When it comes to women’s health care, who’re you gonna call? Recently, in a congressional hearing on access to birth control, a panel of religious men with no medical experience were allowed to testify, while Republicans did not allow a single woman to speak.
Like women everywhere, I was furious, and gratified by the outrage that followed, but not in the least surprised. I equate it to other predictable behaviors evoking feigned public shock.
Extra! Extra! Powerful men crave sexual attention. You can reference the beginning of recorded history for that data.
I am equally unsurprised by the shameless arrogance of these male religious “leaders” feeling completely comfortable making a very public argument against any possible infringement on their exclusive right to control women’s behavior. The state has no business offering women reproductive freedom, when their god hasn’t.
There’s no moral conflict, or even embarrassment, over professing your right to control women’s behavior in society, when your male deity mandates your right to do just that in your religion. After all, how can you trust women with important moral decisions when they were responsible for the corruption of mankind?
I know the realization that organized religion is innately misogynistic is shocking. It is, after all, the mission of organized religion to proclaim dominion over all the Earth, especially its female inhabitants, and propagate the faith.
There’s the rub. You’ve got to control women’s reproductive freedom to do that.
Separation of church and state is the reason women have made political progress. The religious right’s unrelenting war on women and their health care, while tax-exempt religious organizations like Catholic Charities accept billions in funding from federal programs, goes beyond efforts to defund Planned Parenthood, and preventing women from getting contraception.
Republicans are now fighting against the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act, and women serving in the military. Since women aren’t about to go backward any time soon, I’m pretty sure they’re shooting themselves in their tiny, let’s say, feet.
And come November, I pray women will serve up the can of fire and brimstone these Republican misogynists so richly deserve.
For those of us who have a fuzzy grasp of the definitions of the various types of government and economic systems, I recommend digging out the Feb. 16 issue of the Post Independent (or access it on your computer) and read Hal Sundin’s “As I See it” column headlined “The matrix of political and economic systems.”
It is the most concise definition of the terms we throw around in our political discourse, often with mistaken or emotionally loaded concepts, that I have seen.
Mr Sundin wrote about democracy and totalitarianism, socialism and capitalism.
I believe that ignorance is the source of thoughtless knee-jerk reactions to some of the words Mr. Sundin wrote about, and contributes to violence, both verbal and physical, and on both national and local levels. And this is not to mention its use as a tool to influence voters to cast uneducated votes.
We owe thanks to Mr. Sundin for his attention to this matter.
In the national discussion over contraception and the Affordable Care Act, all the smoke about religious freedom has obscured a very important fire: the facts behind the issue. So, here are some.
Fact: The ACA will set up insurance exchanges, virtual marketplaces where insurance companies can sell heath insurance policies to individuals and small businesses.
Fact: To make comparison shopping easier, the ACA mandates that policies offered on the exchanges offer a standardized, minimum level of coverage. This is where contraception comes in. The Department of Health and Human Services has proposed that prescription contraceptives be included in the standard coverage model. A policy must cover them to be offered on the exchange.
Fact: No insurer is required to offer insurance over the exchange, they merely have the opportunity to access a lucrative market, with the requirement that they meet the standards.
Fact: No one, not me, not you, not any church, is compelled to buy insurance over the exchange. All other options currently available will still be available. Individuals can get coverage through their employers’ group plans, if they offer them, or buy them on the open market. Groups can negotiate with the insurers directly, self insure, or simply decline to provide insurance to their employees, as there is no mandate on businesses.
To sum up: Insurers must provide contraceptive services if they want to sell their policies on the exchange, but no one is compelled to sell or buy on that exchange. These are the facts.
And here is another fact: In spite of all the disingenuous posturing by the bishops and the GOP, poll after poll show majorities of men, women, Republicans, Democrats, independents, and yes, Catholics, believe this policy is a sensible one.
I have never seen a more perfect example of why religion has no place in politics.
Man or woman, anyone who was not outraged by the total insult to American women by the condescending display of religious intolerance, ignorance, idiotic political stupidity and outright rudeness to Reps. Eleanor Holmes Norton, D-Washington, D.C., and Carolyn Maloney, D-N.Y., displayed by the out-of-touch, grandstanding Republicans during the phony, stacked, disgusting congressional hearing on contraception held Feb. 16 and chaired by Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., truly has their head in the sand of the party line.
Any woman in the U.S. who would vote Republican after this true demonstration of what to expect from a religion-dominated government led by the likes of Rick Santorum, Newt Gingrich or Mitt Romney should get set for a return to the Dark Ages and second class citizenry.
Send these fools a bottle of aspirin. Let’s fill their committee room with little white pills and make Bayer’s sales go through the roof.
P.S.: To the women of America, I’d be reading “Lysistrata” and acting accordingly until your men get it.
I had hoped more people would play the “What if” game.
What if there were some rules against half-truths? Consider a few observations to Bob Anderson’s post of Feb. 6.
Of the $9 trillion in deficits forecast for the 2010-2019 period, $5 trillion are due to programs from the prior administration, including tax cuts from 2001 and 2003 and the unfunded Medicare Part D.
Another $3.5 trillion are due to the financial crisis, including reductions in future tax revenues and additional spending for the social safety net, such as unemployment benefits. The remainder are stimulus and bailout programs related to the crisis.
The Bush team tried to conditionally approve the Solyndra loan just before President Obama took office. One of the earliest and largest investors, Madrone Capital Partners, is funded by the family that started Wal-Mart, the Waltons, who have donated millions of dollars to Republican candidates.
Drilling moratoriums in the Gulf were lifted in October 2010. Drilling companies are not happy about new safety restrictions. Gasoline will continue to go up as speculators control the market, or if Israel hits Iran.
Hey, it’s an election year. What better way to get rid of Obama than $4 to $5 a gallon gas prices?
The Keystone Pipeline would not create 100,000 jobs.
From CBS on Jan. 19: “Transcanada itself cast doubt on its employment forecast when a vice president for the company told CNN last fall that the 20,000 jobs Keystone would create were temporary and that the project would likely yield only ‘hundreds’ of permanent positions.”
GM posted its highest profit ever. Unions took major concessions to keep it alive. Would Mr. Anderson prefer that GM and Chrysler not be in business?
Regarding tax rates, how did we move forward with the tax rates of the ’50s or the ’90s? Each major tax break has brought economic decline (excluding the 1-percenters.) Think Reagonomics and Bush tax cuts.
Finally, Obama beats all contenders as of today, despite the GOP’s “one-term presidency” mentality since the day he was elected. Imagine McCain-Palin leading things during the past three years. Think full body shiver.
Craig S. Chisesi
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