaning people

out there who just have no idea.

What to do to help because abortion
is not something they think about.

If it's not in the news or if
they don't personally need one

or know somebody who needs one.

What ended up happening is somebody
from Squarespace reached out to me and

offered to help me make it a website.

So now there's my document, the original
Google doc bit dot L Y slash abortion

funds, Twitter with a F and T capitalized.

Keeping it accessible with Camelot.

And then there's also donate, which is

the website version of it.

And basically what both these
resources have is state-by-state.

The abortion funds that people should
donate to and follow and get involved in.

If they want to help planned parenthood
named Raul, these national organizations,

they have the biggest name recognition,
and they also have the biggest.

They have multi-million dollar budgets,
meanwhile, abortion funds that are

operating on shoestring budgets.

I know from my experience as an
abortion fender and abortion fund

cofounder, particularly what it's like
to have a baby fund and, you know,

abortion funds can't fund everybody.

They have to turn people away.

You see posts on social media, all
the time of abortion funds saying

we reached our monthly budget
limit or our health plan is closed.

So, you know, What these
restrictions are going to do.

We've been living in a post-sale reality,
but 26 states once rose overturned,

whether they have trigger bands,
constitutional amendments, pre-roll bands

that haven't been overturned, or they
have just restrictions that are blocked by

courts, but that deem abortion accessible.

They're going to ban abortion and.

These people are going to have
to travel farther and farther.

They're going to have their appointments.

Later in later their appointment, their
procedures are going to get more and more

expensive and abortion funds have been
upholding this infrastructure for decades.

They know the landscape,
they know what's required.

We've been preparing for this moment
and it's really just all hands on.

So that's why I'm just so passionate
about sharing information so that

people don't reinvent the wheel
so that people plug into the

organizations, are they doing this work?

And if there's one good thing that
came out of this week, it's that

people woke up it's that people are
mobilized and galvanized, and these

funds are having a huge influx of money.

And, once this.

This is out in the news again, hopefully
at least some people are recurring monthly

donors and people are more aware of
ways to help and how much help is needed

Melanie: when we get the person
we like or the party we like, or

whatever, you know, however people
have a sense of security or comfort.

There's a, a tendency to
get a little bit complacent.

That's part of the reason why we are here.

I think there are some.

Rights that we, that we took for granted.

And no, it takes work.

Democracy takes work full stop is, and we
haven't gone too much into the opinion,

mostly because the opinion is crap, but
also because it's already been covered,

but we know we've seen time after time.

All of the things that are going to,
that that are on the chopping block.

When you look at it through
the lens of, well, this wasn't

in the constitution before.


It wasn't in the constitution before,
because you were not listening to women in

the 17 hundreds talk out loud in public.

So it's absurd.

It is absolutely absurd to use that.

The metric before we go, I want
to go into, because every week we

have petitions, so I want to go
into the petitions that we have.

Um, the first one is
codify Roe versus Wade.

Right now we have 5,436
signatures with a goal of 10,000.

If you would like to be 5,437 texts
P as in Paul, F as in Frank, H E

R O that's P F hero 2 5 0 4 0 9.

We also have codify Roe versus
Wade and expand SCOTUS now.

And for that one, we have 2,997.


We'd like to get to 300,
which is just far away.

You can get to 97, 98, 99 to 3000.

It's okay, go ahead.

Text 5, 0 4 0 9 2 P as in Paul, G as in
Gary, he was in question O P as in Paul.

And another one.

This is one of my favorites.

We have, uh, Jonathan who has done
the letter a day opposing force birth.

And he's also done another day.

One of writing until abortion is
protected by law, and that is P U U B T J.

If you text that to 5 0 4, 0 9.

We that is just under 2000
signatures, which is amazing.

It's a very simple to the point
letter, but it gets right to the

heart of it because by and large,
we live in a democracy, which is

run by the will of the people.

And the majority of the people in
this country are in favor of abortion.

So 5 0 4 0 9, for any of
these, or if you want.

Different wording.

If there's, if there's something
else that you would like to say,

there are resources on
to help you craft your letter.

But you can also just text petition to
5 0 4 0 9 and start your own letter.

I love to like compose it and in
notes and just copy and paste.

It's as easy as that, you don't
even have to put your phone down.

So before we go home yet, like you
to tell the folks where to find you.

Helmi: Yeah.

Y'all can find me on Instagram
or Twitter at Helsinki.

H E L M S I N K I it's a fun play on my
first name and the capital of Finland.

And you know, I'm always happy
to answer people's questions.

I've been fielding a
lot of questions about.

What this means, um, what's the best ways
to help, you know, whatever you have.

You can send me a DM on either one.

Melanie: Thank you.

Thank you.

Thank you, hommie.

And cannot wait to have you back.

Helmi: I would love to be back.

Thank you for having me.

Melanie: What amazing people I
want to thank Helmi and Robin

and Susan for joining this week.

And I want to thank Christine
and Athena for their work every

week with resist spotlight.

This week, Congress is
voting on codifying Roe vs.


And unfortunately it is not expected to
pass the filibuster, which brings me.

to the final petition of the day.

That is to destroy the filibuster.

If you text P Z, Z C O G to 5 0 4 0 9, you
can sign and send to your representative.

Destroy the filibuster.

I want to thank you all for joining.

If you want to learn more,
you can go to resist that bot.

If you'd like to vote volunteer, you
can email us at volunteer at resistance.

If you'd like to donate, you can also
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And we have quite a few of them this week.

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you like we do every week.

Thank you.

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