Lose Your GPS—And Go There

Lose Your GPS—And Go There

by | Sep 17, 2022 | Reproductive Rights

I’m navigationally challenged, so last week I gave myself an extra half hour to canvass Fairfax Heights and Lupton City. I’ve driven through that honeycomb of a neighborhood enough times to know I’d get lost—and I did. That led to an interesting front-porch conversation.

Just FYI, when you canvass, you use an app loaded with publicly available voter data. The idea is that you skip doors that aren’t worth your time. Obviously you skip homes whose occupants aren’t registered voters. But you also skip anyone whose voting history (based on primary ballots pulled) suggests you won’t change their mind during a two-minute chat. 

Anyway, due to a combination of factors (the main one being my lack of internal GPS), I ended up knocking on the wrong door. Soon I was talking to an older woman who told me she was a lifelong Republican. She was pro-life, she explained.

My attempts to discuss Tennessee’s terrifying new abortion ban with “pro-life” men have generally failed. When I tell them there are no exceptions for rape, incest, pregnant children, or even the life of the mother, they either tune out or tell me I’m wrong. With women, though, it’s been different.

So I went there.

As I laid out the facts of the ban, it was clear that the woman was hearing them for the first time. I remarked casually that the legislators who passed the trigger law back in 2019 probably just didn’t understand how medically dangerous it is. Whether that was a charitable or damning remark, I let her decide.

After a few minutes, she leaned toward me. “You know, you’re raised up a certain way,” she whispered, “but I think that should be between a woman and her doctor.”

I nodded and said I agreed. Then I asked her to help me find the street I was looking for. She very kindly did, and she wished me luck.

Please talk to every woman you know about Tennessee’s abortion ban. Every single one. Whether they’re Democrat or Republican, most of them still don’t know the facts—and they need to know.

Women’s lives are on the ballot in November.