July 16, 2013

Birth control and abortion: A man’s right to choose!

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , — Jane Stillwater @ 2:37 pm

I recently saw a cartoon of a man walking out of an X-rated video store — only to be confronted by an irate bunch of women picketing him and screaming, “Masturbation is murder!” and “Life begins at erection!” Truly hilarious. But perhaps a lot of people who saw this cartoon missed its main point. Ironic sarcasm? Sure. But also by its shear absurdity, the cartoon made it clear that an American man’s reproductive decisions are his and his alone — and that a woman’s reproductive decisions are mostly his too.

I think that we’ve all seen photos of grinning federal, state and local lawmakers who have just voted in favor of making various birth-control and anti-abortion laws mandatory for all women. And most of the people in these photos are men.

So maybe it’s time to turn the tables here and take away a man’s right to choose too.

The possibilities are endless.

Suppose, for instance, that some man wants drink a few six-packs on a Saturday night and make drunk-dialing booty calls? Nope. His state’s legislature has just made that illegal. No more right-to-choose for you!

Or let’s say that you and your wife have decided to have children. Maybe one or two? Not gonna happen. Laws have been passed. No condoms or vasectomies for you either. You must now have ten kids and change all their diapers and pay child support for all of them too — whether you want to or not. Screw right-to-choose for men.

You wanna play around at the office Christmas party? No way! Maximum sentence here. Jail time. You have no choice. Wanna cheat on your wife? No, no, no and no. There’s a law against that too.

Oops. OMG! You just had a wet dream. That’s a $10,000 fine and a year in the slammer. “Baby killer!” Plus some pro-life fanatic might shoot at you too.

Make up your own examples here. Have fun with it.

How about that we make laws demanding that boys should be taught from birth onwards that their whole duty in life is to propagate the race — nothing else. Let’s keep ‘em barefoot sperm banks and chained to the kitchen. Let’s stop giving the males of our species any choice at all, especially their right to make decisions regarding their own reproductive organs — which they clearly can’t manage to keep inside their pants without stern legislative help.

Turnabout is fair play.

Male lawmakers all over America have certainly had fun taking away American women’s right to choose lately, and some of the bizarre things that they have come up with so far have just got to be jokes Reality itself these days has become so weird and far-fetched that even Andy Borowitz’s recent satire on this subject might actually really become yet another facet of male lawmakers’ current Taliban-like right to choose what women can or cannot do with their own bodies.

Then there’s the fact that over 10,000 men show up at the ER each year because an erectile dysfunction drug like Viagra has given them an unrelenting stiffie. Each of their ER visits costs these guys approximately $1,778. According to NBC News, “In all, the mean annual charge for episodes that began as an E.R. visit for priapism was $123,860,432.” So shouldn’t we be passing laws that make use of Viagra illegal too? For wasting all that good sperm?

But how about that we pass another new law instead, one that will finally make sense? How about passing a new law that says only women are qualified to make any and all laws regarding their own reproductive freedom.

No men allowed.

PS: About three years ago, I looked in the mirror and said, “OMG, I look old — what can you do with OLD?” That’s obvious. I should become an actress!

Since that time, I have played all kinds of older women in approximately 60 student films — kindly grandmothers, women dying of cancer, judges, burka-wearing Afghan ladies, the devil’s minion, business executives, homeless women, doctors, society matrons, aging sluts.

Last Saturday I played a drunken barfly in a honky-tonk saloon at a morning shoot, and then an aging whore in 1850 San Francisco in the afternoon (and they paid me in pizza).

“So, Jane, what’s your point?” My point is that there are all kinds of women out there — just like there are all kinds of men. And almost all of us are totally capable of making our own freaking decisions regarding our own reproductive organs. It’s time for our leaders to go legislate on more important stuff (such as putting Wall Street criminals and War Street weapons profiteers in jail for criminal destruction of life after birth) and leave our individual reproductive choices alone.


December 18, 2011

World-wide, women are in trouble: “First they came for our daughters, then they…”

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , — Jane Stillwater @ 3:40 pm

I was just told by my dentist that I need three cavities filled, two teeth crowned and two root canals. We’re talking at least $10,000 here, probably more. But who has that kind of money these days? Looks like pretty soon I’m going to have to go toothless. But I won’t be alone. 99% of the rest of America may be facing toothlessness too. What an ugly country we will become — nothing but gums.

Also, I pretty much can’t afford to travel any more, but that’s okay. Scottish journalist David Pratt now does most of my traveling for me — and sends his reports from all corners of the world back to the Glasgow Sunday Herald, which then forwards them to me.

Pratt’s latest report is from the slums of Nairobi, Kenya, where women and children live in such unbelievable poverty that even I can’t believe it. As part of a series entitled “Women of the World’s Worst Slums,” Pratt spells it all out for us.

“I wanted to find out for myself what it’s like for the women here who lead a life of fear, unremitting toil, and who worry constantly over the disease and hunger that stalks their children. In the back alleyways of [Nairobi's two largest] slums I was to meet four such women, young and not so young. What follows is a glimpse into their hopes, fears and above all fight for survival in the heart of this human abyss.”

The first woman that Pratt interviewed was 21-year-old Purity Atieno, who lives in little more than a wooden crate, in a neighborhood flooded with human feces, sewage and rats. Hardly out of her teens, Purity is already the mother of three sons. Pratt didn’t actually comment on whether or not Purity’s babies were a result of her having to sell her body in order to buy food, or of the constant rapes perpetrated against women here night and day — but he did state that she constantly had to deal with the rapists who prowled through her community each night.

Next, Juan Gonzalez of “Democracy Now” interviewed Yanar Mohammed from Baghdad, who informed us that Iraq is currently one big hot mess as a result of Junior’s stupid and unnecessary war. “And the biggest loser out of all of this are the women…. At a women’s organization, we daily meet women who are vulnerable to being bought and sold in the flesh market. We see widows who have no source of income, and nobody to get them IDs for themselves and their children, because they have been internally displaced. So poverty and discrimination against women has become the norm.”

She then goes on to state that there is now a whole generation of women in Iraq who are totally illiterate — as compared to all the many female college graduates there under Saddam Hussein.

And then there’s the good old USA. I don’t have to travel widely here at all — because I can see what is happening to women in America just by traveling to nearby homeless encampments. And a lot of women at the encampments are toothless too, just like I’m going to be soon.

And if Republicans have their way, American women will also be hungry, illiterate, jobless, barefoot and pregnant as well.

But as Martin Luther King Jr. once said, “Let us realize the arc of the moral universe is long but it bends toward justice.” Isn’t it time that freedom’s arc started bending toward justice for women too?

No, ladies, that arc is never gonna bend toward us voluntarily. If we ever want that to happen, we alone are gonna have to stop the killing, stop the raping, stop the war machine and stop the war-on-women all by ourselves.

And to paraphrase a famous cautionary quote about Nazis, “First they came for our daughters — and I did nothing. Then they came for the crones and then they came for all women. And I did nothing. And now there is no one left to reproduce the human race.” Too bad for you.

PS: So how, exactly, will we women — never outnumbered but always out-gunned — still manage to fight back? Perhaps by copying guerrilla tactics used recently by Occupy Portland: Retreat and advance like the wind, don’t ever let them pin us down — and do it all to music, especially rock and roll.

PPS: Forget what I just said. If we women ever do start to fight back against injustice, then every woman on the planet will be instantly labeled a terrorist — not to mention being charged with committing “economic violence,” whatever that is.


February 2, 2011

Non-violent protests in Egypt: BRING IN THE WOMEN!

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , — Jane Stillwater @ 5:04 pm

Hosni Mubarak is once again acting like the slimeball that he truly is — shamelessly employing his mafia thugs against peaceful protesters. Even as we speak, that creep is using paid thugs on camels and horses to cut a bloody swath through the non-violent demonstrators in Tahrir Square. Mubarak is still a monster. Nothing has changed.

And faced with all this new slimy outrageousness, what should Egypt’s non-violent protesters do now? Should they fight back? Absolutely not. Would Gandhi have done that? No way! He would have done something else — but what?

These protesters need to bring in their secret weapon, their Second Line Club, their last-ditch Hail Mary play. They should BRING IN THE WOMEN!

If Mubarak’s scum-patrol also attacks non-violent women who are standing up for Democracy (they’ve already attacked poor sweet Anderson Cooper), then Mubarak will be truly exposed (once again) for the pond-scum lowlife that he really is.

Women hold up half the sky on this planet — and also in Egypt. And I’m sure that if Mubarak’s mother were around to see what her misbehaving son is up to right now, she would give him a rigorous timeout and send him off to bed without any supper. And then she too would go out and join the non-violent protesters in Tahrir Square. Go mom!

PS: The women of Egypt — and the world too! — all need to unite against violence. Lighten up, guys. As soon as the guns come out, all the fun goes away.


May 10, 2009

The Origins of the Two Mother’s Days

Before becoming the commercial holiday it is now, the Mother’s Day we celebrate on the second Sunday in May was originally about other issues, such as battlefield hospital sanitation and world peace. As Mother’s Day on the Net says in “The History (AKA Her-Story) of Mother’s Day”:

“In the United States, Mother’s Day experienced a series of false starts before eventually transitioning into the “Hallmark” holiday that we celebrate today. In 1858, Anna Reeves Jarvis was the first woman to hold an official celebration of mothers, when in her home state of West Virginia, she instituted Mothers’ Work Day to raise awareness about local sanitation issues. During the Civil War, she expanded the scope of Mothers’ Work Day to include sanitary conditions on both sides of the battlefield.”

In 1870, “Battle Hymn of the Republic” author Julia Ward Howe, appalled at the bloodshed of the American Civil War, proposed making it a Mother’s Day for Peace, as “Julia Ward Howe: Beyond the Battle Hymn of the Republic” at states:

“In 1870, Julia Ward Howe took on a new issue and a new cause. Distressed by her experience of the realities of war, determined that peace was one of the two most important causes of the world (the other being equality in its many forms) and seeing war arise again in the world in the Franco-Prussian War, she called in 1870 for women to rise up and oppose war in all its forms. She wanted women to come together across national lines, to recognize what we hold in common above what divides us, and commit to finding peaceful resolutions to conflicts. She issued a Declaration, hoping to gather together women in a congress of action.”

Not surprisingly, a world Mother’s Day for Peace never received the support of the politicians that the later commercialized version would. From the article:


September 14, 2008

The Tattlesnake – An Insidious GOP Email Campaign to Sucker Women Voters Edition

The ‘Obama is a Muslim’ Tripe Was Bad Enough, But This?

I receive many daffy emails from my conservative acquaintances, usually on the order of chest-thumping twaddle like “A Simple History Lesson” involving conservative cavemen who productively hunt and fish while Milquetoast liberals serve the beer, set the table and polish the silverware. That none of this is the least bit historical or even humorous doesn’t deter the modern office-bound neoconservative — typically a wimpy chickenhawk who these days hunts for bargains at the gas pump and fishes for compliments from women 20 years his junior — from forwarding it all around with the challenge to send it to a liberal and giggle as he gets angry. Neocons follow a tired script; as they sink deeper in their self-created quicksand they scream louder that it doesn’t exist to make themselves feel better. From their perspective, it’s better than admitting you’ve been dead wrong and taken in by cynical con artists like Karl Rove, I suppose.

The latest batch of anti-Obama email is mostly of the ‘Scary Rev. Wright Hates Whites’ variety, even though Obama severed ties to Wright months ago. (Ah, who lets facts get in the way of an unfunny cartoon, right?) One that stood out was a drawing of Obama, Wright and Louis Farrakhan singing in unison about the ‘change you can believe in’ and another was more blatant, with Wright shouting “God damn America and kill whitey!” with Obama nodding assent from an aisle seat while wearing a bag on his head. “I’m not here,” reads the balloon emanating from the Obama character.

But this fetid crapola is nothing compared to the one I received yesterday from the wife of a friend of mine, a nice, white, middle-aged, suburban-bred women, with a tendency to moderate conservatism.

The email, titled “Why Women Should Vote,” subtitled “A Message for All Women,” starts with a brief history of the women’s Suffrage movement and then focuses on a November 15, 1917 event wherein women were jailed and beaten for marching on the White House demanding the right to vote, most of the information gleaned from the laudable HBO film “Iron Jawed Angels.”

After informing modern women of all their ancestors went though to give them the right to vote 88 years ago, the email implores them to make sure and use that right this year. It closes with this paragraph:

“We need to get out and vote and use this right that was fought so hard for by these very courageous women. Whether you vote democratic, republican or independent party — remember to vote.”

But the kicker, stuck in at the end, is:

“History is being made.”

When I read it, the obvious conclusion that came to mind is that the reader should vote for the ‘historic’ candidacy of Sarah Palin, regardless of the supposedly non-partisan nature of the email’s contents.

That the Suffragettes advocated policies that the regressive Palin is against – such as equal pay and equal rights for women – almost goes without saying; that Palin herself, should she have been alive in 1917, would have been condemning the women’s Suffrage movement is also obvious – she’s a traditional conservative woman, and that was the stance of traditional conservative women of that era.


August 8, 2008

The Tattlesnake – Sen. Buffalo Chip’s ‘Female Trouble’ Edition

Yet Another Aging Republican Frat Boy Vying for the ‘Ladies Choice’ Award

In the latest installment of John McCain’s bizarre relationship with women, he gleefully offered up his long-suffering wife as a contestant for the X-rated ‘Miss Buffalo Chip’ Beauty Pageant at the Sturgis, SD, Biker Rally, an event which included simulating fellatio on a banana and something called a ‘pickle-licking’ contest, although it’s not clear, according to Josh Marshall at TPM, if that last item is actually part of the beauty pageant or a separate Olympic sport.

McCain, hunched over and reading his speech from a music stand, was caught on videotape grinning and crowing,

“I encouraged Cindy to compete,” McCain said to cheers. “I told her with a little luck she could be the only woman ever to serve as first lady and Miss Buffalo Chip.”
– From CNN, August 5, 2008.

Yes, that line was part of McCain’s script. Gee, the president’s wife AND an Easy Rider ‘sissy seat’ occupant in a string bikini — will wonders never cease in the alternate universe of the McCain campaign? If elected, will Misogyny Mac be president of the US and the Hell’s Angels as well? (The Carpetbagger Report has further details.)

I’ve had friends who were bikers; some of them were good people, and I think Americans should live, dress and act however they choose, as long as they aren’t hurting anyone else – but I wouldn’t want any of them in the White House. (And they wouldn’t want to be there either.) The bikers I’ve met roughly demarcate into two groups: the mellow ‘hippies on hogs’ who are generally decent folks who like the freedom of the ‘ride fast’ motorcycle lifestyle, and the angry, violent, usually racist “I’ll kill your ass and piss in your skull” types who live to cause other people grief. The latter were the crazies who murdered that black guy at the Rolling Stones’ Altamont concert in 1969 and I’d bet a sidecar stuffed with sawbucks that those were the same types who were revving their engines while McCain spoke.

At any rate, you might think this would be one of those “Aha, here’s the politician’s true character laid bare” moments the Big Media likes to spring on Dems, from Hillary’s laugh to Obama ordering orange juice instead of coffee at a diner, but, except for Keith Olbermann and Dan Abrams on MSNBC, it was hardly mentioned save for a few male pundits who, chuckling indulgently, dismissed it as more of McCain’s ‘maverick’ sensibility joined with his ‘fighter jock mentality.’ Yep, that’s just what we need in the next president – a guy mired in the frat boy sexism of the mid-20th century to lead us in the 21st.

Earlier this year there was some baseless bantering by the Punditocracy that Obama might have some ‘problem’ with women, but these same Below-the-Beltway talkers are silent on McCain’s manifest disrespect for those who don’t happen to be male. McCain’s degrading relationships with women have a long history, as Kate Sheppard delineates in “McSexist: McCain’s War on Women,” (In These Times, July 24, 2008):


May 3, 2008

A Short History of Misogyny

Filed under: Toon — Tags: , , , , , , — Volt @ 6:37 am

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