Sunday, January 22, 2006

What's Missing in this Picture?

This is a picture of BushCo signing the "Partial-birth abortion ban" (a.k.a. late-term abortion ban, if you're one o' them evil scientific "facty" types) into law in 2003. How happy all those present seem to be in putting an end to the millions of late-term abortions that occur every year because women don't like stretch-marks. What's that you say? These are generally emergency procedures, occuring only when the life of the woman is at stake? This illegal law doesn't provide a reasonable exemption for the life of the woman, you say? That can't be so, because these people are all pro-life. Ask them, they'll tell you. Except they aren't pro-life, and they aren't pro-human sanctity either. What they are is anti-female autonomy. Period. This aggression towards women shows itself as a moral opposition to abortion, or contraception, or sexual education that educates people about sex, or even social programs that make pregnancy and child-bearing less frightening, but it all stems from a central thesis: women and their bodies rightfully belong to men and/or the state, and must be governed by men and/or the state. There's an astonishing lack of uteri in this group. And that is very much the point.

Roe v. Wade made abortion legal in the United States 33 years ago today. In re-legalizing abortion (which had been legal in the US prior to xenophobic concerns in the middle 19th century), the Supreme Court of the time recognized that women, much like people, are people. The wingnuts and their little kinglet have spent the time since trying to get an American woman's right to bodily autonomy revoked. They are frighteningly close to achieving that goal.

This will not be the best post, because I cannot begin to adequately express the rage I feel when pro-birthers speak. I recognize their hypocrisy for what it is, and I resent the insult to my intelligence. I do not consider it incumbent upon me to prove my own humanity to my legislature, nor do I for one second believe that my legislature would demand that every healthy citizen donate blood for the benefit of another citizen who will die without it, so the whole "a fetus has the right to live regardless of the woman's wishes" argument does not fly with me. Nor does the adoptive home argument. I owe nobody a baby.

There are, however, a few things I can and will say. Should this, my country, decide that it has the legal right to co-opt my body for its own purposes, to declare me a less-than-human less-than citizen because I was born with a uterus, I will no longer consider the laws of this land applicable to me. Period. Should the democratic party continue in their "roll over and play dead strategy" of declaring women and their rights "fringe issues," rather than fighting for the civil rights of all citizens, the democratic party will no longer recieve my votes. Period.


t1ernd0g said...

Limiting reproductive rights to women is gender-specific and is therefore unacceptable. If we believe in equal rights, we need to recognize men’s equal reproductive rights and equal right to privacy.

We need to change our vocabulary to eliminate prejudices and negative connotations, and to put a positive slant on these neglected rights of men. Therefore, “rape” and “child molestation” will become the more positive “drive fulfillment”; “domestic violence” and “child abuse” will be appropriately called “anger redirection”; and “victim” becomes the non-prejudicial “facilitator”.

I personally am against drive fulfillment and anger redirection, but every man has the right to choose.

The laws that currently repress these freedoms must fall in landmark Supreme Court cases. Men should educate themselves, recognize their empowerment, and become activists. Society should shrug off the negative connotations of “rape”, “molestation”, “domestic violence”, etc., and these rights must no longer be exercised furtively in back alleys but allowed to be enjoyed in the full light of day, free from disapproval and intolerance. Politicians at all levels should be supported or not based on their support of gender-neutral reproductive rights. After all, it’s my body -- government, keep your laws off it!

We should be prepared to counter the attacks of narrow-minded special interests, who may make claims such as “rape is wrong”, “child abuse is violence”, etc. We can easily poke holes in their arguments, for example by simply countering that if they don’t like “rape”, then they don’t have to have one. In the case of drive redirection via minor (formerly called “child molestation”), it’s obvious that a minor is a post-natal fetus, and a fetus has no rights. The issue of pre-term vs. post-term falls before the more fundamental right to privacy.

Please join with me in embracing this progressive cause.

Laurelin said...

t1ernd0g- [sarcasm] I love a reasoned argument [/sarcasm]. Likening women's right to their own bodies to sexual violence is revolting and unacceptable.

Heocwaeth- brilliant post. Thank you for showing up patriarchal dominance for what it is.

KCB said...

That photo just turns my stomach. Great post.

Chris said...

t1ernd0g clearly has problems forming analogies, or arguments of any sort. According to his blog, for example, "venus flytrap" is a "two-word proof that evolution is bad science."

HeoCwaeth said...

Oh, cool! A real-live reductio ad troll argument here on my little blog. *Ahem* I'd like to thank the academy for finding me worthy of a troll of my own, and the fans, of course. But, most of all I have to thank my Mom who bought me all those radical books that told the stories of women's lives when I was a girl (Dr. Elizabeth Blackwell, you go girl!), and Jesus Christ, who has documented his love for me in a best-selling book and song. *weeps as the music swells*
But seriously now, I have been trained to find the good in all pieces of written opinion, and encourage the author from there. In that spirit, t1ernd0g, I too oppose reproductive slavery of men. Should the government decide that men must be held against their will, and forced to ejaculate with electronic probes, I will fight such a law to the death. Should any private citizen suggest that a man must host foreign objects anywhere in his person for religious reasons not his own, You just send me the petition, man. I'll sign it in a heartbeat.
Now for the bad news: Neither men nor women are entitled to rape or assault others. That violates the rights of those others. We are entitled to avoid others, and even evict them from our homes. We are certainly entitled to evict others from our bodies. And, unpleasant as it is to you, any body that is living in my body is existing on a HeoCwaethian grant. A grant that may be pulled if I decide to "go another way," or if the other body threatens my life in any way.

Laurelin, kcb, and chris - thanks.

Kicki said...

Heo, I am proud to call you my sister. Excellent post, and excellent dealing with the troll.You rock.

Bardiac said...

Kick ass post (and response to your troll!)!

Anonymous said...

Heocwaeth I'm afraid your eviction analogy fails on a very fundamental level. Last time I checked, when a landlord evicts a tenant, he does not shoot said tenant in the head.

Equating the abortion of a fetus with evicting an unwanted presence is silly, as evicting is merely PLACATING the unwanted party while abortion TERMINATES it.