Actress Alyssa Milano sent a tweet on Friday night urging women to join her in a sex strike to protest anti-abortion laws passed by Republican-controlled legislatures in Georgia. She tweeted “to stop having sex until we get bodily autonomy back.”
Her tweet came after the state of Georgia became the fourth state in the nation this year to ban abortions after a fetal heartbeat is detected. That time is roughly at six weeks after conception when women typically don’t know that they are pregnant.
“Our reproductive rights are being erased. Until women have legal control over our own bodies we just cannot risk pregnancy,” Alyssa Milano wrote. “JOIN ME by not having sex until we get bodily autonomy back. I’m calling for a #SexStrike. Pass it on.”
Our reproductive rights are being erased.
Until women have legal control over our own bodies we just cannot risk pregnancy.
JOIN ME by not having sex until we get bodily autonomy back.
— Alyssa Milano (@Alyssa_Milano) May 11, 2019
Milano’s tweet garnered a ton of attention and the hashtag trended through Saturday on Twitter.
Not all the attention was positive though. Many women were disappointed by Milano’s request for a sex strike. Some felt that a sex strike reinforced archaic and patriarchal views of women’s sexual behavior. Others claimed that it was exclusionary to the LGBTQ community.
Love the idea of trying to send a message, but you are going about it the wrong way. It pushes a sexist narrative that sex is something WE give to men as a form of currency, that it's a reward. That is not empowering at all. Can we get some real solutions here?
— ??? ; ? (@stvckyxholland) May 13, 2019
Milano said she fears the laws could eventually be decided by the conservative-leaning U.S. Supreme Court, which Republicans hope will overturn the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision legalizing abortion.
“That is absolutely horrifying to me,” Milano said. “Anyone who is not completely and totally outraged by this and doesn’t see where this is leading, I think is not taking this threat seriously.”
if they want to control our bodies reproductive organs, than we should deny sex to cis men
— le fey (@globelamp) May 11, 2019
Apparently, Milano has not indicated how long the sex strike should last nor does she know how long she will participate. She highlighted reports of sex strikes in various countries dating back decades. In 2003, Liberian Nobel Peace Prize winner Leymah Gbowee notably incorporated a sex strike as a strategy in a women’s peace movement to bring an end to the Second Liberian Civil War. Other women have called for such strikes to protest issues, including violence and political conflict.
Whether or not women in Georgia or around the nation will participate in the sex strike in protest to the new anti-abortion law, Alyssa Milano certainly has people talking.