WARNING: I used a lot of bad language in this. Forgive me.
So, I shared this picture on Facebook:
And the first comment I receive is from a friend going “Fucking really? Spare me.”
Now, I don’t take crap like that lying down, so my first response (done via mobile at work) was:
I love you, but you’re not female.
I have been told before that my stranger rape was my fault because I didn’t do enough to prevent it.
I have been told that I’m a slut for using birth control, by random people in line at the pharmacy who don’t know me or my situation. Pharmacists right now in this country deny women birth control based on false stereotypes, “religion” and “values.” Women get vilified for going into women’s clinics by people who have no knowledge of the situation or reason, nor do they know what women’s clinics are even for, besides abortion.
And our lawmakers are mostly old white MEN. Do I even need to remind you about the ACA panel on birth control that contained NOT ONE SINGLE WOMAN on it?
There is a huge problem with this in our country. But you’re a man, so unless you decide to really educate yourself, you’ll never experience or even see it happen.
The response from him went as such:
I have educated myself. Please don’t confuse misogyny with conservatism. There are quite a lot of variants within that mindset. Gender biases are a polarizing thing in this country, being too aggressive one way or the other won’t help the situation. Unfortunately, these old fuckers on capitol hill won’t change, but they’ll be dead soon. That’s the only thing to look forward too.
Oh right! I forgot that I’m supposed to remain meek and mild and not make any generalizations or have any opinions worded in a way that might offend someone! Silly me, forgetting how fragile the conservative ego is. There is no way in hell I’m not going to be aggressive about being treated like a fucking human being and not an incubator for babies. If women weren’t aggressive, we’d still be dealing with the shit we dealt with not half a century ago.
Okay so let me clue you in: when you say such things – whether it be “not all conservatives,” “not all white people,” or “not all men” – you deny and dismiss the experiences that are being talked about that led to this in the first place. As a feminist, I’ve had to learn just how closely things like race are related to things like feminism. As much as I sometimes want to shout “not all white people” to the minority races, doing so would dismiss their oppressive experiences. I – everyone with privilege really – needs to learn how to listen to and support the people saying these things instead of getting all butthurt like you’re doing and trying to deny the oppressive experiences being related to us. And you only get butthurt because it hits a nerve and you don’t want to talk about the problems the particular category you belong to has. It’s easier to say “not all [blank]” instead of saying “yeah, you know, [blank] has a lot of problems that need fixing.” I’m constantly doing this with feminism. I want to scream “not all feminists” but that doesn’t change the fact that feminism does have some problems, especially with certain sects, and not acknowledging those problems does nothing to fix the movement and help it help everyone else.
You know, deep down, that a majority of women experience one or all of the situations above to some degree. You probably also realize, way deep down, that the reason some of these discriminations exist is because of conservatives. Liberals believe that a woman should be able to do whatever the fuck she wants to do with her body. She has her own mind, her own emotions, her own soul and her own life. Nobody should make decisions for her unless it’s an extreme case, because nobody knows her situation better than her. Conservatives seem to think that anyone who is not a conservative is too morally corrupt and that every decision needs to be made for them – because they hold “values” that means they know better.
In the context of the picture however, it IS “all conservative politicians.” That picture – that’s Conservative Logic 101 (for Politicians.) It can also be called Republican Logic 101 if you prefer. Why? Because moderate conservative republican politicians are denounced by the Teabaggers that run the GOP nowadays and “real” republicans refer to them as RINOs (Republican in Name Only) because they lean too far left for this polarized nation. Note: democrats seem to have less of this problem.
Conservative politicians seem to have this thing where they yak on and on about “personal responsibility” – especially in relation to the incredible amount of violence that America seems to have and what is usually involved in that violence. Yet, when it becomes about a woman taking personal responsibility for herself and her body she’s told that she can’t unless she does so in a way that the conservative approves of. And if it’s something they don’t approve of, they have to prove multiple times why they should be allowed to do such a thing.
There are a lot of instances of this in our news. It wasn’t a liberal who tried to use Joan Rivers’ death as an excuse to close women’s clinics – it was republican Texas governor Rick Perry, who has closed all but 8 of the women’s clinics in Texas. There are only 8 clinics left to service around 13,224,000+ women in that state. There were 44 of them last year. All because of a conservative.
It wasn’t a liberal who tried to tell us that pregnancy rates are very low for “legitimate rapes” – it was Representative Todd Akin (R-MO). A conservative who pretty much implied that if a woman gets pregnant from rape, well then she must be lying about the rape. “The female body has ways to try and shut that whole thing down” you know. Representative Trent Franks (R-AZ) believes the same thing, saying “the incident of rape resulting in pregnancy are very low.”
It wasn’t a liberal who told us that pregnancy is a “gift from God” even if it is a result of the “horrible situation of rape” – it was Senate nominee Richard Mourdock (R-IN). “God intended for it to happen,” including being raped apparently. Because we have a loving God right? Liberals also know that pregnancy kills – but Sen. Brian Nieves (R-MO) doesn’t believe science. He argues that anti-abortions bills shouldn’t make exceptions for life of the mother. Those are just a “matter of convenience.” He’s not the first. Rep. Joe Walsh (R-IL) believes the same thing.
I’ve never heard of a liberal equating childbearing out of wedlock to rape – but republican Tom Smith did. A reporter asked him about what he would do if a daughter or granddaughter was raped and became pregnant from it. He said he already had a “similar situation” since one of his daughters became pregnant out of wedlock. Or at least “the father’s position is similar.”
It wasn’t a liberal who tried to use the boys will be boys adage when talking about sexual assault in the military. Instead it was Sen. Saxby Chambliss (R-GA) who literally said that “the young men coming into each of your services are anywhere from 17 to 22 or 23. Gee wiz, the hormone level created by nature sets in place the possibility for these types of things to occur.” Right, because boys can’t control themselves. Nor have I ever heard of a liberal saying that “some girls rape so easy” – but Roger Rivard (R-WI) did. The first republican to hold a Wisconsin State Assembly seat in 32 years and that’s the shit he pulls.
On this related topic, it wasn’t a liberal who thought that women would be too emotional to hold broader combat positions in the military – it was everyone’s favorite crazy conservative Rick Santorum (R-PA.) You know, the man who also likened the ACA to apartheid in South Africa and thinks that contraceptives in general are a “license to do things in a sexual realm that is counter to how things are supposed to be.” Oh he backtracked, saying that men would be too focused on protecting the women instead but a) that’s not better and b) he meant what he said the first time. This is a man who held a Senate seat for 12 fucking years because nobody bothered to get their asses to the polls and vote this nutbag out.
It wasn’t a liberal democratic representative that thought it was appropriate to call the first lady fat and declare her a hypocrite for her “Let’s Move!” initiative – it was republican Representative Jim Sensenbrenner who found it appropriate to talk about Michelle Obama’s ass. And it wasn’t a liberal who went on CNN to talk to news anchor Carol Costello and proceeded to not only hit on her but devalue her intellect as well – it was Rep. Todd Rokita (R-IN.) In fact, even former Majority House Leader Dick Armey (R-TX) can’t keep his trap shut when debating with women, telling a female panelist on an MSNBC show “I’m so glad you can never be my wife because I surely wouldn’t have to listen to that prattle from you every day.”
And while arguments over the wage gap still exist, liberals understand that a bill to protect equal pay for equal work doesn’t harm anybody – but Sen. Glenn Grothman (R-WI) believes that “money is more important for men” so he has actively worked to repel equal pay laws. And it’s not liberals that believe that working women is what’s making our children’s education mediocre – but Governor Phil Bryant (R-MS) does.
I mean, I know liberal democratic politicians have said some dumb sexist shit too okay. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) was the idiot to call Sen. Kristen Gillibrand (D-NY) “the hottest member” of the Senate – while she was right in the room. No wonder she’s written a book that talks extensively at one point about how sexist the mostly male senate is. And as much as I HATE Michelle Bachmann, it was still inappropriate for Sen. Arlen Specter (D-PA) to tell her to “act like a lady” even if she wasn’t behaving herself. And hey Steve Cohen (D-TN), you probably shouldn’t compare Hillary Clinton to the crazy Glenn Close character from Fatal Attraction. Bad move.
But in just one article (and I didn’t use just one,) out of the 13 examples of political sexism given, only three of them were democratic politicians. That means about 77% of the sexist comments made in that article came from conservative republicans. And none of those quotes came from conservative big-wig, big-mouthed Rush Limbaugh.
So when you say “misogyny and conservatism aren’t the same thing” I go “I can’t hear you over the sound of how wrong you are.” The two things coincide at such a high rate they may as well be synonyms. Why such a high disparity? Well because generally liberals aren’t dicks. Let me elaborate a touch. Democrats suffer from the idiocy known as societal sexism. They see a gender binary, instead of a spectrum and they buy into some stereotypes. A powerful female leader gets called a bitch instead of a boss. They make lewd comments that they intend for you to take as compliments. They want women to act more like women than like men. While such sexism is not appreciated, by any means, one has to understand that these come from an internalized, misogynistic mindset and changing minds – changing that whole pattern of thinking – is a long, slow and arduous process.
Meanwhile, in an effort to preserve “conservative values” and hold onto the past, conservative republican politicians systematically seek to oppress, regulate and de-value women. They do so by submitting bills and passing laws that negatively affect women’s lives while doing nothing to the lives of regular men (I’m not getting into the sexuality thing here.) THAT RIGHT THERE is the reason why feminism is still needed.
As for those “old fucks” on Capitol Hill…let’s do a little Google search. The average age of a Representative is 57, and the average age of a Senator is 62 years. The average human life span – especially in a first-world country like America – is 81 years old. You want me to wait 20 fucking years for them to die and things to change? When I could mobilize and utilize the greatest weapon the common person – particularly women – have: the right to fucking vote! Nobody needs to wait. If the people of Pennsylvania had gotten up off their asses and voted Rick Santorum out when he started saying crazy shit (or, you know, voted for the opposition when he was running instead) he might not have gotten three fucking terms and 12 years in office! These are not divinely granted positions. They’re fucking jobs that you get by election. If the common people hate you enough and actually do something about it, then you don’t have that goddamn job.
But no, I’ve heard you say it before and I’ve heard plenty of other idiots say the same thing. “Oh, my vote doesn’t matter.” “Oh, it won’t change anything if I do vote.” Fuck you all! If every single person who said that voted, goddamn it I bet a lot of things would change!
Bottom line: Fucking vote these conservative assholes out and maybe I’ll stop equating sexism with conservative politics.