I just heard a comment that made me stop my entire workday. I’ve been meaning to write about this topic for a while, but this one-liner made it have to happen now.
Backstory: I abhor political/religious discussions on Facebook. A.B.H.O.R. If there is a stronger word for hate, insert that in place of ‘abhor.’ I want the strength of my sentiment known. One of the reasons that I hate these types of discussions so passionately is that I’ve experienced my share of pointless ‘discussions’ where people argue back and forth and everything just disintegrates into name-calling, generalizing, deliberate baiting, etc. Two people who are convinced they are right “(usually because they think God Herself is on their side, and so their opinion is righter- how convenient for them that God is on their side), and so come away from a discussion without learning anything, but having smeared more metaphorical shit on the Walls of Facebook…sigh, I hate it. It makes me feel mean towards people who are not willing to concede that the other point of view might contain some validity. And I hate feeling mean in general. It holds no appeal.
But I digress.
So, on Facebook I’ve been both bystander and participant in these discussions and never come away thinking that more than one or two people were actually listening. Usually people just wait for their turn to talk and pull out some preconceived point they’ve been rolling around in their prejudiced little noggin that isn’t really a response to what was just actually said. It was a response to what they want to respond to.
I try (albeit at times unsuccessfully) to keep politics and religion off of my Facebook page.
But on my blog, here- It. Is. On.
I think my opinions on Facebook get truncated, misunderstood and half-considered. But here, I can say it whole, without being interrupted. And if you’re rude or go off topic, I can strike you from the record. Booyah.
No, it’s nothing radical that in a forum where I have more control I’ll feel more comfortable. But it’s worth a shout to the sky that in a world where I walk a careful line every day (you know, cause the words applied to opinionated women frequently rhythm with ‘krill’ and ”itch’), that there is a place where I can speak my peace.
Which brings me back to the comment that stopped my day.
This news story popped up today: Democrat Chastised for saying ‘uterus’ on House floor
Brief summary: Democrat from Florida goes onto the floor of the State House of Representatives and calls out the doctrinal hypocrisy of the Republicans who say that they don’t want to regulate business, cause it’s bad for the economy- just the issues that they think are their moral right to control. That’s right, Republicans just want smaller government, except when it comes to what goes on between a woman and her doctor. (Small enough government to fit inside my uterus and my doctor’s office. Really, really small.) So the Democrat from Orlando, Fl. suggests that his wife ‘incorporate her uterus,’ to stop Republicans from pushing measures that would restrict a woman’s access to abortion clinics.
In covering this story, one show had the Democratic representative who made the speech on to comment on the reaction. The representative had this gem of a response:
“[Regarding Republicans and their relationship to the female uterus] …I guess they want to control it, but they don’t want to respect it.”
1) I have not heard any phrase yet that so perfectly encapsulates (for me) the resistance of Republicans (as a political party) to giving one half of humanity personal reproductive control over their own bodies.
2) I sincerely hope I never have to put the phrase “Republicans and their relationship to the female uterus” together again. Ever.
While this is an issue that I won’t discuss on Facebook, I think it is one of the few real, unequivocal life-and-death issues of our time. It’s about power and control. It’s about Naming, which is a revolutionary act. It’s about true quality of life, and not in the way Republicans think. I feel strongly that restricting the ability of women to control their own bodies LOWERS the quality of life for her and her children. I feel that the Republicans are working from a fallacious perspective from the onset, and framing the entire debate as though it rests on only one question and thus can be reduced to a matter of when Human Life begins, regardless of any social context. Pretending it is a black/white issue and that women (left to their own devices) would get abortions all the time (and so need to be restricted for their own protection) is a slap in the face to any woman that has had to make this difficult decision.
Plus, I find something unseemly about people who will never have to make this decision for their own bodies (men) trying to tell people who do (women) how the experience should go. I think this is sexual politics at its dirtiest and most dishonest. I’m against any argument that tells me it is simple. Nothing involving humans is simple. Bringing in projections about God never makes it simple either.
The article is the wind up.
The quote is the pitch.
Let’s play ball.