Blog Post

NARAL Pro-Choice Ohio’s week at the RNC

We’ve had an amazing week in Cleveland, and the best is yet to come. Throughout the city, NARAL Pro-Choice Ohio has been staging protests with our new friends, Lady Parts Justice!

They’ll be capping off a terrific run with a hilarious comedy show Thursday night, and tickets are still available. See Lizz Winstead, Alonzo Bodden, Frank Conniff, Cleveland’s Mike Polk, and other awesome comedians entertain the crowd before and DURING Donald Trump’s speech. He’ll be blabbing up on the big screen while our comedy dream team cracks jokes on stage about his big night.

Tickets available here. (Buy now and get General Admission at 30% off!)

Scroll down and keep reading to learn about all our actions during the RNC.

For choice,
Kellie


Last week, NARAL Pro-Choice Ohio worked with Preterm, New Voices for Reproductive Justice, and Planned Parenthood of Greater Ohio to create a new website: ohioabortionfacts.org To educate Ohio voters and RNC delegates, we took over the websites for the Columbus Dispatch, Dayton Daily News, and Cleveland Plain Dealer.

Learn more at Rewire.com.

PlainDealer


Sunday, our team crashed a fundraiser for Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine! We wanted to make sure everyone knew how anti-choice he is. He has gubernatorial ambitions, which would be a disaster for Ohio women and families.

We showed up… but barely any of his supporters did! Sad!

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Monday, our activists marched in the End Poverty Now! march through downtown Cleveland.

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Tuesday morning, we started having some real fun! Joined by Lizz Winstead and her Lady Parts Justice crew, we “sidewalk counseled” outside Phyllis Schlafly’s Eagle Forum luncheon at the Browns’ football stadium. For two hours, we screamed and yelled and prayed for these anti-choice RNC delegates. We gave them a taste of the kind of protests that women face walking into abortion clinics across Ohio — which can be an unpleasant experience.

Read more in the Cleveland Plain Dealer, Salon.com, and watch Lizz Winstead’s Facebook Live video.

The highlight lowlight of the protest was this lowlife who told out volunteer that: “If I owned you, I’d keep you chained to the stove.”

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(Click image to share on Twitter)


Wednesday, Kellie Copeland took the mic at the official Speaker’s Platform in Cleveland’s Public Square. Volunteers from NARAL Pro-Choice Ohio, the Preterm abortion clinic, and Lady Parts Justice shared their own abortion stories, and read stories from women across Ohio.

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Thursday night, NARAL Pro-Choice Ohio welcomes comedian and The Daily Show co-creator Lizz Winstead and her Lady Parts Justice comedy team to Cleveland for an epic take-down of the Republican National Convention! Joining them is Emmy Award-winning comedian and star of Mystery Science Theatre 3000, Frank Conniff, and the star of NPR’s Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me, Alonzo Bodden!The event will be a raucous, interactive RNC watch party timed to coincide with Donald Trump’s Thursday night acceptance speech. Proceeds from this event go to benefit the work of NARAL Pro-Choice Ohio and Lady Parts Justice.

TICKETS: General Admission now 30% off!

SLURRICANE VS 14

Bohemian National Hall at Sokol Greater Cleveland
4939 Broadway Ave, Cleveland, OH 44127 (map)
July 21, 2016
VIP reception at 7:00 p.m. — $75
Doors open for General Admission at 8:30 p.m. —  $50 (REDUCED! General Admission now 30% off!!!)
Tickets and comedian bios: http://comedyrnc.brownpapertickets.com/

Proceeds from this event go to benefit the work of NARAL Pro-Choice Ohio and Lady Parts Justice.


Help build a pro-choice Ohio. Every day, NARAL Pro-Choice Ohio fights to protect access to the full range of reproductive health care options—including preventing unintended pregnancy, bearing healthy children, and safe & legal abortion care. We educate the public about the real threat to women’s healthcare posed by anti-choice legislation and policies. We mobilize pro-choice Ohioans to take political action to defend reproductive rights. And we are the voice for Ohio’s abortion clinics, helping them navigate the increasingly hostile climate created by extremist groups. But we need your help. As a member organization, we rely on your financial support to fund our important legislative, educational, and grassroots activities.

Contribute to NARAL Pro-Choice Ohio

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2, Podcasts

My Abortion, My Life

Preterm is an abortion provider in Cleveland, Ohio. Their Development and Communications Coordinator, Anna, joined us this week to discuss their newest campaign.

PreTerm_MyAB1

My Abortion, My Life is a public awareness campaign that challenges the silence and stigma around abortion. Our aim is simple: a world without stigma. Abortion is a common experience women undergo for many valid personal reasons. If even a fraction of the 50 million American women who have had abortions spoke about the experience, the cycle of silence, shame, and stigma would be broken.

Here are some excerpts from just a few of the many stories women from around the world have shared with www.MyAbortionMyLife.org:

I went backwards and forwards for weeks on my decision, and it wasn’t until my 21st birthday that I realized abortion was the best thing for me at this point in my life. I had my abortion a week after my 21st birthday. I was 10 weeks and 6 days pregnant, and it was the hardest day of my life. I sat in the car outside the clinic waiting to go in, and at that point I still wasn’t even sure I was going to go through with it.

It’s been 5 months now since my abortion. Although I know that it was 100% the right choice for me at the time, it still makes me sad every now and then. It is definitely a decision I will have to live with for the rest of my life, but I wouldn’t change it for anything.

We are engaging the community in a completely different kind of dialogue than heard on the nightly news. It’s about opening space in our relationships so that others can share. It’s about helping all of us who have been silenced by stigma to find our voice, to speak about our own experiences, and to develop support for and trust in others.

Finally, I told her, ‘Mom, you know, I had an abortion about a year ago.’ To my surprise, she was not surprised. Instead, she replied that for years she had wanted to tell me and my siblings about her abortion. My Mother grew up with eight siblings in a Roman Catholic household, which is why I was surprised when she told me that when she was in high school she had gotten pregnant and went to her Mother, who took her to get an abortion. Her Mother was embarrassed about her daughter getting an abortion so she took her to New York where my Uncle lived, and had the procedure done there. I asked her what she thought about getting an abortion and she said that she didn’t think much of it, she was young and careless and the abortion was just something that needed to be done.

My Abortion, My Life is changing the conversation by creating safe spaces for the sharing of abortion stories and nuanced and respectful conversation about abortion experiences.

It could never happen to me. I am a planner. I am responsible. I always use protection. I waited until I was 27 to start having sex. I’m still 27. And now my abortion is part of my narrative. The weeks following my positive pregnancy test were the most difficult and trying of my life. My conservative childhood collided with my progressive adulthood and forced me to make a choice. And I chose to love myself and make the best decision for me. I am relieved. I am angry I can’t share my narrative with some of those closest to me for fear of making their worlds crash down around them. But I am empowered and thankful to be connected with a THIRD of the women in the United States—and all women throughout history who have taken control of their own bodies.

It’s easy to be a part of the My Abortion, My Life campaign. From having a conversation with a friend, to hosting a house party or inviting a speaker to your community group, there are many ways to break the silence and stigma.

Here are ways to get involved:

Share Your Abortion Story
Do you have a personal story about your own abortion or first-hand experience with someone else’s abortion? If you are willing to share, think about how you might feel comfortable telling it. You can submit your story to www.MyAbortionMyLife.org, or speak out at an event or a house party.

Start a Conversation
Talk about abortion with a friend, family member or co-worker. Share your own story if you have one. Even if you don’t have a personal story to share, you can listen with compassion and respect. Open a conversation with people in your life… you may be surprised how many have a story to share.

Throw a House Party
House parties are small, informal gatherings that promote open and honest discussion. When most people think about abortion, they think about a divisive political or moral issue. House parties provide an intimate space for people to delve into the more nuanced complexities of abortion. These can be powerful and transformative events. A toolkit and facilitators are available to help you plan your gathering and create a safe space for conversation. Find the toolkit here.

Host a Film Screening or Public Conversation
Check out our Conversation Starters list for suggestions of films, readings, and podcasts that can be the centerpiece of an event for your group or organization, large or small, and spark conversation. Representatives from My Abortion, My Life are available to facilitate discussion.

Invite a Speaker
My Abortion, My Life can provide a speaker for your class, group, or organization. Content can include background on abortion and abortion stigma, efforts to effect cultural change and shift in discourse about abortion, and how to create spaces and start conversations.

Volunteer with the Campaign
There are many ways to help spread the work and word of the My Abortion, My Life campaign—from joining our planning committee, training as a conversation facilitator, or writing about the campaign and the need to change the way we talk about abortion.


Help build a pro-choice Ohio. Every day, NARAL Pro-Choice Ohio fights to protect access to the full range of reproductive health care options—including preventing unintended pregnancy, bearing healthy children, and safe & legal abortion care. We educate the public about the real threat to women’s healthcare posed by anti-choice legislation and policies. We mobilize pro-choice Ohioans to take political action to defend reproductive rights. And we are the voice for Ohio’s abortion clinics, helping them navigate the increasingly hostile climate created by extremist groups. But we need your help. As a member organization, we rely on your financial support to fund our important legislative, educational, and grassroots activities.

Contribute to NARAL Pro-Choice Ohio