There Comes a Time When Silence is a Form of Betrayal
The above quote is attributed to Martin Luther King during his efforts to promote civil rights for blacks. The quote is
again appropriate at this point in time, for the attacks on women’s reproductive rights.
Several states are passing or attempting to pass legislation that severely restricts a woman’s right to choose and even limit access to birth control. Congressmen and Senators continue to make outrageous and medically, scientifically false statements about women, pregnancy, rape and abortion. Many bills would force a woman to give birth even if she will die and/or the fetus has a fatal flaw.
Nebraska state Senator Bill Kintner says he doesn’t understand women (and that women don’t even understand themselves) but he has no problem with passing legislation that gives government the right to control women.
North Dakota has passed a law requiring physicians to lie to their pregnant patients who are considering ending a pregnancy by telling them they will be come sterile, they will suffer from life long depression and will be very likely to commit suicide. No study done in the decades since Roe vs. Wade has shown any of that to be true.
The men running for governor and lieutenant governor of Virginia have both compared abortion to slavery.
Virginia Republican party treasurer Bob Fitzsimmons has said “I’m not a big fan of contraception”.
Rick Santorum said during the primary debates last year that “birth control is not okay”.
Ron Paul said that “married people who use birth control are immoral.”
Republican Bobby Franklin proposed (fortunately it was not passed) a bill that would require any woman suffering a miscarriage without a doctor present to report said event to the police within 24 hours or risk facing a year in jail and a $2500 fine. His original proposal recommended the death penalty for any woman having an abortion and the physician who performed it.
Bills are being proposed to require women to purchase a supplemental insurance policy that would cover abortions, even though at this time, most insurances already cover abortions. A lawmaker has compared getting pregnant by rape to a “car accident”, which is covered by specific insurance.
Representative Louie Gohmart (R-Texas) said that women carrying a fetus without a brain should be forced to carry the pregnancy to term and give birth to a baby that will die within minutes.
GOP Representative Trent Franks said that “denying abortion rights is just like ending slavery and the Holocaust.”
Bills have been proposed to consider a single egg a person and a single sperm a person, with all the rights that you and I have.
Bills have been proposed to deny the right to choose to a victim of rape, incest and even to a mother will die if the pregnancy continues.
Several bills have been proposed to prevent insurances from covering birth control. Amazingly, these bills only propose to stop coverage for female forms of birth control, not vasectomies.
In the midst of all these efforts to stop abortion and limit access to birth control, the GOP is attempting to de-fund social services for low-income families. Low income families will be even lower-income if they are forced to give birth when an unwanted pregnancy could have easily been prevented.
I have seen many stories on the news and in various newspapers about women protesting these efforts to deny our constitutional right to choose and to make our own decisions about our health care. What I find sad is that I seldom see men in these pictures. For any man reading this, I ask you…where do you stand? Will you stand for the rights of all the women in your life? Your wife, your sisters, your aunts, your cousins, your nieces and most importantly..your daughters? Why are you so silent? So I say again….
THERE COMES A TIME WHEN SILENCE IS A FORM OF BETRAYAL. Why are you betraying us?