Expert Blog Compelling advice, stories, and thought-provoking perspectives straight from YourTango's lineup of Experts to you

Lawmakers: Stay Out of My Bedroom & Out of My Body!


Contributor
Self

A Frightening 'War Against Women'...Again

Women have gained much ground concerning our rights in the last century. However, a frightening trend, which limits our rights, is making headway yet again: the right over our bodies. At the end of the day, what rights will women have left? Recently, lawmakers proposed a bill that could close down the last abortion clinic in Mississippi, making it an ‘abortion-free’ state.

Though I’m not arguing for abortion, I certainly believe in a woman’s right to choose. So how far reaching are these bans? Will these bans begin to invade other areas of women’s lives?

For now, there seems to be a disturbing trend on the rise, which involves banning the very rights our ancestors fought for. Our constitutional amendments are being tried and tested as lawmakers try to ban one thing after the next. We women seem to be in the fight of our lives concerning the right to freedom over our bodies.

Although we enjoy far more freedoms today, I have to wonder about the purpose behind certain bans. Similarly, there is a dispute spanning healthcare and how much, if any, say so the government has over whether we carry health insurance or not. It’s a terrifying thought to know that many aspects of the things we hold dear, our freedoms, our right to choose, are on the verge of being mandated.

No. This isn’t a rant about ‘the man’ and the power he holds over us. But the most obvious concepts seem to take us the longest to grasp. Today, what rights women hold are provocative yet terrifying. What we once held dear, the struggles our feminine ancestors burned bras for, seems to be unraveling with thunderous applause.

Many women run companies, coordinate world relief efforts and serve in our armed forces. We have the power to run businesses, give aid to other countries, yet we are being told that we cannot have control over our own bodies. This message is conflicting. We learn that our body is our own; yet, once again, we may not have the right to choose what comes out of bodies if need be.

What’s more disturbing is the shift backwards. It’s as if we are being sent back to the Victorian principals from which we emerged—principals that meant a degrading lot for women. Heaven forbid if we should ever return to those narrow-minded values!

Lawmakers fail to consider what happens to the unwanted babies once they are born. Those who make it to term may be beaten to death or made cripple, they may be unloved, put up for adoption, or raised by a parent who cannot care for him/or her.

There are far too many reasons why lawmakers should stay out of our bedrooms and out of our bodies. It seems a gross violation that certain legislation can decide what literally goes in and what shouldn’t come out of women.

They already determine how much insurance covers in relation to preventive care and contraceptive coverage, as well as how far into the pregnancy a woman can terminate. Not to mention, new legislation would force the woman aborting to view horrendous images beforehand of aborted fetuses to allow her to see the impact of her decision.

In an interview with Amy Goodman of DemocracyNow.org, Cecile Richards, President of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America had this to say:

The House leadership in Congress has basically just declared war on women, really from day one....They not only are now trying to — federal funding hasn’t been available for abortion for more than 30 years, but what they’re really doing is trying to overturn the legal right to abortion in any context. As well, though, it’s way beyond abortion. Now they’re basically trying to end family planning and access to birth control in America. The Republican budget that came out basically gets rid of the nation’s Family Planning Program. And as well, we expect in the next day or two, with the support of the Speaker, there will be an amendment to basically end all federal funds going to Planned Parenthood, including funds that are used for basic birth control, cancer screenings and preventive care for more than three million people every year.

In addition, there are debates over what a woman can and cannot reveal about her sexuality. In an article by Blogher.com’s Avflox, “A Mother’s Sexuality: Taking Back MILF,” she tackled the disheartening truth women face as mothers as it relates to sexuality. In an interview with Kendra Holliday and others, Avflox details how little women are allowed to express about sexuality before they are “slut-shamed.”

That we love to read about sex was proven with the mommy-porn type work, E.L. James’ 50 Shades of Grey flying off the shelves. To acknowledge this other part of ourselves, to admit that women are having sex, and that at times when in the heat of the moment, contraceptives are forgotten, does warrant a look at who is ultimately responsible.

Yet, abortion may prevent another unwanted birth, which could decrease the overall funds the government has to shell out to take care of these unwanted children.

To let politicians debate the rights over a woman’s body is a scary thing. Hopefully, we are not on the verge of forfeiting the rights we have over our own bodies. With any luck, women will win the war seemingly being waged against us…again, so that lawmakers can stay out of our bedrooms and out of our bodies.

 


 

Author

Contributor

Explore YourTango