The “Pray for Betty White” movement is cute and all, but I think the person who really needs our prayers right now is Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
Ruth Bader Ginsburg is a liberal member of the United States Supreme Court. Being a Jewish woman and a big advocate for women’s rights, her presence on the Supreme Court has really helped American law move towards equality. For example, Ginsburg is the first Supreme Court justice to officiate a same sex-wedding, is a big advocate for equal voting rights, and as a feminist, her voice and vote in the Supreme Court has helped protect women’s reproductive rights for years.
The problem is, Ginsburg is 83 years old (the oldest member) and a cancer survivor. If she passes away, Trump will be in charge of replacing her presence on the United States Supreme Court, and you can be sure that he’ll replace her with somebody who is against everything she stands for.
At the moment, the Supreme Court consists of 4 liberal members, 3 conservative members, and Justice Kennedy, who is a conservative swing (a conservative member that occasionally sides with the liberals). The confirmation of Trump nominee Neil Gorsuch would give conservatives a potential edge of 5 to 4, which means conservatives could control what cases enter the Supreme Court for a vote, as well as the results. It only takes a simple majority of 5 votes to overturn a case. Nevertheless, we have fared well in a 4 liberal, 4 conservative, and 1 conservative swing court before. It’s not good, but not the end of the world.
Ginsburg’s passing would give the conservatives a concrete 5 votes, and a potential 6 votes, which would give conservatives the ability to overturn any major court case, including Roe v. Wade (abortion rights) and Obergefell v. Hodges (gay marriage).
On top of that, Supreme Court justices serve life terms, so you can bet Trump will elect a YOUNG conservative, meaning conservatives have the potential to completely control the Supreme Court for GENERATIONS to come.
Abortion abortion abortion abortion.
I’ve had an abortion.
I had an abortion when i was freshly fifteen.
I had lots of good reasons for an abortion.
I was too young. Id gotten pregnant at fourteen.
I was mentally ill with an eating disorder.
I was physically ill with undiagnosed food allergies.
I pregnant by an mentally ill and abusive man who killed small animals, either by accidental abuse or on purpose.
But aside from the reasons why I got an abortion, I want to talk about something else.
Stigma. Women who have abortions are stigmatized. They are perceived as someone bad, or at least not as good as other women.
Some people are ok with with abortions, as long as the person is properly pays their penance afterwards.
At one point in our history, women came together in their community to support a person who was having an abortion.
They would care for the person, keep them company, help with miscarriage cramps, the women in the community supported them and helped them through this process. The ending of a pregnancy.
When I think of ending stigma against abortion; I see women holding a persom while they bleed out the fetus. I see women weeping, laughing, praying, singing, loving. I see a person crying to their friends about how hard it was to end the pregnancy. I see a person laughing and sipping a martini while they talks about blood clots and how they could not have had an abortion soon enough.
I see the word abortion said with out glancing side eyes, without a hushed voice, without guilt.
I see people not living alone.
Let’s be very honest. When those who advocate for the murder of an innocent unborn child use the terms ‘choice’ and ‘freedom,’ it comes from a misguided understanding of the whole situation in its entirety.
“When Christian schools respond like this they are promoting abortion. How many countless girls have been too afraid to ask for help and end up aborting their baby?”
I shudder to think of how many women have aborted their children because they couldn’t bear the shame of facing their Christian community. Praying for compassion and support to be the norm. I have such enormous respect for Maddi.
Mary, Mother, humble Queen, you were an unwed pregnant woman in a time when you could have been stoned to death, pray for pregnant women- especially the young, the impoverished, the abandoned, and the afraid.
You felt the life of the growing Christ within your own immaculate body, Holy Mother, pray for an end to abortion.
You gave birth in a stable and laid your baby son in a manger, Holy Mother, pray for impoverished and struggling mothers.
You fled to Egypt with your young son when Herod would have had you both killed, Holy Mother, pray for displaced and homeless mothers.
You found that young Jesus was missing and searched desperately for him in Jerusalem, Holy Mother, pray for mothers with missing children and for mothers whose children have gone astray in less literal ways.
You knew the pain of losing St. Joseph, your spouse, Holy Mother, pray for widowed and single mothers.
Your son was arrested after the Passover, Holy Mother, pray for those mothers whose children are incarcerated.
You witnessed your own beloved son’s death on the cross, Holy Mother, pray for mothers who have had to bury their children.
Emily grew up under the pressure of being the only child of an American Ambassador. Elizabeth was far too busy to spend her personal time instilling proper values in Emily.
So Emily had to go off what she learned from society and the people around her. She was young and impressionable, she absorbed everyone’s character flaws as her own without knowing any better.
She saw how distant and stern her mother was and Emily vowed to be the opposite. She wanted to be caring and soft.
It was 1985 in Rome. She spent much of her time in the Catholic Church learning how to be a proper woman and wife. She learned that she must obey her husband’s wishes and she must procreate.
That’s when she met John. She was 15 and she wanted so desperately to feel loved and wanted. So when he pressured her into sex, she obliged.
She ended up pregnant. It was a sin in the eyes of the church to have premarital sex but it would be even worse to get an abortion.
Emily prayed about it for weeks. But God never answered her prayers. She had done as she had been taught. She had obeyed her partner. But he wasn’t the one who would have to make a life altering decision.
That was about time Emily turned from a child into an adult. She knew she had to take care of herself, first and foremost, even if it was against the Church.
John disagreed. He couldn’t be part of any of her radical ideals. He forced Emily to confess her sins to their Priest. The Priest made it clear he could not support an abortion and it would be a mortal sin in the eyes of God.
With no one else to turn to, Emily told her best friend, Matthew. To her surprise, he didn’t judge her.
Matthew held her hand when they walked into the clinic. He held her hand the entire time. And when she was better, he held her hand as they sat in the front row of the Sunday service.
He protected her, like no one ever had. And she never forgot how good it felt to be cared for by someone who had no ulterior motives.
In high school she got into Goth culture, longing to fit in, anywhere she could. Elizabeth thought it was just Emily being rebellious but it was truly Emily’s attempts at finding herself.
She had always been what everyone else expected her to be. The proper young lady, the devout Catholic, the loyal daughter. She had never had the freedom to discover who she really was.
Because of this, her college years were rough. She had extremely low self esteem and longed for a romantic connection that mirrored the friendship she once had with Matthew.
Everyone talked about true love and soul mates but Emily had been so traumatized from such a young age, she genuinely believed she wasn’t good enough. She thought she’d never be good enough for someone to love.
She slept around through college. Never letting anyone get close enough to get to know her. A different partner every weekend.
Emily had decided that her Mother had the right idea all along. If she was distant and detached, she could never be hurt.
After college when she enrolled in the FBI, Elizabeth was less than thrilled. Emily saw it as an escape. A way to escape her past and create a new life.
She poured herself into her training and graduated the Academy in the top of her class. When she was recruited by a joint task force between Interpol and the CIA she was only 30.
She was told she would have to cut all ties with the world as she knew it and she never hesitated. Her job was the only thing that mattered to her and thus, Lauren Reynolds was born.
When Emily received the assignment to infiltrate Valhalla thru Ian Doyle she didn’t think much of it. She knew how to get a man to bend to her whim, that had never been a problem.
But Ian Doyle was different than the her past partners. As their relationship evolved so did Emily’s feelings. Ian knew her as an arms dealer, a criminal, and yet he saw past that and he fell in love with her.
Emily had never experienced unconditional love before and yet it felt so comfortable and real. She struggled to keep her emotions out of her operation but it proved more difficult than she could have imagined.
She knew he was a criminal. She knew he was a murderer. And yet, she went home with him and lived with him and saw a side no one else could.
No one had ever truly loved her the way Ian Doyle loved Lauren Reynolds. She spent nights staring into the dark trying to draw a line between where her cover ended and where the real Emily began.
She would do absolutely anything for the mission. It was what she was trained to do. Always put the operation first. She knew what the CIA could do to agents that went rouge.
So she kept playing the role. And at some point it was no longer pretending. At some point, that line between Lauren and Emily disappeared.
She had spent so much time being someone else, that she forgot what it was like before Doyle. She continued to gather intelligence but she also let her walls come down in regards to Doyle.
When he proposed, she wasn’t sure who had said yes. Lauren or Emily?
Things only became more complicated. She wanted to be extracted, they knew Doyle was Valhalla but her handler insisted she stay to see what else she could uncover.
When Doyle divulged that Declan, the young boy Emily had grown to love, was actually his son, Emily’s heart broke.
Doyle asked her to raise Declan with him. To be the Mother he deserved. But Emily knew she could never be what Declan needed. Not living as Lauren Reynolds.
Emily had always wanted children and she loved Declan as her own but she couldn’t lie to him. That was the breaking point when she informed her handler the operation was over. She would take no more part in it.
Doyle was captured. Emily was sent back to DC, Lauren Reynolds was wiped from existence.
But Emily knew she couldn’t leave Declan as an orphan. She risked so much to bring him and Louise to the states.
She knew Doyle would never stop looking for his son, so she staged their deaths. She took photographic proof that Declan was dead and it made her sick.
She thought about how Doyle would feel when he found out his only son had been murdered. Even Doyle didn’t deserve that pain. Emily knew what losing a child was like, first hand. But she also knew she had to protect Declan no matter the cost.
After the photos had been taken, Emily gave Louise and Declan an envelope with their new identities, cash and an address.
She had bought a house for them to live in. Small neighborhood, cul-de-sac, close to a great school. It’s where she would raise a family if she had the liberty to.
She did her best to build a normal life for Declan. They spent weekends together until she was transferred to Kansas. Emily would send Declan a birthday present every year and he would send her a Mother’s Day card that he would hand make.
When the position at the BAU came open, Emily jumped at the chance to move back to DC. She would do anything to be close to Declan again.
She joined the BAU but kept her past a secret. JTF-12 had been a top secret operation and none of her team knew she still had contact with Declan.
She settled into the BAU quickly. It was nice to be out in the field again. But as time passed, she struggled with her secrets.
At one point JJ told her that she could see Emily with kids. JJ said she thought it would be a good idea.
Emily simply nodded. Thinking of Declan, thinking of how she longed to someday have a normal parent/child relationship with him. It tore her up inside.
Years passed and Emily found the balance of what she did and didn’t share with her new team. She knew they trusted her with their lives but part of her was always aware of just how little they truly knew about her.
When Ian Doyle escaped prison in 2011, seven years after he had been captured, Emily knew he’d come after her.
She watched as one by one her team from the JTF-12 operation were assassinated. It was then she knew her team would become collateral damage, so she left.
With no explanation she left the BAU and went after Doyle alone. She knew him better than anyone else and she knew she would never risk the lives of her team.
But Doyle was always one step ahead. He captured her, tortured her, threatened her life. But Emily wasn’t afraid to die. She would gladly sacrifice herself for her team and even more so for Declan.
She knew her team would come after her. So she stalled. And when she had nothing left to give and the barrel of the gun was pressed to her head she had a lapse in judgment.
Her pride got the better of her and she ended up telling Doyle a secret she hadn’t told anyone in seven years. Declan was alive.
Her team wasn’t as quick as she had hoped and with this new found knowledge, Doyle escaped.
Emily was severely wounded. When she was rushed to the hospital, Hotch was contacted by the Department of Defense. He was told Emily would be declared dead, for her own safety, as long as Ian Doyle was at large.
And so her team, her family, buried her. They mourned her loss. They tried to move on.
All the while, Emily lived in solitude in Paris. She had to explain to Declan that she couldn’t talk to him for a while. That it was for his protection. But he was only nine. He didn’t truly understand. He asked why Emily would leave him after promising so many times she never would. It killed her inside but it was her only option.
She entrusted friend to keep watch over Declan and Louise but Tom often traveled, leaving them vulnerable.
She lived every day in fear, always waiting for the call that Doyle had located them. But a month passed, then two, then five and everything was fine.
She had started to feel at ease. Then seven months after her “death” she received the call. She was on the plane in a matter of hours.
She spent the whole flight thinking about Declan. She only barely thought of how her team would react to the news she had been alive the entire time. The most important thing to her was making sure Declan was safe.
When she saw Doyle again it brought up so many old emotions. Emotions she thought had died with Lauren Reynolds.
When she asked him where Declan was she wasn’t asking as an FBI agent. She was asking as a mother and Doyle saw that on her face. He saw her genuine fear and he knew Declan was in trouble and not even God himself would stop Emily from finding him.
When they did find Declan and he was safe again in Emily’s arms she tried to be strong. She had been so fearful she would never see him again.
She watched as the life slipped out of Doyle’s eyes. She watched Declan put together memories from his childhood of the father he all but forgotten.
After they cleared the scene, she went to see Declan. What should have been a joyful reunion was instead solemn and sorrowful.
She told Declan stories about his father, not of his crimes but of the man he was behind Valhalla. The man she had once loved.
They fell asleep on the couch, Declan in her arms. It was the only time in her entire life she felt like she was home.
The next day the Marshals came. She choked back tears as she hugged Declan for the last time. She told him to be strong. To be a good person. And to never forget her.
She will never forget him looking out the back window of the car, tear stained cheeks, mouthing, “I love you, Mom.”
After that she tried to recover. She tried to fix her strained relationships with the team. She did her best to go about life as normal.
But it was never normal.
When Clyde offered her a position in London, she knew she had to take it.
She knew it was her chance to reinvent herself. Just as she had always done after a loss. She had always been able to compartmentalize and move on. If she had let herself truly mourn or feel the pain she had suppressed for so long, she would have drowned.
Emily Prentiss is not broken. She is simply scarred. She has battle wounds but she is so strong. She has lived through more pain and suffering than anyone ever should. But it made her a better person. In her search for unconditional love she ended up finding herself. She learned what was truly important and she never sacrificed her character for the job again.