1. Philly Lawmaker's Office to Women: Menstruation Is Too "Graphic."
Philadelphia may be the city of brotherly love, but after what went down this week, the sisters may have needed it more. As many of us have since the election, Nina Starner, one of Philly’s many good samaritans, bit the bullet and gave her state rep a call to voice her disapproval of the repeal of the Affordable Care Act. While on the line with a staffer in the office of Republican Rep. Pat Toomey, Starner claims that she was reprimanded, her language called “graphic”, when she used the word “menstruation.” As the conversation veered into women’s health territory, and as Starner was driven to defend Planned Parenthood to the anti-choice staffer on the line, she rightly explained that abortions cannot currently be federally funded under the Hyde Amendment, asking how defunding Planned Parenthood would do anything but keep women from receiving the health care that they need. This is about where she mentioned that she would like to talk to Toomey about her period, to which she was told that next time she calls she should try to be less “graphic.” If mentioning one’s period is graphic, then I guess THINX is pretty darn explicit. Warning: THINX is rated P for period, viewer attention is advised.
2. Pope Francis Re-titterates Encouragement for Public Breastfeeding.
Glory, glory, areola! During a baptism at the Sistine Chapel in Rome this week, Pope Francis was interrupted by crying babies (TBH I don’t blame them; if I had to sit through one of those things, I’d also be hungry enough to eat the father, son, AND the holy ghost) to which he responded with the utmost grace. Yes, that’s right, the pope actually encouraged the mothers in the room to breastfeed their babies without shame or hesitance, citing how even baby Jesus once suckled at the teet. No matter the motivation, encouraging women to feed their babies sans stigma is always appreciated. I think it was about this same issue of a mother's right to breastfeed in public that Moses said his famous line to the Pharaoh, “let my nipples go.” #FreeTheNip
3. Jeanette Epps Will Be First African-American to Board International Space Station.
As of this week’s announcement from NASA, the solar system has a brand new shining star. Jeanette Epps, officially scheduled to be the first African-American to board the International Space Station, is breaking more than just sound barriers in her career as a super scientist. While 14 other black people have been sent into space before her, Astronaut Epps will be the first to remain aboard the ISS as a crew member, working as a flight engineer on Expedition 56, scheduled for May 2018. Epps, a Syracuse native who has been getting astro-naughty since 2009, has her PhD in aerospace engineering, and used to work for the CIA. Basically, she’s the coolest person in the atmosphere. Also, this kind of history-making is making us want to go see “Hidden Figures” before it’s out of theaters! All these badass ladies are hotter than the surface of the sun.
4. Indian Med Students Write Period Poetry to Combat Stigma.
Med students in India are speaking out against period stigma by flexing their creative prowess and putting together period poetry with the goal of exing out shame where it bleeds. As the whole world is beginning to embrace a new era in which menstruation is slowly normalized, there are still places like India where even speaking about one’s period is considered undignified at best, and sinful at worst. The women of the Calicut Medical College literary society decided to address this cultural flaw through art, compiling haikus that express a range of emotions and opinions about periods in a blunt and powerful fashion. This work deserves a stanza ovation. Sry not sry.
5. Paul Ryan Confirms Intentions to Defund Planned Parenthood in House Vote.
In news that came as a shock to exactly ~no one~ who may have tuned into the news recently, Speaker of the House Paul Ryan announced this week that he will vote to defund Planned Parenthood (in the same bill the House is using to try to repeal the Affordable Care Act, naturally). Fueled by an anti-choice president-elect and an increase of animosity within federal government toward basic health care for women, which includes abortion services, politicians like Speaker Ryan are feeling ever more confident in their ability to strip funds away from providers like Planned Parenthood who primarily care for low-income women in need of services like cancer screenings, STD tests, sex education, and contraceptive provisions. Luckily, always pro-choice Queen Elizabeth (Warren) also had an announcement this week: come 2018, she’s running for reelection as a Massachusetts senator. Go high, lady!
- Curtin University’s women-in-science leadership program sent over 70 female scientists to Antarctica for the largest all-woman expedition in South Pole history.
- Multiple intelligence agencies have confirmed that Russian hackers most def interfered w/ our election w/ the intention of hurting Clinton and helping Trump. Who wants some tea?
- Ilhan Omar was sworn into office and there was some well-deserved swoonage.
- Join Toni the Tampon on their journey to teach children all about menstruation in this inclusive period coloring book!
!BONUS! What's the reason for the season? We can address sexism in the film industry beyond awards season. Click to read.