| Greg Abbott is ‘running’ against Wendy Davis |
for governor of Texas
We are used to seeing MCPs (male chauvinist pigs) like Rush Limbaugh speak of and about women in the most demeaning and factually inaccurate terms. We are accustomed to a lot of old white men more officially speaking for the GOP doing so regularly and often, on every possible topic, from rape to reproductive rights, to earning unequal pay and other unequal treatment insensitively and offensively. Contraception and other reproductive-related health care is just one example.
A couple of examples gained the right notoriety this week. When women contribute to their husband progressing, they’re just wives. When a husband contributes to his wife’s advancement which benefits their family, he gets called a “Sugar Daddy”. When women want equal treatment, including reproductive care coverage under insurance mandates, we see fat old white men like Mike Huckabee referring to that equal treatment through government regulation as “Uncle Sugar”.
Of course, Huckabee exempts himself from those who are sucking down on “Uncle Sugar” — presumably he still receives some sort of state-provided insurance coverage, as a former governor. And let’s not forget that Mike Huckabee HIMSELF signed state-wide legislation in Arkansas that required that insurance coverage in that state provided contraceptive coverage, virtually identical to the ACA coverage. That presumably makes him “Uncle Sugar” himself.
It must be that abstinence only sex ed that misinforms conservatives about the facts of sex and sexuality, including libido and contraception. Because the ignorance on the right about sex is shocking, as is the hypocrisy about sex and sexuality — and health insurance.
As noted by Julie Lapidos in the New York Times:
A lingering question: If a woman actively wants the government to compel her employer to cover her birth control, is she helpless?
One other nitpick: If an individual state, rather than the federal government, were to pass a contraceptive mandate, would that be condescending to women? Because as Bill Scher has pointed out, when Mr. Huckabee was governor of Arkansas he signed a law mandating that insurance plans provide contraception coverage. The law did not exempt church-affiliated organizations.
Then we have Texas conservatives referring to gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis as “Abortion Barbie”. Davis is blond, slender, and attractive, and dresses well. She is pro-choice, and pro-health care, including reproductive health care.
A recent Minnesota attack on Davis by a local blogger faulted her for referring to campaigning for office and her differences in struggling because of a less affluent background as “running for office” and her opponent as someone who “had not walked in her shoes”. Her opponent, Texas Attorney General Abbott, is in a wheel chair. One MN pundit opined from this that Democrats “hate cripples”, suggesting Ms. Davis had somehow been insulting her opponent by using common descriptive language and was prejudiced against people with disability because of doing so.
I was stunned by the statement. I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised at the degree of obnoxious dishonesty that comes from the right, ever, but it still caught me off-guard.
This is like saying someone hates blind people if you happen to use the phrase, “see what I mean” in conversation with someone who has a visual impairment.
The irony — and the ignorance — of the Republican blogger that relates both to those who are disabled, including paraplegia like that of the Republican candidate Abbot, and to the reason that we have such a desperate need for the health care insurance mandate is this, from the Texas Tribune that shows how little regard Texas conservatives have for those who are similarly injured and the extent of their suffering and need:
Abbott Faces Questions On Turnabout and Fair Play
When Greg Abbott’s spine was crushed by a falling oak tree in 1984 he had no health insurance, no paycheck and no feeling in his legs.
But he had a good lawyer and, back then, access to a civil justice system that was generally hospitable toward plaintiffs. So Abbott did what many people would do in his situation: he sued.
Nearly 30 years later, as Texas attorney general and the leading candidate for governor, Abbott is facing new questions about the multimillion-dollar settlement he was awarded and about his advocacy of laws that critics say have tilted the judicial scales toward civil defendants.
Those critics, generally Democrats who oppose the Republican-backed lawsuit curbs, say the policies Abbott has fiercely promoted over his career as a judge and elected official make it virtually impossible for a plaintiff to win the kind of award he got.
“You would think that a young man, at the start of his career, crippled by an injury, would want to make sure that others that may have the misfortune to follow in his footsteps would ensure that those people had the opportunity to be compensated for their injuries in the same way he was,” said Tommy Fibich, a Democratic donor and personal injury lawyer. “He instead closed the door because that would help him get re-elected.”