Over the weekend I went to a friend’s house warming party. As I was talking to people and making new acquaintances, I began to share this blog with them, and without fail, I would receive quite an outburst of giggles when I mentioned what the name of the blog was. After the laughing subsided, and I explained the layout of the blog and the subject matter, my new acquaintances proceeded to ask about the “War on Women”. Their curiosity, since they were mostly males, had to do with wanting to know what exactly the “War on Women” is, my opinions on it, and what it means to me. Well, ladies and gentlemen, since I’m pretty sure to eloquently illustrate what the “War on Women” and my personal stance, mainly due to my slight state of inebriation, here’s my attempt to highlight a few of the key points on the “War on Women.”
One of the most prevalent battles of the War on Women has to be the attack on a woman’s right to choose. Yes, ladies and gentlemen, abortion is definitely one of those hot button issues that will always manage to stir up a whirlwind of emotions within people, but we have to put our emotions aside and actually think for a moment. What is under attack, at the moment, is late-term abortions, and rightfully so, it’s a very touchy and controversial topic. Any abortion that is performed after 20 weeks of gestation is considered “late-term”, mainly due to the fact that a fetus is usually viable after the 20th week. But let’s think about this for a moment, according to the Association for Natural Psychology’s website, “teenagers and women in general who have a late-term abortion performed may experience disturbing and painful emotions." When taking this into consideration, one must wonder why would anyone have a late-term abortion? The answer is almost always because the woman’s life is in danger, and in a few cases because the fetus would suffer greatly after it has fully developed and been delivered, like Carolyn Jones shared in an article she wrote, for the Texas Observer, about her late-term abortion experience.
Carolyn’s experience is a notable one due to the new Sonogram Law that Texas has instated, in which a woman is required to listen to the fetus’ heart-beat, or watch the sonogram, and have a doctor describe the fetus, then wait a full 24 hours before having an abortion. As if the emotional and psychological trauma of the abortion itself was not enough, women are now expected to go through an entire gauntlet of emotional torture before having an abortion. This attack is just one example of many in which a woman’s right to choose is under fire. To me, it seems like the Right-wingers are just using late-term abortions as their first point of attack so that in the long run a woman’s right to choose is outlawed all together. What men have to understand, though, is that if this country were to completely ban abortions, one would almost definitely see an increase in deaths from women having botched back-alley abortions. But then again, considering the political agenda of most right-winged conservatives, I wouldn’t be surprised if they would be ok with this.
The next battle I want to point out is the battle against women’s access to contraception and basic women’s health needs. Arizona House Bill 2625 would allow Arizona employers to deny employee coverage of contraceptive services if contraception “is contrary to the religious beliefs of the employer, sponsor, issuer, insurer or other entity offering the plan or is because the coverage is contrary to the religious beliefs of the purchaser or beneficiary of the coverage.” In essence, if your employer is morally opposed to the use of contraception, then so should you. Of course, women who use contraception for medical reasons have to “first pay for the prescription and then submit a claim to the insurer along with evidence that the prescription is not in whole or in part for a purpose covered by the objection.” Considering what the price of contraception can amount to, especially for some women who are not able to use generic versions of the pill, for example, will probably have to go without receiving contraception at all because they can’t afford to “first pay” out of pocket.
The most infuriating battle of all, at least to me, and ESPECIALLY because it’s Sexual Assault Awareness month, are the debates and reservations Republicans are having about reauthorizing the “Violence Against Women Act.” In this battle bigotry rears its ugly head. The objections that come with the reauthorization are with some new provisions that were added to the act. So what is so objectionable that there can be a potential cause for delay? Well, the provisions include protections for LGBTQ individuals, undocumented immigrants who are victims of domestic abuse and the authority of Native American tribes to prosecute crimes. Now, to me, a woman attacked is a woman attacked, regardless of what her sexual orientation, gender identity, immigration status, or cultural background may be. Attacks against women happen all over the world, and a woman hurt in this country should have some sort of protection, period! Unfortunately, Republicans are turning VAWA into a partisan issue, while too many women are victims, and many more don’t seek help because of fear, shame, or whatever their personal reasons may be.
I know that I didn't go through everything, and that I just lightly covered these topics, but this is just to illustrate the broad range of fronts in which women are being attacked. Women in this country are of different racial, cultural, socio-economic backgrounds, and these differences make them targets to various attacks that warrant our attention. Unfortunately, I can't get to it now, but I plan to do so in future posts.
Until next time, stay excited!
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