To begin with I want to say thank you to Mr. Todd Akin and Victoria Jackson for explaining to the world how DNA and legitimate rape makes everything OK for men to treat women as brood mares and making personhood amendments make sense. And if you believe that fairy tale, then please, put a bid in on Reverend Sharpton’s bridge (if you haven’t seen the commercial… it’s the Brooklyn Bridge).
Yes, I know that Mr. Akin’s comment about legitimate rape is so last week’s news, but the reason that I’m going back to it is that the Republican Party’s newly minted Vice Presidential candidate, Paul Ryan co-sponsored, with Mr. Akin, a bill, “The Sanctity of Life Act”, HR 212, its title should say it all, however, it’s description “To provide that human life shall be deemed to begin with fertilization.” makes it even scarier, especially to women. It effectively reduces women to nothing but brood mares. Backpedaling as fast as he can, Mr. Ryan is trying to distance himself from this bill; however it is part of his Congressional record. It is something that he supports. He is stuck with it. And it is part of the Republican Party platform. Mr. Akin just happened to say it out loud, ahead of time. Oopsie.
You have to ask yourself, exactly what does this mean? Well, if you read the full text of the bill (it’s only three pages), it means that every zygote, every embryo, has the right, of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. OK. But what of the mother’s right of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness? As one lawmaker said, (and I’m paraphrasing here) women are more like barnyard animals.
This brings us to reproductive health. In case you didn’t know, a woman’s reproductive system and its health are tied, intimately with the health and wellbeing of the rest of her body. If something is wrong in her ovaries, where the hormone estrogen is produced (as well as ova) it could send the rest of her body into a tail spin. Ovarian cysts are a major cause of incredible pain and discomfort. And these are just the beginning.
What I’m getting at here is that a woman’s body is far more delicately balanced and nuanced than men imagine. Yet they insist on trying to legislate something that they don’t know or really understand.
How does this affect the economy?? Simple. If a woman is working, bringing in a decent wage, supporting her family, she needs to know that no insurance company is going to drop her because she “has menstrual cramps”. Or because she might get pregnant (which, by the way, costs more than paying for contraception.). She needs to know that if she does choose to start a family that her job will be there, waiting for her after she has had the baby and is ready to return to work. Or that she can find an alternative to coming into the office, like telecommuting. She has to know that her insurance company is going to do what it is paid to do – pay for the medications that she is prescribed, including her contraceptives, regardless of the reason that she is prescribed them. It is no one’s business why anyone takes any medication. There is a reason why we have HIPPA laws.
Women are already paid twenty three cents less an hour than men. They are, in general, paying more for health insurance than men, providing they can get a job that offers this benefit. Many women are stuck in jobs that don’t.
Women pay taxes, just like men. They raise families, just like men. They add to the economy. And they see their rights to make their own choices in healthcare being slowly eroded by men and women who seem to have no clue about how biology and physiology works.
Perhaps it’s time to make our lawmakers return to school and teach them the basics about the “birds and the bees” once again.