A few days ago I got into a discussion on twitter with a feminist. She was tweeting that Republicans want to take away women’s birth control. A few exchanges revealed that this feminist was equating abortion with birth control. The conversation then devolved into arguments about whether the birth control pill can cause abortions and other such details.
My primary objection was her use of the phrase “War on Women.” The phrase “War on Women” and associated arguments are intended to demonize Republicans and conservatives in the eyes of women. Twitter is full of statements that no female who believes in her own self-interest should every vote for any Republican anywhere or she is some sort of traitor to women everywhere.
This argument is based on a fundamental proposition: That opposition to abortion, or any form of birth control, or even requiring others to pay for birth control is based on hatred of women and a desire to subjugate them. In other words it is a slander.
Feminists will not accept the truth about opposition to abortion. Opposition to abortion is based on a moral conviction that it takes the life on an innocent. Therefore, desire to reduce and restrict abortion is based on the need to protect innocent life and has nothing to do with any desire to punish or harm women. Feminists cannot grant this basic truth or they will lose their basis to demonize their opponents.
This fact becomes even more apparent when you examine an obvious truth. A large percentage of women oppose abortion and have various opinions of which forms of birth control are acceptable. Do these women hate themselves? Are they waging a war on their own gender? Fifty seven percent of women believe abortion should be illegal in all or most circumstances. Forty four percent of female voters voted for Mitt Romney. Perhaps the feminists believe that such women are too stupid or uneducated to come to the “correct” choice.
And what to make of Republican women who are office holders? There are 4 Republican women in the U.S. Senate and 19 Republican women in the U.S. House, most of which are pro-life, including my congressman, Rep. Diane Black. Do these women hate women? Are they waging a “War on Women” when they oppose ObamaCare forcing religious organizations to provide contraceptives against their belief? Or are they supporting First Amendment freedoms of religious women?
But what about men? Feminists seem to believe that men should stay out of “women’s issues” but do not return the favor by staying out of issues that affect mostly men (such as fighting wars in Iraq.) As a husband and father of two young daughters I object to this characterization. Do feminists believe that all conservative men hate their own wives and daughters?
The simple truth is that the “War on Women” rhetoric is simply a slander and a lie, designed to silence the opposition and avoid debate on the real issues. We should oppose that lie with vigor, every time it is used.