The GOP War on Women and Hillary Clinton


We might not have needed Hillary Clinton if the Republicans
had not spent the last seven years (at least) making women’s lives miserable. Women, no matter how men feel about it, have been under attack by the GOP and especially by Conservative Evangelicals.
We remember when Rush Limbaugh called Sandra Fluke a slut because
she wanted to continue to have access to birth control pills. BIRTH CONTROL PILLS! I’m surprised no one recommended that clitoral mutilation should perhaps be adopted as an American rite of passage.
There was an implication that women should not get any pleasure from sexual relations. Representative Steve Pearce (R-N.M.) wanted women to be submissive to their husbands as a way to “fix America”. Women were blamed for the demise of the families which then led to
the demise of the entire social order in the US. OMG – we went to work – and we liked it. It gave some of us a sense of purpose and sometimes prevented negative female problems like frustration, depression, etc. So the GOP told America that “liberated” women can be blamed for the holes in the fabric of the American Dream.
We might not have felt we had to insist on a female President
except for the number of times Congress has tried to “defund” Planned
Parenthood and threatened to shut down the US government in order to do it. We value Planned Parenthood. It has helped huge numbers of women at times when they needed safe, inexpensive, and confidential attention in their lives for a variety of reasons (and it still does). It sort of stands as a symbol of the freedoms women have won. I have a tough time understanding anyone who does not see that the GOP has
been obsessed with women and issues that should only concern women, and perhaps their partners, ever since Obama took office. But none of this is Obama’s doing; he has no beef with women and vice versa.
Clearly the GOP does not intend to wait until numbers are on
their side to overturn Roe v Wade and perhaps make some forms (or all forms) of birth control illegal. They can do this if they control all three branches of government and there will be almost nothing we can do to stop them. The Republicans have created such a threat against women that the only way we will feel safe from losing hard-won rights, granted by law and bolstered by scientific advances, rights that offer freedom to women, is to put a woman in the White House. One reason many women will support Hillary is because things look really grim for us if we don’t.
The GOP has spent seven years riling up all of the groups of
Americans who are not white men or Evangelical women and now they act surprised that the only people in their tent are old white people, including white supremacists like David Duke and the KKK. The Republicans will reap what they sowed, we hope. The media, on the other hand, seems to have suddenly come down with collective amnesia. Hillary Clinton might rather just enjoy being a grandmother, but we can’t let her do that yet. So when the GOP starts in on Hillary, and they will, I hope that at least the women of America will remember what they stand to lose if we put a Republican in the White House.
By Nancy Brisson

More Thoughts on Fundamentalism


My mind is obviously consumed by thoughts of
religion and spirituality this week. I did not know I had been so intensely
involved in the kinds of mental correlations our minds love to make as we take
in seemingly disparate pieces of information and see where they connect and
then try to communicate that synthesis to others. My absorption and my passion
apparently arises out of that very war on women that Republicans conduct but
deny these days.
On several occasions this week as Americans
blocked buses full of immigrant children fleeing Central America and heading to
temporary housing until they could be processed according to law, I heard
protesters doing that thing they love to do any time cameras are around. They
love to list all of their grievances against the government that have led up to
this moment when they are acting in a totally inhumane and selfish manner.
Their grievances often have to do with those pesky “nanny state” rules intended
to keep Americans safe and avoid expensive insurance settlements and law suits
or excessive death and grief. 
Then there are the insulting judgments that have been expressed
against females, that degrading four letter work for “trashy” women that begins
with an “s” and ends with a “t”, which probably stands in publicly for a
number of more colorful slurs used in private, has been heard quite frequently
on TV over the past four years. Women have been accused, by men who are
regularly caught in embarrassing affairs, of being unable to control their libidos.
The condescension offered by men to women because men want to enact religious
laws in America, the same America whose founding fathers cherished a separation
between church and state, has kept religion and Fundamentalism in the forefront
of my mind.
I remember a funny conversation between Leonard’s
mother Beverly Hofstader (played by Christine Baranski) and Penny (played by Kaley Cuoco)
which went something like this:
Beverly: I have been responsible for my own orgasms
for a long time.
Penny: I have been responsible for my own buzz
(alcohol) for a long time.
Well I have been responsible for my own spiritual
well-being or spiritual life for a long time.
This is Existentialism and Existentialism is a
sort of lonely philosophical position to occupy but at least gives people
credit for having intelligence, and is probably more true to the conditions
that actually prevail in the world as we know it. Most people feel that Existentialists are Atheists, but that is not a requirement. And being an Existentialist means that women are
grown-ups too, no longer in need of male guidance (dominance), although we
still appreciate men and the many ways they are different from women. There is
a difference between protecting women from “bad” men and turning women into
meek, submissive people.
I’m sure women could be frightened into
submission, or terrorized and policed into abject dependency, but that could
also be and has been done to men. Given the right circumstances, power,
advantages, and strategies anyone could be rendered powerless and incapacitated
by consistent levels of threat. It is difficult to see the point of doing this
to another human being (especially given horrific historical examples) and it would be
necessary to be constantly on guard to quash escapes or attacks. I don’t think
the human spirit is happy being oppressed for very long.
It also seems counterproductive to cut off those
who might make valuable contributions if not held prisoner. Women around the
world understand this so well. They find ways to contribute even in cultures
which suppress women, refuse to educate them, and keep them hidden away. The
human spirit is not only happy to take responsibility for itself; it insists on
it if that is at all possible. It is like one of those plastic bubbles filled
with air in a swimming pool. Push it down and when you take away the downward
pressure it will pop back up. Sometimes it will even escape from under the
downward pressure even as it is applied and pop up far away.
So, which is worse:
  1.      A
    nanny state that has us wear seat belts, eat healthy food, that restricts where
    we can smoke if we want to, requires child seats and auto insurance and
    mortgage insurance and federal taxes? or
  2.      A
    nanny state which legislates health choices for women, picks a fight with birth
    control used by virtually all women in America, places such strict requirements
    on abortion providers that the law of the land is not overturned legally, but
    is blocked by clever rules; a nanny state that makes it harder to vote (for
    heaven’s sake) and makes corporations people (religious people no less) and
    allows the wealthy to steal from the poor and give as much money to political
    campaigns as they wish (unlimited) and in which men get to make important
    decisions about how women live their lives and insulting judgments about female
    behavior ?

These men are not Existentialists, for sure; they
are Fundamentalists who are doing all this because of their beliefs about
religious morality and because they feel that in a male-dominated world everything
was calm, orderly, and non-violent. There is no era in history which backs this
up. Male-dominated or female–dominated the world has rarely (or never) matched
that utopian description.
I’m willing to keep being responsible for my own
life. I accept that Existentialism offers the human spirit the most freedom. I
reject Fundamentalism as the ultimate nanny state; a nanny state which would
restore the age-old inequality between men and women. If the Fundamentalist
movement wins the day in America, American Democracy ends (at least for women).
And if it ends for women, it actually ends for everyone.
 By Nancy Brisson

War on Women – A Conversation

Most of this conversation took place in an exchange of emails:
TRIMBY:   (The Republican in my Back Yard ) (He is talking about the Larry Flynt attack on S.E. Cupp, a GBTV employee and a woman.)  Where is NOW?  Where is the media on this??  Of course if this was Hillary, Nancy or some other liberal woman, we would never hear the end of it…
TRIMBY:  “There is no war on women,” Glenn (Beck) said this morning, “at least from the Republican Party.”Earlier in the show, Glenn reported on the story of the union thugs who created a piñata of the face of South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley. “The war on women is coming from the left and it sickens me. Ann Romney, of course, has never worked a day in her life. The union piñata that is happening with Nikki Haley, the governor, it’s incredible,” Glenn said. The attack on Nikki Haley isn’t the worst attack on a conservative woman Glenn reported today. “One of our employees with GBTV, S.E. Cupp, has been so incredibly wronged. You would think this would be illegal, but it’s not,” Glenn told listeners this morning. The Blaze reported this morning that Hustler Magazine published a fake photo of S.E. Cupp in a sexual act with what appears to be a penis in her mouth. The pictures is published under the headline “Celebrity Fantasy,” and the text beside the picture asks, “What would S.E. Cupp look like and a [d**k] in her mouth?”Here is what Hustler had to say about S.E.: “S.E. Cupp is a lovely young lady who read too much Ayn Rand in high school and ended up joining the dark side. Cupp, an author and media commentator, who often shows up on Fox News programs, is undeniably cute. But her hotness is diminished when she espouses dumb ideas like defunding Planned Parenthood. Perhaps the method pictured here is Ms. Cupp’s suggestion for avoiding an unwanted pregnancy.”A disclaimer follows: “No such picture of S.E. Cupp actually exists. This composite fantasy is altered from the original for our imagination, does not depict reality, and is not to be taken seriously for any purpose.”Glenn noted that this is a complete falsehood, and despite the disclaimer on the photo, it will now be out there forever. This morning on radio S.E. joined Glenn on-air to discuss the disgusting attack.
ME:  This is what the GOP does lately. Any criticism leveled by Democrats is picked up by the Republicans and used in a slightly new way against Democrats, sort of an “I’m rubber, you’re glue, anything you say bounces off me and sticks to you.” You are citing personal attacks, one-on-one, and, you’re right that that attack you mention in this email, which I had not heard of, is quite trashy and disgusting. I don’t think the Democratic Party has anything to do with that attack. The original war on women was not personal, it was global, in this case meaning against a huge group of women who need health services that are inexpensive and confidential. Starting with Hilary Rosen’s unfortunate comments about Ann Romney, the Republicans have once again shifted this dialogue and made it refer to “mean” personal attacks, whether they were intended to be mean or not.
TRIMBY:  Uh… disagree.  First, trying to separate the direct supports of Democrats and Liberals is impossible.  There are some groups / individuals that are just synonymous with the Democratic party – NOW, Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, Green Movement, Peta, Lesbians, Gay Rights Organization, Unions, Planned Parenthood, ABC, NBC, MSNBC, CBS, CNN, Larry Flynt (although you may not aware of him), most of Hollywood, Michael Moore… The Republicans have a number of people on Talk Radio, Fox News, NRA, Tea Party (although they are seen as too conservative, libertarian for mainstream Republicans). To say it was directly the Democratic Party isn’t the point.  Not supporting abortion is not an attack on women – half the women in the country don’t believe in abortion.  The Democrats, in particular have a war on Religion if anything.  So you don’t consider on Mother’s Day, comparing a woman praise of motherhood to Stalin and Hitler offensive… but rather accidental?  Unfortunate?  Really??  How much more hate filled can the left get?  And it isn’t criticism of a policy… this are direct personal attacks on the women and their families…  your answer… it isn’t important, it is unfortunate, it isn’t the Democratic party… Wow… way to support other women… Funny too how you haven’t heard of it… can you image the response if someone did something like that Michele Obama?  Or perhaps Barbara Walters or some other liberal newscaster… Very disappointing comments from you, I figured you would be much more supportive of other women. 
ME: (This conversation has been “improved” but the intent was not changed.) In the abstract I do support women as a group, but in specific instances I do not support each act by any individual woman, since women do act independently sometimes. We are not clones. I cannot agree when a woman acting as a single person does something I don’t agree with. I think that meanness from the members of any political group is reprehensible and that hate talk is cheap and completely unnecessary. People may think they are being witty, but they are not. However, that said, you’re a man, but although you might argue on behalf of men as a gender, you certainly can’t back each man as an individual. You just listed about 20 men that you cannot give your support to.