One of the tags lines on this blog is "what women's rights are when women are no longer manipulated by party rhetoric," and we have just witnessed a week or two where the subject of women's rights are being used shamelessly to manipulate women all over the United States. Both parties are doing it, and to some extent it is probably proving effective. I am so disgusted with this display of manipulation I could spit. I want to shake everyone involved and say "where is your brain????????"
All of this bandying about of "women's rights" is being used at the service of party and presidential politics trying to get an advantage of one faction over another. And it still all goes back to what my friend T says------and I repeat "I AM NOT AN OVARY AND WOMB WITH LEGS!!!!" What I'm trying to say is that the men in power who run the campaigns seem to think that all we women care about is our reproductive rights. Period. That there is nothing else in the world that defines women except our uteruses. And so they insult us by ginning up phony controversies to manipulate us, corral us, and make us cower in fear that our rights are about to be taken away, and then to try to score points against the other side.
Let me elaborate. For anyone who hasn't read this blog before, I am pro-choice, verging on 60 years old, and I DO care about women's reproductive rights. HOWEVER, I am much, much more concerned about women's lack of economic progress, a subject of dire importance that both the left and the right have ignored in favor of keeping the reproductive rights fight going.
We saw this week a birth control controversy spinning out of control (also more here, here, here and here). In my eyes, what this tempest in a teapot amounts to is another point of contention in the new health care law that both sides can distort to play into their memes and get their bases all excited. I am so tired of hearing all of this garbage!!!! And according to my inbox, comments on other blogs, and even from recent polling, people aren't putting reproductive rights on anyone's list of issues this season.
However, the screaming match between the left and the right continues. No wonder people are so disgusted with the parties. And women should be doubly disgusted. Why as women should our interests be totally defined by reproductive issues? That apparently is what the men in charge think because they think they can gain an advantage by trotting out these tired arguments and that we will always respond as blithering idiots and screaming hysterics right on cue. THIS example is one of the reasons women need to run more things and run them in proportion to our numbers. If there had been more women around to comment, we could have told both sides that this debate isn't where they are going to score points. The really easy points that they could score is by committing to running a woman as VP and by committing to appointing 50% of their cabinet members as female. A simple act such as that would send women flocking to the polls voting for their candidates. Instead we are pandered to by the extreme elements in both parties licking their chops for another fight to score points using women as political footballs and making erroneous assumptions.
Lastly, I'd like to comment on one of the grossest sexists hypocrisies I have seen in quite a while. On Friday, I was watching Morning Joe while putting my time in on my elliptical, and these were the segments juxtaposed one against the other: first of all, the 5-man panel on Morning Joe had a field day talking about the hypocrisy of the all-male clerical panel going in front of the Republican dominated Congressional hearing on birth control. If you'd been following that one, the optics were pretty disgusting-----a bunch of men talking about the morality of birth control for women. You can imagine the commentary on that show, especially since Joe Scarborough, the strong conservative voice, wasn't there.
Well, after much smirking and alot of "aren't these people stupid" kind of arrogant remarks, the all male panel pivoted into talking about the Massachusetts Senate race between Elizabeth Warren and Scott Brown. Inevitably it came up about how Massachusetts hasn't been able to get women elected. So what happens next? The frat-boy panel starts dissing all of the women (except Warren who they like) who have ever run in Massachusetts saying what awful candidates they have been and naming some by name, and smirking and laughing and wink-wink----"see me? I'm one of the in crowd." How different is that from the all male panel talking about birth control for women?
The final analysis of this whole scene is that if there was ever a week that showed that we need more women running things, this was the week. If 50% of the legislators, and 50% of the TV journalists, and 50% of the pollsters, and 50% of the (fill in the blanks) were women, the conversation would be much much more respectful of where women REALLY live. And the conversation would be much more relevant. And yoo hoo fellas-------where is the talk about jobs, the economy, the debt, the deficits, entitlement reform, etc???????? Stop using women and their uteruses as your plan to corral us and control us!!!!!!!!!!!!!!