Tag Archives: contraception

Romney’s Logic, or lack thereof

15 Nov

I’m having a very hard time today.  Sometimes I feel like there is this thing called logic, and then all of a sudden something happens and I think that maybe my logic isn’t the right logic afterall because someone who is someone in the grand scheme of things, and not just in a little corner of the internet, says something that is so contrary to my logic that it’s like, wait, what?  Confused?  Let me explain.

I just read this article in the Times that has been going around in different forms about a conference call that Mitt Romney had with his donors and fund-raisers.  In this conference call he accused Obama of winning the election by giving “gifts” to different minority groups.  Okay, so when I see the word “gifts” I think Christmas, Channuka, birthdays!  Last year for my birthday I got this amazing new lamp shade* from Anthropologie (don’t mock me) and a great cherry red stock pot from Le Creuset.  So, did Obama run around giving people fancy new home accent pieces?  Perhaps some useful, and colorful!, kitchen items?  Maybe a sweet new pair of kicks?  No.  Here’s what Obama “gifted” the “minorities”** of this country:

“With regards to the young people, for instance, a forgiveness of college loan interest was a big gift,” Mr. Romney said. “Free contraceptives were very big with young, college-aged women. And then, finally, Obamacare also made a difference for them, because as you know, anybody now 26 years of age and younger was now going to be part of their parents’ plan, and that was a big gift to young people.”

And then there’s this.  Romney was very concerned that the president used his healthcare plan as a tool in mobilizing black and Hispanic voters:

“You can imagine for somebody making $25,000 or $30,000 or $35,000 a year, being told you’re now going to get free health care, particularly if you don’t have it, getting free health care worth, what, $10,000 per family, in perpetuity — I mean, this is huge,” Mr. Romney said. “Likewise with Hispanic voters, free health care was a big plus. But in addition with regards to Hispanic voters, the amnesty for children of illegals,*** the so-called Dream Act kids, was a huge plus for that voting group.”

So now I am going to think back to when Bush did that stimulus plan.  Remember that?  When all of a sudden we all got a check for some money that we were then supposed to spend out in the world to stimulate the economy?****  A lot of people thought that was  good idea.  A lot of people might have called that a gift.  Same goes, I think, for the money a family is “gifted” through access to healthcare.  All of a sudden here is this money not being spent on incredibly costly healthcare that can be repurposed.  It can go towards buying a car, saving to send a child to college, starting a business, or any other number of things.  Or! That family that now has been “gifted” healthcare has healthcare for the first time and is able to seek preemptive medical care rather than relying on emergency room visits or costly procedures to take care of something that could have been avoided.  Now people who previously had to suffer unnecessarily with treatable ailments can get the needed, and widely available, treatment.  It’s the gift that keeps on giving!

All sarcasm aside.  Here’s the thing about all of this.  I find Romney’s comments to be amazingly condescending and rude not only to the man that bested him in the election, but to all of us who voted for that man.  By using the word “gifts” Romney was intentionally playing into an understanding of the word within the political realm as equivalent to a bribe.  There were no bribes involved.  Romney lost the election because while he was yammering on about non-specifics concerning job creation, foreign policy and military strategy, Obama was listening to people and trying to figure out what would actually make this country a more reasonable place to live.  Lack of equal access to birth control and concerns about unwanted pregnancies?  Here, free contraception (not to mention a continuation of Roe v Wade).  Concerns about pre-existing conditions and sky-rocketing healthcare costs?  Here, the Affordable Care Act.  Children of undocumented immigrants not getting a fair shake at the American Dream?  Here, the Dream Act (co-written by Republican Orin Hatch, by the way).  What Obama did was present himself as a man capable of leading this country.  What he did was he listened to the people, and he came up with, or supported, feasible solutions.  That’s not called giving people gifts, Romney, it’s called governing.

So here’s maybe an idea, rather than trying to make up ludicrous, and inaccurate, excuses for why you lost the election, why don’t you look actually at why you lost.  You lost because you were non-specific about things that mattered.  You lost because you listened to the party establishment and aligned yourself with the uber-conservatives rather than the majority of the country.  You lost because you failed to realize that things have changed and you have to convince more than just the white men of your ability to lead.  You lost because you erroneously believed that the person who raised the most money would win the biggest prize.  You lost because you dismissed so many of us.  It sucks, Romney, because like John McCain pre-2008 I always thought you were one of the good guys.  One of the listening guys.  I don’t know, maybe my logic is all wrong.  To me, the logical thing to do would be to bow out gracefully and go back to the drawing board.  Rather than calling sound policy ideas gifts, why don’t you and your party think about how to answer the people’s needs using sound conservative principles.  The Republican party, as far as I know, isn’t about hanging people out to dry.  It’s about a much needed alternative to the Democratic approach to governing.  Although I am a lifelong liberal, I honestly believe that the only way to make this country work better is having a healthy debate.  It’s like an athlete.  An athlete uses the talent, drive and abilities of her biggest opponent in order to become better.  For the Democratic, or Republican, party to live up to expectations and possibilities, for this country to live up to expectations and possibilities, there needs to be drive.  The Democratic party can only be its best incarnation when it is striving to be a better alternative to the best incarnation of the Republican party.  The opposite is just as true.  Unless we have two (more would be better) healthy and functioning parties, we can not have the best governing strategy possible.  For this country to get on a better road, we need some good debate and some healthy competition, not a bunch of blamers and a party-wide abandonment of the needs of the majority of the country.  It’s called logic, Romney.  You should try using it.

*My lamp shade looks sort of like this only significantly more awesome.

**Sometimes use of the word minorities annoys me because it’s not accurate.  Rather than an explanation of numerical fact, it’s more like a forced state of being.  I, as a female, am not actually a member of a group that makes up a minority of the population but am still considered a minority.  Why don’t we call a spade a spade.  We “minorities” are not necessarily the “minority.”  We are the oppressed.  The overlooked.  The intentionally ignored.  The annoyance.

***I despise, I mean despise, the term “illegals.”

****This girl totally took that check and put it straight in her savings account.  Totally against the rules.

An Update! An Ultrasound!

24 Feb

I would like to first announce, for those of you who read my previous post, that I have successfully obtained my driver’s license.  The ways in which I went about doing this cannot be disclosed in a public forum, but suffice it to say that when me and my New York plate-sporting rental car get pulled over on our drive through Mississippi en route to New Orleans this coming week, I will be in possession of the proper documentation.  And not a moment too soon.

In other news, I am dismayed by an article I read today in the New York Times by Sabrina Tavernise entitled “Virginia Lawmakers Backtrack on Conception Bill.”  As many of you may have been following, Virginia recently introduced a personhood amendment very similar to the one that was defeated by Mississippi voters in mid November.  The initiative essentially defined a person “to include every human being from the moment of fertilization, cloning, or the functional equivalent thereof.”  So, no more abortion rights.  Serious road blocks to all kinds of contraception.  Really ugly stuff.  Virgina, however, threw in a little bonus by trying to require women seeking an abortion to undergo an involuntary vaginal ultrasound before being allowed to seek an abortion.*  I am, obviously, pleased that this bill has been quashed, for now.  I am not, however, pleased by this particular paragraph in this article where Tavernise says,

The rapid-fire procedural maneuvering came one day after Mr. McDonnell (governor of Virginia) ordered Republicans in the House of Delegates to soften a bill requiring a vaginal ultrasound before an abortion.  The new version, which requires a non-invasive abdominal ultrasound, appeared aimed at defusing a mounting controversy over the bill that included spoofs on television shows. (Italics mine.)

As far as I am concerned, any involuntary ultrasound, whether administered internally or externally, is invasive.  A woman is being forced, against her will, to undergo a procedure that is not of medical necessity.  There is no reason for it other than to shove the religious and “moral” beliefs of some** into the bodies of many.  I understand that, physically, it can easily be argued, and I would tend to agree, that an internal ultrasound is perhaps more physically invasive than an external one, but to say that women are so unthinking that they cannot be trusted to make the “right” decision unless they undergo this procedure is incredibly insulting.  Every woman is full well capable of deciding for herself what is right for her without seeing the development of a blob of cells in her, not the government’s, her uterus.  I was incredibly dismayed that it was a woman who wrote this article and that this acceptance of a required ultrasound of any kind is so unchallenged by so many that it would be mentioned as a return to the reasonable status quo.  There is nothing reasonable about this requirement and there is nothing non-invasive about it.  It is invasive as hell.

*I would love more than anything to go on a rant here about how incredibly unjust and inhumane this is, but I find myself incapable of reining my disgust in enough to write something that will get my point across.  Also, I imagine people who have read this far probably agree with me and therefore I would be preaching to the choir.

**I also would like to interject here my disgust with the all male panel that was slated to decide the issue concerning religious freedom and the mandate that requires health insurers to cover contraception in the United States.  It seems as though, and I think the lovely Republican Representative from California, Darrell Issa, would agree with me, that women don’t really matter when it comes to issues regarding their own health, of which contraception is one such issue.