Category Archives: women’s rights
Without further ado:
Women are worse off with contraception because it suppresses and disables who they are, Pedulla said.
“Part of their identity is the potential to be a mother,” Pedulla said. “They are being asked to suppress and radically contradict part of their own identity, and if that wasn’t bad enough, they are being asked to poison their bodies.”
Studies show that women using contraceptives consider pregnancy more unwanted than wanted, he said.
Ummm … DUH!!! That’s the point of being on contraception, you idiot!!!
“Studies show”? Really, you needed a study for that? And this is how you conclude that motherhood is “a natural part of women’s identities?” Seriously? You can just stuff that crap where the sun don’t shine, genius.
This brilliance all came from one Dr. Dominic Pedulla, who requested legislation in Oklahoma banning the Obamacare contraception mandate. The damn thing probably isn’t even legal but he found a like-minded nimrod named Senator Clark Jolley to write one up. This being Oklahoma, of course, it passed the committee and will go to the full state Senate.
Pedulla is supposedly a cardiologist but I looked him up and he actually works at one of those varicose vein centers where rich ladies go to get their legs restored to youthful beauty. He also started something called the Edith Stein Foundation, because he apparently cares about women’s dignity, but actually he just really really really hates birth control. From the Edith Stein Foundation website:
In 1968, an Italian scholar predicted that if contraception were to become a cultural norm, four things would result: a general lowering of moral standards, an increase in promiscuousness and infidelity, a rise in the disrespect men have for women, and the coercive use of reproductive technologies by governments. Strikingly, in the more than forty years since that portentous prognosis, all four of these have been realized. Social science not only shows it, but is showing the connection between a contraceptive culture and the social maladies of our day.
What’s more, medical research has shown and is continuing to show the far reaching ill effects of all methods of contraception. Not many people have heard about the 1968 predictions, and the growing body of evidence against contraceptives. For the dignity and health of women, this has got to stop. This is where the Edith Stein Foundation comes in to educate, advocate, research, connect, and heal.
So in short, contraception is evil. We get it. He doesn’t mention who this “Italian scholar” is, but I’d bet anything he’s talking about Pope Paul VI, who issued an encyclical against birth control in 1968.
I love the Edith Stein Foundation’s “Mission Statement”:
To advocate the dignity of women through fostering a non-contraceptive culture.
Sure, ’cause nothing says “dignity” like some man telling me what’s good for me.
Fuck you, “Dr.” Pedulla. I don’t need you to tell me what my identity is. I’ve got a pretty good handle on that with no help from you. What absolute gall you have to try to wrap your antiquated, oppressive views about women in some kind of feminist package. We aren’t that stupid.
Last week I went to the dentist. Today I went to my ob/gyn for my annual.
These days, any trip to the doctor is an infuriating, exasperating traipse through our screwed up healthcare system. And I’m a really healthy person, with really good insurance. Still, red tape and insurance bullshit manages to piss me off every damn time.
I had already decided I was going to ask my doctor about the mandatory pre-abortion ultrasound bills currently making their way through the legislature, in particular, the deafening silence from the medical community and ob/gyn’s in general on this and other issues affecting women’s healthcare. But dang, before I could even get to that we got in a debate about socialized medicine.
It started when she told me she wouldn’t perform the ol’ “blood in the stool” test, aka the FOBT, which I’ve had done routinely for 30 something years. This was because, she said, “BlueCross Blue Shield of Tennessee no longer covers it.” Lovely. I repeat: not because I didn’t need it, but because insurance wouldn’t cover it. And that, she said, was because over the past few years insurance has routinely been paying for fewer and fewer things.
This test is an easy, cheap way to detect colorectal cancer. But hey, I’m over 50 now, it’s not like colon cancer is a concern for us olds, right?
Don’t answer that.
It doesn’t matter because she said I need to think about getting a colonoscopy at some point, since I’m an olds, and of course it’s a better diagnostic test. Now, BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee only pays for one every 10 years if the first one comes back clean. So let’s hope I don’t develop anything in the decade in between tests because apparently I’d have no fucking way of knowing about it.
Okie dokie, let’s hope what I don’t know won’t kill me! Thank you, BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee! May you all get colorectal cancer and die an excruciating, miserable death.
Yes, Republicans. Do tell me more about bureaucrats coming between me and my doctor. I’m dying to hear.
So then we both commiserated about how awful insurance was. I asked her which insurance company was the best in terms of coverage, since she dealt with so many. She said none of them, they’re all bad. Okay, I said, fine, then why don’t we ditch them all and go to socialized medicine?
“Oh, no! That’s worse,” she said. In England, she said, whether you have a hangnail or cancer, you’re put into the system at the same place. In other words, serious health issues aren’t given any more priority than minor ones. She heard this from a patient who lived in London for two years. Her patient, however, was considered a “guest of the country” and was put to the top of the list, she explained. (I’m a little unclear how the patient would know, plus if that were true, wouldn’t there be astronomical cancer fatality rates there? Which doesn’t seem to be happening.)
“That’s certainly not what my Canadian friends have told me,” I said. “I don’t know about England, but they told me in Canada if something’s seriously wrong, you’re priority. It’s true you might have to wait longer for routine stuff, but heck, I made this appointment a year ago!” It’s true, I had.
“Oh no,” my doctor responded, wagging her finger at me. “I know someone who lives in Vancouver and when she needed something done she went to Seattle.”
Clearly we weren’t getting anywhere, trading our stories about “people we knew.” What I did say was, what do we do? This can’t be the best there is. What we’re doing now isn’t working, too many people are uninsured, and the poor are suffering the most.
“Oh, the poor have TennCare,” she said.
And so it went. Clearly my doctor didn’t know the first thing about people who weren’t her patients. She worked at a nice office in the heart of Nashville’s central healthcare campus, not the Vine Hill or Downtown clinics. Her clients weren’t the uninsured or marginalized. Nor did she know anything about what was happening in the state legislature. I asked her if she was aware that there were bills in the legislature requiring women to get an ultrasound before receiving an abortion.
“Really?!” She seemed genuinely surprised. Jesus, lady! I wanted to scream. You’re a gynecologist! This is your field! Don’t you pay attention to what legislators are doing affecting your own business?
I asked if there was any medical reason why this procedure would be necessary. “They need to do it,” she said, “to determine the age of the fetus.”
“But what if a woman is positive that it’s within the first trimester?”
“They still need to do it, to make sure.”
“To make sure?”
“To make sure she’s telling the truth.”
Wow. So we have this law to mandate a diagnostic procedure because women are liars. Got that, ladies? The government thinks you’re all liars, just like with all of that “legitimate rape” stuff, and so they need to check up on you with a diagnostic tool whose sole function is to make sure you’re telling the truth.
Yes, Republicans. Do tell me more about your belief in “small government.” I’m dying to hear.
Keep in mind, I was just told I wouldn’t get a routine colon cancer diagnostic because my insurance won’t pay for it.
Like an idiot, I asked my doctor if she performed abortions. She told me no.
“Does anyone here perform them?”
“So where does someone go if they need one? Someone with insurance, who can afford it, where do you refer them?”
“Planned Parenthood, I guess,” my doctor answered. “Or Atlanta.”
Keep in mind, Nashville is a healthcare city. Healthcare is one of the largest industries here. We have several major hospitals here. The Nashville Chamber of Commerce proudly touts how healthcare contributes $30 billion to the local economy and creates over 210,000 jobs. But that’s all bullshit. None of that matters if you’re a woman who needs an abortion. For that, you go to Atlanta.
I asked why, although I already knew the answer. But I wanted to hear her say it. And she did. It’s just too controversial, she said. “It’s the religious people, they don’t want it,” she said. Insurance won’t pay for it. Hospitals don’t want to have anything to do with it. And finally she said, “doctors have been killed.”
I’m sure “the religious people” will be thrilled to learn they have successfully intimidated doctors in Nashville into not performing abortions. What’s sad is that Nashville is touted as being a progressive city, a patch of blue surrounded by a sea of red. But we’re still a city where women are second-class citizens because our healthcare needs aren’t treated equally.
It’s not just abortion. My doctor told me that as of January 2009, she can’t perform tubal ligations at Baptist Hospital. Baptist is one of the major hospitals here in Nashville and in 2002 Baptist merged with St. Thomas, another major player, so both are now under the Ascension Health umbrella, which is a Catholic non-profit. I had read that because religious hospitals all receive federal funds, they had to offer some kind of “secular floor,” where stuff the Catholics find religiously offensive can be done.
“It was a room, not a floor,” my doctor told me. “A separate room.” And the nurse technician that would assist her had to clock out, clock in again for the hour of surgery, and clock back out again, so she could be paid out of separate, non-religious funds. But as of January 2009, that room is no longer there. Someone who is not a Catholic will nonetheless have their medical choices made by the Catholic church.
Yes, Republicans. Do tell me more about your belief in “religious freedom.” I’m dying to hear.
This is all just so crazy to me. I didn’t intend to write a novel, but we just covered so much ground. What I wanted to know is why the medical profession hasn’t spoken up as the state house and senate legislate their profession. I mean, good lord, every time something happens in Washington we have a flurry of industry associations and phony astroturf groups telling us why it’s a bad idea. Where’s the TN Medical Assn.? Besides offering “doctor of the day” volunteers and lobbying for tort reform, I mean. It seems they haven’t spoken up because the just don’t know or don’t care.
I asked my doctor why people in her profession didn’t speak out. And she said it’s because nothing was ever going to change. That was just it, it’s too big, too hard, too controversial. It’s not going to change. I was so outraged. I just refuse to believe nothing will ever change. I said, what if people said that back in the days of Jim Crow? We’d still have black hospitals and white hospitals. Yes, she said. You’re right. And that was that.
It was the most disheartening conversation I’ve ever had. Apparently the doctors just can’t be bothered. I mean, I don’t know what else to say and I’m way beyond needing to wrap this up. But I guess I had somehow thought that doctors cared about their patients’ healthcare. Silly me.
Congratulations, America! On January 10 the dying institution known as the liberal media coughed out a bouncing baby meme for your enjoyment! Let us welcome this 15-pound whopper! It is adorable!
Apparently, according to the mainstream press, President Obama has “got a diversity problem.” This seems to be due to the fact that he’s nominating a man for Secretary of State to replace Hillary Clinton. I mean, I’m trying to think of the reaction if he nominated a woman to lead the Department of Defense, anyone want to hazard a guess? Women still can’t serve in combat, and we’ve got Republicans who think a woman on the front lines would “impair missions” because of lady parts and upper body strength and all. I think a female Defense Secretary would be a non-starter, but then, what do I know.
The “diversity problem” meme seems to have started at the New York Times, which ran a photo in which only Valerie Jarrett’s leg is visible. Hey, if you hide the one woman in the room behind a white guy then yes, you may have a point! Fail.
Anyway, the story has been picked up far and wide now. I’ve seen “Obama’s diversity problem” mentioned on CNN and MSNBC today, and the right-wing media is all over it, too. It’s the perfect talking point for conservatives, who are trying desperately to mask the Republican Party’s own unbearable all-white-male problem. And if there’s one thing conservatives love to do when faced with their own misdeeds and failings is point their fingers at the left and say, “see! You did it too!”
By the way, how many non-white, non-male House committee chairs did John Boehner appoint for the new Congress? That would be zero. How much tsk-tsking did the New York Times, CNN and MSNBC do on the all-white, all-male committee chairs? That also would be zero — or at least, if there was any, I missed it.
Also, these scolds have failed to mention that Obama’s first choice for Secretary of State was an African American woman. Woops. As Joan Walsh pointed out:
It’s rich when the very forces that made sure we didn’t have an African-American woman secretary of state complain that our first black president’s Cabinet lacks diversity. But that’s what they’re doing.
Y’all know that Obama is half white, right? I guess it’s his white half making the cabinet appointments in his second term.
I wouldn’t be surprised to learn that this meme came straight from the Frank Luntz School of Republican Talking Points, fully vetted and tested by an array of (all white, all-Republican) focus groups. It’s just shocking when the so-called “liberal media” repeats this crap, but if there’s one thing we know about the “liberal media,” it’s that they are desperate to not appear “in the tank” for Obama. The media is and always has been totally fascinated with all things Republican, as the make-up of any Sunday morning panel shows. Back when Bush The Lesser was president we were told, it’s because Democrats aren’t in power. Now we’re told it’s because we’re not in the opposition. Can’t win for losing.
So, yes. Well played, Republicans.
I ask you, who does this?
Unbelievable. I don’t think there’s enough irony in the world for this marketing ploy to make sense. Either this dry cleaners’ is cluelessly unaware of the historic, documented impact of anti-abortion laws, or else they are aware of it and are just being cruel. According to the story, Cincinnati’s Springdale Dry Cleaners has been getting negative publicity (and losing customers) over this since 2010. So I’ll take cruel.
“First of all, from what I understand from doctors [pregnancy from rape] is really rare,” Akin told KTVI-TV in an interview posted Sunday. “If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.”
News flash! The female body is this amazing, mysterious thing that totally knows when a rape is “legitimate” or not! Oh wait, maybe not. Rep. Todd Akin, Republican of Assholedome, Missouri — you’ve just met your Macaca moment!
Akin now claims he “misspoke” but he hasn’t apologized to the thousands of rape victims in the United States whom he just metaphorically raped again by calling them liars. Not to mention the old wive’s tale he just perpetrated that potentially puts other women at risk. Rep. Todd Akin, you’re an asshole. The only cherry on this shit pie would be the discovery that Akin serves on the House Committee on Science, Space & Technology. Republicans, let’s make a deal: we’ll stop making fun of you when you stop being so mockable.
Here’s some advice to all the old, white, male Republicans who are still sucking on the teet of their old, white, male Republican privilege: Go fuck yourselves.
Oh yes, please keep telling me how the “war on women” is all in our pretty little heads. And remember the whole “forcible rape” bullshit from last January? Remember that? How the House Republicans — primarily old, white, males — tried to redefine rape? Yeah, I remember that. Let’s remember that Paul Ryan was part of that little hateful cabal, too.
The Republican War On Women continues apace. Carry on.
I meant to blog about this last week and forgot:
When Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney announced a $50,000 yearly fundraiser at the Star Island home of pharmaceutical kingpin Phil Frost, it didn’t take long for the liberal Think Progress website to note the glaring irony: Frost’s company makes the very type of contraception that Romney falsely bashed as an “abortive” pill.
The Concerned Women of America are very concerned. The president of CatholicVote.org is giving Romney a cautionary pass:
The DC did note, however, that Brian Burch, President of CatholicVote.org, said he understood that Romney would take money from those with whom he doesn’t entirely agree: “What matters is whether a President Romney will end all taxpayer support for abortion-inducing drugs, repeal unconstitutional mandates that force private institutions to cover such drugs, and whether he will make progress in building a culture of life. We are confident that Mitt Romney is committed to these goals.”
Yeah, yeah, yeah. Sure, keep telling yourself that, buddy.
Here’s what I don’t get. I get Romney attending fundraisers from people like this, he’s going to take money from anyone. I get that conservatives will make excuses for him. What I do not get is why someone like Phil Frost would be holding a damn fundraiser for the very candidate and the very political party throwing up roadblocks right and left to the sale of his company’s product.
What. The. Fuck?
Phil Frost is chairman of the board of Teva Pharmaceuticals. Teva makes Plan B, which conservative keep trying to pretend is an “abortion pill” and which Republicans keep trying to prevent women from using with their “conscience clauses” and crap like what the state of Alabama is trying to pass: a bill forcing women to jump through so many medically unnecessary hoops as to render the concept of emergency contraception null and void.
So why the hell are people like Phil Frost supporting Republicans who hate their product and keep spreading misinformation about what it is and what it does? Why would you do that? Why would your political activism be diametrically opposed to your business interests?
And why hasn’t anyone at Teva called him on that? The CEO? Other members of the board? Anyone?
I tried to post this last night but WordPress is finicky where video embeds are concerned and for some reason it messed up my homepage. Guess you’ll just have to go to the link.
This video is hilarious! It premiered on Bill Maher last night.
There are very few times in my life that I wish I knew how to crochet or knit (my knitting experiments at a young age were disasters). However, I might pick it back up again just to participate in The Snatchel Project.
I would love to send Senator Corker and Senator Alexander a hand-knit vagina. Maybe something like this:
Ladies, if you knit or crochet — and I know there are plenty of you out there — please sign up at the link. They even have patterns. How awesome is that?
’cause we can knit one, purl two and oh yeah: we can determine what’s right for our bodies and our lives without any help from you.
RNC Chair Reince Priebus took to the airwaves to claim that the Republican War On Women is just all in our silly little heads. Really!
Republican opposition to renewing the Violence Against Women Act? Scott Walker repealing Wisconsin’s Equal Pay Enforcement Act? The attacks on women’s reproductive rights in every state — the ones making a legal requirement that women submit to shaming, dehumanizing, psychologically stressful and medically unnecessary procedures in order to obtain a legal, safe abortion? Or restricting women’s access to contraception? The shuttering of health clinics that serve poor women around the country?
Ladies, these things should not be taken as attacks on your freedoms or rights or privacy (or even your intelligence, abilities or value). No, these are just logical, necessary pieces of legislation that the penis-Americans in charge deem absolutely vital to the nation’s interests. Any personal offense women may take at being legislated this way is simply unreasonable, maybe even hysterical. Now, run along and swap recipes at the Tupperware Party or however it is you spend your time while the penis-Americans do the heavy lifting of keeping shit running in the world.
But to hear Republicans talk there is a very real war going, and it’s the war on Christians. Yes, little known fact: in state legislatures all around the country, the faithful are being oppressed by anti-Christian politicians passing laws limiting their ability to practice their faith! And even the President of the United States has passed draconian legislation forcing Christians underground. Why, you can’t hardly find a church or a Bible study or even a prayer group anymore!
I have absolutely no evidence of this, of course, but that’s what right-wingers keep telling us. And by right-wingers I don’t just mean fringe crackpots over at ClownHall, I mean people like Rep. Marsha Blackburn who hosted a “rally for religious freedom” in Nashville last month (actually, it was just another highly-orchestrated rally against women’s healthcare but pay no attention to that! This war is real and that one is not!)
No, actually, there is a war on Christianity in this country. I know this because last month an Assemblies of God youth group in Pennsylvania was kidnapped and held at gunpoint. This really happened, however the folks who orchestrated this attack were the church’s pastor and some parents, trying to teach kids age 13-18 a lesson about religious persecution.
Y’know, Jesus did say “suffer the little children.” How ironic that this would come from the sadistic pricks leading the church.
There is a war on Christianity going on, but it’s coming from inside the church, not outside. For example, I just read that the Catholic Church has cut off funds to a group helping the poor because it’s a member of an immigrants’ rights coalition, and that coalition had worked with a GLBT rights group. Got that? The organization receiving the funds didn’t work with this GLBT organization, they were just members of the same coalition. Cooties! Apparently when it comes to fighting poverty or fighting gays, the poor lose out. Fighting gays is way more important. This kind of thinking and attitude will drive the church into cultural irrelevancy faster than any packet of birth control pills or condoms, but hey, don’t listen to me.
So, real or not real, ladies? Who are you gonna listen to: Reince Priebus or your lying eyes?