Thursday, March 15, 2012
The Republican Party has been taken hostage by Christian fundamentalists with such a bold and regressive social agenda, it makes my head spin. I am a feminist, social democrat, in case that wasn't clear. Also, I'm the mother of two young women about the same age, and socio-economic status of Sandra Fluke ( a young woman advocating for better access to affordable contraceptives from their insurers, and called a slut on a nationally syndicated radio show for her effort). Neither here, nor there, but to acknowledge my emotional bias.
So I am mystified, as in, there's something fishy about this, about why the Republican Party's presidential candidates, now all men, are so cheerfully self destructing their party's chance to win the Presidential election in 2012. According to them, women's reproductive systems seem to be the main problem facing our country. The Catholic Bishops don't like it, Republican Governors don't like it, none of the Republican hopeful candidates like it, a certain radio talk show host guy doesn't like it, and Senator Issa doesn't like it. But, like it or not, women have these lady parts. And we have ideas about how we want and don't want to use them. They say, No, it's about religious freedom, but it comes down to what these guys want is to get right in and tell us what not to do with ourselves. This presents a problem for them, though, because attached to every female reproductive system is an actual woman, who has a mind, and a vote. Women are 54% of the electorate, and we're getting mad.
I don't get it. If they want to control what a women can do with her body, shouldn't they at least try to win our hearts and minds? Shouldn't they be offering something good? But no, they talk about this outrageous and invasive private stuff as if we aren't even in the room, listening, with our jaws dropping.
This anti-women agenda, to limit women's economic options and educational opportunities, takes back any small gains we've made. Equal pay and educational opportunity are still a dream. In my state of Wisconsin, a Republican senator, male, just introduced a bill to link Single Parenting with child abuse and neglect. No surprise that the majority of single parents are women. Marriage legitimizes this problem, apparently, not quality affordable child care, health care, and equal wages.
I admit my buttons on women's issues are easy to push, and my youngest son knows it. So, he sent me an email yesterday with a link to Mitt Romney's casual remark that, if elected, Obama care would be toast, and"we're going to get rid of Planned Parenthood." My son also put red meat in front of me with another comment on Romney's pronouncement, Don't the Republicans remember that women have the vote? to which someone else replied, We're going to get rid of that.
In my old school days, when a boy's fly was unzipped, we'd say "shut your barn door, the horses are running away." Well, I think these guys, candidates, Bishops, talk-show-host-guy, Senators, Governors have let their horses (yuck) out of the barn, and I don't think there's any apology, or anything else they can do now to shut that barn door.
As the bumper sticker says, Sluts Vote.