Randi Pink’s Latest Novel Tackles Teen Pregnancy

 ========= Old Image Removed =========Array
(
    [_wp_attached_file] => Array
        (
            [0] => 2019/10/Girls_Like_Us_cover_cropped.jpg
        )

    [_wp_attachment_metadata] => Array
        (
            [0] => a:5:{s:5:"width";i:1650;s:6:"height";i:928;s:4:"file";s:39:"2019/10/Girls_Like_Us_cover_cropped.jpg";s:5:"sizes";a:10:{s:9:"thumbnail";a:4:{s:4:"file";s:39:"Girls_Like_Us_cover_cropped-140x140.jpg";s:5:"width";i:140;s:6:"height";i:140;s:9:"mime-type";s:10:"image/jpeg";}s:6:"medium";a:4:{s:4:"file";s:39:"Girls_Like_Us_cover_cropped-336x189.jpg";s:5:"width";i:336;s:6:"height";i:189;s:9:"mime-type";s:10:"image/jpeg";}s:12:"medium_large";a:4:{s:4:"file";s:39:"Girls_Like_Us_cover_cropped-768x432.jpg";s:5:"width";i:768;s:6:"height";i:432;s:9:"mime-type";s:10:"image/jpeg";}s:5:"large";a:4:{s:4:"file";s:39:"Girls_Like_Us_cover_cropped-771x434.jpg";s:5:"width";i:771;s:6:"height";i:434;s:9:"mime-type";s:10:"image/jpeg";}s:9:"wbhm-icon";a:4:{s:4:"file";s:37:"Girls_Like_Us_cover_cropped-80x80.jpg";s:5:"width";i:80;s:6:"height";i:80;s:9:"mime-type";s:10:"image/jpeg";}s:13:"wbhm-featured";a:4:{s:4:"file";s:39:"Girls_Like_Us_cover_cropped-600x338.jpg";s:5:"width";i:600;s:6:"height";i:338;s:9:"mime-type";s:10:"image/jpeg";}s:20:"wbhm-featured-square";a:4:{s:4:"file";s:39:"Girls_Like_Us_cover_cropped-300x300.jpg";s:5:"width";i:300;s:6:"height";i:300;s:9:"mime-type";s:10:"image/jpeg";}s:18:"wbhm-featured-home";a:4:{s:4:"file";s:39:"Girls_Like_Us_cover_cropped-553x311.jpg";s:5:"width";i:553;s:6:"height";i:311;s:9:"mime-type";s:10:"image/jpeg";}s:22:"wbhm-featured-carousel";a:4:{s:4:"file";s:39:"Girls_Like_Us_cover_cropped-470x265.jpg";s:5:"width";i:470;s:6:"height";i:265;s:9:"mime-type";s:10:"image/jpeg";}s:14:"post-thumbnail";a:4:{s:4:"file";s:39:"Girls_Like_Us_cover_cropped-125x125.jpg";s:5:"width";i:125;s:6:"height";i:125;s:9:"mime-type";s:10:"image/jpeg";}}s:10:"image_meta";a:12:{s:8:"aperture";s:1:"0";s:6:"credit";s:0:"";s:6:"camera";s:0:"";s:7:"caption";s:0:"";s:17:"created_timestamp";s:1:"0";s:9:"copyright";s:0:"";s:12:"focal_length";s:1:"0";s:3:"iso";s:1:"0";s:13:"shutter_speed";s:1:"0";s:5:"title";s:0:"";s:11:"orientation";s:1:"1";s:8:"keywords";a:0:{}}}
        )

)
1627007119 
1572335872

Birmingham writer Randi Pink does not shy away from controversy. Her first novel delved into race and privilege. Her latest young adult novel “Girls Like Us” follows four teenage girls, three of whom are pregnant. The story’s set in 1972, a year before Roe v. Wade, the landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision that legalized abortion nationwide. A few years ago, she planned to write a story on abortion set in the present. But when U.S. Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh was appointed, she knew the court would skew more conservative, and that inspired her to set the story in the past. She spoke with WBHM’s Andrew Yeager.

Pink is a former WBHM staffer. Some listeners may find parts of this conversation disturbing.

Interview Highlights

The spark for the book:

“After Kavanaugh, I started to remember conversations I had with 80-year-old black women in my youth. Family members, friends who discussed the horror of young girls pregnant, having to go into the backwoods, never coming out. And I just started to feel with Kavanaugh that the pendulum was switching back to 1972. So I took every word I had and shot it back into the past where I feel that it belonged.”

Writing controversial subject matter for a young audience:

“I don’t believe in protecting teenagers. [The] caveat to that is I write young adult. I’d say upper young adult. I don’t give it to an eleven-year-old kid. Especially in Alabama, where I live, a lot of sex ed has been phased out. A lot of education about the consequences of strict laws, the consequences of sex even, have been eliminated for more of a pie in the sky, just don’t do it approach. Which, first of all, doesn’t work … If there’s not sex ed, if there’s not education in the classrooms, at least let ’em read a novel about it.”

Concluding the book with her take on abortion:

“I wanted to highlight, yes, 1972 was decades ago. Yes, they had different music, different styles, different everything. But the exact same girl can exist today if that pendulum swings back to 1972, and these laws, especially Alabama’s which is the strictest on the table, if those things happen, we’re right back there. The backwood abortion comes right back. The neighbor with the concoction to fix your problem, little girl, comes right back.”

 

Alabama birthing units are closing to save money

One of the last remaining birthing units in southern Alabama will close next month to qualify for federal funding that will save the hospital’s emergency services, but doctors warn the move may cost newborns and pregnant women essential access to obstetric care.

Biden drops out of 2024 race after disastrous debate inflamed age concerns. VP Harris gets his nod

The decision comes after escalating pressure from Biden’s Democratic allies to step aside following the June 27 debate, in which the 81-year-old president trailed off, often gave nonsensical answers and failed to call out the former president’s many falsehoods.

In Alabama’s bald eagle territory, residents say an unexpected mining operation emerged

Aside Lake Guntersville, bald eagles are royalty. But locals say a planned chert pit is already changing that status.

The UAW’s union dreams seemed unstoppable. Then came the realities of the South

After a historic victory in Tennessee, the United Auto Workers southern campaign is still recovering from a big rejection in Alabama. How will it recover?

Exhibit shows the ‘real people’ around the Civil Rights Movement

The Temple Beth El Civil Rights Experience is a guided tour that allows visitors to explore the lives of Jewish people during the Civil Rights Movement. The exhibit highlighted Jews who were passionate activists and Jews who didn’t do much for the cause.

Alabama executes man convicted of killing delivery driver during a 1998 robbery attempt

Keith Edmund Gavin was pronounced dead at the William C. Holman Correctional Facility in southwest Alabama, authorities said. He was convicted of capital murder in the shooting death of courier service driver William Clayton Jr. in Cherokee County.

More Arts and Culture Coverage