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Please begin with an informative title:

The ultra-fundamentalist wing of the Religious Reich (Republicans and Democrats alike) has been fighting abortion for years, pretty much since the ink was dry on Roe v. Wade. But they're not content to stop at abortion -- they're out after all forms of reproductive choice, including birth control.

Follow me below the twisted Cheeto for more...

Intro

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Anyone remember this little tidbit from "Sean Hannity's Greatest Hits"?

Other than revealing facts about Hannity that requires copious amounts of brain bleach to expunge, here's his point: erectile dysfunction is a "medical condition", but contraception is a "lifestyle choice". Ignore the complications like swollen feet, back pain, morning sickness, and potentials for gestational diabetes and eclampsia, just to name a few drawbacks...ladies, you choose to have sex then you pay the piper. Ignore the fact that it takes some sort of male intervention to get the woman pregnant, unless you're a Jewish teenage girl in the late centuries before the Common Era (if you're of a sufficient religious bent). It's all on the woman -- and if you don't want to get pregnant, either tell the dude "No" (and risk getting raped anyway) or pay through the nose to protect yourself.

Now we've got another man (surprise!) who says that Obama's ruling that employers must provide contraceptive coverage to their employees (not just women, but men who might want it for their covered dependents) is killing babies. Ladies and gentlemen, Rep. Jeff Fortenberry (R-NE):

Fundamentaly, I bellieve this is a bailout for Planned Parenthood because what it does is provide a number of electives that are now free and it is ideologically and politically driven because it is unrelated to the basic needs of health care, most of which is driven by the onset of chronic illness -- that’s about 74-75% of where the costs come from. So if we were serious about trying to get underneath the underlying factors that are driving up health care costs and really worry about prevention, we’d focus on health and wellness and chronic disease prevention. That just leads me to conclude that this was politically and ideologically driven.

It’s a bailout for Planned Parenthood, it’s a direct subsidy to the abortion industry, who is entangled with these services, that’s their political agenda, that’s their ideology, and they are making you and me pay for it. It’s simply wrong.

You can hear the audio clip over at Right Wing Watch.

There seems to be some major disconnects here. First of all, contraception prevents conception (from the late 19th cent.: from contra-‘against’ + a shortened form of conception), ergo, reduces the need for abortions. If you're using an effective form of contraception, you likely won't need an abortion except in the case of failure of that method; for example, oral contraceptives can lose their effectiveness if you are taking antibiotics, and condoms can sometimes break or even slip off (quite familiar with the latter result).

Maybe Rep. Fortenberry needs a visit to Rachel Maddow's Man Cave:

Second, if women are able to avoid abortions, and can get affordable birth control elsewhere, wouldn't that actually reduce the clientele of Planned Parenthood? Why look for a Planned Parenthood office if you can go down the street to your friendly neighborhood CVS or Walgreens to get your monthly pills or diaphragm jelly, or have your IUD inserted in the privacy of your own gynecologist's office?

The final kicker though is that Dingleberry, sorry Fortenberry, in that same statement talks about "health and wellness and chronic disease prevention". How many hours of productive work are lost to absences due to pregnancy-related illnesses? If a woman has a condition that would put her health at risk if she became pregnant, wouldn't birth control be considered "chronic disease prevention"? What if she, or her husband, had a family history of multiple sclerosis or cerebral palsy muscular dystrophy or other debilitating conditions? Wouldn't the ability to plan one's family to have healthy children be part of a healthy lifestyle?

"But wait!" cries the average anti-choice activist. "Many contraceptives, like The Pill and the IUD, prevent implantation of the fertilized egg, thus they are actually causing abortions!"

Fine, you feel that way? Then it's time to go after the biggest abortionist of all.

GOD.

(Bear with me Big Guy, I'm making a political point here -- hold off on the lightning bolts, please?)

Let's look at it this way. If life begins when the sperm and egg do their thing down below, then anything that prevents implantation is abortion, right?

Your average woman, if she doesn't get pregnant (does not have a fertilized egg implant in her uterus and develop into embryo, fetus and baby), will have approximately 500 menstrual cycles over the course of her lifetime. (There's an entire industry of tampon, pad and feminine hygiene manufacturers and their shareholders that depends on that fact of nature.) If that same average woman has unprotected sex in that month (yes, it happens) or their method of birth control fails, there's a chance that there will be a fertilized egg that, for whatever reason, does not implant into the prepared uterus to start the 9-month (approximately) process. In addition, miscarriage rates (medically known as spontaneous abortion) are approximately 10-20% in the early weeks of pregnancy (up to 20 weeks). So if these folks are really concerned about the unborn, why not ask God why He is killing all these innocent lives? (Obviously a woman Goddess wouldn't be so heartless.)

The ultimate goal of the ultra-religious is not just the subjugation of women, but of men as well. A woman who cannot control her own reproduction is at the mercy of men...and men who cannot choose when to produce offspring with the woman they love is at the mercy of society, always forced to work to support an ever-growing brood that he has no control over. If you're that busy working to support your family, then you're not going to have the time or the energy to fight the true injustices in the status quo.

7:47 PM PT: Wow, Community Spotlight, Rec list, and republished by all those fine groups? Guess it was worth kicking the spouse off the computer this morning! Many thanks.


Extended (Optional)

Originally posted to Just a thought... on Wed Jan 25, 2012 at 12:20 PM PST.

Also republished by Abortion, Feminism, Pro-Feminism, Womanism: Feminist Issues, Ideas, & Activism, Friends of Keith Olbermann and Rachel Maddow, Pro Choice, and Community Spotlight.

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