Yesterday afternoon, the House of Representatives voted 240-185 to block federal funding for Planned Parenthood. Said House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, “The time has come to respect the wishes of the majority of Americans who adamantly oppose using taxpayer dollars for abortions.”
Men have unwaveringly set history’s political agenda. In too many places, for too many years, on too many separate occasions, man’s superiority complex has superseded woman’s unshakable humility. Of course, there are exceptions. But in the grand scheme of things, men have suppressed or out-shouted the female voice.
In Biblical times, men set the rules. In literature, male authors set the scene. In the workforce, men set (and collected) the salaries. But a woman’s job in America shouldn’t be – and isn’t – to stand by and set the table; it’s to set the agenda.
Since Cantor brought up the topic, let’s discuss majorities. At the risk of detracting from the essence of the argument, I won’t even take into account outside social, religious, or political arguments. Simply consider the following.
Women make up the majority of this country, and men make up eighty-two percent of congressional representation. The majority of women who opt to abort their pregnancies are black and Hispanic, and eighty five percent of congress is white. The majority of women who choose abortions are are in their twenties and thirties, and the average age of a senator is sixty, and that of a congressman is fifty. The majority of women who choose abortions make low incomes and cannot afford the economic burden of another child, and the current salary of an average member of congress is $174,000 a year – out of the pockets of Mr. Cantor’s oh-so-coveted taxpayers. (Cantor himself nets a whopping $193,400 annually.)
Sound like a crowd who should be markedly narrowing women’s options, deciding women’s fates, or determining the extent of women’s rights?
For a gang whose principle goal is to take issue with government involvement in the personal lives of ordinary citizens, these people are wading into dangerous waters. ‘Pro-Life’ politicians like Eric Cantor and Mike Pence drip with the kind of sanctimonious hypocrisy that is otherwise reserved for quixotic Disney villains.
Every woman in the world – and certainly in the freest nation on earth – has the God-given right to decide the fate of her own body, look out for the welfare of her own family, and make decisions that are influenced and exercised by her own free will. The decision simply does not belong to the Republican leadership – or any political party, for that matter. In actions like the one taken on the House floor yesterday, these men verge on territory that simply doesn’t belong to them – territory that belongs to the individual woman. And no one else.