The Year of Women Voters

Paulie Brading

Back in the early 70's women burned the old rule book; the one that says motherhood and marriage are our destiny. We were self reliant and we took the pill. Lots of women didn't have that marriage and motherhood dream and lots did. The pill allowed women to fulfill their dreams of becoming lawyers, writers, engineers, school administrators and scientists. They took the pill and marched toward their dreams. Some women, like some men, were free to roam from relationship to relationship. Some women just want family planning. Some women and some men want to control the timing of their parenting.

Today a Republican House Panel discussing contraception did not have a single woman on its panel. A bastian of males once again are trying to control women's bodies. The biased sham of a hearing reminded me of all those women with babies on their hips who desperately sobbed when discovering they were pregnent again.

Women in the 21st Century are self reliant. Congressional Republican men are standing on the manhole cover again while women try to rise to their potential. There are a great many women from the 70's who amassed a lot of scar tissue fighting for reproductive choice.

Do women really have to cross this gauntlet again?

I'm not one for longing for the past.

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    Well, it seems that it's time for a fight again. Good article in Daily Kos on this today.

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    This is an excellent issue to put front and center. This issue is destroying what's left of the GOP brand, as the front runner now in their nomination process (Santorum) is someone who considers all contraception evil and has sworn he will use all the powers of the presidency to ban contraception, beginning with banning the expenditure of any federal funds for birth control. The GOP is unmasked as an extremist party completely in the hands of sexual and religious fundamentalists. But the American people are beginning to see:

    If we were unlucky enough to live in Virginia where the GOP is in full control, women who seek abortion now will undergo forcible penetration (rape) by a transuterine imaging device inserted in their vagina. And the passage of a new zygote "personhood" law means most forms of birth control will become illegal. This is what a future under the boot of the GOP looks like, and is happening now in Virginia.

    A Santorum presidency will allow only one form of birth control for women, according to his number one funder and spokesman:

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    Thank you, Paulie, for posting this column.

    I'm male, an old guy, but I'm outraged that at this stage of history, the GOP minions are waging a war on birth control. Patriarchy is dying, but dying slowly and religious and sexual and religious fundamentalists are trying to turn back the clock to an age where women are barefoot and pregnant and dependent on men for their sustenance, where men have control of women's bodies, lives, and their medical care. The GOP has a frontrunner who is ready to do the bidding of a reactionary pope to make this happen.

    Why is there not more women's pushback right now? Where are the comments from feminist advocates who visit this site? As I write two Dem. women senators, Patty Murray and Jeanne Shaheen are standing up for women on the Senate floor. Where are women's advocates here in Oregon?

    My surviving child is a grown daughter in her 30s who works as a health care provider, and I now have an 11 month old granddaughter. What kind of a world will they be living in, one in which they can make the choices to live their lives fully, or one in which right wing fundamentalists oppress them and deprive them of their rightful choices in health care? Extremists are now in charge in Virginia, legislating forcible rape for women who seek abortion and an end to most birth control by turning zygotes (fertilized eggs) into persons. Is this what we want in America?

    Paulie, in your network of women friends and associates, is there not an alarm about these moves on the right?

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    If you don't study history, you are doomed to repeat it. (I am paraphrasing here...) At the risk of sounding like a moldie oldie, I don't think younger women coming up get it. They are so far removed from the fight for equal rights, they don't see efforts to erode basic rights. I recall when Sen. Packwood's escapades came to light my niece said she didn't get it. If a man did that to her, she'd tell him to shove the job. I tried to explain to her that those women were exploited in a time and place were women took it - they needed the job, he could have made sure they never got another job in that town and many women thought they were alone and blamed themselves for the harassment.

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    Women all over America are marching April 28 in Unite Against the War on Women events. Oregon's rally will take place from 10 to 1 at the State Capitol, Salem.

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