By Sasha Brodskaya
The time when feminists keel over and compromise their rights for “the greater good”. Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad the remaining carcass of health care reform will pass, public option and single-payer sacrifices made to the “just say no” Republicans aside. But nonetheless, I’m getting more than a little pissed about this consistent pattern of sacrificing the rights of over 50% of this country. If you’re not sure what I’m talking about, here’s your chance to catch up on the infuriating news :
I understand that affordable health care is important, just as ending slavery and supporting the civil rights movement was important when women postponed their own suffrage and women’s liberalization movements in the 1800s and in the 1950s to help out those valuable aforementioned causes. However, women’s rights should neither be seen as political bargaining chips nor separate barriers to be overcome after the “real problems” are dealt with. We desire equality and affordable health care just like everyone else, and our causes should instead be united with those seeking to reform our democracy to protect and create opportunities for all. It’s hard to understand how our supposed allies, including pro-choice democrats and a supposedly strongly pro-choice president, could backstab us so easily. Perhaps Samantha Bee on the Daily Show was right to jokingly point out that men “only” control three branches of American government. Even in Iraq, where we set-up democracy by force, the government is mandated by law to have more women in the government than we currently do (I guess the message we meant to send was “do better than us”). While I would hardly argue for similar mandates, I’ll be the first to admit that we need more women in the government.
After all, the polls show that pro-choice women feel considerably stronger about reproductive rights than pro-choice men do about the issue; after all, its not *men* that have to deal with the consequences of unwanted pregnancy (perhaps the child that results from a pregnancy coming to term, and even then men can often get away with minimal financial support and no role in the child’s upbringing). To note: this is hardly an argument that all men are evil, but that realistically they may not care about an issue that doesn’t affect them as much as it does women. Thus, today I challenge all you feisty feminists to support pro-choice women running for political office. While Nancy Pelosi and other supposed pro-choice females have also let us down in Congress, I’d like to believe it had more to do with the numbers (a handful of women can’t expect to win against an entire legislative body of men who don’t care about the issue) than with personal convictions. Thus, I suggest all of you check out my friend’s suggested website for pro-choice women running for office, and show your support through campaigning, donations, and just plain talking up these brave, brilliant women.
Here’s the site: womenwinning.org.