I know we've all had pretty much enough of the election babble, but I really feel the need to get up on my soapbox one last time. I'm sorry if this offends any of you for any reason, but my need to get our resident idiot out of office is way stronger than my desire to avoid offending my friends - thus the reason for sending it to EVERYONE. Please pass it on.
I found a flier in the bathroom on campus today - probably strategically placed by a member of a campus political group - and I thought it was so good that I decided to type it in here. On top of that, Mom just sent me this link this afternoon. Even if you don't feel like reading the flier I've typed - because I know it's kind of long - PLEASE click that link and read that. And if you can read that story and still tell me that with that, on top of all the other reasons, you still support four more years of our country under this ignorant man who wants to take away our most basic rights as women - as HUMANS - then I honestly don't know if I'll ever be able to look you in the face again. At the moment, I don't care how fanatical that may sound. The ignorance is simply blinding me.
Anyway, I know none of us really wants to have 15 or 20 kids, so please read this:
The anti-birth control line of the Bush administration does NOT stand for women!
There is a movement steadily gathering steam in this country against birth control.
Of the some 39 million women who are sexually active (with men), 95% use a form of contraception. Obviously, this anti-birth control movement doesn't represent the majority of women in this country.
So why is it gaining ground so fast?
Unfortunately, the movement DOES have the support of the anti-birth control extremists in the White House.
Bush's Record on Birth Control
- In George W. Bush's first budget to Congress (April 9, 2001), he sacked the provision that required insurance companies to cover contraceptives for 9 million federal employees (something House democrats later reinstated).
- Also on April 9, 2001, Bush blocked U.S. grants to family-planning groups that provide contraceptive and abortion services/counseling overseas.
- Bush is an ardent supporter of abstinence-only education programs, which prohibit discussion of contraception. Studies have shown that abstinence-only programs do NOT keep teens from having sex, and certainly do not teach them how to protect themselves from pregnancy and STD/STIs.
- On March 1, 2002, Bush appointed Tom Coburn and Joe McIlhaney to lead the advisory council on HIV/AIDS. Both Coburn and McIlhaney have spoken out against condom use and have worked to push abstinence as the ONLY means to prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS.
- Bush nominated Justice Janice Rogers Brown for U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. Brown upheld the right of Catholic hospitals to refuse to include birth control in employees' health coverage.
- Dr. David Hager - whom Bush appointed to the FDA's Advisory Committee for Reproductive Health Drugs - refuses to prescribe contraception to unmarried women in his practice. Bush also appointed Dr. Joseph Stanford to same committee. In his family practice, Dr. Stanford refuses to prescribe contraception AT ALL.
- In December 2002, Assistant Secretary of State Arthur Dewey - a right-wing Bush appointee - promised that the U.S. would block any U.N. policies that contain the words 'reproductive health' or 'consistent condom use'. The United States was voted down at the U.N. Population Conference. Delegates from all over the world said America's position at this conference put women's health at risk.
- Bush also appointed acting FDA commissioner Lester Crawford and Acting Drug Chief Stephen Galson, who decided NOT to approve the Morning-After Pill for over the counter sales.
Is the Morning-After Pill really contraception?
Yes! The Morning-After Pill (MAP) is made from the exact same stuff that's in birth control pills (it's just a higher dose) and it works in the exact same way to prevent pregnancy up to five days after sex (but the longer you wait to take it, the less effective it is).
When FDA Commissioner Lester Crawford and Acting Drug Chief Stephen Galson voted against MAP over the counter, they went against the FDA's own expert medical advisory committees, the American Medical Association, the New England Journal of medicine, and the women who need it. But they didn't go against the White House.
The decision to block women's access to the MAP plainly displays this administration's contempt for contraception. American women would be able to buy it without a prescription today (just like women in 38 other countries) if it weren't for the rabid, anti-birth control extremists in the White House.
The Movement Against Contraception
All over the country, stories are cropping up about women whose doctors and pharmacists are now refusing to prescribe or fill their prescriptions for birth control.
The Pharmacists for Life is one of several organizations that encourages pharmacists to deny women access to birth control pills. In Mississippi and Michigan, the anti-birth control movement recently succeeded in passing a 'refusal clause', which allows pharmacists to refuse to fill prescriptions for birth control on religious or 'ethical' grounds. As of August 2004, 12 bills are pending in 7 states to allow healthcare providers to refuse to give women contraceptive services.
Most anti-abortion groups will conveniently plead the fifth on the issue of contraception, but there are some that are honest about NOT wanting women to have it or use it. The American Life League is one such organization. The League says that contraception promotes the 'immoral' attitudes that make people want to have sex but not to have children. On its website, the American Life League says, "The practice of contraception is intrinsically evil," and concedes that although it may not be possible to outlaw birth control right now, it is certainly working toward that end.
While Bush tries to be covert about his opposition to contraception - choosing instead to use his executive appointments to limit women's contraceptive access - it is no secret that W. is against abortion. He has done more to undermine women's abortion rights than any other president in history. Abortion is just the most obvious example of the Bush administration's four-year campaign to criminalize birth control.
The bottom line is that the Bush administration wants to punish women for having sex and keep us from having control over our lives.
Why would they bother doing this?
Because when women can't control how many children they have, they don't have as much money, power, time, or freedom as men.
This often forces us into lower-paying jobs, or else keeps us in the home where we work for free. Basically, it forces us to struggle more to get by, and the more tired we are from struggling, the less inclined we will be to fight for the things that will make our lives better.
This is why Bush and his lackeys are against contraception and abortion - this is why Bush poses a serious threat to our equality as women.
* Help Stop the Attacks on Our Birth Control Rights! *
Single women are the largest demographic of progressive people that don't vote (22 million in the last election).
Over the past four years, we've seen that progress for women is not possible under Bush - he and his cronies have done everything in their power to take away women's options (not just by attacking birth control and abortion, but also by launching attacks on childcare and healthcare programs) and they have no intentions of stopping here.
Does this make you angry? Help do something about it! REGISTER before Oct. 4th and ***VOTE*** on Election Day (Nov. 2)!!!!!!!!!!
Me again. This sort of thing drives me nuts. So we're just supposed to bear as many children as fate gives us? Even if, for example, we're married and know we don't want more than two or three kids? And if we happen to be extra fertile and end up pregnant every other year until we're 45, we just have to sigh and do it?
Also, is anyone else paying attention to how this puts all the power in the guys' hands, by taking all women's options away? GUYS: PAY ATTENTION! THIS INVOLVES YOU TOO! YOU will be responsible for all contraception if this continues... assuming they don't ban condoms, too... and if you don't do it, YOU will be responsible for supporting your twelve children. So think about that, the next time you think that contraceptive issues don't involve you just because you don't have a uterus.
My point is, even though there are a lot of Kerry election buttons pinned to backpacks across campus - and although I believe in my gut that the prevalent opinion is for Kerry - there are more than a few Bush buttons too. And every time I see one, I get incredibly angry. So okay, maybe you don't really like Kerry. Or maybe you don't really care one way or the other. But you cannot possibly agree that Bush is a BETTER option! Even if it's just the lesser of two evils for you, choose the right person!
So for crying out loud, take control of your body, take control of your life, register, and VOTE - for the person who will let US decide what we do with our reproductive systems!!!!! Prove to the rest of the world and to ourselves that we are still a democracy, not a dictatorship, and that one man should not have the power to push his PERSONAL beliefs into the lives of 280 million people.
OK, I'm finished now.