Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Reproductive Wingnuttery

All the demonization of Planned Parenthood of late has been a bit over the top. Indiana Republican lawmaker Bob Moore got more notice than he bargained for with his letter denouncing the Girl Scouts for association with Planned Parenthood. How over the top this wingnuttery? Republican speaker Brian Bosma passed out Girl Scout cookies at the Statehouse.

Look- abortion is awful. But it is legal, and as such, Planned Parenthood has a right to carry out the procedures. Opponents have the right to protest. I'd prefer it if no taxpayer money went to fund abortions, or to private organizations including Planned Parenthood. But I'm not going to denounce the Girl Scouts, or even Planned Parenthood as a whole. They happen to do good work for an underserved at-risk population.

I love, love, luv legislators who conclude, "You slither on your belly! Stand aside and let me show you how it's done!"

Democrats are showing that they can be wingnuts too. Get a load of this, from CNN:

As members of Georgia’s House of Representatives debate whether to prohibit abortions for women more than 20 weeks pregnant, House Democrats introduced their own reproductive rights plan: No more vasectomies that leave "thousands of children ... deprived of birth."

Rep. Yasmin Neal, a Democrat from the Atlanta suburb of Jonesboro, planned on Wednesday to introduce HB 1116, which would prevent men from vasectomies unless needed to avert serious injury or death.

The bill reads: "It is patently unfair that men avoid the rewards of unwanted fatherhood by presuming that their judgment over such matters is more valid than the judgment of the General Assembly ... It is the purpose of the General ASsembly to assert an invasive state interest in the reproductive habits of men in this state and substitute the will of the government over the will of adult men."

“If we legislate women’s bodies, it’s only fair that we legislate men’s,” said Neal, who said she wanted to write bill that would generate emotion and conversation the way anti-abortion bills do. “There are too many problems in the state. Why are you under the skirts of women? I’m sure there are other places to be."

Here's a better idea: How about both sides back off and leave people free to choose for themselves?


RAE said...

Come on,'ve missed the mark on this one. I get your point and agree, but this isn't what is going on here. If you read the rest of the article you get an understanding of what she is trying to accomplish. The major difference is the Rep's are serious about their legislation and this isn't.

Mike Kole said...

I don't think I missed the point at all. She's making a joke out of it by proposing legislation. That's a really, really bad gag- because it could actually pass.

She could easily make her point without proposing legislation. Hold a press conference. Do a skit doing parody of the other side, post to You Tube, and watch it go viral. Anything other than proposing, even in jest, more law.

RAE said...

but your point was that Dems are actually trying to pass legislation when that's not the intent of the bill here...the repubs are actually trying to pass...that is an important difference.

Mike Kole said...

My points were:

1. Leave people free to choose.
2. Better to take the high road than to introduce law
3. Both sides can be wingnuts.

Look, if you aren't trying to pass legislation, and you introduce a bill, what is that? The act of a clown?

Doug said...

A bit of a digression, (and I posted a link to it elsewhere), but I was surprised by this blog post at the Slacktivist about abortion.

I was surprised to find that there has been evangelical agreement about the unchanging Bible's position on life beginning at conception since about 1979. "At some point between 1968 and 2012, the Bible began to say something different."

And, I know I'm missing the point of your post which is not actually about reproductive rights but more about government involvement. Still, I expect that the libertarian position on abortion gets emphatically more pro-choice if - as was mostly believed prior to 1968 - human life does not begin at the moment of conception, but rather at some later time, like "quickening."

Mike Kole said...

You are correct on prevailing libertarian dogma, although there is a significant amount of opposition about that which asserts that one of the primary functions of government is to protect life, and as you point to, the moment that life begins is the key consideration.

I have had some interesting discussions that center around viability and beginning of life, because in the past decade or two, viability has gone from 30-32 weeks to now in the mid 20s. As medical science continues this kind of advance, it moves the timeline all the more towards conception.

And me as a smartass, well, I noted that the average teenager, and a sad percentage of adults, aren't really viable.

Anonymous said...

If we started wacking the dicks off all these morons and neutering all male babies, abortion would not be an issue and makes as much sense as THEY do.

patriot paul said...

I get the point she was drawing melodramatic attention to the issue before the Ga. assembly, even though she misued the parrallel which should have equated a man's vasectomy to a woman tubes tied instead of fetus already in progress.

It does bring up a side issue about forced court ordered state castrations of violent sex offenders and pedophiles