ABOVE: Members of a local Planned Parenthood march in an LGBTQ Pride parade. (Image from Wikimedia Commons)
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) | Planned Parenthood is now offering hormone therapy and other services for transgender patients in Florida, starting with two health centers in Miami this week. It plans to expand statewide within the year.
The services could help a patient who, for example, was born as a female and still has female organs but identifies as male. Oral, topical and injectable hormones would address issues like facial hair, redistribution of fat and muscle and thicker vocal chords. The prescriptions are written after extensive medical and blood tests and are only available for patients 18 and older.
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) | It’s time for states with leaders who support abortion rights to go on the offensive against Trump administration attempts to restrict abortion that would reduce access to health care, the president of Planned Parenthood said April 23.
“States are a critical backstop at a time when we have the Trump-Pence administration stripping away women’s health and rights and when we cannot depend on the Supreme Court,” said Dr. Leana Wen.
If you haven’t heard the name Anna V. Eskamani, you have probably been living under a rock … especially since Republicans spent hundreds of thousands of dollars in negative ads to portray Eskamani as a vulgar, radical extremist (they actually made her look like a badass in a leather jacket). Voters made history in November by electing Anna as the first Iranian-American to serve in the Florida Legislature, rewarding her with 57 percent of the vote.
Odds are you have heard of Eskamani, who has become a role model for young people across Orlando. You saw her on the cover of TIME magazine featured as one of many women across the country running for public office hoping to make real change. You read in local newspapers about her healthcare expertise as a senior director for Planned Parenthood of Southwest and Central Florida. You watched her lead the Orlando Women’s March or proudly walking in the Come Out With Pride parade at Lake Eola. If not, you more than likely overheard her signature Eskamani-style laugh in person at any number of local community events, since she makes it a point to attend every single one of them.
We’ve all been in over our heads before. All the vocational training you can crack two credit cards at will still never ensure that somebody at your new job is not going to roll their eyes at you, call you stupid behind your back and talk to management about your mistakes, even – if not especially – in your first 100 days. There’s acclimation to be had, names to be remembered, systems and files, the whole rhythm of the gossip train as it runs to the water cooler.
That, in part, is why most U.S. Presidents dip their toes in the water in the field – you start as an organizer, you become a state representative, you rise to a governorship or a U.S. Senate seat, you learn the ropes by actually walking across them.
ORLANDO – “Hey! I want to talk to you about life,” said a woman holding a picture of a fetus, a picture likely from the canon of propaganda offered by whatever anti-abortion group she clung to. When a black man left his car, the response was even worse: “You know, they’re killing black babies! Are you OK with that?”
Just another day at a Planned Parenthood event, then.
Orlando – Following an extensive history of refusal by several states, including Florida, to pass the historic federal Equal Rights Amendment insuring fair pay for women in the workplace, this year several state legislators are moving forward – as they have been for the better part of this decade – to push it through on a state level.
On March 14, outside Orlando City Hall, representatives from the LGBTA Democratic Caucus, the American Civil Liberties Union of Central Florida, the League of Women Voters of Central Florida, Planned Parenthood of Southwest and Central Florida and Greater Orlando Now gathered in support of Florida Senate Bill 410 and House Bill 319. Congressman Darren Soto (D-Kissimmee) was also in attendance as he was snowed out of Washington during the recent blizzard.
It all began one bright Florida winter-warm December morning at a Quaker meeting in St. Petersburg. An 81-year-old spitfire of a woman stood up and said something like, “Isn’t it wonderful that there is going to be a women’s solidarity march in Washington?
“Like many of you, much as I would like to go, making that trek is impossible for me right now. Wouldn’t it be lovely if we had a march of our own in St. Petersburg?” We all pretty much said to her, “Yeah that would be great. Why don’t you make it happen?” We had no idea of what we were about to unleash.
Another tale of twin cities is encapsulated in twin counties, both nestled on the Tampa Bay. St. Petersburg occupies the southern borders of the bay and Tampa hugs the northern shoreline; Pinellas County and Hillsborough County respectfully.
Like most twin cities, these twin counties are dealing with some of the same civic and social challenges: shared infrastructure or shared natural resources or even shifting residential patterns. Another aspect that these twin counties share is the startling rates of sexually risky behavior among their youth, which manifests itself in high rates of sexual infections and diseases.
Political attacks on both reproductive rights and LGBTQ equality are often indirect. More importantly, they work. Orlando’s LGBTQ Alliance brings collaboration in a post-Pulse world, St. Petersburg mayor Rick Kriseman pulls city funding from St. Pete Pride after relocation announcement, local news, celebrity interviews, photos, events and much, much more!
Winning a war by attacking the edges is an ancient idea.
As early as 5th century B.C., in his military treatise The Art of War, Sun Tzu wrote, “In all fighting, the direct method may be used for joining battle, but indirect methods will be needed in order to secure victory.”
Anti-choice activists have read the playbook, and they’re deploying indirect methods in their fight against abortion.
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