Log in

No account? Create an account
International Women's Day: Not There Yet - MoonScape [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]

[ website | My Website ]
[ userinfo | livejournal userinfo ]
[ archive | journal archive ]

International Women's Day: Not There Yet [Mar. 8th, 2011|11:01 pm]
[Tags|, ]
[Current Mood |angry]

Women have a Day.   International Women's Day.  Today is that Day.   It would take far more than a Day to begin to outline how many ways, in how many cultures, in how many places, women are still being mistreated by religious, cultural, national, social "traditions" that are aimed specifically at keeping women in their place and under someone else's control.  It's an old story.  And it's a new story, a very fresh story.  

Because every single day, in every country around the world, women and girls are denied basic freedoms, denied access to resources, and subject to the control of those who do not respect them.  Every day, women and girls are raped...and someone in power suggests that it wasn't really rape, it was "her" fault.   Every day, women are expected to take less and be grateful for it,  allow others to make their decisions and limit their freedoms.  And if they complain...they're not being good women.

Yesterday was my birthday (so I never forget International Women's Day, kind of check on the celebration...I get to eat cake, but does any other woman?  Do ALL other women?  No...so it's not all fun and games.   And in yesterday's   Nebraska State Paper.com was one of those perfect examples of why there needs to be an International Women's Day.   The concept that an adult woman's most fundamental freedom is to determine what happens in her own body isn't popular in Nebraska--at least not in the state legislature, which passed a law outlawing all abortions for more than 20 weeks gestation.  So a Nebraska woman had to wait until her doomed fetus--known to be nonviable--emerged on its own, and then watch the fetus die, unable to live, in a fifteen minute struggle.   By all means read the story.   

You will note that the law's sponsor, Mike Flood, said the law "worked as it was intended" (in other words, the law was intended to give more anguish to pregnant women with nonviable fetuses.  Because a law cannot "intend" to make a nonviable fetus viable.)  Flood insists it's his point that a nonviable fetus "is still a life."   So is a tumor, with just as much chance to live outside the body as a fetus that isn't viable.   But that's not my point.  My point is that an individual adult human has a fundamental right to his/her own body and the medical decisions made about it.   I'm quite sure that Mike Flood would not want me making medical decisions about his body (let alone his procreative organs and their use.)   And yet he is comfortable making decisions for women--decisions that increase their anguish.    

You will also note that a woman, Julie Schmit-Albin, suggested that it was "more humane" for a nonviable fetus to die "in a loving manner with comfort care and in the arms of her parents than by intentional painful death through abortion."   The possibility that the fetus was already suffering, being nonviable, and that the process of birth might itself be painful and stressful, and that struggling unsuccessfully to breathe for fifteen minutes once born ("loving arms" or not) was probably not pain-free...not to mention the physical pain and mental anguish caused to the mother seems never to have occurred to her...because Ms.  Schmit-Albin, like Mr. Flood, is so eager to control someone else's life and decisions.   Again, I suspect that she would not want me to intervene in her personal medical decisions, including her reproductive ones...and that would suggest that she butt out of making such decisions for others.

It would be interesting to know whether Mr. Flood's interest in "a life" extends to the lives of Nebraska citizens who happen to be already born.   Does he, for  instance, do anything to improve the quality of life of Nebraska's  women and children?    Prenatal and obstetric care for poor women?   Nutritional support for poor children?   Medical care?  Quality child-care to assist working mothers?  Adequate housing for all families with children?   Better schools for those children?  Employment assistance?  

Or does he only care about "a life" when it's inside someone else and not costing taxpayers any money?   Do any of the "right to lifers" support programs that will give all children a decent start in life?   They don't in my neck of the woods...they're adamant that they'll happily force someone to bear an unwanted child, but they won't move a finger (or, more accurately, vote to spend money) to give that child a fair shake in life.   

Cases like this are only one narrow slice of the ways that women's fundamental rights are violated...but it's a stark reminder that progress towards respect and freedom can be lost and slip backward.   


[User Picture]From: greensilk
2011-03-09 06:47 am (UTC)
Can I share?
(Reply) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: e_moon60
2011-03-09 02:51 pm (UTC)
Feel free to share the link.
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: starshipcat
2011-03-09 02:31 pm (UTC)
What really tears me is that these oh-so-righteous people won't fund any research toward things that could actually help in these terrible situations, like efforts to artificially replicate the uterine environment (and in many cases actually oppose such technologies). If they really cared about saving lives like they claim, they'd be giving funding on the level of the Manhattan Project to developing the technology so that nobody has to watch their baby die because they couldn't sustain the pregnancy long enough for them to live on their own. Which indicates to me that it's not really about saving babies, but about woman as vessel instead of person.

(This is a personal sore spot for me, even though I know intellectually that the technology wouldn't have saved my sister-in-law's third kid for the simple reason that by the time my sister-in-law had any sign something had gone wrong, the placenta had already failed and the poor little mite had already died).
(Reply) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: e_moon60
2011-03-09 03:06 pm (UTC)
It's very clearly about controlling women-as-vessels, not about promoting/preserving/assisting lives.

In the case of the GOP, I see it as a cheap-grace approach: by attacking abortion, they are also saving money (taxpayer money) by not allowing money to be spent on them. They can wave their arms and shed crocodile tears about the poor little innocent unborn--no dollar cost there--while ignoring the needs of those already born, because it would cost money to do anything to help them. We have 16 to 18 MILLION children below the poverty level in this country, mostly due to their parents being out of work, or a serious medical problem in the family...we have kids living in cars, on the street, in homeless shelters, going to school hungry, going to sleep hungry, without medical care, without the glasses they need to see or the hearing aids they need to hear...but that doesn't soften the hearts or open the pocketbooks of the right-to-lifers. They save their pity for those it costs nothing to pity.

(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
From: kalinmoor
2011-03-10 02:08 am (UTC)
I lived in a car once with my parents… not so fun… was below the line a handful of times, and barely above it the rest, so I can sympathize with them. Though I suppose I technically had it better than others.

As a guy who strongly prefers females (because I find most other males insufferable) I seriously find sexism the single most maddening thing ever. I can put up with quite a bit, but marginalizing women, and by extension, my closest and most valued friends, is a guaranteed way to gain my eternal ire.

I’ll never quite understand how, as a species, we went from deifying women and worshiping primarily female gods, to denigrating them to weak, frail little creatures that need a man to do everything for them. Completely ignoring the fact there are plenty of women who are anything but weak. The reason I prefer strong female leads is because I know females who could very probably kill me if provoked, and I dare anyone to tell them, to their face, what to do with their bodies. No, really, I’d love to see the outcome of that.

That fact that we’re STILL dealing with these archaic issues in this nation is abhorrently depressing, for a people who purportedly love freedom and liberty so much, we seem highly conservative as to the nature of the freedom given, extending only to a small segment of men (who all seem to have been raised by the same person… I posit Echidna.)

It wasn’t even until extremely recently that we started to seriously consider allowing females into active combat positions in our military… (Disclaimer: I am not a member of any military service) Maybe I’m in the minority, but I’d rather have a woman as my wing[wo]man and or cover/backup in any type of combat. And to anyone who claims women aren’t good soldiers, I have one thing to say: Lyudmila Mykhailivna Pavlichenko, 309 kills. Show me a single modern male soldier with a better record then hers (Bombers and heavy artillery don't count).
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: gifted
2011-03-11 11:02 am (UTC)
Well said, Elizabeth!! The fact that these breaches of basic freedoms and personal rights to choice are allowed to continue are angering and frustrating!! "Awareness" -- "Human rights" -- "Freedom"? We have a long way to go yet.
(Reply) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: cissa
2011-03-11 10:28 pm (UTC)
I assume that since preserving LIFE!!! is so important to these pols, they also support forced kidney donations, bone marrow donations, etc. After all, those save LIVES!

And what if the person who had a kidney someone else needed was on welfare, and the person needing it was rich? Isn't the rich guy "more valuable"? Would it not be worth it to force the less-valuable person to suffer risk of death, pain, and serious bodily intervention to possibly save the more-valuable???

So there's even more reason, in some sense, to mandate forced organ donations etc. than forced pregnancies; after all, that fetus may never amount to anything, unlike someone needy with PROVED WORTH.

Note that i do not actually support any of this. I think the state should keep its paws off everyone's innards. BUT: if it's OK to force women to undergo expensive, painful, risky medical procedures for the sole benefit of someone else... well, I think that could easily be extended. Even *gasp* to MEN.
(Reply) (Thread)