The radical extremism of the GOP war on women

Posted by AzBlueMeanie:

There was the threat to shut down the federal government over a Tea-Publican plan to defund Planned Parenthood. There was the Susan G. Komen Fund attempt to defund Planned Parenthood. There is a similar bill to defund Planned Parenthood in the Tea-Publican Arizona legislature.

There was the "Blunt Amendment" that by which Tea-Publicans sought to give employers preferential status to determine the health care coverage of individual employees, in particular contraception coverage for women. There is a similar bill in the Arizona Tea-Publican legislature that has passed the Senate.

Just how radically extreme is this GOP war on women? A Bloomberg poll out today holds the answer. Republicans Losing on Birth Control as 77% in Poll Spurn Debate – Bloomberg:

Americans overwhelmingly regard the debate over President Barack Obama’s policy on employer-provided contraceptive coverage as a matter of women’s health, not religious freedom, rejecting Republicans’ rationale for opposing the rule. More than three-quarters say the topic shouldn’t even be a part of the U.S. political debate.

More than six in 10 respondents to a Bloomberg National Poll — including almost 70 percent of women — say the issue involves health care and access to birth control, according to the survey taken March 8-11.

* * *

The results suggest the Republican candidates’ focus on contraception is out of sync with the U.S. public. Seventy-seven percent of poll respondents say birth control shouldn’t be a topic of the political debate, while 20 percent say it should.

As for Rush Limbaugh’s misogynistic comments about Georgetown University law student Sandra Fluke, "men are split over whether the radio host should be let go from his job — 49 percent say so, while 47 percent disagree. Fifty-six percent of women support the move compared with 39 percent who don’t. Almost one in three Republicans, 30 percent, say Limbaugh should be fired for the remarks."

In a press release from the Arizona Democratic Party today, Interim Chair Harriet Young had this to say:

Arizona Tea-Publican legislature one step closer to reducing women to second-class citizens

Posted by AzBlueMeanie:

Uterus-stateThe Arizona Tea-Publican legislature is one step closer to reducing women to second-class citizens who are property of the state by stripping women of their Constitutional rights and liberties in Arizona. Birth-control-exclusion bill goes to AZ Senate:

A Senate panel voted Monday to let employers with religious or moral objections refuse to include contraceptive coverage in their health insurance plans for their workers.

HB 2625 would repeal a decade-old mandate that says companies that provide coverage must also include contraceptives. Rep. Debbie Lesko, R-Glendale, said the move is necessary to protect freedom.

The measure already has been approved by the House, meaning it needs only approval by the full Senate before going to the governor.

"I believe that we live in America. We don't live in the Soviet Union," Lesko said. "And so government shouldn't be telling employers, Catholic organizations or mom-and-pop employers to do something that's against their moral beliefs."

Wow. This Lesko is seriously whack. She has a different definition of "freedom" than everyone else. And the Soviet Union? Please. This is the most authoritarian piece of legislation yet from the Tea-Publicans.

What Lesko is really saying is that Constitutional rights and liberties guaranteed by the Bill of Rights are not shared by all Americans equally, but are ranked according to classes of individuals, including the legal fiction of corporations ("corporations are people too, my friend"), who enjoy a preferential legal status over lower-ranked classes of individuals.

This is the only possible explanation for why employers (including corporations, many of them multi-nationals) and insurance companies should enjoy a preferential legal status to make health care decisions for American women, rather than American women enjoy the individual "freedom" to make health care decisions for themselves in consulation with their physician:

Class 1

Corporations, Partnerships, Nonprofit Organizations, Trusts, Sole Proprietorships

Class 2

Males (preferably White)

Class 3

Fertilized human eggs, zygotes, fetuses

Class 4

Females*

* Constitutional rights and liberties subject to and limited by the preferential status granted by the state of Arizona to higher ranked classes. Voidable upon the occurrence of pregnancy.

Celebrating Women’s History Month: The GOP’s war on women shifts into high gear

Posted by AzBlueMeanie:

Did you know that March is Women's History Month?

Uterus-stateThe GOP decided to celebrate Women's History Month by shifting its war on women into high gear this week, and take women back to the dark ages when women were chattel property of their husbands or families, second class citizens who do not possess full constitutional rights and liberties, and their uterus is the property of the state — their sex lives and reproductive health subject to stringent government regulation by men in government and religious institutions. We have moved one step closer to the dystopian world of The Handmaid's Tale. (h/t graphic Daily Kos).

Earlier this week the main anti-abortion bill of the Christian Taliban aka Center for Arizona Policy (CAP), which did not have enough votes to get out of the committee to which it was assigned in the House, was pasted into an unrelated bill on the Attorney Gneneral's Office  in a "strike everything amendment" by CAP's point man woman Rep. Kimberly Yee (R-Phoenix) in the Senate Judiciary Committee and — surprise! — the bill passed the committee and moves to the full Senate. Sweeping abortion bill advancing in Senate – Arizona Capitol Times (subscription required):

Imposing One’s Beliefs On Others Is Not A Religious Freedom

By Michael Bryan

Bishops

Should these celibates decide who needs birth control?

The recent concern over "religious conscience" brought into focus by the controversy over mandating contraceptive care by self-insuring religious institutions to their employees, and exacerbated by a pending amendment in the Senate which would allow any healthcare insurer to deny any care that offends a moral sentiment, mistakes religious freedom for religious tyranny.

When relgious practices impose on the choices of others, the government has a legitimate role in ensuring that unequal power relationships do not result in imposition of religious beliefs on others in our society. Obama's contraceptive coverage mandate respects freedom of religious conscience by ensuring that employers cannot impose their religious beliefs about reproduction on their employees. When that employer is a religious institution, obviously the temptation of the employer to impose their views is manifest. 

Of course, many in the GOP don't see it that way.

Ron gould arizona

They think that religious freedom only includes the right of religious institutions to impose their views on others, using whatever means of coersion is at hand, including employment, ecomonic power, and contracts. Any move by the government to prohibit such impositions on others is viewed as a "war on religious belief", or some such nonsense…

Here in Arizona, Steve Yarborough and number of primary co-sponsors, including CD4 GOP Congressional Candidate Ron Gould, are bringing this pernicious conceit to Arizona with SB 1365, which would prohibits the government from denying, revoking or suspending a professional or occupational license based on any action deriving from a person’s religious convictions.

Russell Pearce Uses the End of 287g Program to Fundraise for BAN… Surprise!

By Michael Bryan

Not.

Russell-pearce

“When fascism comes to America, it will come wrapped in the flag and waving a cross, and will claim the label Americanism”

Arizona's own Goebbels, Russell Pearce, is now attempting to raise money for Ban Amnesty Now using the phase-out of the 287(g) program as a panic button.

What Pearce fails to mention is that DHS is also rolling out a new program, Secure Communities, which accomplishes the same immigration status checks on all persons booked in local jails across 15,000 jurisdiction in 44 states (whereas 287(g) is only in about 60 jurisdictions), without the liability and constitutional violations created by unleashing xenophobic hate-baters like Sheriff Joe Arpaio on an innocent public.

Let's have a look at Pearce's fundraising pitch: