Thursday, July 17, 2014

Do Women Count Any More?

I'm a woman and I vote. That's what I told my two Senators in an email this morning as I thanked them for  attempting to circumvent the Hobby Lobby decision on the Senate floor earlier this week. But the measure failed and I'm disgusted with America and our political system once again.

Women in the US have only had the right to vote in the United
States since the 19th Amendment was passed in 1920. That means
we've been able to vote for less than one hundred years. Why aren't
we screaming out loud as our rights are being abrogated and
legislated against now? What happened to the drive of our
grandmothers and great-grandmothers? 

I absolutely understand that there are sometimes religious caveats that dictate forbidding birth control by any outside method, but birth control medication is used for more than just avoiding pregnancy. Over time, 90% of all women in the US will use birth control medication at some point in their lives, and not all will be using it for the purposes of contraception.

Around the world the rights of women are being stomped down. Honor
killings in some areas of the world have increased. The gang rapes of
teenaged women in India have been punished by mere slaps on the hand,
although the victims are dead. Are we moving back to a time when being
female meant being a second-class citizen? 

But thanks to the five men on the Supreme Court who saw fit to say that select businesses can opt out of providing this type of medical support to its employees, women who actually need this type of medication for their personal health cannot receive it under the corporate health plan. I do have to ask, and hope I'm not too snarky by doing so - are male sexual enhancement medications (Viagra, Cialis) or male contraceptive measures (vasectomy) still covered by the insurance plans when female versions are now not?

The US Supreme Court 2014 (from left) Clarence Thomas, Sonia Sotomayor,
Antonin Scalia, Stephen Breyer, Chief Justice John Roberts, Samuel Alito,
Anthony Kennedy, Elena Kagan and Ruth Bader Ginsburg. 

Here's a list of Senators and how they voted. Please, write to your Senators to either thank them for acknowledging that their female constituents are as important as their male ones, or to assure your Senator that you are a female, you vote, and he/she will not be receiving your vote when their re-election comes up.

Voted FOR Women

Voted AGAINST Women

Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI)
Sen. Mark Begich (D-AK)
Sen. Michael F. Bennet (D-CO)
Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT)
Sen. Cory A. Booker (D-NJ)
Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA)
Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH)
Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-WA)
Sen. Benjamin L. Cardin (D-MD)
Sen. Thomas R. Carper (D-DE)
Sen. Robert P. Casey, Jr. (D-PA)
Sen. Susan M. Collins (R-ME)
Sen. Christopher A. Coons (D-DE)
Sen. Joe Donnelly (D-IN)
Sen. Richard J. Durbin (D-IL)
Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA)
Sen. Al Franken (D-MN)
Sen. Kirsten E. Gillibrand (D-NY)
Sen. Kay R. Hagan (D-NC)
Sen. Tom Harkin (D-IA)
Sen. Martin Heinrich (D-NM)
Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND)
Sen. Mazie K. Hirono (D-HI)
Sen. Tim Johnson (D-SD)
Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA)
Sen. Angus S. King, Jr. (I-ME)
Sen. Mark Kirk (R-IL)
Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN)
Sen. Mary L. Landrieu (D-LA)
Sen. Patrick J. Leahy (D-VT)
Sen. Carl Levin (D-MI)
Sen. Joe Manchin III (D-WV)
Sen. Edward J. Markey (D-MA)
Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-MO)
Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ)
Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR)
Sen. Barbara A. Mikulski (D-MD)
Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK)
Sen. Christopher Murphy (D-CT)
Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA)
Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL)
Sen. Mark L. Pryor (D-AR)
Sen. Jack Reed (D-RI)
Sen. John D. Rockefeller IV (D-WV)
Sen. Bernard Sanders (I-VT)
Sen. Charles E. Schumer (D-NY)
Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH)
Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-MI)
Sen. Jon Tester (D-MT)
Sen. Mark Udall (D-CO)
Sen. Tom Udall (D-NM)
Sen. John E. Walsh (D-MT)
Sen. Mark R. Warner (D-VA)
Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)
Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI)
Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR)
Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN)
Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-NH)
Sen. John Barrasso (R-WY)
Sen. Roy Blunt (R-MO)
Sen. John Boozman (R-AR)
Sen. Richard Burr (R-NC)
Sen. Saxby Chambliss (R-GA)
Sen. Daniel Coats (R-IN)
Sen. Tom Coburn (R-OK)
Sen. Thad Cochran (R-MS)
Sen. Bob Corker (R-TN)
Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX)
Sen. Mike Crapo (R-ID)
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX)
Sen. Michael B. Enzi (R-WY)
Sen. Deb Fischer (R-NE)
Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ)
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC)
Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA)
Sen. Orrin G. Hatch (R-UT)
Sen. Dean Heller (R-NV)
Sen. John Hoeven (R-ND)
Sen. James M. Inhofe (R-OK)
Sen. Johnny Isakson (R-GA)
Sen. Mike Johanns (R-NE)
Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI)
Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT)
Sen. John McCain (R-AZ)
Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY)
Sen. Jerry Moran (R-KS)
Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY)
Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH)
Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV)
Sen. James E. Risch (R-ID)
Sen. Pat Roberts (R-KS)
Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL)
Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC)
Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL)
Sen. Richard C. Shelby (R-AL)
Sen. John Thune (R-SD)
Sen. Patrick J. Toomey (R-PA)
Sen. David Vitter (R-LA)
Sen. Roger F. Wicker (R-MS)

Not Voting

Sen. Brian Schatz (D-HI)

Why have I posted a political rant? I don't do this often. But as the laws in this nation lately seem to be cracking down on freedoms that women have worked so hard to win over the past 60 years, I'm not only getting incensed, I'm starting to get frightened. I worked for women's liberation throughout my youth and into my 20's and 30's. I know what huge strides were made by women in those years - the right to have separate credit, to have no fault divorce, to have abortions that were legal and safe, to have access to contraceptive and basic OB-GYN care no matter their income or residence, and the right to be considered a person who could stand with the men around her, not behind them. I'm seeing this ground that we fought so hard for crumble beneath our feet, and it frightens me that we are not joining together with our fellow sisters and saying "No More!"

Now we start to see mountains as we climb to the beginnings of the Alps. 

Today is Stage 12 in Le Tour de France, and although it seems odd to place the profile below a rant like I just gave, I still want to have it here for those of you who check in to see it. Here is Stage 12 which will end up in the beginning hills of the Alps. Tomorrow will be the first day of the big mountains, but today is no cakewalk. Have a good Thursday, and please, write or phone your Senators to either thank them or to tell them that you will not support the denial of female rights and will be following that up with your vote. Have a good Thursday.

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