Reply from Feminist Fightback London: After we had wished them a successful action on May 19th, this answer fluttered into our letterbox:
We were very happy to receive your letter in solidarity with our action. The pro-choice action in Stratford, London against “Helpers of God’s Precious Infants” on Sat 9th of May 2015 was vibrant and loud. Feminist protestors –both from Feminist Fightback and other allies that came for the action- blocked the anti-choice religious group as they tried to march from a church to the abortion clinic. The action took place outside the church –with the intention of not interfering nearby the abortion clinic- and attracted passer-bys who stopped and engaged with us. The group ranged from women to children to male allies around colourful handcrafted banners. We made noise with pots and pans, whistles and the stereo that was playing punk songs as well as feminist classics. There was a brilliant moment where we sang along to Aretha Franklin’s Respect, summed up why we were there: RESPECT women’s choices! The feminist presence managed to delay the anti-choice group for over two hours until we were pushed back by the police (who escorted the procession), though the anti-choice demonstration only had ten minutes in front of the clinic. A great achievement!
We would also wish to express our solidarity with your action on the 1st of June in Annaberg-Buchholz in Germany. It is great to make connections with and be inspired by comrades working on similar issues elsewhere. Attempts by religious groups to make regressive demands in terms of reproductive rights and harassing women against making choices regarding their own bodies, are merely the last desperate acts of a dilapidated dogma. We will continue to engage in action to stand against fundamentalist religious attempts to control and dictate women’s lives. We very much appreciate engaging in on-going conversations with comrades around the world on this issue!
We look forward to hearing about your experience and in combining efforts to overcome the challenges to our reproductive rights!
Today, Feminist Fightback is protesting in London against a fundamentalist right-wing procession from their church to a nearby abortion clinic (we wrote about it in this post). Since we face a very similar problem with the “march of silence” in Annaberg-Buchholz, we sent them this adress of solidarity:
We want to express our solidarity to your struggle in London against the religious right-wing movement and their anti women* views.
Even if the situation differs in the various regions of the world, we are united by many common interests and similar challenges in our fight for the right of pregnant people to decide!
In Saxony, we have to face a silent march which advocates for abolishing – the already very restricted – legal options for abortion. At the 1st of June, evangelicalists will try to spread their regressive demands demonstrating in Annaberg-Buchholz, a small saxon town – but we will be there, too. We want to protest for the right to choose and we are ready to intervene when they try to influence public opinion and political discussions!
In Latin America as in the US, in Germany like in UK, all over the world emancipatory movements have to face fundamentalist religious attempts to control and dictate the life of women*! All over the world, reactionary forces try to ensure their influence on society. One of their tools is the control over reproductive rights. They do this at the expense of oppressed and underprivileged people.
Our strength when fighting those repressive actions lies in connecting emancipatory struggles throughout the world. When we share our experiences, our analyses and our critique, when we combine our efforts for a liberated and solidary society, when we stand united in hard times as well as when celebrating our victories – we will overcome the patriarchal and capitalist structures which constantly deteriorate our lifes and impair our freedom.
So we wish you good luck with your Pro-Choice Action. Our thoughts are with you, we’ll keep our fingers crossed for a successful day in London!
When they try to take our rights – we don’t step back, we start to fight!
We want to do a short input about christian antifeminism and fundamentalism and discuss together about what it means to us individually, for our social life and our political struggles. Why do we even have to deal with christian fundamentalism and how can this work? We also want to focus on reproductional rights and analyse how they became one of the main battlefields of fundamentalist movements (s. „Schweigemärsche“). Annaberg-Buchholz is on the 1st of June, christian fundamentalism, unfortunately, is all the year…
P.S.: half of the talk will be in English and half in German
In the end we will give some information about the action planned in Annaberg-Buchholz.
The fight concerning repoductive rights is an international one. Even so the situation is mostly different in each country it is possible to find similarities. One example is the Pro Choice – Action against a religious, right wing demonstration on May 9th in London.
The group Feminist Fightback organizes a counter action.
Here is their announcement.
A religious anti-abortion group are planning a procession from a church in east London to a nearby abortion clinic. We can’t let this go unchallenged – they might have a right to express their opinion, but they don’t have a god-given right to stand outside a clinic, peddle lies and intimidate and harass people. As well as making sure people can access the clinic safely, we want to do a lively action that makes a stand against the religious right-wing and their anti-women views that are dressed up as concern and counselling.
More details to follow but pls save the time and date! The location is near a tube station in East London.
There will be a banner and placard making session on Tuesday 28th April at the Common House 7-9pm. We can use the riso printer to print off your own ‘pro-choice’ designs. We will also discuss plans of action for the day.
Spread the news to all your networks!
Abortion is not just a ‘women’s’ issue. And not just about a woman’s individual ‘right’ or ‘choice’**, which is hard to come by in a capitalist system, especially for black and working class women who always bear the brunt of such policies – either by not being able to access abortions if they want one, or being forced to have one because the state doesn’t want them to reproduce, or having to have one because they can’t afford to have a baby. As communists/anarchists/socialists of various types, we should all recognise the importance of reproductive justice, linked as it is to capitalist production and control over working class bodies. We all have an interest in defending ourselves against the state and religious powers.
On June 1st fundamentalist christians and other people want to march through Annaberg-Buchholz. They support the so called “pro life”-movement.
From now on you will be able to purchase tickets to go to Annaberg-Buchholz by bus at the book shop “König Kurt” at AZ Conni.
More information in English will follow soon.