On the day that is reserved for honoring Indigenous people whose stolen land many of us occupy as settlers, the United States Senate has begun its hearings for Trump’s nominee for Supreme Court justice, Amy Coney Barrett. There is no greater miscalculation than to pick this date out of haste, as our nation is reminded of the widespread violence and genocide enacted against Native people to conjure our collective spirit of resistance.
We are reminded that there is a thorough line that stems from the earliest days of settler colonialism to this month’s attempted confirmation of lawyer Barrett on the nation’s highest court.
The Spanish Colonizers knew that in order to conquer the land…THEY HAD TO CONQUER THE WOMEN! The Spanish Colonizers used these same brutal tactics in the Philippines, Haiti, Puerto Rico, Honduras and so many other territories.
Now, the fascists in our government know that in order to conquer this nation, THEY MUST ATTEMPT TO CONQUER US WOMEN!
That is why they have chosen to nominate a woman to the Supreme Court, in a feeble attempt to disguise their ambitions. But Barrett has left a long record to reveal who she is and what she stands for. At her core, Barrett is a soldier for patriarchy and has enthusiastically upheld misogyny, racism, homophobia, transphobia and ableism.
If confirmed, the fate of women’s health and human rights would be at Barrett’s fingertips. We are clear that the U.S. healthcare industry does not serve women or our communities. Even so, should the Affordable Care Act be overturned, 23 million women could lose access to health care services, many of whom are women of color. Sixty-eight million women and girls would lose protection from discrimination for what insurance corporations call “pre-existing conditions.” And reproductive healthcare is acutely at risk, making the lives of all women vulnerable, but especially Black and Indigenous women who are 2-3 times more likely to die of pregnancy or childbirth under our current healthcare system.
To quote AF3IRM New York: From slavery’s breeder farms to stolen Native American children to ICE’s arbitrary hysterectomies of migrant women to the nomination of Amy Coney Barrett to the US Supreme Court; this is an enduring pattern of colonialism. Dispossession and theft of the reproductive rights of oppressed and exploited women is the first step in a strategy that turns our bodies into Capital, so that our childbearing abilities can be both monetized and suppressed – all to maintain White dominance over stolen land and the resources thereof. This slow-motion racialized genocide also creates opportunities for super-profit generation for a handful of cisheteropatriarchs.
Across Turtle Island women have been abused – our bodies used for experiments draped in the phrasing of “progress” and “medical advancement”. James Marion Sims using enslaved black women to “develop” surgical techniques for the female reproductive system.” Our sisters’ bodies in Puerto Rico being used to test birth control.
There has been constant pressure to eradicate women’s control over our wombs and the children of our wombs – let us look at these historical phenomena as a distinct pattern to keep women as a political class subservient, subdued and living only under the patriarchal system of domination.
AF3IRM chapters marked October 11 as a day of action to oppose the confirmation of Barrett and call attention to how this latest move by Trump directly links to femicide. Our sisters in New York declared: Dispossessing racialized women of the possession of and control over our wombs is the ultimate colonization. It is part and parcel of Capital’s monetizing of the body, first through rape as a method of war, then through slavery, then through a pervasive sex trade which destroys the lives of the young and the very young. So shameless is this assault by Capital on the human body that even now, some believe this should be the norm.
At stake in lawyer Barrett’s Supreme Court nomination is the sex-based cluster of rights that stem from decisions made by the late Ruth Bader Ginsburg during the crest of the second wave of the US feminist movement. Barrett has neither the legal experience nor an unbiased record of judgment on either or both women’s rights and immigrant rights.
Only more women will die as we seek remedies for pregnancies occasioned by rape, by reproductive abuse, and all unwanted pregnancies caused by men, whose reproductive rights have not been restricted by any law.
Until all grievances against male violence receive sufficient justice, no one has the right to deprive women of ways and means to survive assaults.
Until fascism falls, and we reach our collective destination where there is genuine liberation for all, we must organize to oppose the patriarchal domination over women’s, girls’ and feminized bodies.
Sisters, there is no better time than now– we must ORGANIZE and AFFIRM the Revolution!