(This post originally appeared on doesthismakesense.com)
I’m writing this when I should be vacuuming. In pearls and heels and nothing else; well, maybe an apron, just an apron covering my front so that my ass hangs out, tantalizingly. In the hope, of course, that my husband, the only man with whom I have ever had sex, will come home and take me, there, in the living room, throwing caution (and the vacuum) to the winds. We will have sex without birth control so that, perhaps, if he and I are lucky, we will conceive yet another child to add to the many others who have been so thusly conceived: my husband, the only man with whom I have had sex, so lustily turned on by the image of me doing housework in heels and pearls and, perhaps, an apron.
Or perhaps, Total Woman-like (for those of who you don’t get the reference: look it up) I will put down my cleaning tools and, wrapped only in Saran Wrap, greet said husband at the door
And so it goes.
One hundred and sixty four years after Elizabeth Cady Stanton started fighting for women’s rights, ninety two years after women got the vote, thirty nine years after Roe v Wade, and millions of hours of fighting for our rights in the workplace, the home, the battlefield, and in the political arena, I have only one question: Who is it Republican men are fucking?
Besides the country as a whole, metaphorically speaking, of course.
Okay, some Republican men are fucking other Republican men. Those, that is, who fight most against gay rights and are the most virulently homophobic and have been outed over the past few years for man on man action, despite their protestations to the contrary. But not every Republican man is a closeted homosexual. Right? So who are they fucking? It isn’t women. It can’t be.
Because women must be held down, held accountable for their sexuality, and held back from living lives as free women; they can’t be allowed to ask their insurance companies for birth control; they can’t get abortions if they fall pregnant; and if they do have a child, they can’t get any help from anyone in the government. And they shouldn’t even dare and ask for child support, right guys? So it stands to reason that Republican men who wish to impose those draconian measures must be holding themselves to some fine chaste state, too. Right? Or else they are all breaking the law by going to real women of the street and paying for sex. While they call women who have sex outside of marriage whores.
Rick Santorum doesn’t believe women should use birth control. His wife apparently agrees. But she isn’t in the 99% of all women who have used birth control at some time in their lives. 99%. That number sounds suspiciously familiar. Mitt Romney (of the Mormons who are busily baptizing dead Jews) supported the recently barely defeated Blunt Amendment, which would have allowed companies to deny certain health insurance benefits, specifically birth control (but extrapolated to any number of other things), after, of course, he said he didn’t support it. ALL the Republicans in the Senate (save for the soon-to-retire Olympia Snowe) voted for the amendment. I don’t know what Newt Gingrich thought, but his position on fucking is abundantly clear. He believes in it whole-heartedly, both inside and outside of marriage and I have to believe that as his second and third wives bore him no offspring, someone in those marriages is using birth control But other than Rick and his wife and Mitt and his, and Newt and all of his wives, who are the other Republicans fucking?
Can it possibly be that all the Republicans members of the Senate (and all the countless other Republican toadies who accepted the concept of the Blunt Amendment) have never had sex with anyone but their current wives, and only AFTER the weddings? And if that’s so, then why the need for transvaginal ultrasounds and abortions at all? At least not for Republicans. Because they aren’t doing any of the kind of fucking that would necessitate either service.
I find it very hard to believe that discussions about limiting women’s health services are even under discussion in the 21st century. I find it appalling that women who wish to use birth control rather than get pregnant are still being called sluts. But then I find it equally appalling that women still don’t get equal pay for equal work and that women can still be called to task for the clothing they wear and be held accountable for their own rape, among a multitude of other indignities. But that’s just because I am one of those radical feminazis who actually believes in equal rights for all, in every arena, even sexual intercourse. Obviously, I am not a Republican.
And even though I’ve done a considerable amount of fucking inside both my marriages and before and after them, too, I have never had to get an abortion. Probably because I was pretty conscientious about using that birth control that the Republicans sneer at and hate the idea of insurance companies paying for. But, also, because I was just damned lucky.
Here’s the thing: retro is cool in fashion, design, maybe even movies. But it is not cool in sexual politics. Just find me a woman who is willing to return to the days and mores of yesteryear, really, with all that entails; I don’t think you can. I don’t think she exists. I don’t believe the wives of the current crop of candidates want to be the women the rest of the party seems determined to craft either. Because the implications are pretty profound. Rick’s wife could be one of the few exceptions ( I don’t have a bead on her), but the fact that Ann urged Mitt to run and Callista was Newt’s mistress means they are no shrinking violets. They are their husbands’ partners. But you can’t be a partner without the same rights, and some of those rights include the right to control what happens to our bodies. That shouldn’t even be debated.
You can’t have it both ways: a partner and helpmeet who is under the thumb of her man. Those two ideas cannot exist simultaneously.
So, I am willing to offer a compromise. How about we limit birth control and abortion services, STD testing and breast, cervical and uterine cancer screenings only to those women who can prove that they are not registered Republicans? That way, no one has to worry about operating outside his or her “morality,” either sincerely, or, say, like too many others, hypocritically. And that way, everybody wins.