All Female and Nearly All Black: Democratic Georgia State Senators Walk Out Protesting a War on Women
The demonstration took place after Republicans passed two bills that opponents have said are part of the GOP’s “war on women.” The only female Republican senator did not take part in the protest.
“As a state employee, we’re going to make this decision for you if you’re raped or the victim of incest,” state Sen. Doug Stoner (D) argued in objection to the bill.
Democrats also objected to state Senate Bill 460, which would amend a 1999 law that required any “religious employer” to cover contraception. If the new measure become law, any group organized for “religious purposes” would be exempted from covering birth control.
That bill passed by a vote of 38-15.
So the party that wants the government out of everybody’s house is infringing on the rights of women (and the men who love them) in their bedrooms? A religious minority gets to dictate to the majority how they should conduct their lives? How do you like those apples?
And women of color are interested in reproductive rights within their own communities. While black out-of-wedlock births continue higher than other groups, it as well as the American birth rate has fallen. From Electronic Urban Report:
Among major population groups, Hispanic women in 2008 (the latest year for which complete figures are available) had the highest birthrate – 98.6 births per 1,000 women. This compares with birthrates of 71.2 per 1,000 women for African American women, 71.4 for Asian American women and 59.6 for white women.
Could it be that the right information about young women waiting until they are older to experience sex, and with birth control devices, and about the dangers of sexually transmitted diseases has reached them? I’d like to think that good sense and advice about going to a community college or a four-year college to pursue a trade and/or a degree has also given them pause to reflect. In other words, creating value within oneself and the means to create financial security is not necessarily ensured by having a child whose father may or may not stay in the picture until s/he is of age because he has little to offer—financially or otherwise. And as we all know by now, love is not enough.
For young black women to achieve any goals for themselves, access to health care, education, and contraception, if not abortion, is a paramount concern, particularly to these women senators who walked out. Bad enough that black women have had a history of being forced to have children by men—black and white men—that they did not want, during and after slavery. Bad enough that black women had to have numerous children so that the family could continue to till land that they did not own. Black women died young during childbirth, and endured numerous other reproductive diseases, because they did not have the right to control their own bodies and their own destinies. These bible-thumping idiots are bringing hell, not J.C., back here on earth all the quicker.
Barry Goldwater must be twisting wildly in his grave. He and his first wife Peggy helped to start Planned Parenthood in Arizona. In some of the last interviews before his death, he decried the addition of the religious right in the Republican Party, something that he directly blamed Richard Nixon for promulgating in the South.
Mark my word, if and when these preachers get control of the [Republican] party, and they’re sure trying to do so, it’s going to be a terrible damn problem. Frankly, these people frighten me. Politics and governing demand compromise. But these Christians believe they are acting in the name of God, so they can’t and won’t compromise. I know, I’ve tried to deal with them.
The sistas were right to get up and leave, no matter if it didn’t change anything. But principle must be turned into common sense, and alternatives for those who need them.
- Georgia Women Senators Walk Out, Protesting ‘War On Women’ (crooksandliars.com)
- Georgia Female Legislators Stage Walk Out To Protest Anti-Abortion And Contraception Bills (thinkprogress.org)
- Female Dems to Boehner: ‘Enough’ (politico.com)
- Stand Up For Your Rights (sairasays.wordpress.com)
- Ga. abortion bill adds to national debate (ajc.com)