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4.28.2012

Why do conservatives dislike women?

I am truly at a loss to understand why the Republican party dislikes women. Do they think that women don't deserve health care because they are less human than men? Are they under the impression that women are incapable of understanding their own health and political issues? Whatever it is, legislatures across the country are taking a blast to the past attitude where they want women to be subserviant second class citizens. 

Lets look at the facts. Just yesterday Republicans voted to pay for extending low student loan rates by cutting funding for breast and cervical cancer screening in the health care bill. That alone is inexplicable but it is part of a huge trend. Earlier this year, Republicans attempted to cut funding for Planned Parenthood which provides health care for hundreds of thousands of women under the guise that they refused to fund abortions (Planned Parenthood does not use federal funds for abortions - which only account for 3% of their services). Federal Republican legislators have voted against the Lily ledbetter Act that allows a woman to fight for equal pay and Republican controlled states around the country have repealed fair pay laws for women. In order to limit access to legal abortions, several state legislatures have passed laws requiring women to have invasive vaginal ultrasounds that are both unnecessary and expensive but demeaning demeaning and practically a state sanctioned rape in themselves. Then there's the reproductive rights laws that want to delcare life at conception and outlaw hormonal birth control which has many non-birth related benefits as well. Don't forget the new bills that allow employers to chose if they want to cover a woman's health issues. This list goes on. 

I don't understand what women have done to make the Republicans dislike them so. These elected officials did not campaign on these issues but have spent the past 2 years ramming them through both state and federal legislatures. The only conclusions I can draw are that these people really believe women are worth less than men. Otherwise, why deny them access to necessary healthcare that men take for granted? Why eliminate fair pay laws when they know full well women are still denied equal pay up to 30% for the same job a man does? Why humiliate, and demean a woman by forcing her to give birth to a child of rape or incest? These things denote a strong dislike for women as human beings. There can be no other conclusion especially when the vast majority of people voting for these bills are men, and the few Republican women who try to oppose them do so at their political peril.

I find this fundamentally disturbing. This is the 21st century. Women are half the human race and entitled to the same rights as men. It should be laughable that anyone would even dare to raise such issues as denying fair pay and healthcare to women. But somehow, instead of being a 19th century joke, here we are watching men who hate women push them back into the past.

But we can't go back. The world has moved on from the sepia lit memory of mom toiling at home while dad makes a living that covers the family expenses. We don't live in a world anymore where girls are raised to think that dynamic careers are for men only. And we should be ashamed to live in a world where we blame and hold accountable the victim of rape and not the perpetrator.

There are plenty of Republicans who agree with me. The problem is, your party doesn't. Will you support candidates who say they are fighting for the economy and jobs, jobs, jobs but spend their entire 2 year legislative session passing hundreds of antiabortion bills and cutting healthcare for women?

I understand that abortion is an important issue with strong feelings on both sides. We need a different approach that spreads the responsibility for unwanted pregnancy equally  among men and women but that is a subject for another day. In the meantime, denying women health rights so that mother and child may be in danger is not going to solve it. 

Wake up, America. Wake up, American women. Pay attention to who you elect this year. Your freedom is being threatened by this fat foot in the door. If nothing is done to stop this now, what's next? If a legislature can demand you have a procedure done against your will, maybe they'll start demanding a dress code, perhaps take away your rights for a divorce, or right to sue when fired for no reason. 

If that sounds absurd, take a look around. We've already passed absurd. Now they're just arguing over the level of absurdity you'll accept before you object.