Well folks, Lady Parts Justice League is changing our name!
When I launched LPJL in 2015, I could never have imagined the impact our scrappy little team of comedians and writers would have. Between LPJL’s videos and live events, our work has reached millions of people, and for many, it has been their first exposure to activism for reproductive freedom. From day one, our mission has been to create engaging media that destigmatizes abortion, highlights the bad actors chipping away at access to reproductive health care, and gives people tangible actions they can take to fight back. Our work on the ground provides practical support for abortion providers in states hit hardest by these hideous laws. Our comedy and music shows bring new recruits to clinics and local organizations working tirelessly to combat laws that are lurching their communities back into a reproductive rights chamber of horrors—which, by the way, would be a terrible Harry Potter book.
I couldn’t be prouder of the work we do at LPJL, and I’m excited about expanding our reach. But in order to do that, we need to make a major change: a new name, one in line with our vision and values. We strive to be intersectional, but does our name reflect that work? Not so much. We decided to fix that.
I am over the moon to announce that beginning today, Lady Parts Justice League is officially changing its name to Abortion Access Front. Since we’re friends, you can call us AAF for short, or if you want to confuse your parents, and piss off the orcs who support this avalanche of anti-abortion detritus, you can join us in boldly referring to ourselves as Abortion AF.
Why did we choose “Lady Parts” in the first place? Were we some kind of radical anti-trans, exclusionary creeps? Hell no. But we definitely weren’t thinking enough about the impact our brand would have. The name came from a mindblowing interaction between former Michigan State Rep. Lisa Brown and her then-Speaker of the House back in 2012. While Lisa was fighting on the floor of the statehouse against a bill that would force patients to have medically unneccesary transvaginal ultrasounds before they could access abortion, the Speaker threw her off the floor for saying “vagina.” When she demanded to know what word she should use instead of vagina when talking about, err, vaginas, he suggested something “less offensive” like “lady parts.” Outraged that an extremist gynotician cringed at the word vagina but felt completely entitled to legislate them inspired us to take “Lady Parts” as our name as a tongue-in-cheek way to expose this kind of patriarchal hypocrisy. But regardless of this origin story and our best intentions, the name was narrow, alienating, and just plain hurtful to many. I want to apologize to all who felt excluded or othered by it.
In comedy there is an old expression, “If you have to explain it, it’s not working.” Same applies here. We advocate strongly for the reproductive health and rights not only of cis women but people of all genders. Let’s be clear: not all ladies have uteruses. And not everyone with a uterus identifies as a lady. Full stop. Everyone deserves access to dignified, safe, culturally competent, affordable health care.
In addition to being more inclusive, we are also pumped to continue our work with a name that reflects our primary mission of putting ABORTION front and center. We are seeing a wave of extremist anti-abortion legislation like never before, and it’s critical that we not shy away from what we are all about: Abortion Access! AAF’s work is to normalize abortion, celebrate those who provide it, and fight like hell to keep it accessible and legal. By choosing Abortion Access Front, we unapologetically declare we are on the front lines of the fight and stand with the providers of abortion. Ask any of the over 70 clinics we have serviced; when they ask for help, #WeShowUp.
We are the Abortion Access Front. We are Abortion AF. We are damn proud of that, and we are here to serve! If YOU’RE Abortion AF, sign up to kick ass and take names with us HERE. Trust me when I tell you, when you hang with AAF, you will see, exposing sexist shitheads has never been more rewarding.