I have watched Charmaine Yoest on YouTube and she was calm, cool and collected as well as cheerful in face of a hostile media pile up against her.
So I like the title of this New York Times Magazine article.
Liked this part, too, because I relate to it:
When she’s at one of her children’s baseball games or crew regattas and a parent asks about her work, she tries to deflect the question. “I tend to say, ‘Oh, gosh, it’s Saturday, it’s sunny — have you seen any good movies?’ ” she told me. After that, she’ll say she works at a nonprofit. If pressed further, she sticks to her TV talking points. “I explain that we work on moving forward legislation about informed consent, and making sure women get the best standard of medical care — the things most people agree on. So there’s a parallel between our public strategy at A.U.L. and my private discussions.”
Just used this strategy the other day, when I was out at a concert. Oh gosh, do we really want to talk about what I do? This music is great!
But what I don’t like about the article is an underlying sentiment that somehow she is nuancing talking points when she speaks about how abortion harms women:
Yoest put her arm around her daughter and finessed the slogan a bit. “We’re fighting Planned Parenthood to protect women,” she said. “When those babies aren’t born, that is a loss for their mothers, and that’s part of why they need a chance to live.”
It gives me the impression that the reporter cannot believe that Yoest would have a truly held personal conviction that abortion is worth fighting because it harms women.
Lines like this: “None of this, however, means that Charmaine Yoest is a moderate. For all her emphasis on women’s health, her end goal isn’t to make abortion safer,” really betray that bias. I imagine when I return to finish reading the article, I’ll be frustrated by this, but return I will.
(As a side note, I just went to hear a seminar about how to counsel women in reproductive loss, which includes abortion as well as miscarriage, infertility, stillbirth and hysterectomies. Very elucidating, and I hope to write up a wee summary soon.)