No! Now is the Time to Do Battle

No! Now is the Time to Do Battle

By Mina Assidi

Singer Gissoo Shakeri and poet Mina Assidi, both of whose works are banned in the Islamic Republic of Iran, created what has become the signature song of the Campaign for Abolition of All Misogynist Gender-Based Legislation and Islamic Punitive Laws in Iran ( In 2006 the Campaign sponsored a march through five European cities, culminating in The Hague on International Women’s Day. Gissoo’s soaring voice was unforgettable–whether broadcast during the march from the sound truck, in evening performances, or leading us all (including the few non-Farsi speakers) in song during the bus rides between cities. Gissoo was born in Iran in 1953 and has lived in Sweden since 1988. Her work is available at

A video with the song can be seen by clicking here. A translation of the song follows.

Through the cracks of closed doors
I watched a bird fly.
I lay in a house of despair.
I heard fortune walking out.
I was captive of the dark night.
I saw moons coming and going.
I asked myself, what kind of life is this?
Enough waiting.
No! Now is the time to do battle.

We saw a woman in love
Condemned to death and stoned.
We saw the laborer on the ground
And capital riding on his back.
We saw the hungry baby crying,
Sad and miserable.
We saw the sapling of dreams
Wilt yellow with no spring.
We asked ourselves, what kind of life is this?
Enough waiting.
No! Now is the time to do battle.

As long as we are chained
Capital, ignorance and religion will reign.
Did not that young sar-be-dar
Want only freedom?
We asked ourselves, what kind of life is this?
Enough waiting.
No! Now is the time to do battle.

Words: Mina Assadi; Music: Mohamad Shams; Singer: Gissoo Shakeri


Merle Hoffman's Choices: A Post-Roe Abortion Rights Manifesto

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“Merle Hoffman has always known that in a democracy, we each have decision-making power over the fate of our own bodies. She is a national hero for us all.” ​—Gloria Steinem

In the wake of the Supreme Court overturning Roe V. Wade and a country divided, a pioneer in the pro-choice movement and women’s healthcare offers an unapologetic and authoritative take on abortion—“the front line and the bottom line of women’s freedom and liberty.”

Merle Hoffman has been at the forefront of the reproductive freedom movement since the 1970s. Three years before the Supreme Court legalized abortion through Roe v. Wade, she helped to establish one of the United States’ first abortion centers in Flushing, Queens, and later went on to found Choices, one of the nation’s largest and most comprehensive women’s medical facilities. For the last five decades, Hoffman has been a steadfast warrior and fierce advocate for every woman’s right to choose when and whether or not to be a mother.