Women

Donald Trump’s government has issued a ruling that allows employers to opt out of providing free birth control to millions of Americans.

The rule allows employers and insurers to decline to provide birth control if doing so violates their “religious beliefs” or “moral convictions”.

Fifty-five million women benefited from the Obama-era rule, which made companies provide free birth control.

Before taking office, Mr Trump had pledged to eliminate that requirement… More at The BBC.

Conservative MP Jacob Rees-Mogg says he is “completely opposed” to abortion, including in cases of rape or incest.

The backbencher told ITV’s Good Morning Britain that abortion was “morally indefensible”.

“Life is sacrosanct and begins at the point of conception,” he said… More at The BBC.

I am no feminist, I can’t be because I am a man. The idea that a man shouts about being a feminist highlights an issue that exists in all of us men. We are all sexist in 2017 because the world around us sees women as lesser than men.

Think about the two politicians above and what they say. They have no right to speak on the subject of birth control or abortion because they are men. It’s as simple as that. Both rely on the rulings of a religion and the belief that there is some kind of being up there in the clouds who to this day tells us what to do. There are 300 gods worshiped on earth and every one of them is, for most people, the only one that is real. The other 299 are figments of people’s imaginations and so can be ignored.

The fact that people like Rees-Mogg and Trump feel they can dictate to women what they should do with their bodies is abhorrent and goes to the heart of a problem that exists in all of us. Imagine a female politician standing up and saying that vasectomies should be banned on religious grounds. I am pretty sure that there would be an outcry because a woman had effectively tried to dictate what men should be allowed to do. It just does not happen when it comes to what men can do with their bodies- yes, it happens with behaviours and what should be legally allowed, but not actually what we do with our bodies.

The idea that a woman should be forced to carry a baby to term following a rape can surely not be seen as acceptable by the majority. The ‘right to life’ applies to the mother as well as the child and legally the man should have and actually does have fewer rights regarding an unborn child.

I’m not saying that those who commit serial abortions as a form of contraception should ever be helped to do that, but a woman has a right to do what she pleases, just as a man has the right to make as many women pregnant as he wants to.

To me, there is a sense that we see women as less than men. We may find them attractive, we may adore some of them and we may respect them to a point, but I suspect that we all say things like ‘you are acting like an old woman’ and ‘don’t be such a girl’ to fellow men without even thinking that we are then using gender as an insult.

It’s not deliberate and it is the world we live in, which is admittedly getting much more positive in terms of women’s rights in very recent times, but I do wonder if a time will come when we can genuinely say that women are valued as equal to men in everyday life. They most certainly are not at the moment.

5 thoughts on “Women

  1. > I am no feminist, I can’t be because I am a man.

    I don’t follow this, unless you are using some odd definition of “feminism”?

    1. Technically incorrect of course, but highlighting those men who proudly boast of being a feminist and then act in the opposite way. It’s easy to say you are a feminist, very difficult to be one as a man. I don’t know a man who truly is and I include myself in that.

  2. Seriously, there are 300 gods available for me to choose from?! I have slowly come to the conclusion they are all just figments of people’s imagination. I believe women should have the right to choose, and why not?

  3. I’m not a feminist, I’m an equalist. I see every human being as equal in the same way feminists want women to be treated as equal. Too often, in my experience, a movement such as feminism, and there are many others, swings the pendulum too far the other way, causing resentment in those adversely affected.

    That said, I believe that the people who are affected should be making the decisions that affect them. Seems to me that birth control and abortion is a woman’s decision just as a vasectomy is a man’s decision. And that would apply even when your partner of the opposite gender disagrees. We are talking about a fundamental right. The right to choose. The question is simple. Is one in control of one’s own body or not?

    I wonder if those companies who won’t be providing free birth control are going to support their employees who have unwanted pregnancies but who can’t or won’t have abortions?

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