Solidarity with women is a working class issue | Street Jazz

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Solidarity with women is a working class issue

Posted By on Sat, May 12, 2012 at 11:21 AM

However muted its present appearance may be, sexual dominion obtains nevertheless as perhaps the most pervasive ideology of our culture and provides its most fundamental concept of power. - Kate Millet, Sexual Politics”

As the Men with Bad Haircuts continue their their unabated onslaught against the women of this country, it has occurred to many that standing up for the rights of women is very much a working class issue.

We live in a time when Americans are pitted against fellow Americans, when one just has to pick up the daily paper and read letters from folks jeering at union workers, public employees or the poor. It is as though our political life has become like a reality show, with all of the shallowness attached to it.

One by one, segments of society are picked off for ridicule and broken off. Racial and religious minorities have always felt the sting of this particular game. Women, long the target of unfair employment practices, have become a special target of late.

It approaches almost open contempt at times.

Stephen Colbert said “I’m half woman, on my mother’s side,” and that holds true for all of us, even the Men with Bad Haircuts. Yet so many of us seem willing to sit on the sidelines and watch passively as the rights of working class women are stripped away in this country.

Consider this:

the attacks on Planned Parenthood might be considered a class warfare issue, in that PP serves women (and men, as well) of modest means. While the ultra-sound bills affect all women, the defunding of organizations which help members of the working class, or at the poverty level is an attack on the most economically defenseless in this country.

Women have long been punished for for simply being women, as though their very sexuality itself were some sort of sin to be punished, and now those who have always been afraid of the sexuality of women are out in full force, claiming that they are somehow “empowering” them, by forcing them into humiliating medical procedures. In Oklahoma, the legislature is concerned that “girls” are not “tricked” into having an abortion.

The ultra-sound procedures are government’s way of sexually humiliating women who insist on their legal rights to a medical procedure. It is cruel, vicious and unnecessary. But it serves the purpose of men who don’t have much use for these women.

In Georgia, Republican state representative Terry England said this about a bill which would make it illegal to have an abortion after 20 weeks, even if the woman is known to be carrying a stillborn fetus, or or the baby is not expected to not make it to delivery.

“Life gives us many experiences . . . I’ve had the experience of delivering calves, dead and alive. Delivering pigs, dead or alive. It breaks our hearts to see those animals not make it.”

Calves.

Pigs.

It just breaks his heart.

The news networks are like Magpies, attracted to bright shiny objects for a short time, and then abandoning them for another. How long has it been since since we have heard anyone talk about income disparity since it was brought up several weeks ago?

The working class are all too aware of it, even if the shallow talking heads at the cable channels have moved on.

Even the issue about mothers who stay at home centered around the wife of a billionaire. Not too many factory-working mothers made it onto the nightly news.

As a member of the working class, I cringe whenever I hear comments by others (especially by members of the working class) which demean women. I think that we all need to realize that all of our interests our tied in together, and that an attack (or even a crude remark) upon one really is aimed at all of us.

This is how they win.

******

Quote of the Day

Let us read and let us dance - two amusements that will never do any harm to the world. - Voltaire


sdrake@cox.net

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