Oct 16th, 2012

To All the Girls

(This is a response to one of the RLA’s young female students, who recently posted on her Facebook page that she is a proud Republican.)

You say you are sporting a Romney bumper sticker and are a proud Republican. OK. You say you could never be a Democrat. OK. My question for you is this: you are a young, strong, hard-working woman. You have been independent since your early teens. You are tattooed and pierced. You smoke cigarettes and ride a motorcycle. You are not the sort of woman I would expect to be willing to give up any personal freedoms. How, then, can you be willing, no, eager, to vote for two men who would work to legislate changes to this country that would deny all women the most basic freedom of all: ownership of their own bodies.

That is what this election is about. Oh, it has been hidden behind a smokescreen of class warfare, thinly veiled racism and the manipulations of the robber barons over the working man, but it is really an attempt to put women back in their proper place as chattel.

The media calls it choice, but it is more properly a question of ownership. If an individual is not free to determine what happens to their own corpus, what is that state but slavery? Slavery to whom? To the man, institution or government that denies that freedom. If one is not free to own their own body, the next question should be why? Under what conceivable set of circumstances should a human be denied the right of self-determination? Incapacity? If a person is of sound mind and body, there can be no law of nature, only of the law of men.

And you are willing to agree that the condition of being a woman makes you unfit for self-determination? And if you are unfit to own yourself, perhaps you are unfit to own property, unfit to hold certain jobs, to earn an equal wage, incapable of determining if you were raped, incapable of being trusted with the vote, incapable of deciding whom you wish to marry or when. Not only are you willing to agree to that for yourself but you are condemning your sisters, daughters and granddaughters to that fate. Cupcake, you need to remember that it was quite literally the blood of our own grandmothers, mothers and sisters that ended that state of affairs. Forty years ago I had a teacher tell me that as a girl, I was incapable of doing research science. Two fucking generations, and you are ready to go back to being, at best, a second-class citizen, at worst, simply chattel?

The fact that you are proud to be voting against your own best interests makes me afraid that the Republicans might be right not to trust you with the vote.