We haven’t heard any specific mention of the War on Women in the debates so far, but make no mistake it continues to be the elephant in the living room, the bedroom and the exam room.
This election offers a pretty clear choice, if you’re looking for someone consistently loyal to women. Women, being 51 percent of the population, 54 percent of the voting public. Bigger than a binder-ful.
Oh sure, the election will dramatically affect men, too, but as individuals, not the entire gender. Generally speaking, the male sex will be status quo. The female sex? Ah… could be in big trouble.
Here’s the deal that Republicans offer women. Vote for them and they’ll come up with a way (not sure how) to get America working again and fix the deficit (ask them how later). But they want women’s bodies back.
It’s surprising, shocking really, how women’s rights became a big factor in the election. With so many pressing concerns, you would have thought we’d be fully concentrating on moving America forward. But, nope. There are people bent on going backwards. And they will make their mark with women.
Nobody is lurking inside men’s health clinics to spy on a man’s exam. No one is thinking up ways to turn a legal urological procedure into something that is shameful, embarrassing, unnecessary and invasive. Or saying vasectomies should be illegal.
No one is saying an employer should get to grill male workers about why they want birth control. No one is fantasizing about what happens to a man’s body during a “legitimate rape.” No radio bully condemns sexually active male college students. Guys having sex? Well, boys will be boys. And the women? Simply sluts.
Of course the Republicans make war on women.
Republicans fought against the Lilly Ledbetter Act to protect women workers from wage discrimination. Republicans stood against extending the Violence Toward Women Act.
Republicans support person-hood amendments that would turn a woman into a felon if she couldn’t prove her miscarriage happened naturally.
Yet, they toy with us. Mitt Romney has been for choice, against choice and then, kind of, maybe, for. Paul Ryan, who’s voted 60 times against reproductive rights, mocks the War on Women. Lately he’s been saying he’d allow abortion in certain cases.
Haven’t women learned not to trust a man who won’t commit?
Romney and Ryan have played fast and loose with women, backing some of the wackiest and most punishing notions concerning abortion and birth control. They hope we will forget.
The Romney campaign this week said that equal pay and choice are “small things” and not important to voters. Real women, the GOP claims, don’t worry about women’s rights. Women care about jobs. Women care about going to war in Iran. Of course, we worry about the economy and Iran getting the bomb. But does that mean we have to give up our freedom?
The extremist religious and retro right and their candidates would turn us back to an America where our daughters and nieces and granddaughters have fewer rights than we women have now.
They don’t want to mess with men. They are not threatening a man’s choice. Or plotting what their Supreme Court might do to men.
They just want to take away a little bit of freedom from women, shave off just a little equality.
And were they to once taste victory, what thinking woman can imagine them not asking for a little more? And what thinking man wants that?