Friday, April 08, 2011

Where are They?

Where are they? Where are all the Republican women on the issue of Planned Parenthood? You know, all those well-groomed, well coiffed, mostly blond women in their 20’s, 30’s, and 40’s who appear often on TV as Republican spokespersons, analysts, or other Republican activists? As far as I know we have heard nothing from them about women’s health or Planned Parenthood. There was apparently some kind of gathering of some of them today but they ducked questions on the subject and stuck to the party line about it just being about spending. And where are they with respect to the negotiations? I have not seen a single Republican woman involved (there could be some, of course, but I certainly haven’t seen any evidence of it). Nor have I seen any of the Republican women who control talk shows speak out about this travesty. Where, for example, is Coulter or that blond talk show host in Nevada who is always speaking out on behalf of Republican nonsense? And even more importantly, where were Sarah Palin and Michelle Bachmann, I didn’t see either of them speaking out on the issue. Do they believe women should not have adequate health care? What do they think about contraception, breast exams, pap smears, and other procedures dealing with women’s health? Are they prepared to throw their sisters “under the bus” for some minor spending cuts? Or should we, perhaps, just go along with Mencken when he defined a Misogynist as , “A man who hates women as much as women hate one another.” I naively believed that the time when a bunch of middle-aged or older White men decided health care for women was long gone.

One obvious factor comes easily to mind, these women are relatively if not absolutely wealthy, and would not have to visit Planned Parenthood under any circumstances. But wouldn’t you think that as women they might have some empathy or understanding about the problems of women who are not wealthy, and who must depend on Planned Parenthood? You might think that, but you would apparently be wrong. They, like their male Republican counterparts, seem to be incapable of empathy or understanding. This seems to be a Republican character trait that is shared by both genders. I do not understand it but it seems to me to be unfortunately true. How else can one explain that Republicans are opposed to virtually everything and anything that might make the lives of the middle class and the poor easier or more comfortable. They are, as you know, opposed to unions and collective bargaining, unemployment insurance, universal health care, minimum wages, any control over giant corporations, insurance companies, and banks that are basically robbing us blind. They do not want Public Radio or Television, and even wish to deny the masses the enjoyment of the arts and humanities, and also favor ravishing public lands. They insist on tax breaks for the obscenely wealthy and huge corporations making unprecedented profits, but do not hesitate to suggest more taxes on the middle class. They favor permanent wars because they are good for business and do not touch them in any way, the “volunteer” military consisting mostly of the poor who enlist because they have few other options, and nowadays of paid mercenaries, many of whom are not even citizens. They would like to see everything privatized with no controls of business whatsoever. They are, in short, sworn enemies of the majority of American citizens and are devoted to the single-minded pursuit of profit. I do not believe this description is either inaccurate or exaggerated. I am at a loss to explain it in terms other than just plain selfishness and greed. Although I hesitate to say it, as I have no way to demonstrate it, I sometimes suspect there may be an element of sadism involved, a kind of sadism that may accompany the possession of power, especially unlimited power, over others.

The bottom line on all this I guess is that I simply do not understand Republicans. Try as I may I always get hung up on believing they must be either incredibly stupid, incredibly ignorant, incredibly selfish, incredibly short-sighted, incredibly greedy, remarkably insensitive, or perhaps all of those things. But then I come up against the fact that large numbers of people actually vote for them. This I truly do not understand. They do not have the Black vote, the Hispanic vote, most of the urban vote, the union vote, and now they have deliberately mounted an attack on women and the elderly. To me this seems unbelievably stupid if they want to win elections, but we still hear talk of the next election being a 50-50 toss-up. How can this be? Further along these lines, how can anyone take seriously a political party that offers potential candidates like Donald Trump, Sarah Palin, Michelle Bachmann, or Newt Gingrich? It’s not that any of these people might actually become President, but one would think (at least I would think) the Party itself would be more serious about this (after all, it is for the most powerful position on earth). Donald Trump for President? Sarah Palin for President? This is little more than insulting and we should not even have to hear about it. Similarly, when they suggest things like doing away with Planned Parenthood, the EPA, or Medicare, and so on, they should be indulged, patted on the head, and sent directly to play in the sand box where they so obviously belong.

If you want to see what children can do, you must stop giving them things.
Norman Douglas

No comments: