1st class photo of Supreme Court, 1867
So, my lovelies,
My personal belief is that you and I will benefit most by focusing on educated and scientific thought. When we keep learning and evolving, we will automatically question and make decisions that are best for ourselves and others. Read on…
It’s the first days of May and already (ahead of schedule) the true colors of the U.S. Supreme court have shown. And I must say—though not totally unexpected, the three recent Trump nominees to SCOTUS have certainly manipulated (lied?) themselves onto our nation’s highest court when they, under sworn testimony, stated that Roe vs. Wade (1973) was the “law of the land” and therefore needed to be upheld.
With the recent leaked draft of an opinion in Roe V. Casey, it appears the majority of justices (in particular the three nominated by Trump) have changed their minds. With six of the justices being Catholic, this comes as no surprise to me. And of course, we have the conservative political party trying to take the focus away from the disastrous opinion by holding news conferences and saying the biggest problem is the leak. That in itself is hypocritical—it was those same people who have taken away our (yours and mine) right to privacy. But the Supreme Court has a right to privacy? No law has been broken by the leak. In fact, the night before Roe V. Wade (1973) was announced to the world, the opinion was leaked to a newspaper. This is NOT the first SCOTUS leak, and probably will not be the last.
I thought I would post a photo of the 1867 SCOTUS--with Justice Alito quoting white men from two centuries previous to justices in that first photo--to show how far back SCOTUS has stepped (500 fucking years!!) Let’s focus on what Justice Alito said. It is true the constitution did not address abortion, but it also didn’t address women sitting on the court. Abortion was simply part of a woman’s life in the U.S. until the mid 1800s. We followed the British common law which stated abortion was illegal only after the quickening (movement) of the baby. Mothers usually felt this between the fourth and sixth month. Embryos do not have heartbeats. A flutter can be detected at six weeks, but a heartbeat cannot be heard until twelve weeks. That’s the end of the first trimester or beginning of the 4th month.
In the mid 1800s, doctors (males) felt that their competition (midwives and healers—females) were “getting out of hand” (taking business away from them). These physicians argued they had more medical knowledge about fetuses and should thus be the only ones to determine when life begins. (Does any of this sound like the typical white male ego????)
The newly formed American Medical Association (all-white men) jumped on board and took up the cause of the white male doctors—despite the untruths that doctors knew more about the fetus than did midwives or healers (no-one knew about fetuses back then). Nonetheless, by the early 1900s every state had made abortion illegal—which is why so many women died from back-alley abortions. The need has always been there to abort pregnancies and will continue.
Why is it conservatives and the “Far-Right” want to eliminate abortion but not help support the child once it’s born? This total act of hypocrisy is so typical of today’s political system. SCOTUS nominees can lie to the court about their intentions; people who protest the loudest against abortion are never around to help financially support that same child. They don’t want their tax dollars spent doing anything to help a baby grow strong and healthy when it was that same infant whose life they screamed had a right to exist! What are these people smoking?? It simply makes no sense.
Justice Alito quoted Sirs Edmund Cooke and Matthew Hale, men who believed witches should be murdered by the state. They also believed it was okay for husbands to rape their wives! If you doubt me, look it up. (I suspect there’s a law clerk out there who is in big trouble!)
Remember, the U.S. Constitution was written at a time when people OWNED slaves. Slavery was justified in the bible—so they said. We had to have a civil war that freed the slaves. But we all know and recognize the Jim Crow laws (legalizing segregation) in the south were in force for another 100 years after slaves were freed. There are those of us who recognize that Jim Crow is alive and well today in our prison system.
Then we had to have a constitutional amendment that dealt with integration of schools! Back in 1954, the Supreme Court handed down an opinion in the Brown V. Board of Education case stating all state funded schools must be integrated. So what did racial bigots (whites) do? They opened private schools that did not have to follow the law of the land.
But still that wasn’t enough. Along came bible-thumping Jerry Falwell quoting the same passages that were used to justify segregation in 1776. (Talk about going backward!) Thus, the Far-Right is born. But because these same evangelicals were losing political influence they had to come up with a different focus. Guess what! They chose abortion.
Using the term pro-life, evangelicals quickly began gaining POWER not only in the bible belt but on Capitol Hill (1978). They skillfully used their bottled-up anger over segregation and focused it on abortion. Pro-life brought people together politically. The Far-Right was delighted.
Despite being a minority of people, Evangelicals and the Far-Right now today find themselves ruling our land. It’s all about power and control of people. Whether we’re talking about war, greed, politics, or organized religion. It’s about dominating people with their power(money). Getting people to do what “THEY” want them to do. Follow the rules, play the game, fight the war. Blah, blah, blah.
Remember when Communist China ruled that Chinese couples could only have one child? It happened forty-two years ago in 1980. Their government controlling reproductive rights. China. And now the United States of America is about to do exactly the same thing! How sad and backward is that?
Personally, I could never have an abortion. But I’ve never been raped or gotten pregnant by incest. I am definitely Pro-Choice. Why aren’t men held responsible for getting women pregnant? Why does the Dept. of Defense spend $41.6 million dollars on Viagra? And a total of $84.24 million dollars total was spent on erectile dysfunction prescriptions in 2014? Can you guess what that number would be today with the cost of drugs continually going up (35% since 2014)?
The answer is $113,724,000—spent on erectile dysfunction drugs by the Department of Defense. That’s 113 million dollars per year! Does anyone else think there’s something wrong with this picture? Our government pays to help penises produce sperm that impregnate women. Now it appears they’re making it illegal for women to do away with those pregnancies, even in cases of rape and incest. In some states, murder charges will be made against women choose abortion. How fucking ridiculous is that?
1.) If Roe v. Wade is overturned, women will lose their right to have a choice of healthcare when it comes to their bodies’ pregnancies.
2.) Men are not held responsible for getting women pregnant. Only women pay the consequences.
3.) The government (specifically the Defense Department) pays for men to have the ability to get women pregnant. Of course, other men who are not part of the armed forces also get women pregnant. But it’s a fact that women cannot get pregnant without sperm.
4.) If Roe v. Wade is overturned, it will be the first time in our nation’s history that a right is taken away from the people. What’s next, contraception?
I ask you again……When did we become Communist China? Why are the laws of our land so set on controlling women?
My disappointment knows no bounds when it comes to SCOTUS and the Far-Right Evangelicals. This issue is simply too important not to discuss. Please VOTE this fall. Use your voice to change things that are going backward in these United States of America.
Love and light to all. And yes, especially to those who are hell-bent on controlling women and their bodies. Those folks need all the light in their lives they can get. Join me.
GUTSY WOMAN: Dr. ISABELLA AIONA ABBOTT
A Hawaiian educator, phycologist (science of algae), and trailblazing ethnobotanist (study of a region’s plants and their uses), and mother, Isabella Aiona Abbott (1919-2010) was the first native Hawaiian woman to receive a PhD in botany (1950). Known as “The First Lady of Seaweed”, Isabella was the world’s preeminent expert of Pacific marine algae. During her long and accomplished career as a scholar and educator, Isabella discovered more than 200 species of algae, wrote eight books, penned nearly 200 research papers, and received numerous awards including a lifetime achievement award from Hawaii’s Land and Natural Resources for her studies of coral reefs. She led the way for generations of both indigenous and women scientists. Isabella was also a 40-year cancer survivor! Certainly, an amazing woman that we’ve not often heard of.
Born Isabella Kauakea Yau Yung Aiona in Hana, Maui, her Hawaiian name means “white rain of Hana”. She was known as “Izzie” to family and friends. Isabella’s father, Loo Yuen, was Chinese and her mother, Annie, native Hawaiian. The family was trilingual, speaking Chinese, Hawaiian and English.
As a child, she went on foraging trips with her mother for edible limu (seaweed) that drifted in Waikiki’s tide. In the 1920s, there were few tourists on the beach so the coveted golden-brown Limu lipoa grew thick in the seabeds. Wading knee deep in the surf, a young Isabella learned of the tasty treasures to be found just beneath the sea’s surface. Annie taught her the historical uses and diversity of Hawaii’s native plants.
It was those early expeditions that evolved into her life-long passion. The brilliant scholar brought centuries-old knowledge from Hawaii to Western academia. She was married to Donald Abbott, a zoologist, in 1943. After they both received their PhD’s, the couple moved to Pacific Grove, California, where Donald began teaching at Stanford. (At the time, women were rarely considered for academic positions, despite their brains, talent, and education!)
While raising little Annie, their daughter, Isabella began studying the local bull kelp (Nereocytis) using it to make foods like cake and pickles as her mother had taught her to do with limu. In 1960 she became a lecturer at Stanford’s Hopkins Marine Station. Isabella was awarded the Darbaker Prize (presented for meritorious work in the study of microscopic algae) by the Botanical Society of America in 1969.
By 1972, Sanford University promoted her to full professorship (of Biology) making her their first female and women of color Biology professor! While teaching, Isabella became "without doubt, the preeminent marine botanist," said Celia Smith, former student and professor of Botany at the University of Hawaii.
Cooking was one of Isabella’s passions and she became renowned for her culinary accomplishments. Using her vast knowledge of limu she created edible specialties, much to her student’s delight. She often brought her unique dishes to picnics and potlucks. She gained the attention of Gourmet magazine, publishing an article on her creative and delicious (!) recipes in 1987.
An exceptional teacher, Isabella “allowed her graduate students to explore their own research interests, rather than insisting they work on her topics, and as a result had students working on a wide range of areas.” Smith went on, "It was just a very supportive, almost nurturing, environment for students," she said. "She always had time to listen, had good advice, professional career advice." Isabella became known as “the seaweed lady” along the California coast as she gathered specimens for research.
In 1982, the Abbott’s returned home to Hawaii where Isabella began a second career at age 63 (I like that!). She was hired by the University of Hawaii at Manoa where she began teaching Hawaiian ethnobotany. Her aim was to "demonstrate the vital link between the Hawaiian flora and the Hawaiian culture." Isabella relied heavily on oral histories and often gave credit to her elders for the knowledge she was passing on.
Isabella found many ways to reintroduce seaweed into daily life as she continued Hawaiian ocean stewardship. She enthusiastically sought to revitalize people’s relationship with the natural ecosystem. Below you will find one of her recipes. I hope you try it out!
A recipe originally designed to use Nereocystis kelp that is common in central California and northward. In Hawaiʻi, either Eucheuma species from Kāneʻohe Bay or ogo may be used.
Cream well 1 ½ cups salad oil, 2 cups sugar; add 3 eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
Add 2 cups grated carrots, 2 cups grated Eucheuma or 2 cups coursely chopped ogo, 1 cup crushed, drained pineapple, or 1 cup fresh grated coconut.
Sift together 2 ½ cups sifted flour, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon cinnamon. Mix all together.
Add 1 cup walnuts if desired.
Bake in oblong pan or loaf pan at 350 degrees 45-50 minutes.
Serve plain or with buttercream frosting. A moist cake which keeps very well.
Did you know?
1.) In 1976, Isabella wrote Marine Algae of California, which is said to be "the definitive description of marine algae along the Pacific coast."
2.) Isabella was awarded the “Gilbert Morgan Smith medal”, the highest award in marine botany, from the National Academy of Sciences in 1997?
3.) A genus of the red algae family is named Abbotella or “Little Abbott” in her honor.
4.) Isabella was named a Living Treasure by Honpa Hongwanji Hawaii, a Buddhist organization.