Friday: Unfinished business

For a long time now, I’ve been thinking that feminists dropped the ball after they won Roe v. Wade.  Everyone took it down a notch and went back to whatever it was they were doing.  The ERA officially died in 1982.  I was at Point Park in Pittsburgh at a rally the day it happened.  It was important and it was no doubt a very bad thing when it died.  But I was young and stupid and I thought at least we have Roe and cheap, plentiful oral contraceptives.

And that’s where we fell into a trap.  The right wing had us just where they wanted us.  Instead of protecting us, Roe has been used as a political hammer by both parties and as a result, its no longer the protection it was assumed it was.  I say assumed because it never was supposed to be a proxy for true equality.

Today, Louise Trubek, one of the plaintiffs in an earlier contraception case in Connecticut pre-Griswold, seems to agree that we lost the plot in her post in the NYTimes:

Why are issues that the courts decided so long ago still unresolved? Maybe it is time to recognize that law alone is not enough to effect social change. It must be linked to social activism on behalf of women’s rights.

[...]

We can celebrate Griswold, Roe and all the cases that stemmed from the Poe litigation. They are important landmarks in American jurisprudence. But as I look back I am dismayed by how few of the issues I was fighting for at the time of Poe are resolved. To be sure, we have important rights and more legal privacy. But we still have not provided all the support women need to combine rewarding careers and healthy families. Planned Parenthood is under siege and poor women who are seeking comprehensive reproductive care are still at risk. Presidential candidates can get away with saying that all contraception should be outlawed. Comprehensive child care services are difficult to locate, and fully financed family and medical leave is still controversial.

In short, we won the legal battle but not the war. Women are still not guaranteed control over their lives, because the necessary social supports were never secure. The initial goal of Griswold was to help women — and even though the precedent has helped with same-sex marriage laws, those initial needs, especially of poor women, have been left largely unmet.

The universal coverage plan outlined in President Obama’s Affordable Care Act is a good step forward, and we should do all we can to ensure it. Perhaps if activism had been linked to the lawsuits, the aims I fought for would have been secured, and we would be spared the spectacle of Republican candidates threatening, yet again, a woman’s right to control her own fertility.

She’s right.  After we won Roe, we just assumed that social equality would follow on its own.  But that was never going to happen if the activists stopped being active.  I blame my own generation for this.  We straddled the gap between the end of the baby boom and the Gen Xers.  We were children during the activist days and too busy breaking new ground in college and careers to pay any attention to what was happening to our rights.  It was hard enough to get some professor to notice us or some supervisor to recognize our achievements to go out after work and organize.  But without that activism and organization, our accomplishments were illusory.  There was no permanent change in the culture except these two flimsy supreme court rulings.  That is all we had.  And as the right wing started to chip away at them, we didn’t get alarmed enough.  Now the right has almost got its way even with the rulings in place and our rights and equality looks like a matrix of swiss cheese.

So, it’s back to the trenches for us or our daughters will not have the privileges that we had in the 70s and 80s.  If we’re wondering why we get treated badly at work, it’s because the old boys club knows that there are things society can force women to do that can never be forced on men.  It makes us look weak and easy to run over.

It’s still a man’s world out there and we were stupid to think an abortion ruling was going to change that.

*******************

Craig Crawford has a great post on the fallout over Rush Limbaugh’s “Slut” broadcast.   If you missed this fecal vomit from Rush, here’s an excerpt:

[O]n his radio show today, Limbaugh showed no remorse and instead reveled in the attention. Referring to Fluke, Limbaugh demanded that women post sex tapes online if they use insurance-covered birth control:

LIMBAUGH: So Miss Fluke, and the rest of you Feminazis, here’s the deal. If we are going to pay for your contraceptives, and thus pay for you to have sex. We want something for it. We want you post the videos online so we can all watch.

 And here’s Rush’s followup.  He just can’t seem to stop himself.  This man needs help.  Or a stiletto shoe in his face.  I just can’t decide…

Craig has a handy list of sponsors that you can contact and includes this little tidbit:

The Rush-Romney Connection
Limbaugh’s daily radio show is syndicated by Premier Networks, which is owned byClear Channel, which is co-owned by Bain Capital.

Folks, you can’t make this up.

Yesterday, I wrote a response to a post by Sarah Lane on google+.  Sarah Lane is the bubbly tech blogger who’s a mainstay at Twit.tv.  I love Sarah Lane but I don’t like the idea that Carbonite is a sponsor of Twit AND Rush Limbaugh.  So, I wrote to ask her what she thought of that?  No answer yet but I’m hopeful.  I might try Gina Trapani next.  Or Leo Laporte, although Leo can come off as a sexist jerk himself on occasion.  In fact, I might just want to abstain from Twit and remove its app from my iphone and ipad until they have a word with their sponsor.  For sure, I am not using the Twit offer code from Carbonite until Carbonite disassociates itself from Rush.

ProFlowers also sponsors Rush.

Now would be a good time for Barack Obama to overcome his Mike Dukakis impression and stand up for women agains this evil bully.  It could be a twofer because Rush may push the nuclear option with a really vile racist remark and then we’ll see how far gone the American public truly is.  It’s one thing to think uncharitable, ignorant things, things you know are not socially acceptable.  It’s quite another thing to say them to the President of the United States.  Barack Obama might be an unprincipled schmoozer and a lousy president but that has nothing to do with his race (which is only a social construct anyway).

This is an opportunity for him to act like he’s got some backbone.  Someone needs to step in here and level Rush.  Maybe Hillary can lend Obama one of her balls.  Schedule a news conference and condemn him in the harshest terms.  Take a note from Bill Clinton’s evil cowards speech after the Oklahoma City bombing.  It’s the right thing to do and I guarantee that it won’t cost the election.  It’s not censoring Rush to tell him that his remarks are uncalled for, destructive and reflects badly on American values.  Call him out.  Do it now.

*****************

In science, it looks like you can teach stale eggs new tricks.  A new study in the journal Nature shows that human ova can be created from ovarian stem cells:

Previous research had suggested that a woman is born with all the egg cells she will ever have in her lifetime.

But in recent experiments, scientists discovered a new type of stem cell in the ovaries that—when grown in the lab—generates immature egg cells. The same immature cells isolated from adult mouse ovaries can turn into fertile eggs.

Stem cells, found in embryos and certain adult body tissues, have the potential to grow into many different types of cells.

(See “Liposuction Fat Turned Into Stem Cells, Study Says.”)

The finding reinforces the team’s previous experiments in mice, which had identified a new type of ovarian stem cell that renews a female mouse’s source of eggs throughout its fertile years.

That study, published in the journal Nature in 2004, was the “first to reach the conclusion that this long-held belief in our field—that young girls are given a bank account at birth that you can no longer deposit eggs to, just withdraw from—was no longer true,” said study leader Jonathan Tilly.

This is good news because if you can collect your stem cells early in your reproductive years and store them, there won’t be as much pressure to have kids before your expiration date.  You can have a backup plan and can get back to work doing something else, like research or starting your own business or writing books or something that requires your full attention.  Biology isn’t destiny until you’re ready.  It’s a good thing.

*****************

This is just cool.  Or disturbing, depending how you look at the idea of small flying objects:

*****************

Blame the user:

NEW YORK -(MarketWatch)- AT&T Inc. T +0.88% is taking a step closer to doing away with unlimited-mobile data-plans.

Under a new policy, AT&T will slow download speeds for unlimited 3G and 4G smartphone customers who exceed 3 gigabytes and 4G LTE users who exceed 5 gigabytes of data in a given month. AT&T had previously been slowing speeds, or throttling, customers who were in the top 5% of data users in their respective market.

AT&T has been trying to manage capacity on its network in the face of heavy data consumption by Apple Inc. (AAPL) iPhone users and a limited supply of wireless airwaves, or spectrum. The carrier is spending billions to build out a new fourth-generation mobile-broadband network that can handle more data traffic.

A spokesman said the new guidelines were necessary because of confusion among unlimited customers over when their download speeds would be slowed. He declined to say by how much the speeds would be decreased.

If you want to know why you’re losing the unlimited data plan on your iPhone, you can blame deregulation of the phone business years ago.  I guess when they decided to break up the monopolies to encourage competition, they never thought about whether they should require the phone companies to invest some of their ungodly profits into improving their data networks.  So, scarcity, like, you know, works in their favor.  They can make you slow down and use less and still charge you a fortune for crappy service.  I have ATT and I can barely get a signal in parts of central NJ and in NY City?  Fuggeddaboudit.  Covering the Occupy events in Zuccotti park was nearly impossible in real time and just drained the battery as the iphone uselessly pinged the sky looking for a signal.
Wherever Steve Jobs is, I’m betting he’s not amused.
About these ads

29 Responses

  1. The sad thing is you can’t even boycott Rush’s sponsors. Who in their right mind uses these services anyway:?

    “Century 21, Quicken Loans, Legal Zoom, and Sleep Number.”

    • Pro flowers is an online florist. Carbonite is an online backup system. I’d use carbonite- as soon as they stop sponsoring Rush. Sleep Number beds are supposed to be super comfy.
      They could be losing a lot of money.

  2. Rush the 4-time married family man who was caught coming back into this country from a so-called “vacation” in the Dominican Republic with over 100+ Viagra pills and condoms? The Dominican Republic is a well known haunt for dirty men like Limbaugh to have sex with under-age girls and boys and he certainly didn’t come back from that vacation with a tan!

    • I certainly would never advocate violence but if there’s any justice in this universe, it would be fitting for Rush to be afflicted by a multi drug resistant strain of the same bacteria that ate off King Herod’s junk.
      Oh, shit! Did I say that out loud?
      Yes, I did.

  3. Call me a little bit crazy, but unless OxyLush is a eunuch, having been married four times, someone is utilizing contraceptives. I’d rhetorically ask, “Hypocrite much,” but the answer would be all too obvious.

  4. If you’re in PA, here’s a link to a site where you can send a message to radio stations in regard to Rush. https://secure3.convio.net/pn/site/Advocacy?cmd=display&page=UserAction&id=2063

  5. If there was any weakness Obama had demographically it was with women, and here the Republicans are begging him to take their votes.

  6. Boehner gave an anemic response, calling Rush’s comments “inappropriate” in the same sentence where he called out Democrats for sending out a fund-raising letter for a fund developed specifically to combat the war that Republicans and theocrats have declared on women. He’s so weak and afraid of Rush that the best he could come up with is “inappropriate”.

    • Romney came out with the same kind of weak sauce, saying that what Limbaugh said isn’t how he would have put it or something like that. What’s interesting to me is that the GOP guy in Mass. running against Elizabeth Warren was a lot stronger, saying that the remarks were “reprehensible” and that Lmbaugh ought to apologize. Once again, if we had a functioning liberal party in this country, it would be asking the probable nominee of the GOP why he can’t say something straightforward like that and instead has to say something that makes him look like a coward.

  7. OT…. I have finally had it with several of my relatives who like to bring up the 2008 election then tell me to get over it. They deny there was any sexism. Does anyone have quick access to that link with all the sexist remarks etc… directed at Hillary.

  8. The Limbaugh remarks should leave no one in the dark now that there’s a large segment of the conservative population that hates women. Hates them, is afraid of them, thinks they need to be controlled for their own good or to protect themselves, whatever. If we had a functioning liberal party in this country that cared about such matters, it would run as the party that respected the rights and abilities of women and against a party that hates women. If.

    • As long as a lot of liberals and women and liberal women continue to think that the Democratic Party “is” that Party, they will continue to give it their time/money/loyalty/votes. And it will continue to usurp that part of the political landscape from which a liberal party might emerge if only the Democratic Party were not squatting on it instead. At least at the Federal/National level. Some of the state-level Democratic Parties could be described as “liberal” maybe. Maybe.
      Just as some of them could be described as sorta nostalgiac for the New Deal maybe. Maybe.

    • If only!

      Btw, Romney is part owner in Bain Capital which is part owner in Clear Channel which broadcasts Rush. Why am I not surprised.

  9. Go to the website of your local AM Hate radio stations and find out what other stations they own, boycott the advertisers on them too.

    Here in the Alabama triangle of PA there are two AM Hate stations that carry Rush they also own several FM stations with various music formats. They are no longer on my car radio presets.

  10. Limpballs must be worried, he was going with his, “It a joke!” meme that he uses every time he steps in it.

    • Republicans just don’t have the balls to diss Rush …

      “Slut” is the New “Liberal”

      Proving that Rush runs the conversation in the Republican Party, the California Republicans’ Communications Director has rolled out her new strategy—if you disagree with Rush, then you’re a slut.

    • The group that went after Beck’s advertisers when he call Obama a racist is going after Rush. They succeeded in running Beck off of Fox. Maybe Rush is afraid that he’s finally angered a group that’s organized enough to force his hateful self off the air.

      • That could only help the national conversation. He’s worse than pond scum!

Comments are closed.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 470 other followers

%d bloggers like this: