The Conservative War On Women

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Conservatives suggest defeating birth control by calling it 'abortion.' No, really.

This is another example of what I mean about what the abortion fight is REALLY about. It's not about saving babies, it's about punishing sluts. Easy access to contraception is demonstrably the best way to prevent abortions, but that is not the real goal of the conservative movement. The real goal of the conservative movement is to stop premarital sex, by punishing women who engage in it.

Obama is requiring churches to cover contraceptives in their health plans. If conservatives really wanted to stop abortions, they would be cheering this move. The fact that it's a controversy is the clearest possible proof that what I've been trying to say is true -- that the fight is so nasty and ongoing because conservatives do not want what they claim to want.

They don't give a f*ck about the fetuses, what they care about is the women. They want to stop access to contraceptives so that those sinful sluts will be punished with pregnancy as God intended.

Oh, and it's okay to lie about birth control in order to get those bitches.

These people won't be happy until women are declared chattel again.

Just when you think they can't sink any lower, they do. These are supposedly in favor of Christianity, but then actively promote lying to get what they want. Riiight.

This is a topic you bring up a lot Malor. Maybe this should be the "War on Women" catch all instead of just being about this one incident/aspect.

gregrampage wrote:

This is a topic you bring up a lot Malor. Maybe this should be the "War on Women" catch all instead of just being about this one incident/aspect.

It would seem to be a more accurate phrase than slut shaming. And in any case, Mal is hardly to blame for the crazy bullsh*t that seems to come up daily.

Reaper81 wrote:
gregrampage wrote:

This is a topic you bring up a lot Malor. Maybe this should be the "War on Women" catch all instead of just being about this one incident/aspect.

It would seem to be a more accurate phrase than slut shaming. And in any case, Mal is hardly to blame for the crazy bullsh*t that seems to come up daily.

Absolutely, I just meant it's talked about so often it deserves it's own thread. Similar to the Police State threads.

I actually don't think Malor is wrong with the "slut shaming" angle. I think Conservatives want to roll back to the clock to when they could control women by being the ones who controlled sex.

Look at the current contraception kerfuffle going on. For a long time, many states have had laws that require contraception to be made available to women in insurance policies. They paid for it, sure, but it's available.

In the Health Care Act of 2010, a rules change made it so that this would be offered without additional charge, reasoning that childbirth prevention is cheaper than childbirth. Problem is, that covers religious organizations as well as ordinary ones. So instead of accepting an exception as a compromise, what is the response? Remove the requirement to provide contraception *at all*. And the Bishops are pretending this just appeared in the HCA, rather than being established policy in most of the country.

This is an attempt to roll back much more than just Obama's policy.

I try to mollify my rage at these utter asshats by the fact that this sort of asinine, medieval attitude is going to completely and utterly alienate women and younger voters, and is condemning the radicals of the GOP to irrelevance within a generation. Screw these people.

Robear wrote:

This is an attempt to roll back much more than just Obama's policy.

Thanks for the details, Robear. That clears things up a little bit in terms of "why is this stuff going on now".

MilkmanDanimal wrote:

I try to mollify my rage at these utter asshats by the fact that this sort of asinine, medieval attitude is going to completely and utterly alienate women and younger voters, and is condemning the radicals of the GOP to irrelevance within a generation. Screw these people.

I can only hope you're right but I worry that the fear mongering about Obama being on a "War against Religion" will sway a lot of people who don't really think too deeply about these issues.

Greg was right that I DO bring this up a lot, and that maybe turning this into a catchall is a good idea. So, done.

LarryC was saying in that other thread that motives don't matter, but they most certainly do... people can argue fundamentally dishonest positions, even to themselves.

One way of picking this out, in the abortion debate, is to find out if someone thinks that women should be allowed to have an abortion in the case of rape or incest. If they say yes, ask them why... usually, you will get some variant of, "Well, the pregnancy isn't her fault, she shouldn't be punished for it." In other words, if the sex was voluntary, the pregnancy WAS her fault, and she SHOULD be punished for it -- she sinned, and God has forced a child onto her. An abortion is her escaping her just punishment, and that's why it's not acceptable.

If you point that out, self-aware conservatives will sometimes back down, but what I'm seeing is that more and more of them are doubling down. They don't want to admit that they're trying to punish women for having sex, so they modify their stance to be 'no abortions, ever, under any circumstances'.

Of course, this is entirely counterproductive, because abortions are more common in countries that outlaw them. Since the actual goal is not to prevent abortions, but to stop premarital sex, that's why these policies don't get changed, and why conservatives keep pushing for laws like this, even with such strong evidence that they don't work.

A country like that is hell on earth for women. See: Pro-Life Nation, about El Salvador, where all abortions are banned, period, even if the mother will die. They have actual, honest-to-god vagina police in El Salvador.

(Note that there's an error in the El Salvador article: the woman sentenced to 30 years in prison may have been sentenced for carrying the child to term and then letting it die, not aborting it as the original article said. There's a correction down at the bottom, but I'm still unclear on the details.)

IMAGE(http://i.imgur.com/dvGHx.jpg)

The next step? Abstinence = abortion, might be amusing watching the conservatives try to spin that one.

"You must have lots of unprotected heterosexual intercourse, for the sake of the children!"

IMAGE(http://apsenglishlanglit.edublogs.org/files/2011/09/0099740915-21bmbi5.jpg)

Malor wrote:

One way of picking this out, in the abortion debate, is to find out if someone thinks that women should be allowed to have an abortion in the case of rape or incest. If they say yes, ask them why... usually, you will get some variant of, "Well, the pregnancy isn't her fault, she shouldn't be punished for it." In other words, if the sex was voluntary, the pregnancy WAS her fault, and she SHOULD be punished for it -- she sinned, and God has forced a child onto her. An abortion is her escaping her just punishment, and that's why it's not acceptable.

One only has to look at the language used regarding sexual intercourse that is often used. In my lifetime, I have constantly heard statements such as "Having sex has consequences" or "That's the price she paid for having sex." Pregnancy is something that may or may not happen during intercourse. To couch it in such terms is to demonize a wonderful, pleasurable experience. However, there is no shortage of people willing to deprecate women to advance their own causes.

Women are no longer slaves to their bodies.... science has set them free. This means that conservatives have lost a lot of power over women, and they want it back. They want to force them to get married and live like Leave it To Beaver, with twin beds and not the slightest trace of anything bad, except for This Week's Life Lesson.

What they'll actually get, of course, is something that looks a lot like a Muslim theocracy.

Malor wrote:

One way of picking this out, in the abortion debate, is to find out if someone thinks that women should be allowed to have an abortion in the case of rape or incest. If they say yes, ask them why... usually, you will get some variant of, "Well, the pregnancy isn't her fault, she shouldn't be punished for it." In other words, if the sex was voluntary, the pregnancy WAS her fault, and she SHOULD be punished for it -- she sinned, and God has forced a child onto her. An abortion is her escaping her just punishment, and that's why it's not acceptable.

Or, maybe, that person just sees voluntary sex as the woman being irresponsible, and feels that's not a good enough reason to warrant something as significant as an abortion. The religious aspect, which you continually harp on in your posts, doesn't have to be a part of their reasoning at all. Personally, I sympathize with the non-religious criticism myself. I'm ok with abortions up to three months, but only because I think that's a reasonable compromise on the whole issue, and because the fetus at that point is so undeveloped.

But if contraception was a 100% guarantee that conception could be prevented, I'd give strong consideration to banning abortions entirely except in those cases of rape/incest/mother's health. I think sex, especially unprotected sex, requires responsibility, and it rubs me the wrong way when a fetus has to pay the price for its parents' irresponsibility. It just doesn't seem fair.

I reject the concept of sex as an action with no consequences, because that's not biology, no matter how much we might wish it to be otherwise. So, with that outlook, it DOES seem fair to me that if a woman has sex without contraceptives, she could be barred from aborting her pregnancy. By granting such a woman an abortion, I feel society grants her the ability to be as careless with her body as she desires, which I feel hurts both her and society. If some people feel that makes me a person who hates liberated women, so be it. I personally view that outlook as one which simply accepts the shortcomings of our biology.

I also believe that abortions are a significant action - it's surgery, after all - so it bugs me when I hear people talking about it as if it were just another form of birth control.

Crispus wrote:

But if contraception was a 100% guarantee that conception could be prevented, I'd give strong consideration to banning abortions entirely except in those cases of rape/incest/mother's health. I think sex, especially unprotected sex, requires responsibility, and it rubs me the wrong way when a fetus has to pay the price for its parents' irresponsibility. It just doesn't seem fair.

How is the fetus not paying the price for the irresponsibility of at least one of its parents in the case of rape or incest?

And why exactly should the result of incest be abortable anyway? We've advanced technologically to where we have DNA tests, amniocentesis, ultrasound, etc. Why does the incest exception make any sense these days?

Or, maybe, that person just sees voluntary sex as the woman being irresponsible,

She did something bad, she should be punished for her irresponsibility. In other words, punishing sluts. It's woven into the language you're using as a counter-example. The rights of the woman outweigh the fetus only if she behaved 'properly'.

Malor wrote:
Or, maybe, that person just sees voluntary sex as the woman being irresponsible,

She did something bad, she should be punished for her irresponsibility. In other words, punishing sluts. It's woven into the language you're using as a counter-example. The rights of the woman outweigh the fetus only if she behaved 'properly'.

Yep. I didn't see a single reference in Crispus' post to the responsibility of men in the whole process. It's her fault, absolutely and utterly, and she deserves what she gets.

Phoenix Rev wrote:
Crispus wrote:

I reject the concept of sex as an action with no consequences, because that's not biology, no matter how much we might wish it to be otherwise.

Here is the odd language again that puts sex outside of other body functions. No one would ever say to someone who got food poisoning, "Well, those are the consequences of eating." Using a loaded word like "consequence" in this context turns this into a blame game where sex is both deified and demonized in one quick sentence.

Yeah, I don't remember anyone talking about how the Heimlich maneuver encourages people not to chew their food properly.

CheezePavilion wrote:
Phoenix Rev wrote:
Crispus wrote:

I reject the concept of sex as an action with no consequences, because that's not biology, no matter how much we might wish it to be otherwise.

Here is the odd language again that puts sex outside of other body functions. No one would ever say to someone who got food poisoning, "Well, those are the consequences of eating." Using a loaded word like "consequence" in this context turns this into a blame game where sex is both deified and demonized in one quick sentence.

Yeah, I don't remember anyone talking about how the Heimlich maneuver encourages people not to chew their food properly.

Sometimes I wish message boards had a "like" feature because I really just want to say how great this post and Pheonix Rev's posts are but I don't have anything else to contribute.

Crispus wrote:

I reject the concept of sex as an action with no consequences, because that's not biology, no matter how much we might wish it to be otherwise.

Here is the odd language again that puts sex outside of other body functions. No one would ever say to someone who got food poisoning, "Well, those are the consequences of eating." Using a loaded word like "consequence" in this context turns this into a blame game where sex is both deified and demonized in one quick sentence.

So, with that outlook, it DOES seem fair to me that if a woman has sex without contraceptives, she could be barred from aborting her pregnancy.

Why is there no mention of the responsibility of the male partner in this?

By granting such a woman an abortion, I feel society grants her the ability to be as careless with her body as she desires, which I feel hurts both her and society.

I have heard this exact same sentiment said about contraception in general.

I also believe that abortions are a significant action - it's surgery, after all - so it bugs me when I hear people talking about it as if it were just another form of birth control.

But it can be a form of birth control. The fact that it is a medical procedure doesn't change that fact. I don't diminish the significance of an abortion being a medical procedure. By the same token, I am not going to diminish the fact that it isn't open heart surgery either.

Phoenix Rev wrote:
Crispus wrote:

I reject the concept of sex as an action with no consequences, because that's not biology, no matter how much we might wish it to be otherwise.

Here is the odd language again that puts sex outside of other body functions. No one would ever say to someone who got food poisoning, "Well, those are the consequences of eating." Using a loaded word like "consequence" in this context turns this into a blame game where sex is both deified and demonized in one quick sentence.

I disagree, on several points:

1. The definition of "consequence" is "something that logically or naturally follows from an action or condition." There is no demonization there, nor do I see it as a loaded word. It simply describes what is. Babies are a possible consequence of sex, just like choking is a possible consequence of eating.

2. Not all biological functions are created equally. The difference between eating and sex is that eating is required to live. Sex is not. Sex is an action that can be postponed, indefinitely, until a time when it can be performed with contraception. This can be done without killing the subject, which is not the case with eating. Hence why some would be quicker to condemn sexual consequences than they would eating consequences.

3. If someone contracted food poisoning by eating food in a risky, irresponsible manner (for instance, by eating something that was raw and unwashed), I don't think people would simply give that person a pass for their actions. They'd criticize that person for being irresponsible.

So, with that outlook, it DOES seem fair to me that if a woman has sex without contraceptives, she could be barred from aborting her pregnancy.

Why is there no mention of the responsibility of the male partner in this?

Obviously, it takes two to tango, and the male does share responsibility. But the fact of the matter is, biology has dictated that the female carry the child. In a perfect world, I agree, the male and female would share that responsibility equally, perhaps with either party potentially becoming pregnant. But biology doesn't allow for that. That's where child support comes into play - it's the best method we've come up with, as a society, to pin sexual responsibility to males.

Removed personal comments about other posters from Crispus' post. Stay on topic.

Malor wrote:
Or, maybe, that person just sees voluntary sex as the woman being irresponsible,

She did something bad, she should be punished for her irresponsibility. In other words, punishing sluts. It's woven into the language you're using as a counter-example. The rights of the woman outweigh the fetus only if she behaved 'properly'.

You've made this point a few times now. Repeating yourself isn't a discussion, it's soap boxing. What's the goal here?

Crispus wrote:

2. Not all biological functions are created equally. The difference between eating and sex is that eating is required to live. Sex is not. Sex is an action that can be postponed, indefinitely, until a time when it can be performed with contraception. This can be done without killing the subject, which is not the case with eating. Hence why some would be quicker to condemn sexual consequences than they would eating consequences.

But people also eat for pleasure, do they not? And often people eat foods that are not specifically required to keep them alive, or binge and eat more than the necessary amount of nutrients and calories. Sex and food are both vital biological functions (one for the survival of the individual, and one for the survival of the species), that we long ago began to also enjoy for reasons of pleasure. Are contraceptives fundamentally different from a modern 0-calorie food product? In both cases we have used technological advancements to circumvent both the consequences and the original purpose of a biological function.

muttonchop wrote:

But people also eat for pleasure, do they not? And often people eat foods that are not specifically required to keep them alive, or binge and eat more than the necessary amount of nutrients and calories. Sex and food are both vital biological functions (one for the survival of the individual, and one for the survival of the species), that we long ago began to also enjoy for reasons of pleasure.

Do we not criticize people who eat irresponsibly, though? Aside from the example of intentionally eating inadequately prepared foods above, there's also the fact that we're attempting to curb eating behaviors that lead to obesity in the US today, and the medical care costs attributed to obesity are something for which the obese are criticized. Criticism for irresponsible use of biological functions is nothing new, nor do I think it's always wrong.

Are contraceptives fundamentally different from a modern 0-calorie food product? In both cases we have used technological advancements to circumvent both the consequences and the original purpose of a biological function.

I agree. I just don't think that abortions should be lumped with contraceptives as a normal birth control method that should be readily available at all times for any reason. As I said previously, I think it's necessary to compromise on the issue and allow abortions through the first trimester, because contraceptives can fail. It's a sad necessity, though, and one which I'd like to see used as little as possible.

Crispus wrote:
Phoenix Rev wrote:

Here is the odd language again that puts sex outside of other body functions. No one would ever say to someone who got food poisoning, "Well, those are the consequences of eating." Using a loaded word like "consequence" in this context turns this into a blame game where sex is both deified and demonized in one quick sentence.

I disagree, on several points:

1. The definition of "consequence" is "something that logically or naturally follows from an action or condition." There is no demonization there, nor do I see it as a loaded word. It simply describes what is. Babies are a possible consequence of sex, just like choking is a possible consequence of eating.

Okay, but then abortion is a consequence too. The consequence of sex is that you might have to make a choice between abortion and giving birth.

2. Not all biological functions are created equally. The difference between eating and sex is that eating is required to live. Sex is not. Sex is an action that can be postponed, indefinitely, until a time when it can be performed with contraception. This can be done without killing the subject, which is not the case with eating. Hence why some would be quicker to condemn sexual consequences than they would eating consequences.

Not all forms of eating are necessary either. If you choke on a fish bone, should we let you die because you could have gotten your omega fats from a capsule?

3. If someone contracted food poisoning by eating food in a risky, irresponsible manner (for instance, by eating something that was raw and unwashed), I don't think people would simply give that person a pass for their actions. They'd criticize that person for being irresponsible.

Right, but we wouldn't deny them medical attention. Denying someone an abortion is going far beyond just criticizing them for being irresponsible.

Crispus wrote:

If someone contracted food poisoning by eating food in a risky, irresponsible manner (for instance, by eating something that was raw and unwashed), I don't think people would simply give that person a pass for their actions. They'd criticize that person for being irresponsible.

Note that this response is different from society deciding to make choosing to eat unwashed food illegal, which would be a closer parallel to conservatives' position on the abortion issue.

I also think that your supposition that abortion is viewed by significant numbers of people as simply another form of birth control needs a citation or two.

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