History Evades Us Again?

Recently, I’ve been having political conversations with my friends that often start incredulously with “Does no one seriously remember when ___ happened?” The blank is often filled in with some politician’s name referenced with a GOP hopeful. (See Bill Clinton affairs re: Herman Cain “I’m sexy and you know it, even if you don’t.”; Michelle Bachman re: Stupid Shit Sarah Palin Said That Didn’t Work for Her Either; Rick Santorum re: himself).

Ah, yes. The easy-to-pick-on, eternally idiotic, Rick “the ‘P’ is silent” Santorum and his really shitty politics.

Let’s refresh a moment, shall we?

In 2003, (P)rick Santorum did an interview with the Associated Press wherein he lambasted welfare (because “well, if it’s my money, I have a right to judge.”), lamented liberalism (blaming it for the “moral relativism” that was corrupting the Catholic Church), and vilified homosexuality (but tempered it by pointing out that “I have no problem with homosexuality. I have a problem with homosexual acts.” Well thank you. I certainly feel better.)

Needless to say, people who were affected by Santorum’s brainless (and bizarrely draconian) comments were infuriated. Sex columnist (and personal hero of mine), Dan Savage, fired back immediately: “There’s no better way to memorialize the Santorum scandal than by attaching his name to a sex act that would make his big, white teeth fall out of his big, empty head.” And so we did.

So why am I so up in arms about this “man”? Well, basically, he and people of his ilk pose a sad and scary threat to human rights across the board. Their ideas about what we should and should not be able to do with our bodies are, at their most fundamental, antiquated, invasive notions that are the true threat to the moral fabric of society. For example, allowing people to claim their sexuality, but never act on it is sick and wrong.

Just like telling a woman she is not allowed to decide for herself when and if she should become pregnant.

When I see the rights of any person being impinged upon, I get upset. But take away a woman’s most basic right to decide how to use and maintain her body, and I’ll lay down some red-headed vengeance on you.

Hence my loathing for our favourite GOP hopeful, (P)rick Santorum, who is apparently full of moral fiber when it comes to protecting little fetuses, but is devoid of any real concern for living, breathing, ex-utero humans. Never mind the traumatizing back alley abortions of the pre-choice era and the 50% maternal mortality rate that they still cause in countries where abortion is stigmatized. Never mind the fact that properly performed abortions have saved the life and future reproductive abilities of a woman (isn’t that right, Mrs. Santorum?) Never mind that we live have a secular government for a reason and THIS ISN’T ABOUT YOUR FUCKING BELIEFS.

As part of his never-fricking-ending endeavor to please God, ole’ (P)Ricky boy has stated time and time again that he will stop at nothing to make sure that we women folk have sex with men and make babies whether we want to or not. Never one for paraphrasing, however, I’ll let him layout his feelings for you in his own words:

“We’ll repeal Obamacare and get rid any idea that you have to have abortion coverage or contraceptive coverage. One of the things that I will talk about that no president has talked about before is I think the dangers of contraception in this country, the sexual liberty idea and many in the Christian faith have said, you know contraception is OK. It’s not OK because it’s a license to do things in a sexual realm that is counter to how things are supposed to be.” (From Caffeinated Thoughts via The Raw Story)

They’re supposed to be within marriage. They are supposed to be for purposes that are, yes, conjugal but also procreative, and that’s the perfect way a sexual union should happen. When we take any part of that out, we diminish the act. If we take one part out, it’s not for the purposes of procreation, it’s not one of the reasons, then you diminish this very special bond between men and women.” (From same Caffeinated Thoughts interview via The Raw Story)

“I would argue, this right to privacy that doesn’t exist in my opinion in the United States Constitution, this right that was created, it was created in Griswold — Griswold was the contraceptive case — and abortion. And now we’re just extending it out.” (AP interview via USA Today)

When asked by ABC News’ Jake Tapper “Would we allow the police to search the sacred precincts of marital bedrooms for telltale signs of the use of contraceptives? Santorum replied, “the state has a right to do that, I have never questioned that the state has a right to do that. It is not a constitutional right, the state has the right to pass whatever statues they have.” (Salon.com)

Credit: Mario Piperni

“I believe and I think that the right approach is to accept this horribly created, in the sense of rape, but nevertheless, in a very broken way, a gift of human life, and accept what God is giving to you.” (From CNN interview with Piers Morgan via The Guardian)

Well, leave it to some guy to point out his belief that a woman carrying a baby is a sacred thing that not even she has the right to mess with. Funny, and here I thought my uterus was part of my body.

It’s a common logical fallacy that right-to-life arguments are black and white. Hell, even I fell into it once. When I was fifteen. And going to an all-girl Catholic school. And living under the roof of my middle-class parents’ home. And very much a virgin.

It never occurred to me that there were people in the world who might actually not want to go through the nine months of (sometimes potentially life-threatening) body-morphing that occurs during pregnancy, or face the lifetime of responsibility that comes after. At that very innocent, very naïve stage in my life, I would have whole-heartedly supported bills like Oklahoma’s Senate Bill 1433, the “Life Begins at Conception Bill”. Fortunately for me, there were women like Senator Constance Johnson, who, in response to 1433, offered the “Every Sperm Is Sacred” amendment, which states that “any action in which a man ejaculates or otherwise deposits semen anywhere but in a woman’s vagina shall be interpreted and construed as an action against an unborn child.”  (Think Progress)

Which begs the question, why is it our responsibility as the bearers of life to have to carry through with pregnancy when nature, “God” and country tell us to, but the men who inseminate us are exempt?

Let’s start by fixing the rape/pregnancy issue, shall we?:  If a rape victim becomes pregnant and is expected to carry her little gift from God to term, I say make the rapist financially responsible as well. And not with welfare and food stamps. Make him get a real job. And make him make an honest woman out of the mother of his child. After all, children born out of wedlock are a sin, and this damage to the morality of the United States of America can only be stamped out if we force rapists and their pregnant victims to marry. She’s already married, you say? Too bad, husband. This is God’s will we’re talking about here, so we must reconcile you. Of course, divorce is a liberal-minded idea and it’s pulling our families apart at the seams, so really, the only way to deal with you is to put you to death. I know, I know. It doesn’t sound like it makes sense given the whole “right to life” thing and all, but you’re not a fetus. You’re a full-grown man with a wife and maybe even some “gifts” of your own, and that makes you expendable.

Tell you what, let’s take the death penalty off the table. It’s too much pressure to have to follow your wife around all day just to make sure she’s not raped (though really, how do you stop God’s will). I have a better idea. We’ll just send you off to war instead.