Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Kittisplace: THE POWER IS US.

Kittisplace: THE POWER IS US.

Suddenly the news is that women and their supportive men have won another battle toward freedom of
choice.  As the VP of the Susan G Komen Foundation steps down in defeat after announcing that the
Foundation would no longer fund Planned Parenthood. In the Fundie fight against the freedom of women
to choose their own future the oppressors  have lost another round. Women have been fighting for forty
years for this right to choose, and have gradually gained some power against the old white men
personified by Karl Rove and Rush Limbaugh; incidentally Limbaugh coined the misnomer “feminazis”.  For
all the years of this fight women have won small victories, but have done so at great cost, always moving
one step forward and two steps back. The loss of the effort to pass the Equal Rights Amendment lost in the
same period that the first female Vice President was running on the Democratic ticket; Josephine Ferraro
also lost the election. Since that time things have changed in society with the advent of subsidized day-care
Title Ten and Pell Grants. It has been a slow climb for women, aided by the availability of effective and
available birth control. Planned Parenthood has contributed much to this change, by offering affordable
health care, including birth control to women and girls. Mothers take their teen-aged daughters to Planned
Parenthood at the first sign of sexual activity, cutting the incidence of teen-aged motherhood for white,
middle-class girls, though still leaving the daughters of poor families, Latinas, and black teen-aged girls in
the cycle of poverty and single parent families, but  also cutting the incidence of abortion. Rather than
seeing this as a positive step the men and women who would control women and girls see it as a threat to
the status quo, and unleash all of their power against this positive trend. Sexual politics has accelerated to
an alarming degree, as the Tea Party voters, largely dominated by right-wing-christian-
fundamentalists….or, in the word coined perhaps by gifted blogger  astra navigo, “Fundies”, changed the
playing field by giving dominance in the Congress to this group, who, with their aggressive overreach have
wakened a sleeping giant. Not content to keep their own wives and daughters subservient through a
generation of home-schooling, they decided that they could use their newly gained power to force every
family into that mold.  They did not take into account that there were new weapons in this war, and they
were weapons in a battle that they didn’t anticipate or understand. The first skirmish in this was the virtual
uprising of the women in Mississippi who, along with supportive men defeated the first “Personhood
Amendment” in a state that has an overwhelming number of Fundie voters; they were not ready to give up
the freedom given them by the availability of birth control, and with this defeat the other Republican
governed States were warned and did not risk the same defeat. The leaders slowed their offensive and
looked for other ways. One Tea Party Congressman, drunk with power, instigated an investigation of
Planned Parenthood, which signaled the Fundies in the Susan G Komen Foundation to use the investigation
as an excuse to refuse to give their customary 700,000 annual grants to that organization. This would have
been a point at which the leaders on the board of SGK could have used the Rick Perry exclamation
“OOOPS”.  In 24 hours, assailed by liberal leaning members of the Social Network organizations Facebook
and Twitter, they reversed this decision The world is changing exponentially and they are losing ground and
losing “face”. But, and this is a billboard sized “BUT” they now have Rick Santorum in the fight to unseat
the man they hate: President Barack Obama, by using the power given them by the Supreme Court to enlist
those who have the most to lose in the 2012 election, the billionaires in the 1%.
It is no accident that the right defeated Al Gore  by using the conservative Catholic Justices to rule for
George W. Bush, who appointed a Conservative Catholic as Chief Justice. In the Robert’s Court the Citizens
United decision gave power to the 1% whose “good old days” are the Gilded Age that preceded the Great
Depression. This is the most important election of my lifetime since Franklin Roosevelt and in all the
elections since the one lost to Reagan in 1981 for most of you who will read this.
Don’t worry about the President defeating Mitt Romney; worry about the dark-horse, the guy in the
sweater vest: Rick Santorum. A Fundie Catholic who thinks we are losing power because the birthrate in
the U.S. among white, middle class families is too low. The Gingrich money will now flow to him, not just
from the Casino mogul but from those who have an “anyone but Mitt” mentality. The Koch Brothers come
to mind. The power structure in the Republican Party will rise up in his support, more attacks from the
Party and from the extremists on the Left, including those who want to see Hillary trade jobs with Biden,
will mean a narrow defeat for the President….but a defeat nevertheless. The strangest of all strange things
is that the rank-and-file Catholics are not necessarily Republicans, and 98% of all Catholic families use birth
control. Watch closely and be ever alert to changing trends. The fight that still goes on is not just for
women, but for all who seek a level playing field and a just society. But now we have a weapon that we
must not give up to the enemy: Facebook and Twitter.

1 comment:

Cris said...

You, as wise elder, who remembers history - please keep writing to remind those who may not know how hard-fought the battles were that allow modern women in America the same civil rights as male counterparts - and yet we still have a ways to go. xxoo