I recently watched the Penn & Teller's Bullshit episodes about abstinence, teen sex and family values. They pointed out something poignant about the conservatives involved in these topics: they're not accustomed to having people disagree with them. There are, in fact, subgroups in this country that are so cloistered that any foreign lifestyle is completely unknown. The higher-ups who oppose abortion, for example, may very well be unfamiliar with anyone who's open about a beneficial abortion (or who's life was made unbearable by not being able to get one).
And then this happened: http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2012/04/07/wisconsin-s-repeal-of-equal-pay-rights-adds-to-battles-for-women.html
Scott Walker signed bills that:
- Block insurance companies from covering abortion
- Remove contraception from the sex education curriculum
- Overrule the objections of the Wisconsin Medical Association to interfere with doctors on counseling women on abortion
- Eliminate the states key protection for women trying to get equal pay for equal work.
These are symptoms of a large national shift which had most visibly arisen when the House nearly removed government funding from Planned Parenthood (which gave me a free pap smear and IUD thankyouverymuch).
Don't get me wrong, Scott Walker is a fucking idiot. No argument there. But I wonder if other politicians have really just been sheltered from people who benefit from Planned Parenthood, from comprehensive sex ed, from access to legal and healthy abortions (and who talk openly about it), etc. Where are the loud feminists? Who's upfront and vocal about what our lives need when a "traditional marriage" isn't an option or even wanted? Ask a few people who don't relate to feminism to name five things Hillary Clinton supports, if they know who Jessica Valenti is, why so many Women of Color refused the SlutWalk, etc.