Saturday, March 3, 2012

And when do women get to be persons?

I have been too immersed in my schoolwork to give more than passing attention to the daily news. This is not entirely a bad thing. I really don't think it is necessary for me to keep track of every time some wingnut patriarch celebrity or right-wing Republican legislator says something truly stupid about a woman, women, or women's rights. Such nincompoopery has been so widespread for so long that it is hardly worthy of notice, and frankly, some of the nincompoops seem to thrive on the attention, any kind of attention. It's probably a good thing that my attention has been focused on Information and Communications Technology and Management of Information and Knowledge organizations instead.

I do regret that I can't keep up with the anti-woman shenanigans of the 2012 Oklahoma Legislature. This is not merely some kooky talk radio show that a person can turn off. These people are passing actual laws, and one of the laws that they seem poised to pass is called The Personhood Act, which would declare a fertilized egg to be a human being, with all of the rights and privileges of any other citizen or resident of Oklahoma.

I've found what looks like a pretty good explanation of the situation on a blog called God Discussion, including the text of the bill that's making it's way through the Oklahoma Senate. God Discussion reports that House already passed a similar bill on Tuesday.  As other commentators have noted, this is a law that would ban many forms of contraception. The creative and courageous Oklahoma Coalition for Reproductive Justice held a "Barefoot and Pregnant" rally at the state capitol in Oklahoma City, and is leading the campaign against the Senate bill (and against a possible ballot measure that would add this type of language to the Oklahoma Constitution). OCRJ also provided this link to help you take action to defend women's control over our own bodies and our own lives.

Not so long ago, the US Supreme Court decided that corporations are persons. The Oklahoma Legislature wants to declare that fertilized eggs are persons. I would like to know when women get our chance to be persons, too.

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