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by jess “votes with her uterus and her brain” lewis

here’s the deal.
i’m sitting here and i’m not exactly sure where i’m going to go with this post. it’s probably not going to be eloquent, it’s likely to be jumbled, and to be honest, i’ll be satisfied if it’s semi-coherent. so, i’m just going to dive in and hope for the best.

my original intent was to come here and lay out my reasons for calling bullshit on the meme that the war on women is a political fabrication, a distraction from the “real” issues. but, i don’t think i’m going to go that route (at least not entirely). i believe the proof  is on my side. the center for reproductive rights says that it “is hard-pressed to cite a time in the last twenty years that can rival – in volume and in severity – this most recent period of anti-woman, anti-child, and anti-health legislative action in the united states.”.
i can not stand behind a party that overwhelmingly wants to limit or deny a woman’s access to healthcare, contraception, and abortion while they simultaneously advocate abstinence-only education in schools. (don’t think that is part of the plan? look it up, it’s in the republican party platform.)  in the first 3 months of 2011, 49 states introduced 916 measures related to reproductive issues. over half of those measures sought to restrict abortion access. how does this make sense?   in their world, it seems to make some kind of (insane) sense to them to limit/deny education, birth control, healthcare, abortion (and then on top of that get rid of assistance programs). do they think these issues will go away? should we all buy stock in that aspirin they think we’re going to hold between our knees?    the answer is to take rights away? seems to me that education and teaching people to make wiser choices would be a better solution. please, someone explain it to me, because this is beyond my comprehension.

there is only one party where the vice presidential nominee co-sponsored 38 measures to restrict abortion. there is only one party that is  trying to introduce laws that require women to tell their employers why they need birth control. they want to let employers decide if the sluts who want it for responsible sex deserve birth control coverage under their insurance  or just the ladies who need it for medical reasons (and if you give the wrong answer you may be fired). party of freedom my ass. we have leaders of one party trying to redefine rape (forcible rape, legitimate rape, easy rape, rape lemonade, rape gifts from god, honest rape, etc.),  they want women to prove they were raped in order to receive care and benefits (if they receive any at all).  i, in no way will support a politician/party that believes somehow a pregnancy as the result of rape is god’s will. talk about establishing religion! i live in a state where in 2011, an elected wack-afucking-doo introduced a bill that wanted any woman who suffered from a miscarriage to prove that it happened naturally (without intervention) or possibly face felony charges. what the fuck is going on? the crazy train needs to be stopped.

this stuff makes my head spin and my stomach turn.  this may be shocking, but i consider my rights and having bodily autonomy more important than your religion, and i hope i’m not alone in that belief. i don’t believe in the pro-life argument.  i believe in choice, and if you don’t believe that i, or any other woman or family has a right to that choice, then i consider you to be anti-choice. i’m fine with you personally being against abortion, but i am not okay with you saying that we  have no choice. that choice is about equality, it is about economics, it’s about quality of life, and it is about freedom. and you better believe i will be voting for the people who grasp these concepts.

“we should all have compassion for rape survivors who need abortions. and we should have that compassion for others who need them too.” – irin carmon

 

 

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  1. October 25, 2012

    You speak is sista!

  2. October 25, 2012

    you’re SO not alone with this!

    • October 26, 2012

      that’s such a relief, we need a good team!

      • October 26, 2012

        I’m actually contemplating about getting the citizenship so I can vote here…that’s how far I’ve come! Thinking about being American…lol

  3. Jill #
    October 25, 2012

    I love you . . . that is all. And that’s coming from someone who needed the choice to be there and made the only one for me.

  4. October 25, 2012

    Thank you. This is what I hoped you were going to bring. And you brought it so hard and so eloquently I could cry.

    • October 26, 2012

      thank you! i was hoping to bring it harder, i left so much out. but, as i was sitting here all the information just made my head spin. SO much left out.

  5. amy #
    October 25, 2012

    i feel very proud of you, and i don’t even know you. but i understand the heart and logic behind what you write. and…i have a daughter.

    • October 26, 2012

      thank you, amy. i have a daughter as well. and i hope she’s not fighting this battle when it comes time for her to vote.

  6. anonymous #
    October 25, 2012

    Fuck yes.

  7. October 25, 2012

    You are a fucking idiot!

  8. October 26, 2012

    No, not an idiot – simply pro-choice.

  9. Meghan #
    October 26, 2012

    You are amazing!

  10. October 29, 2012

    wonderfully said. do you have a reply to those who say that Obamacare means Catholics who don’t believe in birth control/abortion will be footing the bill for those who are pro-choice? i used to say ‘well the rest of us pay for your welfare when you have too many kids to feed’ but some of these folks are also against welfare somehow…maybe a conversation for facebook or an email?

  11. Goda Ona #
    October 30, 2012

    I stand with you on this.

  12. October 31, 2012

    I’m pro-life, not anti-choice. I completely believe in provisions for rape. To me, being pro-life means choosing life for the person inside of you when you can, not choosing abortion because it’s convenient. I think that “a few bad apples are spoiling the batch” when it comes to your arguments regarding what this Republican said or that one. Just because a Republican says something doesn’t mean that’s what every other Republican thinks.

    Also, are you voting for a party or a person? Just because something is in the platform doesn’t mean that’s universally what all Republicans believe.

    Just to be clear, I’m neither Dem or Rep, but i think this post shows a bias that was already there. That and the fact that you linked to Maddow. That pretty much gives it away :) I appreciate the post though, it was good reading.

    Lastly, you said “that choice is about equality, it is about economics, it’s about quality of life, and it is about freedom.” All of which (possibly barring economics) you’ve taken away from an unborn child with an abortion. It’s never easy. I’m not saying it’s a CHOICE that one should make lightly. I’m not naive enough to think that any girl going through this situation (which I’ve never been through) is going to enjoy it, but, in my view, it’s still a person you’re allowing not to live through choice. You can call it a cluster of cells if you like, but by that definition, we’re all just a cluster of cells. It seems ironic to me that you can parade out causes like equality and freedom whilst denying those very qualities to someone else. “A cluster of cells” is just easier to swallow. Kind of like an excuse, in my mind.

    Again, awesome post. I’ll follow from here on out!

    I hope you don’t view this as hate-speech or rhetoric.

    • November 6, 2012

      i appreciate that your beliefs are different than mine, and no, i don’t view what you wrote as hate speech or rhetoric. i’m glad you took the time to read my post and took the time to respond.

      i don’t think that “a few bad apples are spoiling the bunch”. i understand that not every republican may have the same beliefs regarding choice, but anti-choice policies are part of the republican platform and are being widely accepted as such. i say anti-choice because no one is anti-life, unless they’re for the death penalty. it’s getting to where if a conservative candidate does believe in choice, they have almost no chance at being elected or supported, regardless of where they may stand on other issues. my belief is that it is not up to any person other than the person whose body/life is being effected by the decision.

      i have never voted for a specific party. until this election. absolutely, my belief in the right to choice shows a bias. i believe that women should make decisions regarding their own bodies, their lifestyles, and their ability to raise another human being. i linked to maddow because she better articulates my feelings on many issues. i also think she is one of the most honest and fair pundits out there at this time.

      to be truthful, what you wrote has a condescending tone whether it was intentional or not. “being pro-life means choosing life for the person inside of you when you can, not choosing abortion because it’s convenient” – that statement, to me, says that other people should decide for a woman whether or not she “can” have a child (and then continue to raise and care for it). can you explain to me how abortion is convenient? republican laws are making it more difficult for women to get affordable birth control and in some states impossible to get an abortion, which by the way is a right that is constitutionally protected. at the same time they are reducing funding to aid programs that help families who need assistance. this makes no sense to me!!! “and “I’m not saying it’s a CHOICE that one should make lightly” – i would say it’s never a decision that is made lightly. ” I’m not naive enough to think that any girl going through this situation (which I’ve never been through) is going to enjoy it” – i’m sorry, but are you kidding me? the number of women that will “enjoy” an abortion is ZERO. i just can’t even wrap my head around that statement.

      it is about freedom, quality of life, and economics. at least half of american women experience an unintended pregnancy by the time they are 45. some women do not want children, some may not be able to competently care for a child, some may not be able to afford more children. the reasons women make the difficult choice to have an abortion is as varied as we are. all i’m saying is, it is not up to me (or you or the government) to tell a woman that she has to give birth to a child that she does not want, isn’t able to care for, or isn’t able to feed and clothe, or whatever else reason she may have for making such a difficult decision. it is also not up to me to judge.

      this isn’t a light topic for sure. i’m okay with differing opinions on it. but, we don’t always know the circumstances people are in or why they make the decisions they do. i do know that for me, having a government that can tell a woman that she has to give birth against her will and she has no say in the matter, is the wrong government for me. abortion exists. it always will. i just hope that women who need to make that choice, can do it safely. i also wish they could do it without judgement.

      (for the record, i do hope that you support easy access and affordable birth control. that is one step in the right direction to reduce unwanted pregnancies. i relied upon planned parenthood for healthcare, not just birth control, well into my twenties. they are the ones sent me to a specialist (oncologist) when i needed one. i know of only one party that is supportive of planned parenthood and understands the role they play in womens health.)

      • November 6, 2012

        Hi Jess –

        In response to a few of the posed questions, please read:

        I went out of my way to NOT have a condescending tone to my message. This isn’t because it’s difficult or because I know my view is correct, it’s because you seem like a bright lady and I don’t think I’m any smarter/more informed/better than you. I just wanted to have a conversation. Thanks :)

        My comment regarding abortion being “convenient” alluded to the fact that a girl can have an abortion, in some states, without even notifying her parents. You don’t find anything wrong with that?? I’ve expounded more on this further down.

        You must have mis-read my statement regarding someone enjoying an abortion, because I said exactly what you said.

        The point where we’re always going to differ is that you continue to tout freedom and equality as reasons for an abortion. You said

        “it is about freedom, quality of life, and economics. at least half of american women experience an unintended pregnancy by the time they are 45. some women do not want children, some may not be able to competently care for a child, some may not be able to afford more children.”

        I can’t wrap my head around that. Simply because a pregnancy is unwanted, we should kill that child? I have an annoying neighbor that’s unwanted, I guess I should just go kill him, right? This is where it gets sticky. Once again, I think that there should be provisions for rape, incest, etc. I’m not void of a heart for circumstance, but this leads back to convenience, doesn’t it? An “unwanted pregnancy” isn’t convenient. That doesn’t make it any less wrong to make that child go away.

        I whole-heartily support birth control. We use it daily :) When you define “easy access” I’m not sure we’d agree. I don’t think that birth control should be free and given to the masses on my dime.

        Abortion exists. It always will. No truer words have been spoken by you or I, but that doesn’t mean it’s right and that doesn’t mean we should support (or tout) it.

        I just don’t see how one can take the moral high-ground when he/she is responsible for ending a human life. Once again, it’s not a decision to be made lightly. I never said it was. It’s not enjoyable. I never said it was.

        Lastly, you keep alluding to abortion as a choice about a woman’s own body. When does a baby’s body become its own? If you’re completely for choices, that baby should definitely have his/her shot at life. No one is saying that the birth mother is mandated to keep her child. I never said that. There are definitely resources out there (both gov’t funded and private) that will take that baby with open arms. To me, from the outside looking in, it seems more convenient not to deal with it, right?

    • Jill #
      November 6, 2012

      Currently, the only states that allow a minor to obtain an abortion with parental notification and/or consent are: New York, Connecticut, Vermont, Washington, Oregon, and Hawaii. However, five states require that notification and/or consent be obtained from BOTH parents. Characterizing an abortion as “convenient” because one does not need to sit down and have a chat with Mom and Dad is simplistic at best. There is nothing “convenient” about making multiple trips to a doctor’s office to obtain a medical procure that the woman has likely spent countless hours agonizing over. Or being given “medical” literature that is dishonest because your state’s legislature has deemed it appropriate.

      Easy access has nothing to do with being given for free. It means being able to access the birth control with a minimum of hindrance. However, in most states, obtaining “The Pill,” means going to the doctor’s office which means access to either money or insurance. If you are blessed to have either, you then need to obtain that prescription, and again, notifying your parents (at least one in most cases) and hoping that the birth control is covered (it’s not in all cases). OR go for condoms. God knows that most schools would like to give them out for free, but many are leery when parents become enraged that the school is trying to do their job, so they don’t give them out. But you know what, Planned Parenthood will. However, most Republicans want to cut funding for PP because they also offer abortions in some places. So that whole easy access thing isn’t so easy even when you’re willing to pay for it.

      There are less resources than you would think that will help and support a woman when she chooses adoption. Often times, women are treated as if they did something wrong by choosing adoption, treating them still as if they are living in the ’50s and need to be shipped away so people won’t remember that they are pregnant.

      I don’t think you’ll ever find a person who says that they support abortion. What people say is that they support the right to choose what they want to do with their own body. Because what I want to do with mine in the case of an unplanned and/or unwanted pregnancy is nobody’s business but my own, not even my partner’s. The choice truly comes down to the simple fact of do I want to continue with a pregnancy or stop it right now. Call it a baby if it makes you happy. Call it a cluster of cells if it floats your boat. Until you can sustain life independent of another, it’s still my choice.

      And it’s a choice that I made. And it’s a choice that I have lived with for the past 22 years. Did I involve my parents? No. They were told after the choice was made. Did I involve my partner? Yes. He supported me every step of the way, and he continues to support me. But I made the choice. Me. Because it was – still is – my body.

      • November 7, 2012

        Thanks for the info! I’m a little embarrassed that you know stats that I don’t.

        I agree that it’s still your choice. I agree that you’re the one who has to live with the decision, not anyone else. I agree that it’s got to be one of the most difficult thing that a woman would have to go through (in most cases). If I portrayed it differently, it’s only because I’m not as eloquent as I wish I was.

        Through this back-and-forth, I hope you see that we agree more than you may think, I just have more of a layperson’s opinion, having not been through this situation. All I have is an opinion, not an experience, to go on.

        My only hope is that adoption can be accessible to those who opt for that route.

      • Jill #
        November 7, 2012

        Information junkie, right here! Probably because I refuse to debate a topic if I am uninformed. Abortions have been decreasing at a rate of about 2% in the past several years, which means either the birth rate is also declining or women are making different choices. Honestly, it’s probably a combination of both. However, adoption has been staying steady domestically, even rising a bit thanks to more stringent rules from foreign countries. Many people have mixed feelings about domestic adoption because of the concerns over birth parents reentering the picture (a truly legitimate concern in some states where an adoption can proceed without consent of the birth father if he’s listed as “unknown”).

        And choice involves all three: giving birth, adoption, abortion. Mine? The two girls in the previous post on this blog. They are mine. And I would support whatever choice they would make.

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