Category Archives: women’s rights

Consequence-Free Sex

It was entirely predictable that right-wing males would act like giant assholes in the wake of the Hobby Lobby ruling; after all, these are the perpetually-aggrieved folks who have felt neutered by “feminazis” since women first demanded the vote.

My favorite response was from Douchebag Emeritus Erick W. Erickson, who tweeted:

erick

And yet, because Hobby Lobby pays for men’s Viagra, that is exactly what this employer is doing: subsidizing consequence-free sex, only just for men. Because, by virtue of biology, all sex for men is consequence-free. It just is. Birth control levels the playing field for women. And it is no surprise that conservative men, whose most unifying feature is an overarching inferiority complex, have been threatened by that since the first cave lady brewed her special cup of herbal tea to keep the babies away. Insecure men will always try to control that which they cannot control. And that’s what we have here.

This, from The New Republic, sums it up thusly:

There’s a reason so many women were outraged on Monday. They saw the decision as yet another attempt to preserve the old double-standard—to dump most of the responsibility for reproductive health and child-bearing on them, in ways that inevitably deter gender equality. With comments like Erickson’s bouncing around cyberspace, it’s easy to see why they had that impression.

Yeah, it’s not an “impression.” It’s called reality.

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Filed under birth control, feminism, sex, Supreme Court, women's rights

Religion Is Dead

That will be the upshot of today’s completely outrageous Hobby Lobby ruling. The U.S. Supreme Court has effectively killed religion.

I know, it looks the opposite, but what have I said here a gazillion, bajillion times, folks? When religion gets forced on people by government or corporations, religion always dies. People don’t want this shit foisted on them. As I’ve said a thousand times before, the surest way to kill off religious belief is to declare a “state religion.” The bigger religion’s role in the secular aspects of life, the more people run away from it.

And in this ruling SCOTUS said some corporations can impose the beliefs of some religions on some employees, effectively legalizing discrimination against women and certain religions. If you’re a company owned by Jehova’s Witnesses, sorry, you have to pay for blood transfusions. No out for Scientologists who object to psychiatry and psychiatric drugs. Christian Scientists who don’t believe in most healthcare at all still have to pony up. But if you’re a Christian fundiegelical who believes completely erroneously and incorrectly that IUDs cause abortions — even though they don’t! — you can refuse to offer a healthcare plan covering that form of birth control to your female employees. That’s what SCOTUS just ruled.

The debate wasn’t even really about the Hobby Lobby peoples’ religious beliefs, it was about their completely erroneous, counter-factual scientific beliefs cloaked in religion:

Hobby Lobby already covered 16 of the 20 methods of contraception mandated under the Affordable Care Act, but it didn’t cover Plan B One-Step, ella (another brand of emergency contraception) and two forms of intrauterine devices because of aforementioned ideologically driven and not medically based ideas about abortion.

“These medications are there to prevent or delay ovulation,” Dr. Petra Casey, an obstetrician-gynecologist at the Mayo Clinic, told the New York Times in a piece on the science behind emergency contraception. “They don’t act after fertilization.” As the Times noted, emergency contraception like Plan B, ella and the hormonal IUD do not work by preventing fertilized eggs from implanting in the womb. Instead, these methods of birth control delay ovulation 0r thicken cervical mucus to prevent sperm from reaching the egg, meaning that fertilization never even occurs. That said, when used as a form of emergency contraception, the copper IUD can interrupt implantation, but this still does not mean a pregnancy has occurred.

This ruling was stunningly ham-fisted on so many levels. In a nutshell, in “going narrow” SCOTUS picked a religion — the fundiegelical Christian kind — over the rights of female employees who may not be of that religion, and also over the rights of every other religion out there. This is going to have repercussions, people — and not good ones for the religious folks. It’s gonna get messy, and I think it’s gonna smack religious people on the ass so hard they won’t sit for a month. Stories like this one are going to ripple across the workplace in every state. It’s a ruling that basically legalized gender discrimination and religious discrimination. When it all shakes down it’s not going to be pretty for the people currently doing a happy dance.

In the meantime, folks calling for a Constitutional Convention to repeal corporate personhood just got a little more ammo.

[UPDATE]: ThinkProgress agrees with me.

[UPDATE] 2: Charlie Pierce at Esquire also agrees with me. SCOTUS just perpetrated an act of religious discrimination while professing to do the opposite. WTF is up with that, people?

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Filed under birth control, corporations, healthcare, religious fundamentalism, religious right, Supreme Court, women's rights

Those Who Do Not Learn From History Are Doomed To Repeat It

This is what happens when you restrict women’s access to abortion services:

As policies restricting access to abortion roll out in Texas and elsewhere, the use of miso is quickly becoming a part of this country’s story. It has already made its way into the black market here in Texas’s Rio Grande Valley, where abortion restrictions are tightening, and it is likely to continue its trajectory if anti-abortion legislation does not ease up and clinics continue to be closed.

The Texas law which sparked Wendy Davis’ famous filibuster has already shuttered 12 of the state’s 40 abortion clinics, and counting. It was predicted that the law would keep 23,000 Texas women — one third of those who seek them — from getting abortions. Meanwhile,

Many of these women can be found in the Rio Grande Valley, where the admitting privileges provision forced both of the county’s abortion clinics to shut down. Now, the closest clinic for the region’s one-million-plus residents is 150 miles away. For many poor, uninsured South Texas women, that distance is beyond feasible. Few have access to a set of wheels for the long haul, and others lack the right paperwork to cross immigration checkpoints on highways that run through the state.

Meanwhile, the flea market is close to most people living in the Valley, and the massive Alamo pulga looks like just the kind of place to pick up miso. According to several of my local sources, the drug is sold here and it’s not difficult to get—you just need to know who to approach and what to ask for.

God, stop me if you’ve heard this story before. Like we don’t already know that women will do anything to terminate an unwanted pregnancy. Like we don’t have a gruesome history of coat hangers, knitting needles, women throwing themselves down stairs, etc. etc. etc. Jesus, but pro-lifers are stupid. Closing a Planned Parenthood clinic doesn’t stop abortion. It stops safe, legal, clean, compassionate abortion care. It makes women criminals for doing what the Supreme Court has said is legal.

Meanwhile, forcing women to seek out black market medication for a perfectly legal procedure puts vulnerable, poor women at risk:

One woman I interviewed at a Mexican restaurant in Brownsville told me her good friend nearly died after taking pills that her husband bought in Mexico. Instead of ingesting four of the 12 pills every three hours, as is recommended by the World Health Organization, she took two pills under her tongue, then four pills vaginally, then two more under her tongue, then four more vaginally. She began to bleed profusely, doubled over in pain. But because she was undocumented, she was afraid to seek medical help at a nearby hospital or clinic. Instead, she crossed the border to Mexico with her five children—all the while hemorrhaging—in search of medical assistance. She has since recovered but is still in Mexico with her children because she can’t cross the border back into the United States.

Women will always find a way. Always. It doesn’t matter what the law says, desperate people will go to any lengths to get what they need. This is something we women know deep in our bones, because pregnancy is something that affects our bodies and our lives, while for men it’s a mere abstract concept. Men don’t get it, they will never get it because it’s not the same issue for them.

The fetus-fetish crowd are true monsters.

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Filed under abortion, healthcare, women's rights

Because It’s Not About Guns

[UPDATE]:

Case in point:

EatShitt

This is a comment waiting approval this morning (and no, I won’t) on this week’s Tennessee Gun Report thread. This is rather mild compared to some of the stuff I’ve received and routinely delete. Stats tells me I got a link on thegunwire.com, so I’m gonna guess that’s where this lovely missive came from.

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Mother Jones looks at the gun extremists’ attacks on women, especially the women behind Moms Demand Action. It’s a must-read. Specifically:

mannequin300_0

The Female Mannequin Firing Squad
Open Carry Texas takes pains to convey a clean, friendly image in the press. Last November, the group made national news after some 40 members armed with assault rifles showed up outside an Arlington, Texas, restaurant where four women from Moms Demand Action were having lunch. The group released a statement saying it was being misunderstood: “In reality, the peaceful gun owners were posing for a photo.” After a rally outside Austin City Hall this April, Grisham told the Texas Tribune, “We’re not out there to bait police officers or to scare the community. We wave, we smile, we hand out fliers. If we see someone who seems really nervous, we’ll talk to them.”

What the group hasn’t publicized are some of its members’ more degrading antics. In March, a group of them held a “mad minute” at a firing range, pulverizing a female mannequin with a hail of bullets. They positioned the figure with her hands raised in surrender, naked from the waist up. Afterward, they posed with the bullet-riddled mannequin, her arms blown off and her pants down at her ankles. “Mad minute” is a military expression referring to a burst of rapid fire, and Open Carry Texas members have often referred to Moms Demand Action as “mad moms.”

Four of the men who shot up the mannequin were present at the Arlington restaurant, including one listed by Open Carry Texas as a board member and the group’s Director of Operations.

Grisham said he was not part of the group at the gun range, but when the mannequin video was posted on Facebook, he commented: “Warms the cockles of my heart.” Recently he called women from Moms Demand Action “ignorant, retarded people,” and last fall he referred to them as “thugs with jugs.”

The thing you have to remember with these guys is that it’s really not about guns. It’s about power, and their inability to deal with a culture in which they have to share that power with women, minorities, Muslims and gays. It’s about feeling culturally irrelevant. It’s about being left behind while the rest of the country moves forward.

You know, a gun isn’t going to solve a psychological problem. Maybe some therapy and anger management classes? I don’t know, but I’m finding the gun loonz increasingly indistinguishable from the rest of the right-wing lunatic fringe (such as these guys, another group unable to come to terms with their cultural irrelevance).

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Filed under feminism, gun control, gun violence, Guns, women's rights

Today’s IOKIYAR

Nope, no War On Women here:

PelosiSABO

Honestly, after all of the ginned-up fauxtrage the right has spewed over comparatively tame comments made by the likes of Melissa Harris-Perry, David Letterman, and even President Obama himself (“OMG! He said Trayvon Martin could’ve been his son! WELL I NEVER!”), the above should result in non-stop Fox News outrage, right? Calls for apologies and boycotts?

But of course it won’t, because IOKIYAR, and feminazis, and socialism, etc. etc.

Oh, and meet “the artist” here.

(h/t, Ana Marie Cox)

8 Comments

Filed under conservative bloggers, feminism, sexism, women's rights

Fuck You, Internet

Today marks the internet’s 25th birthday. And here is today’s internet-delivered contribution to the national discourse:

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Spreading ignorance and hate for 25 years. Thanks for nothing, internet!

Honestly I sometimes wonder if we wouldn’t have been better off without it. This is the kind of ignorant BS your crazy uncle used to spew at the dinner table and everyone would sorta roll their eyes and pretend they weren’t related. Now it’s a meme seen by millions, perpetuating the kind of BS stereotypes people like Paul Ryan use as their basis for their economic policy.

Cripes. I’ve got to unfriend me some folks.

(By the way, that same photo was used on a “humor” site under the headline, “What a Country Girl Looks Like.”)

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Filed under internet, poverty, sexism, taxes, women's rights

It’s The Message Not The Messenger, Stupid

As long as Republicans continue to push for policies that are demeaning, shaming and utterly lacking in compassion, I don’t think efforts like this are likely to be successful. The problem is not that you don’t have enough women candidates. The problem is that even your women politicians show little understanding or interest in issues of economic inequality and income disparity affecting so many women.

When someone like Marsha Blackburn can say with a straight face that women don’t want pay equity laws like the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, they “just want to be recognized,” Republicans are seen as out of touch (and rightfully so).

From The Tennessean link:

“I feel like (Democrats) do more for people that are not making good money,” Loretta Lindsey, a retired housekeeper, said in a recent interview on the square in Murfreesboro.

“I feel like there’s more caring on the Democratic side.”

That’s your problem, Republicans. I don’t know how much more obvious it can be.

Also? Stuff like this isn’t helping:

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Filed under Democratic Party, equal pay, feminism, Republican Party, Tennessee, women's rights

Women Are Not Right OR Left

So, yesterday the old white dudes who make up the Republican Party emerged from some smoke-filled room with their cool new idea to show how much they {heart} us ladies. Is it endorsing gender pay equity? Workplace childcare? Or giving up the stupid fight over the birth control mandate?

No! Don’t be silly.

It’s a hashtag, ladies! C’mon, isn’t that what you always wanted? And it’s so awesome, it goes like this:

#WomenAreRight

I saw that on Twitter yesterday and really had to struggle to figure out what the fuck it means.

#WomenAreRight … which is why we keep telling them to sit down and shut up?

#WomenAreRight …. which is why we didn’t appoint a single one of them to chair a committee in the 113th Congress?

#WomenAreRight…. except when they’re wrong, which is every time they come to a difficult decision a Republican man doesn’t agree with?

Anyway, the GOP started sending out cutesy little hashtag bromides about how much they love us ladies, for example:

….which prompted the Democrats to respond:

… and it all went downhill from there.

Predictably, Tennessee’s own Marsha Blackburn is involved in this “Women are right” effort, which appears to be a female candidate recruitment thing. And let’s remember how well that worked last time. We got a bunch of Tea Party wacko losers like Sarah Palin, Julia Hurley (of the carving-her-name-on-her-desk/dog surfing fame) and Christian singer CeCe Heil. Marsha Blackburn was last in the news for making the ludicrous claim on Meet The Press that women don’t want fair pay, we just want recognition for a job well done! So, y’know, this will go swimmingly, I predict.

Look, Republicans. Here’s the deal. It’s not the gender or race of your mouthpieces which is the problem. It’s your policies.

Women are not right or left. Women are people, with jobs and families and responsibilities. We are not electoral marbles for you to horde to keep your political future alive. We want our needs addressed by our representatives in Congress. You know, the same way you address the needs of ExxonMobil and Koch Industries and Raytheon?

Address our needs. Don’t just give us a new face to recite the same BS talking points. Just something to think about.

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Filed under feminism, Republican Party, women's rights

Idiots

[UPDATE]: Word in some corners is that the “some idiot” in question is named Erick Erickson.

———————————————-

Some GOP idiot started this Twitter hashtag today, to universal derision:

Sit Down

This, of course, referencing the heroic fillibuster of Texas state senator Wendy Davis. They just don’t get it, do they?

Republicans still think if they find female mouthpieces to spout their crap, they’ll endear themselves to women voters. And they have no idea how insulting that is.

Wendy Davis galvanized more women voters than any S.E. Cupp repeating Frank Luntz-written talking points ever will.

11 Comments

Filed under feminism, reproductive rights, Republican Party, women's rights

First Draft Tuesday

North Dakota’s Anti-Woman Dystopian Horror Show.

2 Comments

Filed under abortion, feminism, women's rights