Monday, November 12, 2012

War on Women

Republicans tried to dilute the definition of rape, and refused to pass the Violence Against Women Act.

Republicans refused to pass the legislation that would support victims who are mostly women, and investigate and prosecute the rape and sexual abuse of members of our military, known as the STOP act.

Republicans have tried to defund Planned Parenthood, the source for many women for contraception and birth control pills used for other therapeutic uses such as managing the symptoms of menopause, breast cancer screening and cervical cancer screening, which for millions of women in this country is the only available and affordable source of life-saving care. Republicans have passed laws which have forced women to reveal private medical information to their employers in order to receive contraception coverage to which they should be entitled by law. Prominent Republican voices have routinely referred to women who seek to control their reproductive lives responsibly, both for the use of contraception and the decision for abortion, as sluts, a paternalistic unwarranted judgement and vilification.

Republicans have tried to repeal legislation that guarantees women equal pay for equal work, even though women in this country still make significantly less than men, even at the highest executive levels.  Republicans have engaged in union busting that significantly harms women and have taken action to reduce their health care coverage, and their pensions. Republicans have tried to do away with minim wage laws which affect many women.

Republicans have passed or tried to pass legislation that allows doctors to lie to women without consequence, justifying imposing their values on their patients even if that impairs their health or results in their death, but most of all it removes women's choice in their lives. Republicans have passed legislation that mandates women be given false health information about breast cancer and abortion, Republicans have mandated sex education that misinforms women about factual medical information regarding contraception and sexually transmitted diseases.  Republicans have opposed widespread vaccinations against the papilloma virus that can render a woman sterile, an illness which afflicts large numbers of women and girls, and some men and boys.  Republicans have mandated medically unnecessary and expensive transvaginal probes and ultrasounds and other attempts to try to coerce women from a legal and ethical choice that affects their lives, their health, their family and their other relationships in a way which intrudes into the most personal aspects of the lives of women, coming between women and their partners, women and their clergy, and women and their medical care providers.

Republicans have promoted legislation which returns gun rights to men who have been convicted of violent crimes, including domestic abusers.  These felons have a far higher incidence than non-criminals of repeating violence against others, often women, with those firearms.

But still the Republicans deny a war on women, when so clearly there is one.

But on Veteran's Day, THIS is what most explains the use of the term War on Women.  Given the attitudes, the candidates, and the legislation of Republicans, I think they have a significant ownership of this for their paternalistic, and controlling positions, and their failures to support and encourage the independence of women, free from violence.:

That figure doesn't include women injured or intimidated by physical abuse, or emotional or psychological abuse. The war on women has real casualties.

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