Wednesday, February 16, 2011

The War Against Women

In Egypt, we have (paid?) harassers assaulting Lara Logan.

In the United States, we have the Republican Party.

So much seemed to be going so well for feminism for a while. Although some of us elderly types were wary of the drink-all-night, sleep-with-whomever feminism of the third wave, there wasn't much we could do about it. And yes, I'm using that word, which many younger women shy away from.

The Republicans, asserting their new legislative power, have decided to address a true national problem. Jobs? No. Out-of-control women. Women who get themselves raped.

I didn't pay much attention at first, so I don't have a bunch of links or even a coherent list of the bills decriminalizing rape and even murder that have been presented in the national and state legislatures. I thought that they were one-offs from particularly fanatical rightwingers, a number of whom were elected last fall. But there have been far too many of them. Compound that with the egregious commentary by some on Logan's assault and even the commentary on Julian Assange's penchant for producing children, and we're talking about a wave of justification for the patriarchy we haven't seen in public in a long time.

When (female) representative Gabrielle Giffords was shot last month, there was some feeling that cutting back on violent rhetoric might be a good idea. I guess that didn't include decriminalization of violent acts.

There was a relatively subtle attempt by Republican lawmakers to redefine rape to "forcible rape" by the addition of that adjective to pending legislation. I'm not clear on the status. Now South Dakota wants to decriminalize murder of abortion providers. Well, not quite; it only sounds that way. (More on South Dakota here.)

Let's get clear on one thing. The purpose of the anti-abortion movement is to put women in their place, as defined by a strict patriarchy. That place is barefoot and pregnant. If the supporters of forcible pregnancy truly were concerned about the products of those pregnancies, otherwise known and children, they would support legislation to feed them and provide them medical care, good educations and jobs. But those supporters also want an end to welfare and tax cuts. So their motives have nothing to do with the children.

Why are the Republicans so ready to slam women back to kinder, kirche, kuche? In case you haven't noticed, there's a problem with unemployment that started back almost ten years ago under the low-tax, punitive policies that these folks so enjoy. What better way to focus on scapegoats. It's the women's fault, it always is. Get them back to the way things were, and we'll be okay. And that would work, sort of, if we took women out of paying jobs, which would leave more of those jobs for the men.

And yes, it's the woman's fault. The commentary on Lara Logan seems to be the inevitable "She asked for it." If she weren't a reporter, if she weren't trying to report important stories, if she would leave it to the men, she wouldn't have been assaulted. Same story the Republicans are selling. Thers has the links.

And, for the most part, Angry Black Lady's experience is the same as mine.

Update: OMG. This is just getting sicker and sicker. I've never been fond of the Huffington Post, but this is a new low.


Anonymous said...

With regard to sicker and sicker, what does have to do with Huffington Post ?

Cheryl Rofer said...

It's evidently linked from and started by HuffPo.