With our eyes on the upcoming election, voters concerned with women’s issues can, for the most part, see two possible outcomes:
- Obama gets re-elected and we can only hope he upholds the promises of respecting our reproductive health he is making during his campaign, or
- Romney gets elected and we are essentially robbed of decades of progression.
Mitt Romney’s running mate Paul Ryan, who seems to be the heart and soul of the GOP’s war on women, already has an impressive track record. Let’s take a stroll down memory lane…
HR 3 -“No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act,” a bill still going through Senate, essentially says that only women who are victims of “forcible rape” qualify for abortions. We already know the flawed logic behind that idea. Paul Ryan’s support appears all over this bill. http://thinkprogress.org/justice/2012/08/19/712251/how-todd-akin-and-paul-ryan-partnered-to-redefine-rape/, http://veracitystew.com/2011/05/03/gops-forcible-rape-makes-an-encore-in-h-r-3/
HR 212 – “Sanctity of Human Life Act,” which has not been passed yet, states that life begins at conception. This means that the 14th amendment would apply to fetuses, essentially giving civil rights to unborn children. This would, arguably, mean that abortion would be considered first-degree murder. Furthermore, stem cell research would be seen as illegal harvesting or worse, sending medical research into a grinding halt. This bill could technically make abortion illegal, no exceptions. Paul Ryan voted in favor of this bill. http://www.lifesitenews.com/news/paul-ryan-supports-personhood, http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/112/hr212
HR 358 – “Protect Life Act,” or better known as the “let women die” bill, essentially repeals the practice that hospitals have to provide emergency care for someone during a medical emergency regardless of cost. Providing abortions on federal funds has been illegal for some time with the exception of rape and incest, however HR 358 states that hospitals may deny abortions to women even if the woman would die without one. The act also prohibits people receiving federal healthcare subsidies from purchasing private comprehensive health insurance plans that cover abortion. The bill passed late last year only to have Obama veto it, much to co-sponsor Paul Ryan’s dismay. http://www.rhrealitycheck.org/article/2011/10/13/house-passes-hr-358-the-let-women-die-act-of-2011, http://www.huffingtonpost.com/human-rights-watch/us-house-bill-would-permi_b_1010042.html
HR 3803 – An ultimately defeated bill that would have banned abortions after twenty weeks’ gestation, this would even further restrict the circumstances in which a woman has access to a safe and legal abortion. This bill among other things claimed that the fetus could feel pain after twenty weeks. Paul Ryan voted in favor of this bill. http://the51st.org/2012/07/31/they-did-it-simply-because-they-could-hr-3803/, http://www.lifenews.com/2012/07/30/ban-on-abortions-in-dc-after-20-weeks-protects-womens-health/
HR 3805 – “Ultrasound Informed Consent Act,” states that a woman seeking an abortion has to receive an ultrasound and undergo counseling before allowing to consent to the procedure. Not only does this further inconvenience the pregnant woman, it drives the cost up for the procedure that is already not covered by government insurance. This bill is also still in the works. http://www.thepeopledecide.us/bill/hr-3805-ultrasound-informed-consent-act
These are just some of our favorites. I have even more links to Paul Ryan’s voting history here:
If Romney is elected and these sexist idiots are put into power, it is clear what their agenda may be. Get rid of Planned Parenthood (i.e. access to inexpensive and basic healthcare for women) per Romney, overturning Roe vs. Wade per Romney and Ryan, ultimately rendering abortion illegal, and stripping away a woman’s rights to birth control and ridding herself of a rapist’s baby. Who knows, with Ryan whispering words of evil into Romney’s ear, maybe the chemical endangerment laws would rear their ugly heads again and women will be arrested for miscarrying.
Essentially, we would not be able to prevent or terminate pregnancy, we could even be in trouble for miscarrying accidentally, and we would have no rights as a rape victim. We also still have no idea what charges or sentencing we would face upon arrest for violating these hypothetical laws.
How do we even maintain some semblance of control over our bodies? I think I might have an idea…
The Great Penis Embargo of 2012
The only thing we can control is whether or not we have sex. So, if Romney and Ryan are elected, women all over America should stop having sex with men. Single, married, dating, whatever you may be – we can remove ourselves from this equation entirely by simply refusing to have sex.
This idea isn’t completely my own – earlier this year, a liberal women’s group supporting equal health care coverage called out for women to withhold sex from their partners between April 28 and May 5 this past spring. The idea was that it would help men realize that laws restricting access to birth control would affect them as well, and apparently this strike made it all the way to Washington. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/03/13/sex-strike-contraception-_n_1342266.html
The sentiment behind the sex strike earlier this year was to have men wake up to a woman’s reality and show some solidarity. My sentiment about this penis embargo is less concerned with punishing men and more concerned with removing myself from a system in which I have no control over when I give birth. It’s the only logical way to avoid it. Becoming a mother before I am ready or willing completely changes my plans for my entire life. This also applies to if I die due to some untreated prenatal disease no one told me I had. I am confident that millions of women would agree with me.
So I say, if Romney wins this election, we take on this penis embargo and protect ourselves from the ignorance and hate. I saw, we ask our bisexual and lesbian friends for some pointers on how to amuse ourselves during this time. I say, we all invest in the anti-rape “tooth” condoms to protect ourselves when the men of this country inevitably go insane from the lack of sex and attack us: http://www.antirape.co.za/
“Men are sex machines…They only want one thing. You must learn to manipulate them, for your own good.”
-Margaret Atwood, The Handmaid’s Tale