(today’s post title brought to you by the awesome Sojourner Truth)
There are so many discussions taking place right now that will ultimately impact the way women can exist in the world:

In Virginia, the Senate voted to ratify the Equal Rights Act (that’s right, the Virginia Senate is just now, in 2012, getting around to agreeing that women and men are equal – but not without some debate as to whether or not that’s an important thing to acknowledge).

Also in Virginia, there is a bill making its way through the legislature that would mandate a transvaginal ultrasound prior to abortion. If passed, this law would make it absolutely unavoidable for any woman seeking an abortion to have a probe inserted into her vaginal canal.

There’s the whole birth control mandate argument, with supporters of the mandate applauding the president for ensuring access to preventive health care, and opponents arguing that forcing the Catholic church to provide prescription birth control coverage is tantamount to Hitler targeting Jews during the Holocaust. (For realsies, that’s happening.)

Don’t forget Liz Trotta, who thinks women in the military shouldn’t be so whiny about being raped too much. Oh and stop wasting all those taxpayer dollars on bureaucratic bullshit like crisis response units and advocacy and good God if you don’t want to get raped stop having a vagina, ladies. (Bonus: Watch Samantha Bee’s satirical response, same link.)

Too, there’s Santorum, with his whole “Bitches be crazy, no front lines for them” thing (except, as my lovely and inimitable Donna pointed out, “we don’t war in lines”).

And of course the votes in the NJ State legislature on marriage equality, and Christie’s determination to veto (this will impact more than just women, of course).

I’m sure there’s more. Lots more. I just can’t bear to talk about it.

Listen, here’s the thing: people talk in hypotheticals a lot. “If gay marriage gets legalized,” and “If we don’t overturn Roe v. Wade,” and “If this,” “If that.” And a lot of this hypothetical talking comes from people who are men, or who are not gay, or who are not really ever going to have to worry about access to birth control or what will they do if they get raped or what happens if their Humvee gets blown up or or or. But these people who do all this talking are so dead set on hearing themselves talk that they forget: there are real people, actual living, breathing, blood-in-the-veins people who will be impacted in some very significant way by the words coming out of their mouths.

I am a woman. I am queer. I have been pregnant and I have been not pregnant. I have found myself in circumstances that make me feel safe, equal, privileged, loved, and valued. I have also found myself in circumstances that make me feel the opposite of those things. I am an intelligent, forward-thinking human capable of making decisions that are right for me at any given moment. And if, at some point in the future those decisions are not right for me, I am capable of learning from them and moving forward. I have fingers, toes, a heart, lungs, kidneys and a scar on my ankle.

I am tired of other people talking about me as if I am a hypothetical.

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