The GOP War against Women

Embalmer 2012/09/11 13:21:54
There's an obvious war against women.
War against women? No way.
The reason for the war against women is the brainchild of Republican men who can't get it up.
None of the above
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As the Republicans Take Tampa, Consider What a GOP Victory Would Mean for Women’s Health

For decades, Republicans have opposed abortion. This, we know, and so it comes as no surprise that Mitt
Romney, the Party’s presidential candidate, has called “Roe vs. Wade“
one of the darkest moments in Supreme Court history.”

But what some call the “war against women” is escalating. This year, the
Republican platform calls for a constitutional amendment that would
make abortion illegal.

In 1976, the GOP blueprint acknowledged that “the question of abortion
is one of the most difficult and controversial of our time,” and the
Party called for “a continuance of the public dialogue on abortion,”
which it called a “moral and personal issue.” Just eight years ago, the
preamble to the Republican platform declared: “we respect and accept
that members of our party have deeply held and sometimes differing
views.” But today, there is no such language in a platform that calls
for “a human life amendment to the Constitution,” and declares that
“abortion is detrimental to women’s health and well-being.”

Meanwhile Alabama, Arizona, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Nebraska,
North Carolina, Oklahoma, and Ohio all have passed legislation
outlawing abortion after 20 weeks, even though, as the Center for
American Progress’ Emillie Openchowski points out “complications are sometimes discovered after this point in a pregnancy that could cause serious harm to the woman. In those states, a woman would be forced to continue the pregnancy, no matter the risk to her health.” This is frightening.

While Republicans parade women across their Tampa stage– and avoid
talking about what they have quietly embedded in the Party platform–it
seems a good time to consider what a Republican victory would mean for
women’s health.

Turning Back the Clock: Contraception

Susan Faludi’s Pulitzer-prize winning 1991 book, Backlash, is
subtitled: “The Undeclared War Against American Women.” Twenty-one years
later, it seems the war is out in the open . As a recent New York Times editorial observes: “Having won on abortion, social conservatives are turning to birth control.”

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) promises women access
to contraception without co-pays, an idea which enjoys widespread
popular support–at least among women. Nationwide 80% of women voters
support the idea, according to a June survey by Hart Research Associates
An earlier Hart poll revealed that 77% of Catholic women and 72%
Republican women approved of free birth control. By contrast, just sixty percent of all men embrace the proposal. Still, that’s a majority.

Who, then, actually opposes making birth control available to all women, regardless of income?

The extreme conservatives who now run the Republican Party have made
their feelings clear. In February, House Speaker John Boehner, stood on
the House floor, and promised to overturn any rule requiring employers
to pay for birth control for their workers:

“It must not stand and it will not stand,” delcared Boehner,
who believes that bosses who object to birth control should not be
forced to cover contraception. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell,
R-Ky, along with Senators Kelly Ayotte, R-N.H.; Roy Blunt, R-Mo.; Marco
Rubio;, R-Fla.; and John Thune,quickly joined in, arguing that this
provision is a threat to religious freedom.

The right-wingers who now control the GOP seem to view contraception as a
“women’s issue” that should be decided by men. Thus, at a
House Oversight Committee hearing, House Republicans convened a panel
on denying access to birth control coverage with five men– and no women.

As for Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, in a Fox interview just last Sunday, he said: “of course women have a right to use contraception”– if they can afford it.

In March Romney told a Town Hall meeting that if “a woman wants access to free birth control” she “should vote for the other guy,” adding,
“there are a lot of things that we have in our society that we may
like,” but that government should not be paying for.” This suggests that
“the Pill” is a luxury, like a $75 blouse.

Romney also has endorsed the “Blunt amendment” that would let any employer drop health insurance coverage for contraception and other health services on religious or moral grounds.

Here we are not just talking about Catholic colleges and hospitals.
President Obama is making special provisions to accommodate their
concerns. But the Republican “Blunt
amendment” would go further, to include private companies such as
Hercules Industries, a Denver-based heating and air conditioning company

Co-owner Andy Newland objects to birth control, and in July, the company
obtained an injunction from a federal court, allowing it to delay
complying with the law until three months after the case is decided.

The Cost of Contraception

According to Fox News’ Greg Gutfield, “Anybody can afford birth control.” In
July, he asked his audience, “How much more affordable can you make it?
. . I mean, do we–should we start up like a ‘buy the pill’ campaign?
Like ‘feed the children’ where we make sure we all adopt one woman and
pay for her pills?”

Gutfield is, of course, wrong about the cost. In recent years, birth control has become extremely expensive for low-income women,
even if they are insured. Co-payments for pills typically range between
$15 and $50 per month, and for other contraceptive devices, such as
IUDs, co-pays and other out-of-pocket expenses can reach into the
hundreds of dollars.

“Since the average American woman wants to have two children,” Planned
Parenthood points out, “she‘ll spend approximately five years pregnant,
postpartum, or trying to have children, but 30 years trying to prevent
pregnancy. That can add up to thousands of dollars spent on prescription birth control.”

Little wonder that, according to a recent survey, more than one-third of
American women voters have struggled with the cost of prescription
birth control at some point in their lives, and, as a result, have used
birth control inconsistently. Planned Parenthood reports that “this
number rises dramatically among younger women, with more than half (55
percent) mentioning a time when they could not afford to use birth
control consistently.”

Thus, “In the U.S., half of all pregnancies are unintended.”
Inevitably, a great many uniplanned pregnancies end in abortion. “If we
are serious about reducing the unacceptably high rate of unintended
pregnancies in this country, we need to get at the root cause and take
practical steps to increase access to affordable birth control,” Planned
Parenthood observes.

Without the Affordable Care Act– What Women Would Lose

platform states that a Republican President would use his waiver
authority “on his first day in office” to halt progress in carrying out
the Affordable Care Act
. Romney has pledged to repeal health reform during his first 100 days in the White House.

This means that insurers
selling policies in the individual market would be able to continue
charging a women at least 30 percent more than they would charge a man
for exactly the same policy–
even if the coverage did not include maternity benefits.

Women also would lose free access to a list of preventive services that
the ACA requires that insurers offer without co-pays, and without
applying deductibles.

For women, the essential preventive services include: free screening for
cervical and breast cancer; breastfeeding support, supplies, and
counseling; well-women visits, prenatal care, screening and counseling
for sexually transmitted diseases, including HIV; screening for
gestational diabetes; and screening and counseling for domestic partner

Planned Parenthood and Title X

Mitt Romney has pledged that he will “get rid of” Planned Parenthood, an
organization that operates nearly 800 health centers throughout the
United States, offering sexual and reproductive health care for the
nearly three million women and men who visit these centers each years.
While helping women avoid unintended pregnancies, Planned Parenthood also provides roughly 770,000 Pap tests and nearly 750,000 breast exams annually,
along with more than four million tests and treatments for sexually
transmitted infections. At sometime in their lives, one in five American
women have found help at Planned Parenthood.

During his Sunday interview on Fox, Mitt Romney reiterated his desire to
defund the organization, arguing that taxpayer dollars should not fund

Here is the truth: abortion constitutes only 3 percent of Planned Parenthood’s services and abortion is covered by private funds. Federal dollars are not used.

Mitt Romney’s fiscal plan also proposes eliminating Title X—the main
federal family-planning program supported by President Nixon and
then-Congressman George Bush Sr. at its creation in 1970. Title X does not pay for abortions, but it prevents abortions and unintended pregnancies by the hundreds of thousands each year. It also pays for cancer screening and some abstinence counseling for teenagers.

In Texas Republican Governor Rick Perry already has rejected Title X
money, assuring that countless poor women in his state will be denied
access to all reproductive health care, from birth-control pills to Pap

Misogyny: The Elephant in the Room

That both Bush and Nixon supported Title X serves as a reminder of how much the Republican party has changed. As New York Magazine’s Frank Rich points out in a marvelous piece titled “Stag Party”: “For much of its history, misogyny was not the style of the party of Lincoln. For most of the twentieth century, the GOP was ahead of the curve in bestowing women’s rights

Today, many Americans under 40 have no idea how different the GOP (not
the mention the country as a whole) was 25 or 30 years ago.

Rich takes us back, reminding us that Republican presidential candidate
Barry Goldwater (who in 1964 was considered ultra-conservative) was
married to a woman who had been “inspired by birth control pioneer
Margaret Sanger.” Thus, Peggy Goldwater “would help build one of the
nation’s largest Planned Parenthood affiliates.”

Barry Goldwater favored abortion rights.
“‘I think the average woman feels, My God, that’s my business,’ and
that’s the way we should keep it,” he said late in his career.

Rich goes on to reveal that “Prescott Bush, the Connecticut senator who
sired a presidential dynasty, was another Sanger enthusiast and
treasurer for the first national Planned Parenthood fund-raising
campaign. His son, George
when a congressman in the sixties, was an ardent birth-control advocate
and the principal Republican author of the trailblazing Family Planning
Act of 1970.

“Capitol Hill colleagues jokingly nicknamed him ‘Rubbers.’”

Even Richard Nixon, that much misunderstood liberal Republican, favored
the Equal Rights Amendment and in 1972 signed the Equal Employment
Opportunity Act to strengthen the policing of workplace discrimination.”

But Nixon was nothing if not a study in anguished contradictions.
“At the tail end of the Nixon presidency,” Rich notes, “the GOP started
backing away from its traditional beneficence on women’s issues
In a telling shift, “Nixon vetoed a bipartisan bill enabling child care
for the millions of mothers then rapidly joining the workforce.”

Looking back, the timing makes sense. Both Watergate and Nixon’s
“enemies’ list” foreshadowed the deepening parenoia that would lead to a
purge with the Republican party itself.

Granted, it would be two decades before the GOP’s “Big Tent” collapsed.
The liberal and moderate Republicans who I had admired in the 1970s and
1980s (Nelson Rockefeller, Lowell Weicker, and Charles Mathias, to name a
few) would disappear. But it was not until the 1990 that the long
knives came out, and moderates began to be sliced out of the party. Some
gave up and retired.

Why did Nixon kill the childcare bill? Rich explains: “His veto was
accompanied by a jarring statement that child care would threaten
American families by encouraging women to work,” The
inspiration for this unexpected reactionary broadside came . . . from
political strategists eager to exploit the growing backlash against the
sixties feminist movement.”

Backlash–As Male “Influence and Power” Declines

What we are seeing in the GOP today is a continuation of the pay-back that Susan Faludi described in her 1991 book, Backlash.

Conservatives like to claim that “The War Against Women” is a metaphor
manufactured by Democrats as they prepared for the 2012 election. This
simply is not true. Long ago, women such as Faludi saw that herd of
elephants coming our way.

In fact, as Rich points out, in 1996 “Tanya Melich, the daughter of a
state senator in ultraconservative Utah” who grew up “to be a stalwart
New York Republican and a 1992 Bush convention delegate, wrote a book
titled The Republican War Against Women. “These days,” he writes, “her eyewitness account of her party’s transformation seems more pertinent and prescient than ever.”

The anger that Republicans direct toward women that can be traced to the
“women’s movement” of the 1960s. Men feared that women would take their
jobs. Husbands were threatened; once their wives had some financial
independence, they might decide to strike out on their own. Fathers
realized that the “Pill” would give their daughters sexual freedom:
marriage could become a choice, not a necessity.

Worst of all, as women gained power, both in the workplace and in
government, this could mean that men would find themselves having to
answer to the likes of Elizabeth Warren. (In 2009, when Warren, who is
now running to recapture Ted Kennedy’s Senate seat for the Democrats, questioned
Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner about 13 billion dollars Goldman
Sachs got out the back door of AIG –“Do you know where the money went?”

— her tough, probing questions made jaws drop– including Geithner’s.
Geithner would later express opposition to her possible nomination to
head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.)

In Backlash, Faludi quotes Seymour Martin Lipset and Earl Raab,
two political scientists who have explored the “politics of backlash”:
“The reaction” is driven by “groups which are declining in a felt sense
of importance, influence and power,” they explain, “Unlike classic
conservatives” Faludi adds, “these ‘pseudo conservatives,’ as Theodore
Adorno dubbed them…are not so much defending a prevailing order as
resurrecting an outmoded or imagined one.”

She also quotes the historian Richard Hofstadter: “‘America has largely
been taken away from them and their kind, though they are determined to
try to repossess it and to prevent the final destructive act of

In other words, they are afraid, and when people are “on the run,” some turn mean.

Conservative white men know that the demographics are against them.
Before long, they will be outnumbered, and in future years, more and
more African Americans, Latinos, Asians and women of all races will be
in positions of power.

Let me be clear: I am not talking about majority of white men. My
husband, his brother, my son, his father (my ex-husband), and a great
many men who I know either personally or professionally do not fit this

But, without question, some white conservative men saw Barack Obama’s
election in 2008 as a sign that the country “was being taken away from
them.” To Mitch McConnell, Obama’s re-election would constitute what
Hofstadter terms “the final destructive act of subversion.”

In a sense, those who feared the rise of feminism in the 1960s were
right. The women’s movement would never be snuffed out. Instead, it
became part of our culture. Today many fewer women call themselves
“feminists.” The vast majority of younger women simply assume that they
have a right to work, to assume positions of power in the larger world,
to control what happens to their bodies. This is the legacy of the

The Violence against Women Act

Women also take it for granted that they have a right to protection
against the rage that sometimes threatens them–and their children– in
their own homes.

Nevertheless, this year, House Republicans felt free to block renewal
and expansion of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), a 20 -year-old
law that offers shelter and counseling to women who have been beaten or
sexually assaulted by spouses or partners.

In the past, renewal was not even in question. But today, “Some
conservative groups view the Violence Against Women Act as “a slush
fund for feminist causes that harms men unfairly and encourages the
dissolution of marriages
,” the New York Times reported .

Last week, I wrote about how and why Republicans were able to block the VAWA on HealthInsurance.Org. Conservatives claim that Democrats “politicized” the issue by turning it
into a fight over illegal immigrants, Gays and Lesbians. I do not buy
that argument. Nor did all seven Republican women in the Senate. They
voted to renew the bill.

That post also explains why it is so important that, in November,
women–and men who like women–come out to vote. The turnout, not just in
the Presidential contest, but in many Congressional races, will
determine who takes over Washington.

Before going to the polls, check out this piece Healthinsurance.org, showing how your elected representatives havevoted on heatlh care reform. Those votes will help you measure where they stand on protecting women’s health.

Read More: http://www.businessinsider.com/the-war-against-wom...

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  • Roy Munson **SL, BD** 2013/08/11 01:23:52
    War against women? No way.
    Roy Munson **SL, BD**
    What war?
  • ComeOnNow 2012/10/01 14:57:01
    None of the above
    Really, as the HHS tried to ration mammograms for women under 50 basically killing off about 2% of women, you still push this nonsense about it being te GOP at war with women. Over what you actually having to pay for your own birth control? This as democrats worship Clinton with a career filled with accusations of sexual assault, sexual harassment, and abusing interns. You idiots are dilusional.
  • Embalmer ComeOnNow 2012/10/01 15:24:17
    It's got nothing to do with "free" birth control, it has to do with the Republican's who came out against it's use during the primaries, it has to do with the defunding of PP (funding that prevents abortions as well as offering women's health care prevention), and states enacting strict, sometimes propaganda like laws before women can receive an abortion.


    I'm not a woman, all I am doing is supporting their right to choose which is a constitutional right, and if that's delusional to some, so be it. Democrats didn't invent or put mammograms into place so your point is moot.
  • ComeOnNow Embalmer 2012/10/01 16:43:08
    More nonsense from the democrats. First, nobody tried telling anyone that they could not use birth control. It was about forcing other to pay for it. As far as defunding planned parenthood, that is not a war on women. It is about nobody else having to pay for women's choices. If you want people out of your bedroom and personal choices stop demanding others pay for it. I see you had no explanation for the left wingers defense of Clinton and attacking the accusers instead. As far as the mammograms are concerned that is what they were doing and will come under Obamacare. You know, the democrat law that forces the government between women and their doctors.
  • Embalmer ComeOnNow 2012/10/02 02:45:15
    Birth control was a huge issue during the Republican primary debates - then Sandra Fluke testified before Congress and Rush Limbaugh calling her a slut -

    - Rick Santorum stated, "One of the things I will talk about, that no president has talked about before, is I think the dangers of contraception in this country.” And also, “Many of the Christian faith have said, well, that’s okay, contraception is okay. It’s not okay. It’s a license to do things in a sexual realm that is counter to how things are supposed to be.”

    Health insurance companies pay for mens drugs like Viagra and Cialis - why not birth control?

    Clinton's got nothing to do with this - it's a moot point.

    What Democratic law that forces the government between women and their doctors? That's really funny.
  • ComeOnNow Embalmer 2012/10/02 10:40:59
    1. Bill Clinton Was accused of sexually assaulting multiple women throughout his entire career and he was a key note speaker at the convention and is worshiped by pretty much all democrats. With that alone only an idiot would give any credibility to democrats saying anyone ha a war on women.

    2. Where did any of them say anything about banning your birth control. The last time I checked it was readily available and Obama was failing miserably on the economy and on international relations and was trying to change the subject any way he could and figured there are enough dumb women to fall for it. That is not thinking very highly of women. Women really need jobs to pay for things like birth control.

    3. Obama puts the government between women and their health care choices and democrats are fine with that. They won't have access to breast and ovarian cancer fighting drugs but her they will have abortions and birth control right?
  • Embalmer ComeOnNow 2012/10/02 14:11:05
    I still don't see where Clinton is involved in this. He's one man - not an entire party - and I, like many others didn't approve of what he did with Monica Lewinsky and no one I knew of blamed it all on her.

    Santorum did in his comment - obviously.

    #3 is crazy nuts. I don't know where you're getting that from.
  • ComeOnNow Embalmer 2012/10/03 02:12:54
    What do you think government health care is? Who do you think will be deciding who gets treatment and who doesn't It is not rocket science. Look at Europe. They cut off breast cancer, prostate cancer, stomach cancer, ovarian cancer and really any cancer treatments for their participants. Of course they cover abortions and birth control, but don't get cancer whatever you do.
  • Embalmer ComeOnNow 2012/10/03 15:37:39
    You have no idea what you're talking about because you have no perception - your bias prevents it.

    They haven't cut "off" those illnesses, they've changed the testing requirements based on studies from the AMA.

    They did so because too much money was being wasted and both Medicare and Medicaid were being taken advantage of.
  • ComeOnNow Embalmer 2012/10/04 10:38:25
    You mean they have already begun rationing health care for women on their war on women. Is that what you mean by it cost too much to save their lives? Boy, if they only work a little an choose their own health insurance, they would e so much better off. Single payer would be a travesty.
  • Embalmer ComeOnNow 2012/10/04 16:37:10
    Where did I say they were already rationing women's health care?

    If all you can do is insinuate and put words in my mouth I won't respond to you anymore. I won't block, but there's no reason to try to sway right wing radicals - it's a lost cause and a waste of my efforts here.
  • mich52 2012/09/11 16:10:19
  • Rustie 2012/09/11 13:51:39
  • Embalmer Rustie 2012/09/11 14:19:44 (edited)
  • Rustie Embalmer 2012/09/11 15:20:39
    Take a deep breath. Let it out slowly.
    Now realize I don't agree with your assessment of the situation. I'm not bitching at you.
    I just don't agree with you.
  • Embalmer Rustie 2012/09/11 15:53:09
  • Rustie Embalmer 2012/09/11 19:19:26
    That wasn't so hard to accept, now was it?
  • Embalmer Rustie 2012/09/11 20:06:53
  • Rustie Embalmer 2012/09/11 20:10:44
  • Embalmer Rustie 2012/09/11 21:06:09
    If that would ever happen, yes, but I doubt it would.
  • Rustie Embalmer 2012/09/11 21:07:30
    I doubt you would, as "obviously you'll never accept a truth if it makes..."

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