Tuesday, March 6, 2012

The war on women

Call me a bitter feminist if you want, but I maintain that there is one and the last several months certain people in the spotlight have ratcheted the fighting way, way up.

Take this, for example: A Wisconsin legislator wants to penalize single mothers, arguing that having only one parent leads to abuse and neglect. This is barely even worth arguing because it is so insane. A few salient points: 1) it takes two people to make a baby, 2) you cannot criminalize marital status, 3) there is an unfortunately large number of abusive fathers, and 4) get the hell out of people's bedrooms, you perverts. What is wrong with you?

Then there is the contraception issue. This actually shouldn't be an issue, but thanks to the freedom of religion vs. health care debate, the congressional panel full of men and a miscue by a Santorum adviser (keep aspirin between your knees and it'll be all good, ladies!), it has become one. Two points: 1) Darrell Issa is an idiot, and 2) why have we never had this argument about Viagra? Why is the sole concern a woman's sexual activity? Where is the moral outrage about the men having sex with the women who want birth control? I have to assume that the moral dilemma is not birth control itself but the need/desire for birth control, which of course is sex for non-reproductive purposes. In which case Nathaniel Hawthorne truly was writing for our day and my worldview is forever changed.

And then we move to the abortion battleground. Can I just say, for the record, that I do not like abortion? I don't think a woman should get one unless there are some pretty serious health or safety issues at stake. The pro-choice argument is misguided because pregnancy is a possible consequence of sex, and when you make the choice to have unprotected sex, well, there you go.

However. The fact remains that abortions are legal in the United States. A woman is within her rights to get one. She doesn't need what you or I would consider a good reason. She also doesn't need a doctor violating her with a probe so an overly judgmental legislature can feel better about themselves or to be forced to listen to a description of the baby and why she shouldn't abort. (See: Virginia for a short time, Texas.) I have zero problems with a pro-life doctor refusing to provide an abortion in a non-life-threatening situation. I have a big problem with the state forcing its views on a woman.

The slut situation remains a terrible sign of the times and an excellent advertisement for the need for the First Amendment and a better vocabulary. This is less about liberals and conservatives and more about the jackassery of a select few men from both sides of the aisle who should never have been given a platform.

It is not Rick Santorum's place to tell women to stay at home or not go to college. It is not any man's place to tell any woman to stay home or not be educated. It is not society's place to tell women how to live their lives.

Then there's Utah's mandate against reality.

What's sad is now that I've put all of this into one place, I feel even worse than I did before. Looking at it all at once makes it seem impossibly huge.

1 comment:

  1. Heidi: You rock and make so much sense.