"Pro-Life" Isn't.

One of the great coups of the anti-choice movement was getting their hands on such a generalized, warm-fuzzies, can't-argue-with-that name as "pro-life" and securing its usage in popular discourse.  According to that moniker, they are in favor of life!  Who could possibly say that's a bad thing without sounding like a total asshole?  Life is a good thing to be in favor of, right?  Who wants to be anti-life?  Yeah.  They kicked our ass on that one.  Pro-choice is an accurate statement of what we believe, but it doesn't have the ring or raw power of a phrase like "pro-life".

Thanks to our refusal to use their preferred title, though, it's falling out of use in favor of the more accurate "anti-abortion".  NPR, just a few months ago, issued a statement declaring they would no longer use the terms pro-choice and pro-life in their reporting, but would instead refer to "advocates/opponents of abortion rights."  

But why do we refuse to play along and call them pro-life?  Because they aren't.  Because their concern for life begins and ends in the womb.  Once you're on the other side of the birth canal, you're on your own. Pro-choicers have joked about that for years, in a lolsobby sort of way - I remember a bitterly funny political cartoon I saw once (have tried to find it several times since, and never can), depicting a pregnant Latina woman with a toddler holding her hand, standing in a rainstorm, and a white male politician-looking guy solicitiously holding an umbrella over himself and her pregnant belly, leaving her and her child in the rain* - and have prodded at so-called pro-lifers to support things like health care for pregnant women and contraceptive coverage, in order to actually reduce the abortion rate.  They refuse, repeatedly, to hew to their stated values.  They do not earn their title.  And so I refuse to give it to them.

Unconvinced?  Still willing to ascribe positive, if desperately misguided, motives to anti-choicers, and give them the benefit of doubt that they, at least, really believe they're saving babies?  Lolwhut.  A few days ago, when a Democrat-authored bill aimed at lowering the US's abysmally high infant mortality rate through the use of community-based health programs came up for a vote in the House, 64 Republicans voted against it.  The nays included such anti-abortion crusaders as Michele "WTF" Bachmann and Virginia "Dear Gods Who Let You Near The Laws?" Foxx.  I did some random googling of various names on the nay rolls, and turned up, without exception, Republicans with 100% ratings from National Right to Life Committee/0% ratings from NARAL.  These are heavy-duty "pro-lifers".  And when push came to shove, they voted AGAINST a bill that is about saving actual babies' lives.  Actual.  Living.  Babies.  You know, these are the people who are all "Think of the innocent baybeez!" when you're talking abortion.  And yet when you want to talk about infant health and infant mortality rates, it becomes "fuck those babies."  

So if it really is about saving babies, not controlling and demeaning women, how do you explain that?  Why isn't the almighty baby coming first in the priorities here?  What kind of stultifying level of cognitive dissonance would you have to endure in order to simultaneously genuinely believe that the life of the unborn child is of paramount importance and overrides all other concerns like the incubator's health and life, and yet vote against a bill aimed at saving the lives of living infants?  It's not even fucking remotely imaginable.

Anti-choicers are truly the people to whom it's only a precious baby until it's born.

 *ETA: The comic, it has been found!  Fuiin Ekusu, in the comments, provided me with a link to a FB group which uses the comic as their image. 


Bryan Fischer, Yet Again: Hetero Anal Sex, Lesbians Do Not Exist

Bryan Fischer, the one-man 3-ring circus of bigotry and fuckbaggery, is at it yet a-fucking-gain.  He, like so many anti-gay bigots, has huge hangups about teh buttsecks, and so focuses his bigotry on ass-sex to an embarrassing degree, a la Porno Pete LaBarbera.  Honestly, if you're this obsessive over other people's sexual proclivities, you need therapy, not your own radio show.

Here's the prize quote, from Fischer's anti-DADT rant-turned-blog-post (via Bryan Fischer Right Wing Watch):
Homosexual conduct is deviant sexual conduct. Homosexuals are defined by one characteristic and one characteristic only: they want to use the anal cavity for sex. This kind of sexual conduct is aberrant and carries enormous health risks.
Attention Bryan Fischer: straight couples do it up the butt, too.  This public service announcement brought to you by the reality-based sexual facts community.  Where have you been while the media has freakouts about teens who have (straight) anal sex to preserve their technical virginity?  And articles show up about whether or not men have come to *expect* anal from women they date?  For the love of all the gods, man, go browse a mainstream porn store for ten minutes.  I doubt it would even take that long to find "Ass Titans #4"*.  Also?  Not all male-homosexual couples have anal sex.  Some do, some don't.  Just like not all hetero couples have vaginal-penetrative sex.  And aren't you forgetting something?  Or rather, someone?  Very many someones?  Who are also categorized under the general term "homosexual", but who are not men?  Yes, them.  Lesbians.  Some of whom *also* enjoy anal sex, and some of whom do not.  

At any rate, this is a ludicrous level of Othering based on sexuality.  Male homosexuality is defined solely by buttsex?  As well to say that "heterosexuals are defined by one characteristic and one characteristic only: they want to stick their penises in vaginas/they want to have penises stuck in their vaginas."  See how stupidly reductive that is?  No one rational would claim that hetero relationships are based solely on wanting to have PIV sex.  Heterosexuals are defined by being attracted to and forming loving relationships with members of a different gender from their own.  Likewise, homosexuals are defined by being attracted to and forming loving relationships with members of their own gender.  And bisexuals are defined by being attracted to and forming loving relationships with members of multiple genders, and asexuals are defined by not being attracted sexually to other people, but forming loving relationships nonetheless.  See how that works?  

Bonus points to the metric fucknugget for these snippets, too...
We would be left with a military comprised of nothing but sexual deviants and those who celebrate sexual deviancy. That is a guaranteed path to a permanently and irreversibly emasculated military
The impact on readiness, retention, and recruitment would have been utterly catastrophic. Character-driven officers, gone. Character-driven service members, gone. Character-driven chaplains, gone. Character-driven recruits, gone.
So, masculinity is what defines our military and protects us (from what?  Aside from 9/11, which, terrorism is not the kind of thing you can effectively use a military against, we haven't been attacked by anything or anyone we could reliably need the military to defend against), and if we allow it to be "emasculated" it will become worthless.  I'm sure that's news to the many women serving in the military currently.  Nice little dose of misogyny and patriarchal framing there.  And apparently, LGBs and our allies have no character, and are in fact antithetical to retaining people of character.

Frankly, Fischer, given a choice between an all-rainbow-uniforms military composed entirely of buttsex-having gays and lesbians, and your "$MILITARY_TITLEs of character", I will happily welcome our new buttsexing overlords.  Now please, STFU.

*Why yes, I totally did go google "anal porn dvds" in order to give you an authentic anal sex porn DVD title.  See how dedicated I am to you? ;-)


The Definition of Family: I Do Not Think It Means What You Think It Means

This weekend is the Values Voter Summit - yet another wearying conference where hateful conservative demagogues gather to preach at each other about how awesome they are and how horrible the rest of the world is.  This one features a veritable who's who of the hate movement, including the likes of Bryan "All Muslims are inbred and violent and should be deported from the U.S./Gay sex is domestic terrorism" Fischer, Christine "Masturbation is adultery" O'Donnell, and ex-Senator Rick "Man-on-dog/Frothy Mix*" Santorum.  You know, most of us who pay attention to this kind of thing were already aware that these are terrible, terrible people who should never be allowed any authority over other peoples' lives, but it's truly breathtaking the things they'll say in their "natural habitat", so to speak, surrounded by other like-minded haters.  Here's a clip of ex-Sen Frothy Mix, courtesy of Right Wing Watch, explaining how there are no families in poor neighborhoods:

The size and scope of government is directly related to the virtue of her people. Go into the neighborhoods in America where there is a lack of virtue, what will you find? Two things. You will find no families, no mothers and fathers together in marriage. And you will find government everywhere. Police, social service agencies, why? Because without faith, family and virtue, government takes over.
You know, we knew they wanted to redefine "family" to cut out all same-sex pairings, even those with children.  That's not news.  But now it seems Frothy Mix wants to go a step further and eliminate from the definition of family anyone except one woman, one man, married to each other, with children (probably only ones that are biologically theirs, but that's just an educated guess on my part).  Single parents and their children?  Are not families.  Grandparents raising their grandchildren because their children are single parents?  Are not families.  Hetero couples with children, who can't afford the $75 for a marriage license or who don't choose to partake in that social tradition?  Are not families.

I've got two big fuck-yous here.  The first is this:  You know what makes a fucking family, Mr. Frothy Mix?  Choices and love.  The choice to spend your life with someone.  The love you feel for a siblings of the heart, whether they are siblings in blood or not.  That makes a family.  There is a family-in-your-sense-of-the-word out in TN, two hetero parents, three charming daughters, living in one house with their cats and dog.  I have absolutely no blood relation to these people at all.  But for the year and a half that I lived in that part of the world, we called one another family.  My now-ex and I would go to family gatherings at their house.  When the husband graduated his military training and his parents couldn't make the drive up for graduation, my ex and I drove through the night to be there, because that's what family does.  I refer to them as my heart-brother and heart-sister, and their children are my nieces.  My fiance and I live together, with no children and no plans to, and we won't be married until Prop H8 is finally repealed.  We are still family, because we have chosen to be.  On the subject of single parents and single parenting: my parents divorced when I was 18, and my brother was 14.  For the years that my brother lived with my mom and my father lived elsewhere, were we no longer a family?  What about a man who has lost his wife and is parenting his children alone?  Because his wife died, are he and his children not a family?  That suggestion is sick, abhorrent, and morally wrong.  I cannot say it strongly enough, Mr. Frothy Mix.  Kindly remove your head from your rectal opening and look around you at the diversity of families that populate the world.  We are not all one-man-one-woman-2.5-kids.  That is not the only way of doing things.  And it is sickeningly disrespectful of millions of people and the families they have been born to or chosen, to claim that "there are no families" because you don't see enough married hetero couples with children.

Second, what the fuck is up with this way of referring to "poor neighborhoods" like it's another planet populated with a strange alien people called "the poor"?  The way you phrase this, it's *abundantly* clear you are not talking *to* poor people, but *about* them.  Are you poor?  From a poverty background?  No?  Then STFU on this moralizing-at-the-poor thing.  This is not the only place I've seen this attitude crop up recently, and it's also disgusting and wrong.  People living at or below poverty level are still, y'know, PEOPLE.  Not moral problems to be fixed, not some endangered species you need to discuss how to handle.  PEOPLE.  

Look for more to come from this Values Voter Summit, including a rant on the idiocy of the name.

*The "Frothy Mix" thing came from his offensive comments about gay marriage a few years ago, when gay sex-advice columnist Dan Savage decided to hold a reader contest to make up the most offensive/grossest definition of "santorum" they could.  The definition ended up being "The frothy mix of lube and fecal matter which is sometimes a byproduct of anal sex."  Savage put up a website touting that definition and readers and activists across the internet Google-bombed it to bring it to the top of the search rankings.  Go ahead.  Google "Rick Santorum".  I'll wait... Anyway, those of us who dislike his policies with great intensity will sometimes refer to him as Mr. (Senator, when he was) Frothy Mix because of it.


Quote of the Day (+Zombie Blogsplanation)

First, the quote of the day, from a Salon article about the Dems' "Ooga Booga Republicans!!" strategy for this year's elections...
The great irony of the Obama presidency is that a central promise of his candidacy was to reduce the corrosive cynicism pervading the citizenry regarding our political system, but dashing the hopes of huge numbers of first-time and young voters -- as the "enthusiasm gap" compellingly reveals is occurring -- will likely do more than any other single event to increase cynicism levels to all new heights.  It's easy to imagine large numbers of people who decided for the first time that politics can matter -- people who were enthused supporters who expected the fundamental change they were promised by electing Barack Obama -- giving up "hope" for a long time, if not forever, in the face of a Party which now has little to say to them other than:  But Look Over There at Sarah Palin!!
That pretty much sums it up.  I absolutely fall into this category, btw.  I voted in my first presidential election in 2004, when it was just a desperate "ohdeargodgetBushthefuckoutofofficeplz" attitude.  Nobody was *excited* for Kerry, but he was a democrat, and he was Not Bush.  And then Obama's campaign came.  I was one of the many young voters, although not a first-timer, who was swept up in the fervor.  I believed with all my naive little heart.  I hoped!  I changed!  I hoped for change!  I donated time, and for the first time donated money too!  And now I'm counting down until 2012 when we can see the end of the Third Term of GW Bush right alongside my Teabagger-Republican father, although for diametrically opposed reasons.

Let me tell you just how disillusioned with the Democratic Party I am: my family has always been a bit fanatical about doing one's civic duty by voting.  We vote.  We always vote.  Growing up, my parents would each put their ballot stub on the fridge when they got home with it, and I would look at it and imagine the day when I had one to put up there, too.  "If you don't vote, you can't complain" was a common refrain around our house.

This November?  If I vote at all - and I'm considering not - it won't be for Dems.  I might vote Green.  I might not vote at all, except for the propositions (CA's prop system is so fucking broken) and voting against Meg Whitman for governor because she scares me.  But even there, I'm not voting *for* Jerry Brown, I'm voting *against* Whitman.  And I really truly hate that it's come to this.  But there it is.  Thanks, Obama administration.  My bubble: you bursted it.

Now for the blognews:  I realize this blog is kind of coming back from the dead all zombified right now.  I have been gone a long time.  No, I'm not dead.  Clearly.  What I am, however, is employed.  Readers who follow me on Twitter know I have a job at Lane Bryant these days (a plus-sized women's clothing retailer), and may or may not have noticed that it is eating up all my time and also kind of devouring my soul.  Posting has ground to a halt under the weight of stress and work and I'm trying to figure out how to fit blogging in there along with some leisure time on WoW.  (How do people do it?  I know there are lots of people out there who manage to work and have hobbies and a social life all at once.  What am I doing wrong?)  Anyway.  I am sorry.  I've missed it, and you, all of you, whether you comment or not. 

So here it is:  I'm sorry for the absence.  I'm going to work on this time-management thing.  While I'm still figuring it out, posting will be a bit spare, probably only once or twice a week.  Hopefully that will get better with time and practice.  But as of now...I am back.


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