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Filed under: prairie musings, LGBT, GOP, Women's Rights — Peg Britton @ 2:04 pm

To be a conservative must be so much simpler. Who cares about science, climate change, protecting our future, educating our children, saving the planet – that’s all in God’s hands. It doesn’t matter what we think or do because it’s not within our power.

Let’s see…do I have this straight?  Republicans have gone on record as being AGAINST:

…any restrictions on conceal and carry firearms…

….any restriction on gun control and acquisition of ammunition

… separation of church and state…

…minimum wage…

…women having the right to determine their own medical needs…

…women receiving equal pay for equal work……equal opportunity for women…

…Head Start…

… helping children get enough to eat and being sheltered from the elements…


…immigration reform…

…helping students reduce their student loans…

…teaching evolution/science in schools…

…universal healthcare…

…marrying who you love…

… teacher tenure …

…science and  global warming…

…LGBT individuals having the same rights as others…

…abortion under any circumstance…

…contraceptive use…

…veterans’ care…

…voter rights…

You say you don’t agree with the stand Republicans have taken on the above, but you are still a registered Republican.  Why is that?

Thanks for tuning in…



Filed under: prairie musings, GOP, Women's Rights — Peg Britton @ 8:05 am

Posted by: Sky Palma in TEApublicans in Action February 25, 2014

Showing where his priorities lie, Sen. Jerry Moran (R-Kan) Blocked an attempt to vote on a bill that would address sexual assault in the military – to instead push for more sanctions on Iran.

A report has estimated there to be at least 26,000 men and women who are sexually assaulted every year in the armed forces. Democrats, specifically Claire McCaskill (D-Mo) and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), have been feverishly pushing for legislation that will curb the problem.

But this Monday, Moran insisted that a measure to level tougher sanctions on Iran make an appearance on the floor along with the sexual assault bills. Senator Harry Reid (D-Nev) outright objected.

“I’m terribly disappointed that my Republican friends are trying to turn this vital national security concern into a partisan issue by trying to inject [it] into a setting where it’s clearly not relevant,” Reid said.

Senator Gillibrand didn’t pull any punches when addressing Moran’s actions:

“Anyone who has been listening has heard over and over again from survivors of sexual assault in the military how the deck has been stacked against them,” Gillibrand said. “And for over two full decades, the Defense Department has been unable to uphold its continued failed promises of ‘zero tolerance’ for sexual assault.”

“But when the Senate can’t even agree to debate the one reform that survivors have consistently said is needed to solve this crisis, we are telling those victims that the deck is stacked against them right here in the Senate, too,” she added.

A spokesperson for Moran responded, saying, “Sen. Moran supports having votes on the Gillibrand and McCaskill amendments, but he does not believe Sen. Reid should be allowed to pick and choose which amendments blocked from consideration during debate on NDAA [the National Defense Authorization Act] receive a vote. Sen. Moran believes preventing Iran from getting nuclear weapons capability is of such importance it also deserves a vote on the floor.”



Filed under: prairie musings, Women's Rights — Peg Britton @ 12:44 pm

In the 1970s, Irish women could not own their own home or even go to a pub. They could not sit on a jury or refuse to have sex with their husbands. We learned all this in Irish Central’s charming post, “How things have changed – ten things that Irish women could not do in 1970s.” And that made us wonder, what were things like for women in America before the ’70s?

So while we still have a long way to go to secure total equality for women, let’s take a moment to celebrate how far we’ve come. Before the 1970s, an American woman could not:

1. Keep her job if she was pregnant.

Until the Pregnancy Discrimination Act in 1978, women could be fired from their workplace for being pregnant.

2. Report cases of sexual harassment in the workplace.

The first time that a court recognized sexual harassment in the workplace was in 1977 and it wasn’t until 1980 that sexual harassment was officially defined by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

3. Be acknowledged in the Boston Marathon.

Women could not don their running shoes until 1972!

4. Get a credit card.

Until the Equal Credit Opportunity Act in 1974, women were not able to apply for credit. In 1975, the first women’s bank was opened.

5. Refuse to have sex with her husband.

The mid 70s saw most states recognize marital rape and in 1993 it became criminalized in all 50 states. Nevertheless, marital rape is still often treated differently to other forms of rape in some states even today.

6. Compete as a boxer in the Olympics.

It wasn’t until the 2012 London Olympics that women could compete in boxing in the Olympics. This was marked with the amazing victory by Britain’s Nicola Adams.

7. Get a divorce with some degree of ease.

Before the No Fault Divorce law in 1969, spouses had to show the faults of the other party, such as adultery, and could easily be overturned by recrimination.

8. Celebrate International Women’s Day.

In 1980 President Carter declared one week in March to be National Women’s History Week, including International Women’s Day on March 8th.

9. Have a legal abortion in most states.

The Roe v. Wade case in 1973 protected a woman’s right to abortion until viability.

10. Read Ms. Magazine!



Filed under: prairie musings, Women's Rights — Peg Britton @ 9:25 am

NEW DELHI The parents of an Indian woman who suffered a miscarriage and died after being refused an abortion in an Irish hospital slammed Ireland’s abortion laws Thursday.

Savita Halappanavar was 17 weeks pregnant when she miscarried and died last month. Ireland’s government confirmed Wednesday that Halappanavar suffered from blood poisoning and died after being denied an abortion, reigniting the debate over legalizing abortion in the predominantly Catholic country.

Ireland woman denied life-saving abortion?

“In an attempt to save a 4-month-old fetus they killed my 30-year-old daughter. How is that fair you tell me?” A. Mahadevi, Halappanavar’s mother, told several Indian television stations. Her daughter actually was 31 when she died.

“How many more cases will there be? The rules should be changed as per the requirement of Hindus. We are Hindus, not Christians,” she said.

Savita Halappanavar’s father, Andanappa Yalagi, said the combination of medical negligence and Irish abortion laws led to his daughter’s death.

For the rest of the story….



Eco-devo in Brownback era

Sam Brownback this past week came to the KU Business School’s annual Chandler Lecture and rhapsodized about his tax-cut legislation.

“We are trying to create a pro-growth environment,” he said, as he defended the large and highly weighted (to partnerships, trusts, sole proprietors, etc.) tax cuts enacted last May.

Like some Texas hold ‘em poker pro, the governor has pushed most of the state’s chips into the pot, banking on the power of tax cuts to help us attract new investment to Kansas. In his homey metaphor, he said, “I want to win our (economic) league.”

To tell the truth, this goal of regional domination might have meant more before Missouri, Nebraska and Colorado left the Big 12 Conference.

The entire tax-cut philosophy rests on shaky ground, but state taxes unquestionably play some role in business decisions. Still, the quality of the workforce, the strength of schools, good transportation and various amenities are also significant. Indeed, any state seeking to attract new business must be seen as an attractive destination.

And there’s the rub.

Over the past two years, the Brownback-Kobach administration, which definitely is how the outside world views Kansas government, has done a tremendous job in making the state appear unattractive to exactly the kind of high-quality, financially sound firms and start-ups that would provide a powerful wave of good new jobs.

Most recently, we have experienced the fatuous “birther” controversy, which Kobach and his Objection Board needlessly fueled, to the point of legitimizing a trivial complaint that could have been dismissed with no fanfare. Rather, Kobach and his wingmen, Attorney General Derek Schmidt and Lt. Gov. Jeff Colyer, extended the agony by seeking further documentation, only to have the request withdrawn. Across the country, the news stories and editorials were withering in their criticism.

In this case, Kobach won further adulation from his right-wing base, always valuable in some forthcoming primary election, while conveniently not being forced to make a pro-Obama decision that might alienate his most fervent supporters.

So, Kobach was a winner, Obama was a winner, to an extent, and the state of Kansas again became the butt of national — even international — jokes. Blessed by the presence at the hearing of Orly Taitz, the so-called “queen of the birthers,” Kansas was once more painted with the broad brush strokes of political weirdness and intolerance.

Such a portrait, of course, is just what the state needs in the wake of two decades of creationist controversies, unending Westboro Church protests, a governor whose administration monitors a student’s Twitter account and a secretary of state who flies around the country amping up a nasty, ego-satisfying campaign against any presence of illegal immigrants.

That’s not all. Remember the governor’s ill-conceived “marriage summit” and his $75,000 contract with discredited economics guru Alfred Laffer? Or, more recently, Kobach’s sterling anti-immigrant, anti-Sharia-law stances at the GOP convention?

All these incendiary statements, false steps and flat-out blunders encourage the thought that perhaps there has been a cagey plot to make prospective employers, along with thousands of well-qualified professionals recruited by NBAF and the KU Cancer Center, think long and hard about putting down roots in Kansas.

In contrast, as illustrated by Richard Florida’s “Creative Class” argument, it is good schools, lively cities, safe suburbs and thriving arts communities that attract the most innovative firms and the most accomplished professionals.

Who knows? Maybe cutting taxes to the bone will prove a great boon to the Kansas economy. But this narrow policy choice must navigate upstream against an unceasing flow of national news that makes the state look spiteful and stupid. I’m not sure we can lower taxes enough to overwhelm the torrent of negative stories that shows no sign of drying up.

– Burdett Loomis is a political science professor at the University of Kansas.



Filed under: prairie musings, Sam Brownback, GOP, Women's Rights — Peg Britton @ 2:35 pm

Did anyone else observe that Governor Sam Brownback was noticeably absent from the RNC? Coming from the reddest of really, really red Republican states, one would assume he would be front and center for the festivities.  After all, at the beginning of all this presidential election foldarol he was also one of the candidates.  Brownback is as conservative as they make them and fits the mold to have been a rock star at the convention which makes one wonder why he didn’t have a light beam shining on him.   Certainly it wasn’t for lack of ambition on his part.

Even Clint Eastwood had a speaking part although it was directed at an empty chair.  Brownback was also sidestepped for younger rising stars like vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan who was a former staffer of Brownback’s, Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey and Gov. Nikki Haley of South Carolina who were all in the limelight.

What’s happening in Kansas under his leadership is what the Romney camp wants to spread nationwide.  Kansas is being called by some “a pseudo-Christian fascist state where the arts are not publicly funded, women’s reproductive rights are relentlessly attacked, public school funding is drastically cut, voter suppression laws make it nearly impossible for new voters to register to vote, and social services are turned over to evangelical “Christian” groups, all done with the backing of the fabulously wealthy and Christian right evangelical Koch brothers of Wichita. Kansas is becoming a place where civil responsibility takes a back seat to religious intolerance and corporate greed.” Kansas is becoming Brownback’s dream state.

Gov. Sam Brownback’s administration on Thursday announced it was discontinuing the Kansas Main Street program, citing “smaller state and federal budgets moving forward.”  Next may come the elimination of historic rehabilitation tax credits. Then in January, let’s see what he does to eliminate the property tax lids to the benefit of wealthy and detriment of the middle class.

Maybe Governor Sam is too busy running for his own re-election as governor to bother this time around with presidential aspirations. Jeff Sharlet said it best years ago of Brownback:

“Now, Brownback seeks something far more radical: not faith-based politics but faith in place of politics. In his dream America, the one he believes both the Bible and the Constitution promise, the state will simply wither away. In its place will be a country so suffused with God and the free market that the social fabric of the last hundred years — schools, Social Security, welfare — will be privatized or simply done away with. There will be no abortions; sex will be confined to heterosexual marriage. Men will lead families, mothers will tend children, and big business and the church will take care of all.”

My guess is he wants to turn Kansas into the model for all other states to emulate. That’s the bright light he wants shining on him.

I ask…how is it working out for you so far to have Brownback as your Governor?



Filed under: prairie musings, Jeffee Palmer, Women's Rights — Peg Britton @ 10:27 am

R-E-S-P-E-C-T, Find out What it Means to Me
by Now and Thenadays

Although the R’s keep stressing that this election is about the economy, women’s reproductive rights and access to health care keep running out on the battlefield.  As everyone has probably heard by now, Missouri U.S. Senate candidate, Todd Akin (R) expressed his belief in a bizarre bit of health news – at least it was news to us.  He explained that he’d heard that women have a magical form of birth control that prevents a pregnancy when she is legitimately raped.   Whatever the craziness of the biology, surely we can agree that a term that pairs the word “legitimate” with the word “rape” should be declared illegal or, at least, disqualify the utterer from ever running for public office.  Thankfully, Missourians have an option to vote against him and for Clare McCaskill, a woman with a firm grasp on her own biology.

And the selection of Paul Ryan as a running mate can hard quell the concerns of many women in this country about the R stance on reproduction.  He was the co-author with the previously-mentioned Akin of a bill that made a distinction between forcible rape and the rape of a non-forcible variety.  Are they trying to say that rape can be consensual?  I have to wonder about their English-speaking credentials since the definitions the dictionary lists are: 1) the unlawful compelling of a person through physical force or duress to have sexual intercourse; 2) any act of sexual intercourse that is forced upon a person.  In other words, non-forcible rape is an oxymoron.   Rape minus force equals consensual intercourse or what many call, a roll in the hay.

Obviously, this public discourse on the subject of women and their bodies is going in a direction that R’s would rather not go.  They continue stressing that this election is about  the economy, jobs, jobs, and piles of jobs.  The folly of this attempt was summed up well by a panel of women on a recent Melissa Harris-Perry’s show on MSNBC:  to divorce women’s reproductive rights and access to health care from the economy doesn’t make any sense.  As Dr. Harris-Perry said: there is no way to get a job if you are constantly pregnant.

Taking the one divergent view, one of Melissa’s panelists, Monica Mehta, stated that she felt women should be more interested in jobs, her position being that once you have a  good job, you can argue with your leadership to obtain reproductive rights.  But wait, Ms. Mehta, we already did that.  How many more times will we have to do that?

As another panelist, Rebecca Traister, pointed out, the R’s seem to be in a time machine, lost in the days before women and minorities had access to political and economic power, representing women at their convention as symbols of “we’ve got some of those,” rather than having them speak about how an R presidency would continue or increase opportunities for women.  There wasn’t even a subtext that the government had worked for us before and it can continue to be a strong player in future efforts.  They seemed to be in denial that they worked in government jobs and they stood before the world based on opportunities created by the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965, Title IX, the Minority Enterprise Development Commission, and the EEOC, to name a few.  Of course, they would have to admit that these legislative efforts were all passed under D presidents, a fact they must avoid.  About their success, the speeches of Nikki Haley, Susana Martinez, and Condoleeza Rice suggested that “I built it,” or the tried and true “I pulled myself up by the bootstraps” dogma.

Ann Romney, of course, was an exception to the success in government/academia portrayed by the aforementioned female speakers.  If the other women represented the brains of the R sisterhood, Mrs. Romney represented the heart, making her subject “love,” in particular, love of family, devotion to children, and the way women sigh a little harder than men, an issue that none of us doubted.  I would have been interested in hearing just a note of self-awareness that she had it easier than most women in America, particularly the single parents, the working women, and those who didn’t marry as well as she.

In Dr. Rice’s defense, she did make a reference to surmounting her background in Jim  Crow Birmingham, but she deftly sidestepped the issue of how government had paved her way by putting an end to legal racism and segregation.  Instead, she explained her success by her good luck in having parents who believed she could grow up to be president!   What I wonder is whether their belief was formed before or after the 1964 Civil Rights Act and the 1965 Voting Rights Act?   Doing the math, I see that she was born in 1954, and would have been 10 and 11, respectively.  Could her parents really envision her ability to reach the highest levels of our government before either of those?   But, she has to be coherent in a party that trumpets family values and ignore that its stated goal since inauguration day has been to rid the country of its first Black president, simply because he is black and believes that government creates opportunities for others like himself, along with women and other minorities.

Women aren’t needed on the stages of our country just appear as symbols that suggest women can make it if they’d only work hard enough.  They are needed to help engage us in some inter-connected thinking.  As Irin Carmon of noted during the panel discussion, these women should have pointed out that, while they can be role models, they are able to do this because of birth control and the ability to control when they start a family.  At the very least, they need to at least acknowledge that women are affected differently by parenthood and that it’s in society’s interest to recognize that fact.

I recall an elderly woman whose best friend had died recently.  I asked her when she and the deceased  had become friends.  She explained that she had met her through their kid’s school PTA and soon thereafter, her friend became pregnant with her fourth child.  Her friend didn’t have to worry economically, but she didn’t know where she was going to get the energy to handle another child.  Her friend lent her a shoulder to cry on and helped her cope with that pregnancy.

Just think how none of us, the female children and grandchildren of that generation have had to experience a body out of our control, instead, having the size of families we want, not what some angry white men want us to have.  Simply put, keeping us in the pregnancy lottery devalues all women and our contributions to the world beyond procreation.

If only Ann Romney had borrowed Chris Christie’s speech when he reported what his mother had said to him:  She told me there would be times in your life when you have to choose between being loved and being respected.  She said to always pick being respected.   As Aretha Franklin sings:  R- E -S- P- E- C- T, find out what it means to me.  You’ll find that it means one helluva lot to most women.



Filed under: prairie musings, Women's Rights — Peg Britton @ 11:37 am

It couldn’t be a more clear-cut issue. Women need to be able to control their own futures, and the way to make that possible is through readily available contraception (which would consequently save 700,000 lives per year). Seriously, how could we possibly have gender equality without it?

Take a look at this video, please.



Filed under: political musings, Women's Rights — Peg Britton @ 7:44 am

Missouri Claire McCaskill’s Republican Senate opponent, Todd Akin, justified his anti-choice views by explaining that victims of “legitimate rape” don’t get pregnant. He commented, “If it’s legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.”

Akin’s stupidity is an abomination.   His  kind of dangerous ignorance and attack on women has no place in politics, let alone the Senate of the U.S.



Filed under: political musings, Women's Rights — Peg Britton @ 11:25 am

Why aren’t women rebelling against the conservative, right-wing white males who are forcing women into maternity roles? They want to outlaw abortions and contraceptives so there are more and more white children.  White conservative men want to keep women at home reproducing more white children so they maintain their majority status and their political powers in a white male dominated society.  This is a disaster in the making. Our world population is predicted by the United Nations to top 9 billion by 2050. That’s less than 40 years from now. We might have the room for all those additional people, but we do not have the resources to support them.  Women’s rights…what few of them there are…are slowing disappearing.



Filed under: political musings, Women's Rights — Peg Britton @ 9:54 am




Washington — President Barack Obama says he now supports same-sex marriage, ending months of equivocation on a subject with powerful election-year consequences.

Obama says he has concluded that it is important for him to affirm that he thinks same-sex couples should be able to get married. He says he came to the conclusion over the course of several years of talking to family and friends.

Obama has previously said his personal views of gay marriage were evolving, a stance that frustrated gay rights supporters.

Obama revealed his support for gay marriage in an interview with ABC News.

On the other hand…

An overwhelming North Carolina vote to define marriage as legal only between a man and woman dealt a strong blow to gay marriage supporters this week.


There are some states where it makes no sense to hold the National Democratic Convention as there is so much un-Democratic sentiment regarding civil rights/equal rights/women’s rights ….North Carolina, Kansas, Texas, Oklahoma…etc. being among them.  Charlotte et al will reap 160 million over it…
Stay tuned….it isn’t over yet.



Filed under: political musings, Sam Brownback, Civil/Gay Rights, Women's Rights — Peg Britton @ 9:21 am


State Representative Jan Pauls serves the 102nd District which includes central Hutchinson.
Did you know…
Jan Pauls supports Sam Brownback and Kris Kobach and his effort to suppress your vote?
Jan Pauls voted to raise your sales taxes?
Jan Pauls supports Fred Phelps’s bigoted views?
Jan Pauls supports Sam Brownback and the radical Republican war on women?
Paid for by the Kansas Democratic LGBT caucus, David Dove, Treasurer.



Filed under: political musings, LGBT, Civil/Gay Rights, Women's Rights — Peg Britton @ 11:47 am


Here is the link to the  City of Salina’s page, “Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Amendment to City Ordinance Information”, including the long awaited link to the city prepared definition and fact sheet.  It has been a subject of heated controversy and misinformation since its introduction.

Below are a few of the letters in opposition to the ordinance that were submitted by Ellsworth County residents.  They, along with others, can be found on the above site.   Don’t you just wonder how all this misinformation, bigotry and prejudice against others can pass through seemingly intelligent minds in today’s enlightened society?







Filed under: political musings, LGBT, Civil/Gay Rights, Women's Rights — Peg Britton @ 1:06 pm

The Senate voted by a margin of 68 to 31 to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act for another five years. The 1994 law gives federal law enforcement agencies tools to combat crime against women. The reauthorization adds provisions relating to Native American and immigrant women, and sexual orientation. The House is likely to pass a bill similar to the current authorization.
By 68 yeas to 31 nays (Vote No. 87), Senate passed S. 1925, to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act of 1994.

Sen. Marco Rubio – a strong contender for the GOP vice-presidential nomination – is finding his vote against reauthorizing the Violence Against Women Act to be a source of controversy.

Rubio was on the short end of a 68-31 vote in the U.S. Senate on Thursday. And with women’s issues hotly contested in the run-up to the presidential election, Floridians Saturday marched in Tallahassee, Orlando and Fort Lauderdale, vowing a strong turnout at the polls on such matters as abortion, contraception, women’s health care and services for those who have been battered or raped.

“If they want war, they will get war,” shouted Sen. Arthenia Joyner, D-Tampa, at the Old Capitol. “It won’t come with guns or knives, but something the Republicans fear even more – our votes.”



Filed under: prairie musings, political musings, Civil/Gay Rights, Women's Rights — Peg Britton @ 5:17 pm

Today is Equal Pay Day. The sad fact is, in 2012, American women still earn an average of only 77 cents for every dollar men make. This terrible wage gap has dire consequences for not only women, but for their families as well.

But Republicans think that 77 cents is more than enough for women. Just a few weeks ago, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker repealed an equal pay law, yet again turning the clocks back. When Mitt Romney campaigned in Wisconsin, he repeatedly called Scott Walker a “hero” and a “man of courage.” And just last week, Republican Pete Hoekstra, running for Senate in Michigan against EMILY’s List champion Debbie Stabenow, called the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act “a nuisance.”

Let’s get real: there’s nothing courageous about attacking the economic security of women and their families. Rolling back equal pay laws is just another battle in the Republican War on Women. And we’re simply not going to stand for it.

From Emily’s List.



Filed under: political musings, Pro-life/Pro-choice, LGBT, religion, Women's Rights — Peg Britton @ 8:27 pm

Ria Misra, Woman Up
After more than 60 years together, Jimmy Carter has announced himself at odds with the Southern Baptist Church — and he’s decided it’s time they go their separate ways. Via Feministing, the former president called the decision “unavoidable” after church leaders prohibited women from being ordained and insisted women be “subservient to their husbands.” Said Carter in an essay in The Age:

At its most repugnant, the belief that women must be subjugated to the wishes of men excuses slavery, violence, forced prostitution, genital mutilation and national laws that omit rape as a crime. But it also costs many millions of girls and women control over their own bodies and lives, and continues to deny them fair access to education, health, employment and influence within their own communities.

And, later:

The truth is that male religious leaders have had — and still have — an option to interpret holy teachings either to exalt or subjugate women. They have, for their own selfish ends, overwhelmingly chosen the latter. Their continuing choice provides the foundation or justification for much of the pervasive persecution and abuse of women throughout the world.

After watching everyone from philandering politicians to Iran’s president taking a sudden look heavenwards when the roof starts to come down on them, it’s refreshing to see Carter calling out the role of religion in the mistreatment of women.

The question for Carter — and for others who find themselves at odds with leadership — is, when a group you’re deeply involved in starts to move away from your own core beliefs, do you stay and try to change from within or, at some point, do you have to look for the exit? Carter did give the former a shot — in recent years publicly criticizing and distancing himself from church leadership, while staying involved with his church. Now, he’s seeing if absence might do what presence did

See:  Losing My Religion for Equality by Jimmy Carter



Filed under: political musings, Pro-life/Pro-choice, LGBT, GOP, Women's Rights — Peg Britton @ 5:29 pm

Alaska Republican Says Women Should Have To Get Permission From Men To Get An Abortion
March 22, 2012
By Stephen D. Foster Jr.

Conservatives aren’t even bothering to cover up the real reasons why they want to ban abortion anymore. Now they’re just admitting that they want to force women to be submissive to men. A male Republican lawmaker in Alaska has let the cat out of the bag.

According to The Mudflats, Rep. Alan Dick (fitting name) “said in a House Health and Social Services Committee Hearing last week that he doesn’t believe that when a woman is pregnant, it’s really “her pregnancy.” As a matter of fact, he would advocate for criminalizing women who have an abortion without the permission via written signature from the man who impregnated her. He stated, “If I thought that the man’s signature was required… required, in order for a woman to have an abortion, I’d have a little more peace about it…”   He didn’t say whether a rapist would be able to send his signature by fax from prison, or not.

Rep. Dick’s sexist comments aside, Alaska Republicans are also seeking to pass legislation that would violate the privacy and personal liberty of women, and would even misinform them.

Despite the fact that the state Supreme Court in Alaska has ruled that women should have access to abortion without being burdened, Republicans in the state are waging war against women’s rights. In the state Senate, Republicans are pushing SB 191, which forces women to undergo an ultrasound before having an abortion. In the House, the GOP is trying to pass HB 363, which forces state employees to lie to women about their pregnancy options and bans them from referring women to abortion providers and other abortion services.

Clearly, this war against women is all about forcing women to be completely submissive to men. Mr. Dick said as much. These conservative males want to turn back the clock on women’s rights in America and go back to a time when women were property and were restricted to carrying babies and cooking in the kitchen. Many of today’s conservatives even believe that women shouldn’t be allowed to have jobs and should be punished for having pre-marital sex. It won’t be too much longer before Republicans try to repeal women’s voting rights out of some sick belief that women can’t be involved in politics. The Republican Party has become a laughingstock. It is a party that belongs in 19th or 18th century America or perhaps further back. It certainly doesn’t belong in this century. At any rate, the GOP is full of raving sexist chauvinist pigs and since women make up over half of the American population, Republicans are basically committing political suicide by attacking their rights, their privacy, their health, and their independence.



Filed under: political musings, print news, Pro-life/Pro-choice, blogs, Women's Rights — Peg Britton @ 11:24 am

Of course this never would have been an issue if prepubescent boys could get pregnant.

From Daily Kos
U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops offer a compromise on birth control

by Barbara MorrillFollow

Compromise: Do it our way or burn in hell

Since last month’s announcement by the White House that the Affordable Care Act will require employee health insurance to cover contraception without co-pays, we’ve watched as the outrage of celibate men and the Republican Party melded into a perfect storm of religious fervor and political pandering.

But finally, a way out of the apparently controversial concept of providing American women with basic health care has been found. From the general counsel for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, a compromise has been offered:

“There has been a lot of talk in the last couple days about compromise, but it sounds to us like a way to turn down the heat, to placate people without doing anything in particular,” Picarello said. “We’re not going to do anything until this is fixed.”

That means removing the provision from the health care law altogether, he said, not simply changing it for Catholic employers and their insurers. He cited the problem that would create for “good Catholic business people who can’t in good conscience cooperate with this.”

Problem solved! Restrict access to a basic health service for all women.

Of course this never would have been an issue if prepubescent boys could get pregnant.


Filed under: political musings, Women's Rights — Peg Britton @ 8:19 am


Margaret, do you remember how angry we were the day we finally realized that women’s legs are not harder to shave than men’s faces, but rather razors made for women can’t hold a candle to those made for men? And the women’s razors are more expensive to boot. I’d like to meet the asshats at Gillette and give them a piece of my mind. Did they really think we wouldn’t mind just because they made the razors pink?

And speaking of pink, this whole mess with Komen should be a wake-up call to women everywhere. Komen knew damn well that this had nothing to do with mammograms and everything to do with politics. They just thought we wouldn’t notice because the ribbons were pink. They knew what they were getting when they hired Karen Handel. She ran for office in Georgia with a campaign promise to close down Planned Parenthood. Exactly what women’s health clinics did they think we women were using for years before we started racing for a cure? Did they think that the millions of us who had gone to Planned Parenthood before we had health insurance (and even after) weren’t aware of the services we were provided? Trust me. When you go to a place and have a doctor poke around your hoo-ha, you pay attention.

Nancy Brinker, shame on you. You honestly thought your fellow women were so stupid that we would think your reason for defunding Planned Parenthood was somehow different than the never-ending cry for defunding that comes from the far right every election cycle? Well I am here to tell you that it is bad enough when it comes from the male-dominated, testosterone-filled legislatures. But when it comes from a supposedly apolitical women’s health organization, it’s unforgivable. Your original intent when you started this organization was noble and I commend you. But honey, you have lost your way. So much so that you were willing to put tens of thousands of women in harm’s way because the Republican party wants to keep women barefoot and pregnant.

I, for one, am tired of pink razors. And I know I speak for millions of women when I say that from now on if you push us, we will push back. From this point forward, when someone says that you fight like a girl, they had better watch out. We girls know how to fight when our backs are against the wall. No longer is it acceptable that we are half the population but only 16% of the Senate, 16% of the House of Representatives and 16% of the Governors. Margaret, did you know that the proportion of women in America’s Congress is about half the average for national legislative bodies throughout the world? Well honey, you and I are not dead yet, and we sure as hell aren’t leaving this world anytime soon if the women’s movement to date has only gotten us this far.

In the past Margaret and I have stood up for Planned Parenthood. But that is no longer good enough. Today, tomorrow and every day that we have left on this planet, we won’t just stand up for them, we will stand up for women everywhere. We will vote for them. We will advocate for them. We will fight for them. And we will start right here. Right now. My grandson tells us that people from all over the nation and even from other countries read this web page blog of ours. Well, I can’t imagine why, but if you are going to read it, then you should use your head for something other than a hat rack and learn a thing or two about the real Planned Parenthood.

Yes. They provide abortion services. Deal with it because they also do so much more and we remember the world before them. It wasn’t pretty.

I called a Board Member for Planned Parenthood in my community and we had a good talk. I found out that even I didn’t know the whole story. And after you read this, I challenge you to do what she asked me to do: inform the uninformed and educate the misinformed.

Planned Parenthood provides healthcare – pap smears, breast and pelvic exams, colposcopies, treatment for sexually transmitted diseases, and birth control for both women and men – most without access to any other health care services. About 97% of their services are for this basic healthcare. If you want to talk about abortion services then you should at least know the truth. Providing that service for women who are faced with that daunting decision accounts for less than 3% of what Planned Parenthood does nationally. Less than three percent. They also provide prenatal care, vasectomies and adoption referrals. One Planned Parenthood clinic does more in a day to prevent abortions than the entire Pro-Life movement does in a year. We might not agree on abortion, but we should at least be able to agree that they should be safe, legal and rare.

If you want to talk about Planned Parenthood then talk about the thousands of uninsured women for whom the doctor or nurse at Planned Parenthood is the only health professional they will see this year. Tell them about the divorced 40-year-old woman who, for the first time, finds herself without health insurance and how she turned to Planned Parenthood to ensure that she is able to maintain her health and wellness. Planned Parenthood has never been just about sex and birth control. It has always been about ensuring women are healthy enough to care for the children they one day may bring into this world. And yes, it is also about making sure they are informed in their decisions not to bring children into this world.

Tell your Tea Party friends what good fiscal sense Planned Parenthood education and prevention programs make – that for every dollar spent providing family-planning services, $4 are saved in Medicaid costs. Remind them that more than one-third of the individuals who seek help from Planned Parenthood make less than $50 a week. That’s right – $50 a week.

If you are going to talk about Planned Parenthood, then at least have the courage to speak the truth. We knew the Komen decision was politically motivated because we know that far right politicians are the ones who continue to spread untruths and misinformation about Planned Parenthood.

Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum, Ron Paul, and Newt Gingrich all stand ready to restrict a woman’s access to birth control and her right to make her own childbearing decisions. They will cater to the far right and happily deny essential health care to millions of women. The Republican field is united in its determination to overturn Roe v. Wade; to appoint Supreme Court justices supportive of that goal; and to end government funding of any kind to Planned Parenthood for family planning services, cancer screenings and other vital health services provided to low-income women. By the way, Planned Parenthood does not receive government funding for abortions. Although for the life of me, I can’t imagine why not.

Mr. Gingrich has called for punishing judges who make abortion rulings not to his liking. Mitt Romney supported the “personhood” initiative in Mississippi that would have given human fertilized eggs the legal rights and protections that apply to people, and outlawed abortion as well as some of the most widely used forms of contraception and in-vitro fertilization. For goodness sakes Rick Santorum, the candidate who won the first primary this year, doesn’t even believe in birth control at all.

If you really, honestly want to reduce abortions in this country, the last thing you want to do is vote for a Republican. If you want to reduce abortions start in your own home by educating your children. Teach your sons to respect women and arm your daughters with information about birth control. If you are so outraged by abortions that your only criteria for a presidential candidate is that he be obsessed with my uterus, then arm your daughters with all the information she needs to protect herself from all those sons who were raised by politicians in Texas and Virginia. And if you really care, make a donation to Planned Parenthood or this other organization called Annie’s List. My grandson says that if you “click” on the underlined words in the previous sentence it will take you to a place you can make a donation on the internet. It couldn’t be any easier than that.

This November, I say we show them what it really means to Fight Like A Girl. Somebody call Gloria Steinem because we’ve got some more balls to bust. I mean it. Really.


Clicking on those words and you can make a donation? How fancy. I hope they know what to do with yours and my checks when they arrive in the regular old mail. Don’t forget. Stamps have gone up to 45 cents dear. Why isn’t anyone outraged about that? Howard keeps mumbling something about it being privatized.


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