(Photo  by  Mindy Turner)
(Photo by Mindy Turner)
American women are in the spotlight this election season and they have not taken depictions of their lack of worth silently. As the conversation about women’s role in modern society heats up on social media, women have moved into the streets to protest in front of Trump hotels.

And it’s prime time for feminist political satire. Some, like Samantha Bee on “Full Frontal,” have hilariously lobbed the crudeness right back across the net.

Lizz Winstead was ahead of the game. A political satirist and comedian who co-created The Daily Show in 1996 and became the head writer and news correspondent before moving on to work with Rachel Maddow (and is now with the Blue Nation Review), Winstead didn’t wait for this year’s focus on women to get dirty with election politics.

Winstead’s eye-opening moment came when she left New York City in 2010 and traveled back to her home state of Minnesota to finish writing her first book: Lizz Free Or Die. The tea party Congress had just been elected and Mike Pence of Indiana stood up and said he would push to zero out funding for national parks, public radio and television, and Planned Parenthood.

“Within three months, 27 state legislatures were trying to put in laws to prevent women getting abortions,” said Winstead.

She decided to develop a traveling comedy show that would double as a support and fundraising network for Planned Parenthood clinics across the country. Lady Parts Justice (LPJ) is named after Lisa Brown, a Michigan legislator who was told by congressional leadership that she should use the phrase “lady parts” to refer to  the word vagina when discussing legislation on ultrasound. (They kicked her off the floor when she didn’t comply.) 

 Lady Parts Justice is billed as the first not-safe-for-work, rapid-response reproductive rights effort that uses comedy in person and on digital media to sound an alarm about what LPJ calls the “terrifying erosion of reproductive access so people will get off their asses and reclaim their rights.”

“Our goal is to expose anti-choice legislators,” said Winstead. Once on the road, the show quickly realized that they had two other roles: to get those interested in comedy to care about reproductive rights and to thank and support the local clinics for the work they did to provide reproductive choices to women. No one ever thanks them, even though they are risking their lives, says Winstead.

 The website ladypartsjustice.com has a map that clicks through to provide updates on reproductive policy at the state level, with a fair bit of detailed explanation. A word of caution for those tempted to take a peek at the office: This isn’t PG13. It is definitely late-night, kick-ass street humor.