Saturday, March 3, 2012

Pundits, Personhood and The Pill

For those of you who are my FB friends (when I'm not on a Facebook Lenten fast), today's post will not surprise you. Many of you know that I would often post links to articles on topics I am passionate about, and I was [am] not above letting it stir up controversy. When I started this blog, I had no idea where it would take me beyond my surgery and I was sure it would evolve but I never wanted, or expected it to be a venue for me to express my thoughts about religion or politics. However, in light of the events of recent weeks, the fact that I am Facebook-dry and most importantly, the public attempts to belittle and silence women, I have to speak.

Election seasons are always somewhat crazy; the mud-slinging and empty promises and the "he said/she said" party polarization becomes difficult to watch. Since I became old enough to vote, I have always made an effort to follow the elections in order to make an informed decision for my vote. This season is not much different except that it has me really, really pissed off. Pissed off and scared. This year's pool of GOP candidates has left much to be desired. I could talk about the blatant disregard of civil rights for the GLBTQ population, but perhaps I'll save that for another post. Suffice it to say, I am proud to see gay marriage bills being passed in seven (?) states so far and hope there are more to come. What I am currently so angry and exasperated about is the attack on women's rights that is sure to have many disastrous consequences.

A whole gaggle of misogynist crazies!

In recent months, many lawmakers, public figures and media pundits have done their best to show the United States that they feel as though they have a right to dictate what a woman can and cannot do with her uterus. Now, since the era of Roe v. Wade, abortion has been a hot button issue. It usually comes up each Presidential election season among the platforms of would-be candidates. For the GOP this year (and particularly in the group above) it seems to be the only issue. And, abortion is not alone. For some reason, all these rich, "Christian," white, penis-bearers seem to think that they know what's best for women, and wish to make us void of any form of choice about anything relating to our sexuality, sexual health, and conception practices. What law-makers all over this country (not just those running for Commander in Chief) are doing with their law making is basically misogyny, thinly veiled with a guise of Christianity.

Allow me for a moment, to focus on Rick Santorum. I have already made it known to Ethan and to pretty much anyone else who'll listen that should this man for some God-awful reason become our next President, I am purchasing a one-way ticket to Norway and taking my uterus with me. But I digress. All I know about how this man would run the country is that women would basically be sent back to the kitchen, be forced into  being baby-factories and every school would have prayer time. Oh, and also, homosexuals would have to be forced into 'treatment' for their 'gayness.' Santorum and others have completely blurred the line that separates church and state. They can worship on Sunday at any church they choose, teach their children whatever good Christian values they believe in, but when they return to the office Monday morning, I do not expect them to make laws based solely on their religious beliefs. That's not how the job works. Rick Santorum has spent his whole campaign touting his Catholic values, with a focus on the "family" and "morality." He has said the word "God" more times than I think any politician should. And he and his fellow GOP buddies and ultra-conservative pundits (I'm looking at you Fox Faux news) have centered their attack on women's rights.

I could point to a plethora of articles from a variety of sources highlighting the GOPs position on women's rights, but it would take two or three blog posts to cover them all. Allow me to summarize: pro-lifers are on the same crusade they've always been on to out-law any form of abortion, no matter the terrible circumstances (i.e. rape, incest, unplanned unwanted pregnancies). They've also sprouted more ugly heads, with these so-called "personhood" bills popping up in various states. These laws basically state that life begins at conception, therefore abortion at any stage would be considered murder, but also the "Plan B" morning-after pill would be illegal and perhaps most disturbingly, IVF would no longer be permitted, since not all embryos survive. Birth control has also been creating quite an uproar on the federal level, as under President Obama's health plan, employers would be required to cover birth control and women's health exams. Naturally, the hyper-conservative Christian politicians and pundits got their panties in a twist about that. Sorry, but most women do not want to be Michelle Duggar.

A vagina is not a clown car

The list of attacks on women's rights goes on and on, with panels of all men at a hearing re: the pill issue, constant attempts to de-fund Planned Parenthood,  Newt Gingrich accusing Obama of supporting "infanticide," right up to Rush Limbaugh calling Sandra Fluke and any other woman who wants birth control "sluts" and "prostitutes" and not apologizing for it. Rick Santorum was asked a few months ago what he would do in the event that his 14 year old daughter was raped and became pregnant. He basically said he would make his daughter have the baby and give it up for adoption. Not only would she have gone through the physical and emotional pain of being raped, she would also have to go through the physical and emotional pain of pregnancy and childbirth of her rapist's baby. Nice one, Rick. How thoughtful!

Why anyone thinks it's the government's job to be all up in our lady-business and decide what we can and cannot do with our uterus is beyond me. Most of these conservatives say they are driven by God, by their solid, Christian values. Well, let me say this: clearly Santorum's God and mine are not the same. The God I worship gave us free-will, the ability to make decisions for ourselves. The God I worship loves everyone, period.  I'm a practicing Christian woman who uses birth control, has sex and thinks that all loving couples should be able to marry. I am the kind of woman the GOP hates and wishes to silence. What they don't realize is that the women of this country who do not buy into this brand of politics are not going to be silenced, controlled, or regulated. The message is clear; get your politics and your religion out of my uterus.

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