Marriage is a public act; it is declaring your partnership and commitment to the government and the public. Abortion is the opposite of a public act. Abortion is, according to the Supreme Court, about privacy. It is about an individual woman’s right to privacy and personal bodily autonomy. As such, abortion then becomes an individualized issue, despite the fact that one in three women in America will have an abortion in her reproductive lifetime. It may be incredibly common, but abortion is relegated to the shadows. We don’t talk about abortion at the dinner table, but we do talk about our relationships and spouses.

Oh boy, the Vatican, no doubt patting itself on the back for being so generous to the filthy sluts of the world, has set up a six-day event in Madrid where ladies who’ve had abortions can come and confess in order to escape the automatic excommunication they otherwise would get. The reports don’t indicate if the Vatican is generously offering the same thing to murderers, rapists, or priests who molest children only to get transferred to a new parish where there’s fresh young people who haven’t learned to fear you yet, but that’s probably because none of those people are subject to the dogged excommunications of women who let penises near their vaginas for reasons other than producing more hands that can put money in the collection plate. Hey, don’t judge! They have to keep funding these $87-million (the estimated cost of the Pope’s trip to Madrid) Pope excursions, you know.

Amanda Marcotte takes issue with the Vatican. The Guardian reports on the World Youth Day events that will feature the Get Out of Hell Free Confession Extravaganza. (via ilyagerner)

AMY GOODMAN: In your 800 clinics of Planned Parenthood, how much of the work is around abortion? What is the array of services that you provide?
CECILE RICHARDS: Less than 10 percent of our services are related to abortion. In fact, 90 percent, more than 90 percent of Planned Parenthood’s care is preventive care. We do—we provide birth control to about two-and-a-half million people every year. We do almost a million cancer screenings for breast exams, as well as cervical cancer screenings. We’re now one of the largest providers of STD testing and treatment in the country.
And for so many women who come to Planned Parenthood, like other family planning clinics, we are their only doctor. You know, the vast majority of women who come to Planned Parenthood, it will be the only doctor they see all year. And so, I think one of the most damaging things about what’s being proposed by the Republican leadership right now in Congress is it would basically take away healthcare for three million people who currently have it. via cuds.:

 Important information on the work of Planned Parenthood.