The Choice of Change: Congressman Tim Ryan’s (D) New Outlook on Abortion.

220px-Rep._Tim_Ryan_Congressional_Head_Shot_2010Today Congressman Tim Ryan took a bold step away from the pack and told the Akron Beacon Journal that his stance on Abortion has shifted. In his fourteen years as a politician in the state of Ohio, Ryan has remained true to his political and religious stance on abortion, which led him to publicly proclaim himself as Pro-Life. But after hearing stories from women across the state and the nation, it was virtually impossible for Ryan to carry on with business as usual while carrying the narrative of these women’s trials with him.

Congressman Ryan quoted Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro writing that, “Nobody celebrates abortion.” And this is indeed true. Would we love to live in a world where every single pregnancy is chosen? And every single fetus can be carried to term without any complications? Yes. I think we can all agree that, this is a world we’d all love to live in. But it is not, and until we can make it to that day where we live in that utopia “the heavy hand of the government must not make this decision for women and families” as Congressman Ryan stated.

So what happens when there is a paradigm shift in regards to choice? Perhaps the work shifts to comprehensive sex education. Study after study has shown that when students are educated early on they are more likely to make better decision for themselves. Across the globe, we see that comprehensive sex education is working, and is continually driving down the teen pregnancy rates in countries like the Netherlands, Switzerland and Germany.

What Congressman Ryan has decided does not make him a traitor. It makes him aware that this country cannot be headed towards, and retain, greatness if we do not support programs and legislation that “have the ability to play a significant role is in giving women and families the tools they need to prevent unintended pregnancies by expanding education and access to contraception.”

Both Planned Parenthood Advocates of Ohio and Planned Parenthood Federation of America are elated to have a new ally in Congressman Ryan. “We are humbled by Congressman Ryan’s heartfelt commentary about a topic that is too often politicized and stigmatized,” said Stephanie Kight, CEO of Planned Parenthood Advocates of Ohio stated in a press release. “We look forward to working with Congressman Ryan to ensure that all women — no matter where they live or how much money they have — can access the care they need without political interference.”

“We’re grateful for Congressman Ryan’s honesty and courage in sharing how his views have evolved to support access to safe and legal abortion,” said Cecile Richards, president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America. “Abortion is a complex and deeply personal issue, and Congressman Ryan’s journey is not unusual.  Congressman Ryan joins the overwhelming majority of Americans who want women to have access to abortion and don’t want politicians to interfere in women’s personal medical decisions. We thank Congressman Ryan for standing with women across Ohio and around the nation, and we look forward to working with him.”

If we are to hold tight to myth that we as Americans should be able to pull ourselves up by our proverbial bootstraps, those bootstraps for women are shaped in the unwavering need to have full autonomy of our bodies. I applaud Congressman Ryan for honoring and acknowledging that our stances and should consistently be questioned and when appropriate should be shifted to accommodate a new way of thinking.


Dear White People: A reflection on the “Selma” Film.


Dear White Folks…

We are done fighting for what is already ours. This is not a matter of competence, nor a matter of worth. We are living, breathing humans that dwell on this land. This fight is not ours. It is yours. We are done fighting for our lives, our humanity. This is your fight. This is your civil war. It’s your turn to take to the streets and disrupt what has always been a source of comfort. We are tired of being the exceptions to your rules. We simply want to live our lives unscathed.

The work of the civil rights movement was all about white consciousness. For a veil to be lifted from off of your eyes to see that we, black folks, we are not the issue here. You are. We’ve done our share of code switching, and it has not been beneficial. We’ve straightened our hair, and our backs… our backs that have been bent by you. We’ve set aside our language, our customs, our ancestry in pursuits of assimilation only to be met at assimilations door with a “you are not welcome here sign” …we’ve lightened our skin, our hearts, and our memories, to “get over” what we can’t get under. We’ve adopted the rituals and relics that come from worshiping God in the manner you do. And nothing has been enough. Which is why I know that this is no longer our fight. It never was.


One should not have to brawl to be whole. This is not about having the same blood that runs through our bodies, because you have made it clear that is of no consequence. This is about your fear; your apprehension; your perpetual unease; your entitlement; your terroristic ways. White people have been a terror. You’ve terrorized us by your actions and/or your silence. We are not asking you to save us in the manner in which you save whales, and children in some far off land. We are asking that you use your white guilt to save yourselves. Not to pour out fountains of charity, but to place a mirror in front of the silent inequity you endorse and uphold by living your life day in and day out absolving yourself from historic and present sins of inaction.

It is my hope that you figure things out, before America falls from grace. All great lands fall from grace. Have sight beyond what you see white people. Where will you be when the narrative changes? What side will you stand on? We know the impact of being on the wrong side of allies. Don’t expect us to stand with you, when you have always stood on us.

-eris eady

35 Questions

35 Questions
Eris Eady

What has hate done for you?
Has it helped you to sleep at night?
Has it brought you through grief and turmoil?
Has it held you close when you’ve felt your loneliest?
Does hate and apprehension of the different make you feel less legit?

Are you less of you when someone is more of themselves?
Has making excuses based on difference justified a wrong?
What do you think will happen if you thought differently?
Will your head explode?
Will people stop liking you?

Will you start liking yourself?
Did you ever love someone in secret because it was too scary to love them publicly?
Have you ever feared for your life?
Did you wash your hands today?
Was that scary for you?

Has death ever been as familiar as washing your hands?
If color or gender really doesn’t matter… how would it feel to wake up the opposite of who you are now?
Would it change your trajectory?
Would you do everything in your power to become who you once were?
Have you ever felt an aching love?

Do you remember what made it stop?
Do you keep the artifacts of that aching tucked away?
Is it your “break in case of emergency” thing?
Do you have things you break or tear open when you need to feel something?
Anything at all?

When’s the last time you were numb?
I remember when I was last numb.
Are you fingers and toes still cold from it?
Do you own a snuggie just in case it happens again?
Don’t you wish snuggies had a zipper on the back?
How did you survive?

Did you ever put your tears in escrow?
Or postdate a night terror for a more convenient time?
Have you ever tried to find closure with someone?
Was it really finding closure with yourself?
Have you ever snuck a goodbye into the casket of someone you loved before it closed?

I have.