Thursday, December 30, 2010


My position in 140 characters is: “Julian Assange’s sexual assault charges for not using a condom in consensual sex shows that laws punishing men empower the state-not women”

FACTS: There is an investigation going on in Sweden concerning statements made by two women who are concerned that Assange, for whatever reason, didn’t use a condom, and they are worried about sexually-transmitted disease. At first, the investigation was dropped because of insufficient evidence, but it has now been reopened.

Although I have heard that the level of the charge is at the lowest level; if, convicted, Assange would not face jail, I have also heard people discussing the charge as “rape”. It is unclear to those of us who don’t know Swedish law, if the use of the term “rape” means what it means in the United States, violent, unconsented sex, and this includes “date rape” and “marital rape”, then it makes sense that Sweden would want to extradite Assange to be interviewed, because this is a serious felony, carrying jail time. On the other hand, if “rape” in Sweden includes initiating sex in the middle of the night with someone you have been intimate with, there is so much room for interpretation, nuances, etc. and the social context of consenting intimacy, that it would seem overkill to extradite someone just to do an interview to determine if in fact criminal conduct occurred. So, a great deal of internet virtual “ink” has probably been spilled needlessly spent already.

The larger issue, and one that seems to be ignored by many of the “ink spillers” is why is Sweden insisting that Julian Assange be forced to come back to Swedish soil? Here, there is wider agreement that the Western powers, especially the United States, are so outraged that Wikileaks has revealed millions of their secrets, that they want Assange back on Swedish soil so that they can get Sweden’s cooperation in returning Assange to the United States to face extremely serious charges of espionage and other crimes against the state that could result in years of prison, possibly being shipped off to Guantanamo, and being exposed to lack of protection that could even result in his death.

So why are feminists even arguing about the precise definition of “rape” in Swedish law or the nuances of male-female consensual sexual relationships (interesting and important as these topics are)? Feminists are trying to achieve gender equality so that women can demand and get a world without extreme hunger and poverty, in which all children have primary education, where disease is eradicated and a sustainable environment with safe drinking water and clean air. (a la Millennium Development Goals for 2015). This means challenging the patriarchal, militaristic model and the capitalistic corporations and governments that perpetuate war, unsustainable use of natural resources, especially fossil fuels. Therefore, as feminists, we welcome the exposure of the secrets of those very institutions that are seeking to maintain the status quo.

And, it means not letting those institutions get their grubby fingers on Assange (they already have Bradley Manning). Assange, if guilty of these charges, and all men who abuse their power in sexual relations, even consensual ones, should be subject to whatever the penalty is in Sweden. He should comply with the Swedish governments requirement of an interview, but only with an ironclad guarantee that returning to Sweden for an interview does not open the door to being extradited to the U.S.

Our feminist movement has to be wary of powerful forces who want us to help them with their agenda which is to continue to rule the world without having to make fundamental changes. They cite women’s rights when they want to invade Afghanistan or Iraq (never mind that they never say a word about the treatment of women in Saudi Arabia). They cite pollution and depletion of resources when they want to force unsafe methods of birth control on women rather than changing wasteful consumption patterns, industrial practices or deep-water oil drilling (which might lower their profits), and they want us feminists to work for this in the name of “reproductive rights”. And now, they capitalize on women’s righteous anger against rape and other forms of sexual abuse to have us support their attempts to silence Assange, Wikileaks and all others who would bare their ugly secrets.

We rejoice that almost half of the members of the parliament in Sweden are women. No doubt the Swedish feminists felt that it was a triumph for women to pass a comprehensive law that would encompass not only vile, violent rape, but also would include pernicious, bullying tactics used by ordinary men. But see how their reformist efforts have been subverted? See how focusing on women’s victimization, rather than women’s empowerment, leads to an ironic outcome that a champion of democratic sharing of information, whatever his practices in consensual sex, becomes demonized. I heard a feminist spokesperson refer to Julian Assange as a “powerful white male” in a debate on Democracy Now! as though he was a member of the corporate and governmental elite that we feminists correctly fear and despise.

As feminists, rather than looking to the state to increase its power to criminalize more areas of our life and to increase the state’s ability to oversee, control and punish, shouldn’t we be helping women be more economically self-sufficient, and more empowered to assert their rights in all aspects of their lives, especially in the bedroom.

I especially hope that the American feminist movement will work internationally to condemn U.S. imperialism, the rape of other countries resources to enrich American corporations and the consequent cheapening and degradation of our own society.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010


I want to share the continued research that I'm doing into the Women Deliver Conference to discover what the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation are planning for mothers and babies throughout the world and decide whether we should welcome this or organize against it.

Here is a YouTube video of a 13-minute excerpt of the 60 Minutes video interview of Melinda Gates in which they attribute high infant mortality to midwives using non-sterile instruments and say that they lay newborns on cold, dirt floors. Now, supposedly these rates have improved since they have taught the midwives to use sterile razor blades to cut the umbilical cord and they've taught them to wrap the newborn in a blanket, and infant mortality has gone down.

Now I want to ask you to look at some websites about Kangaroo Care, a practice of laying the naked newborn directly on the mother's bare chest, to see that this is the more advanced, enlightened way to stabilize a newborn, especially a low-birth-weight one. The mother's body keeps the baby warm, encourages breathing, and when the baby squirms and roots around, it will find the mother's nipple by itself within an hour or so, thus securing the best nutrition and "securing its safety in its mother's arms".

• Kangaroo Care -
• Dr. Bergman -

What a difference between the Western-style medical approach of teaching "ignorant midwives" to keep the baby warm in a blanket, and the respectful, supportive approach of letting the baby have access to its Mom.

A personal note: I bottle-fed my first two babies, because I was told I had no milk (in fact, they gave me DES to dry up my milk. A nurse who had breast fed showed me techniques to "help" my baby nurse). I then went on to breast feed my other children and always passed along this knowledge to other mothers. I assumed that this was a cultural, woman-to-woman tradition. Imagine my surprise when I saw an 8 minute film a few months ago showing a brand-new newborn wriggle around on its mother's belly, crawling by fits and starts up until it "latched on" to the nipple.

I'm also enclosing the information so that you can order this 8 minute film to see this for yourself. Also, we hope to include a minute or two of this footage on the new page on my website,

•breastfeeding - baby's choice -

Carol Downer with the assistance of Aracely Hernandez

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Dr. Andrew Rutland

Dear Pro-Choice Movement,

Dr. Rutland is an obstetrician-gynecologist who is currently on probation. In July 2009 a patient receiving a paracervical block (local anesthesia) had a severe reaction and ultimately passed 6 days later. The Los Angeles County Coroner's office closed the case after autopsy ruled her death as accidental. Under pressure from anti-abortionists, Dr. Lakshmanan Sathyavagiswaran - Chief Medical Examiner changed the mode of death from accidental to homicide. The reasons are connected to technical violations of practice, which the department disapproves of, but are NOT connected to this event.

This case is about the CA Medical Board's attempt to close down an abortion provider very much like Dr. Bruce Steir in 1997. Originally charged with 2nd degree murder, in April 2000 Dr. Steir bargained for involuntary manslaughter.

We currently do not have an up-to-date on Dr. Rutland's case. But we do urge that people be extremely critical of this case and any other case where anti-abortionists are behind the attack.

Please read the following articles:

And, if you'd like further information please contact Dr. Rutland at

Thank you.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Blogspot: Women's Health in Women's Hands


In 1976, a self-help group spent several months studying the sexual response and the structure of the female sexual organ. On the basis of these observations and reading of anatomy texts, we now define the clitoris, the female sex organ, as being much, much more than a miniature penis, or various assorted structures collectively referred to as "the vulva" and the vagina...

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Blogspot: Women's Health in Women's Hands

Self-Help Clinic: A group of women not long ago banded together to seriously consider some mutual questions concerning the care of their reproductive and sexual organs...

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Blogspot: Women's Health in Women's Hands


"Forced sterilization, either through financial or psychological coercion, or by simply performing the procedure without a woman's informed consent, represents women's ultimate loss of control..."

Monday, November 1, 2010

Women's Health In Women's Hands: Menstrual Extraction

Visit and follow Women's Health in Women's Hands blogspot, this is the latest post: Women's Health In Women's Hands: Menstrual Extraction written by Lorraine Rothman. Please comment and enjoy!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

What is the Women's Health Movement?

What is the Women's Health Movement?

Originally Published in Women's Health Movement Paper, July 1980

The Women's Health Movement is a movement of women who are working on women's health issues so that women's lives will be improved by having more control over their bodies. Much of the work of the women's health movement has been to improve the ability of women to get health care within the health care system, to develop alternatives to the traditional health care system, and to fight unsafe medical practices which are harming women all over the world. Many women's health groups are directly confronting pharmaceutical companies which manufacture dangerous experimental drugs, hospitals for dangerous childbirth practices, sterilization abuse and unnecessary surgery. Other women's health groups have launched suits to get damages for women who have had health injuries from dangerous medical practices (such as DES, or Dalkon Shields).

The Self-Help Clinic is another major part of the womens health movement. In self-help groups women have learned much about the normal functioning of our bodies and how to control our health care, through self-examination. Self-help groups have focused on safe birth control methods, treating vaginal infections, lesbian health care, menopause, and early pregnancy detection. Women involved in self-help clinics are working in the spirit of women regaining control over their own lives.

Women-controlled clinic are another part of the women's health movement. These clinics offer a real alternative to women from the medical system. These women-controlled clinics offer many services, ranging from abortions, to pregnancy screening, vaginal infection clinics, VD screening, and some women health care clinics have home birth projects and/or lesbian health care clinics.

Women's support groups have also emerged on issues such as breast surgery, C-sections, rape, DES Daughters.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Battle Against Population Controllers Unite

Battle Against Population Controllers Unite
Radical Feminists & People Of Color
By Carol Downer

Originally Published in Women's Health Movement Paper, July 1980

The U.S.'s clear (though unofficial) population policy until a mere ten years ago has always been extremely pronatalist (pro-birth), at least as far as the white population goes. Pushing women to have large families goes back to England and Europe and the struggle of the newly formed nations over territory and colonial possessions. Napoleon introduced many policies which rewarded men for its immediate acceptance and use by European men and women, the national leaders pressured the Catholic church for its support. In 1869, Pope Pius IX decreed that all abortion, from the moment of conception on, was murder. Queen Elizabeth passed the first law against abortion. The peasants in England were being forced off their lands into cities to live in abject poverty. Their culture, was lost. The European population swelled to the point where people literally sold themselves into slavery to get to America, the land of opportunity. While Indians were being massacred to wipe them off the face of the earth, white settlers were forced into childbearing to the point that it was common for white men to outlive two or three wives. The doctrine of "Manifest Destiny" demanded that whites settle and occupy the continent from coast to coast.

Then after World War I, a movement to reduce the population grew which adopted the theories of Malthus, an Englishman who, in the early 1900's had predicted that without the "natural" means of birth control (wars, floods, and pestilence) the poor of the earth were going to multiply much faster than the resources of the earth could support. This birth control movement was supported financially by American ruling class families, such as the Rockefellers, the Mellons, Fords and executives such as Cass Canfield, head of Harper and Row Publishers.

After World War II, the birth control movement took its cause to the public in huge ad campaigns, couching its concerns as fear of a population explosion and world hunger. In fact, the birth controllers were extremely afraid of a rebellion of the Third World, whose resources they were plundering. And, as the political awareness of the people of color living in the inner city increased, they were also afraid of a revolution.

Planned Parenthood, started in the 1950's, sponsored early experimentation into the Pill in Puerto Rico. They found out that the Pill would prevent pregnancy. Because of their studies on animals, they also knew that it caused many other undesirable effects, such as shrivelling up the ovaries causing sterility and early menopause, and cancer. They went ahead anyway. Today, millions of women around the world are subjects of the largest uncontrolled medical experiment in history. Planned Parenthood physicians also developed other procedures, drugs and devices, equally dangerous and totally physician-controlled. To mention just a couple, the IUD, Depo Provera, and mini-laparotomy for surgical sterilization of the woman.

The population controllers ultimate weapon against the fertility of the poor and Third World people is surgical sterilization. It is here that we can see most clearly their racist, imperialist motives. In the last 20 years, a third of Puerto Rican women have been sterilized, while during the same period, middle class white women were being denied sterilization in this country. In one example among many, one white woman, a wife of a psychiatrist, stood on the hospital window ledge after delivering her fourth child and threatened to jump unless they allowed her to be sterilized.

Antinatalism (attitudes and policies against birth) had spread so much in the U.S. that by the end of the '60's abortion laws were liberalized in California, New York, Washington and Hawaii. The abortion reform movement was not and still is not guided by feminist leadership. National abortion organizations meet in New York City at the Population Council in a large conference room under the watchful eyes of John D. Rockefeller, III, whose portrait hangs on the wall. Rockefeller, until his death, was the Pope of the antinatalist movement. He provided much of the funds in its early years. After 1950, the U.S. Government provided more and more of the financial backing, especially in the Third World. The Agency for International Development has a population department, which aggressively pushes birth control as part of any foreign-aid package to "underdeveloped" countries. For example, Depo Provera, the Dalkon Shield and self-abortion kits are outlawed in the U.S., but distributed abroad by A.I.D. Ray Ravenholt, Director of the Population Department, publically admitted that A.I.D. was trying to stave off world revolution by mass sterilization of women in poorer countries. Ha has been subsequently removed from that position.

The Feminist Women's Health Centers have led the fight against the population controllers since their early beginning in 1971. They exposed Harvey Karman, and infamous abortionist who has performed experimental and very harmful abortions on women of Bangladesh, poor black women in Philadelphia and poor Latin women in Los Angeles. They also have raised the consciousness of the women's health movement and many liberal people who had not recognized the imperialistic motives that underlay the popular appeal to concern about over-population and world hunger. They attended the Menstrual Regulation Conference in Hawaii in 1973, where Ravenholt, A.I.D., Batelle Corporation and the Pathfinder Fund, were trying to sell Third World physicians on early abortion. Ravenholt proposed to drop self-abortion kits on the rice paddies. The FWHC opposed this plan; subsequently it was squelched by Kennedy's Subcommittee on Human Experimentation.

Feminist and people of color formed an alliance in New York City to get regulations adopted to combat sterilization abuse. In 1977, they were victorious, as the guidelines were approved to be used in New York City Hospital. The group, called The Committee to End Sterilization Abuse, has formed chapters throughout the U.S. and has succeeded in getting similar guidelines adopted by the Department of Health, Education and Welfare. This victory is a stunning blow to the population controllers, who are looking to sterilization as a preferable alternative for poor women. The upholding of the Hyde Amendment in July of 1980 will deprive poor women the financial help they need to have access to abortion. The inevitable consequence is that many will choose to be sterilized rather than risk getting pregnant. This is an excellent example of how population controllers use a variety of social control tools to shape the population growth. Today, it is fairly easy for middle-income women to get abortions. Teenage women of all ethnic groups have been targeted and many are coerced into abortions. Low-income women, which is often synonomous with women of color, will be coerced into sterilization.

Radical feminists are natural allies of those oppressed groups that are the target of population controllers. The Women's Health Movement recognizes the connections between imperialism and its logical expressions, racism and sexism. Unfortunately, many women of this generation have bought the anti-natalist propaganda that their decision to not have children is a sign of their liberation, rather than recognizing that it is necessary for them to maintain a decent standard of living, and that they are subject to many societal pressures to limit their fertility, even if they have to use dangerous methods to do so. It is a job for radical feminists to help women to understand how they are being manipulated.

A common perception is that feminists are anti-male and anti-family. Unfortunately, there are many right-wing feminists who do hold such limited views. However, radical feminists support the true from of the family and do not direct their energies against the individual man, but rather at the multi-national corporation which are indeed run by patriarchal ruling class families. These ruling class families have attempted to destroy everyone else's families, going so far as to redefine the family as the nuclear family. Feminists oppose the nuclear family, which locks people into rigid roles in an oppressive unite, and want to establish a society where all individuals can live in a mutually supportive, loving environment where they are cared about and nurtured.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Sitting Down with Two Sexual Revolutionaries

Sitting Down with Two Sexual Revolutionaries

From Betty and I had the pleasure of interviewing Carol Downer - the mother of the abortion movement. She was jailed...she was censored but she never stopped teaching women how to take control of their own bodies. From contraception to menstrual extraction, she did it all. This is one of my favorite podcasts :)

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Donations for Pa’ti Garcia

Message from Pa'ti:

My beautiful people, I'm continuing my education this October in Australia. Adding another layer of sexological bodywork, including pelvic floor scar tissue remediation, bringing feeling back to scarred areas due to birth trauma, sexual trauma, cesareans, etc. If 300 fans would be willing to gift me between $8-$20, you... would be contributing to a revolutionary endeavor! PayPal:
Mil Gracias!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

International Women's Day 2010

International Women's Day 2010
Break the Chains!
Unleash the Fury of Women As a Mighty Force for
Saturday, March 6
4PM: Rally [Westwood & Kinross (N of Wilshire)]
6PM: March (thru Westwood)

There are no more monstrous crimes committed anywhere in the world than those against women. There are no more righteous reasons to resist than the horror women go through every day. And if this were the only reason - and it is not - these crimes alon would pose the need and demand for revolution.

For International Women's Day we will be marching in the streets with a spirit of resistance by both women and men who find a "woman's place" unacceptable and intolerable, whether under medieval veils or on display as "modern" commodities.

Here in Los Angeles, we will be standing in solidarity with women everywhere, especially the women in Iran who are courageously battling the woman-hating regime. We are inspired by these women warriors who are breaking through the suffocating silence, and refuse to choose between the Islamic fundamentalist theocracy or U.S. imperialism, as they aim to bring into being a world without this oppression. If you long for this kind of future, join with us and take an active part in International Women's Day.

From Carol Downer: Join-us and consider donating...I will speak at the rally!

Donate at IWD Coalition of Los Angeles MySpace (located: left-hand side of web page)
Or Contact: International Women's Day Coalitin

March in Support of Women Warriors in the Streets of Tehran...visit - March 8 Women's Organization (Iran-Afghanistan)