Friday, March 19, 2010

Sometimes rhetoric comes back to bite you in the behind

At This is What a Feminist Looks Like, Vanessa (language warning) describes a recent Planned Parenthood training session she attended.
She was explaining how detrimental it will be to pass a health care bill with limited or no abortion care, and she mentioned a conversation she’d had with some male friends. Some of my guy friends were saying, you need to get over this, we need to pass health care reform. Can’t you just start a fund when you start having sex? You know. Keep some change in a [expletive] plastic jar, to save up for that rainy day abortion you might need later in life! Those are my words, not hers, FYI. She was very funny about it, saying, Well excuse me why don’t you start a fund?!

So, ya know, it was a funny moment in the midst of a positive evening, and it made me laugh and it stood out. But there’s a deeper message, one that we shouldn’t gloss over: why do we (they?) insist on making abortion a woman’s problem? Why does reproductive health care have to mean “for women”? Seriously, why the [expletive] shouldn’t all people be contributing to this hypothetical fund that might be necessary if insurance companies are unable to cover abortions?

It's so interesting to me after decades of defending abortion by claiming "it's my body, my choice" and that "women have a right to privacy," some pro-choice women don't understand why men (including pro-choice men) think the onus of dealing with an unplanned pregnancy and paying for abortion should be on the woman.

If you base your arguments in favor of abortion on the ideology that abortion is a personal and private decision where only the pregnant woman's choice matters, it's not very persuasive when you claim others and the public should fund this decision.

Is Planned Parenthood Really Opposed to the Nelson Language?

Also, note how the Nelson abortion language in Obamacare is treated at this Planned Parenthood training session. To me, it doesn't sound like Planned Parenthood really believes that the Nelson amendment "would result in the most significant restriction in access to abortion coverage in the nearly 35 years since the U.S. Congress first adopted the Hyde Amendment."

One of Powerpoint slide is titled, "Nelson: Hey, At Least It’s Not Stupak" and Vanessa comes away from the Planned Parenthood training session thinking, "The fact is, Nelson is a compromise, one that we can probably live with. Stupak was never any such thing. It was just another example of America, and yes, unfortunately, the Democratic party, throwing women under the bus."

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