Today, January 22, 2013 is the 40th anniversary of the Supreme Court decision we now know simply as Roe v. Wade. I was a freshman in college in 1973 and I remember the groundswell of cultural emotion the news inspired. I also remember, while it was a loud bell in the social structure of the time, it didn’t seem to last too long. Yes, it was seen as a major victory for the Women’s Movement, but that struggle was far from over. The Civil Rights movement was also well under way, and oh yeah, there was also a war going on.
Forty years later, fresh off a brutal election, there still seems to be a “War on Women”, and minority voting rights are once again (still) under attack. Now, even more than before, Roe V. Wade is one of the biggest lightning rods in our culture, and oh yeah, there is also a war going on. The more things change…
What has remained the same is the battles that were fought in the past are constantly being re-fought, and any victories are ephemeral. It seems if we want to hold the social high ground, we must keep each generation engaged in the causes we thought were settled.
About a month ago, I was contacted to participate in a project called “40” – 40 Faces. 40 Photographers. 40 Years of Choice, which serves to launch the “Choice Out Loud” campaign. The project launched today to mark the anniversary, 40 years on, of Roe v. Wade. The idea was simple, ask forty photographers to make images of forty women. The implications are much greater. These women represent the next wave of stakeholders in the struggle to keep the rights they already have. Within the diversity of their faces and images, they can remind and engage people that the fight for a woman’s right to choose what she does or doesn’t do with her body is up to her and her alone.
Please take a look at the website, consider the project and what it stands for. I am proud to be included. As for me, the years have made me realize that I have fewer and fewer absolutes in my viewpoints. This is one of them – absolutely.
I would like to thank Bunny Zlotnik, who was my gracious and willing subject, and Renee Rael who did the hair and make up. I don’t really know how they both felt about the larger subject of women’s rights, but I will say, when I asked them to participate, I didn’t have to ask them twice.
This is the trailer for the film. By the way, that’s my shot of Bunny in the opening sequence. To see the entire film go to “Choice Out Loud”