The stupid keeps coming.
by Amanda Marcotte, RH Reality Check
April 2, 2012 - 2:27pm
The past few months, we’ve seen the nation wake up to many anti-choice assaults on women’s basic right to control their fertility, especially with regards to imposing forced ultrasounds and numerous attacks on access to basic contraception. But one of the other favorite anti-choice approaches to maximizing the pain and suffering of women as punishment for sex has largely gone unnoticed by many outside of the pro-choice activist community: bans on abortions after 20 weeks. It’s understandable that it’s hard to whip people up about this particular situation. After all, abortions after 20 weeks are relatively rare. Only 1.5% of abortions occur after the 20th week, and the vast majority of those that do occur are done for medical reasons, or because legal and financial obstacles--like those put in place by lawmakers--caused a delay. While, if they knew their personal stories, most people would certainly sympathize with women in need of post-20 week abortions, a certain amount of reproductive rights fatigue is setting in. There’s only so many hours in the day, and anti-choicers know if they just keep throwing restrictions on access at us, some will slip through the cracks.
But, as exhausting as it is, we need to pay attention to and resist post-20 week bans on abortion. That’s because it’s cruel on its surface, but also because legislators are using 20 week bans in order to smuggle in other items of more importance to them than simply making it harder for a slim minority of women seeking abortions to get them. The most obvious thing they’re trying to do is set anti-science precedent. Since these bans are based on the false, unscientific claim that fetuses at 20 weeks can feel pain, if they’re allowed to stand, it opens the door for more laws based on straight-up lies to be passed. These laws are also being used to challenge the requirement set out in Roe v Wade that a woman’s health and life should trump that of the misogynist desire to keep her pregnant at all costs.
Imagine if Roe is overturned and states go into a true frenzy of stripping every imaginable right away from pregnant women. It wouldn’t be limited to stripping the right to abortion, but also to any kind of behavior deemed “abortive,” including holding certain kinds of jobs, eating certain foods, or taking certain medications. With this bill, then, you could not only restrict the rights of those who are actually pregnant, but extend the restrictions to all women of reproductive age on the grounds that they “could be pregnant in two weeks, i.e. in perpetuity” and would therefore be considered the same thing as being pregnant.
Wow. If it was up to the right-wing religious nuts in America, we would be simply walking wombs, baby-making machines, otherwise not quite human. They may as well legislate that women of reproductive age should be kept in stalls just like dairy cows, perpetually having these "babies" that the religious right supposedly loves so much. Never mind that they constantly throw poor and disadvantage babies under the bus by cutting the social network, education, health care, and other services that would serve children.
Their intent is to keep as many women as possible under their thumb. It will cost the Republican Party the presidency in 2012, and if they continue with their anti-woman attitude, for many more elections to come.
Reading an article that is talking about women in swing states moving en masse to the Obama camp.
They couldn't control the African-Americans (from getting themselves out of slavery,) they can't control illegal immigration (all those dark-skinned people,) so they revert back to trying to control American women...
Watch them go REAL bonkers when they realize that won't work either.
Excellent reminder by Sara Mead, guesting at the Washington Monthly, on what the statistics say about our national priorities:
... One of the distasteful things about the tendency to label all sorts of debates or initiatives as “wars” is that in real wars, people die. But the reality is that a shockingly high number of American moms are dying for preventable reasons. The U.S. Maternal Mortality Ratio (the number of maternal deaths per 100,000 live births) is shockingly high, well above the average for the developed world, and higher than virtually all of Western Europe as well as some countries in Asia and the Middle East. Even more troubling, U.S. maternal mortality has increased in the last two decades, and is now more than twice as high as it was in the late 1980s. The Affordable Care Act included provisions designed to help stop this scary trend—not just by expanding health care access (many maternal deaths could be prevented with proper care)—but also through the Maternal, Infant and Early Childhood Home Visiting program, created as part of ACA, which provides nurses and social workers to work with high-risk moms, starting before they give birth, to help them have healthy pregnancies and deliveries and support their babies’ health and development after birth.The program is modeled after programs, such as the Nurse Family Partnership that have a strong track record of improving maternal and child outcomes, preventing abuse and neglect, increasing fathers’ involvement in their kids’ lives, improving kids’ school performance, reducing crime, and saving the taxpayers a boatload of money over the long term. But all that could go the way of the dodo, if ACA is struck down or repealed (and some of the right wing fear-mongering about this program must be seen to be believed).
For all we hear about “family friendly” conservatives promoting traditional families to keep us from going the way of G-d-forsaken Europe, the reality is that the U.S. actually has a higher percentage of infants and toddlers in childcare (as opposed to home with mom) than all the OECD countries except Denmark, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden (and we’re closer to Sweden than we are to the OECD average). That’s the direct result of policy choices we’ve made, including the total absence of paid parental leave (for which we stand alone among developed countries, in a small and shrinking field that includes Papau New Guinea, Swaziland, and Lesotho). And even as the recession has increased the number of moms of very young children in the workforce, states have cut funding for child care and made it harder to get in other ways as well…
For better or worse, ours is a capitalist society, and in a capitalist society anything “priceless” is by definition worthless. If the politicians and other grifters snuffling about “mommies driving the economy” and “our precious, precious children” actually cared about the real women & children outside their own gated communities, they’d talk less about giving the so-called job creators further breaks and more about supporting the next generation and the people doing the hard work of raising them.
APR 13 2012, 8:20 AM ET 7
During the war years, American women have forged steadily ahead in industry, politics and education, but the soldiers probably will put an end to all that when they return... Especially in the period following a major war are men and women at loggerheads. War brings a temporary revolution in the relations of the two sexes. One might say the women get out of hand. This happened in WWI, and, before that, in our Civil and Revolutionary Wars. But after this war the women will probably put up a stronger fight for supremacy because this war's changes have merely climaxed generations of feministic progress.The author interviewed veterans upset by that progress:
Waller then predicted that the "battle for jobs" would be followed by "the battle of the birth rate" and "the battle of personal ascendancy," warning that "the patriarchal family must be restored and strengthened."
Tech. Sgt. John A. Price, who was wounded in the European theater, is married and has a little girl. "After the war," he says, "women will be needed in the home. They're needed to rear children to become good citizens. Our civilization needs homes, and the woman is the foundation of a good home." Now convalescing... is Cpl. Fred Bienstock, who says: "I'm married. My wife's working now, but we want to start a family as soon as possible. You can't have a family when the wife is working. I want her to quit and let me do the supporting. Anyway, there aren't going to be too many jobs and the men ought to get 'em. And something else: if a woman isn't married, she certainly isn't going to be unless she quits her job - or is willing to quit."
Wounded in the Middle East, Cpl. Otto Makovy declared, "I'm not married. But when I am, I'll insist on doing all the supporting, and my wife's staying home. That's a woman's place. Another thing it seems to me that we won't have to worry so much about juvenile delinquency if there's somebody in the homes looking after the kids..."
If we are to have an adequate birth rate, we must hear less talk about women's rights and more about their duty to the race. The plain fact is, women do not produce children under the conditions of freedom and equality that have existed in the United States since the last war. The birth rate among educated, emancipated women is very low indeed, since few women manage to compete with men and, at the same time, produce their due number of children. Usually the career of a brilliant woman is bought at the cost of an empty nursery. The price is too high, even if the contribution is great... Now surely some old-fashioned feminist will say that a woman is the mistress of her own body; the nation has no right to force her to bear children. Well the man is the master of his body too, but hardly anyone questions the right of the nation to force him to expose his body to the risks of war. A woman's ownership of her body should be subordinate to her obligation as the trustee of the race.That established, Waller concluded by offering practical advice for how to bring about male dominion. "A man should not try to convince his wife that he is more intelligent than she is, because very likely that is not true," Waller says. "It is better just to tell her plainly that he is going to be the boss, and then she will be very angry and will threaten to leave him and will love him to distraction." The "War on Women" circa 1945 doesn't much resemble the one today.