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I went inside a Colombian ‘youth camp’ run by anti-abortion activists

Wednesday 6 February 2019, by siawi3

Source: https://mailchi.mp/opendemocracy/i-went-inside-a-colombian-youth-camp-run-by-anti-abortion-activists?e=955b1076cc

sent by email on Feb 6, 2019

I went inside a Colombian ‘youth camp’ run by anti-abortion activists

An evangelical group prayer, Guatemala 2014. Photo: Flickr/amslerPIX. CC BY-NC 2.0. Some rights reserved.

At a camp mixing extreme sports and extreme rhetoric last September, Camille Mijola saw how the Christian right is training teenagers to join their fight against reproductive rights.

A backlash against women’s and LGBTQI rights was felt throughout Latin America in 2018.

Evangelicals joined the backlash against reproductive rights in El Salvador. The changing religious landscape in this historically Catholic country has not been good news for women, who live under one of the world’s harshest abortion laws.

Meanwhile, the first legislative proposal of evangelical groups in Guatemala looked set to legalise homophobia and threaten women who have miscarriages with jail terms.

Also in 2018, the Argentine senate voted against legalising abortion, with opponents to reform including many doctors and health facilities.

"Anti-abortion groups scout hospital wards and break into the rooms where women or girls await an abortion to ‘save the baby.’”

Photo: Marielle Franco in August 2016. Credit: Mídia NINJA/Flickr. [CC-BY-SA-2.0]. Some rights reserved.

But women and LGBTQI people are fighting back throughout Latin America.

This group in Mexico City is challenging ‘negative masculinities’ with weekly group classes. Meanwhile, from her home and cafés in Mexico City, María Salguero is mapping femicides (gender-related killings).

“Her body was found the next day in the passenger seat of the bus, which had been abandoned. She’d been sexually assaulted and murdered”

In rural Paraguay, women are on the frontlines of a ‘race against time’ to save native seeds.

It isn’t always safe to fight back. Latin America is the deadliest region for environmental and land defenders. And these murders often follow numerous threats, including online.

“We confront capitalist interests, and this means our work involves a higher level of risk.”

The only black woman from the favelas on the Rio city council, Marielle Franco was assassinated on 14 March 2018. People mourned and protested her death all over the world. Franco represented the struggle to succeed in Brazil when one does not belong to the white middle class.