Sunday, January 3, 2016

Democratic Women

With terrorist groups using Donald Trump's hate speeches to encourage terrorism, I would like to suggest a little diversion from the terrifying idea that he or any one of those idiots could be our next president.  It is truly too soon after the Dubya years to contemplate.

Instead, let's take a peek at our own SC State Legislature, and the schemes and pranks they have up their sleeves for the coming legislative session.

We do have heroes stepping up to file a bunch of gun control bills (oops, I mean "gun safety"), and a particularly brilliant and much-needed erectile dysfunction bill, the usual nuts and bolts are spewing the usual old-white-christian-male nonsense.  I wish December saw them spending more time celebrating the joy of Christmas and less time ruminating on how to take away the rights of all us residents of Whoville.

We have a bill that will protect pastors from the ever present threat that they will be forced to perform a marriage ceremony on a gay couple.  There's the one that keeps popping up that would make absolutely sure that our judges will not practice Sharia Law in our South Carolina Courts.  And one that will protect us from being overrun by refugees; once they have food and a roof over their heads, I imagine the fear is that the next step will be to establish their own little governments.

Then we have one that would require every school district to display the words "In God We Trust" in every single school in the state.  Since they'll be spending the tax dollars on plaques instead of educational materials, maybe our pols figure a miracle is the only way our kids are going to get educated.

Of course, the real red meat for our right wingnuts is women's reproductive rights.  How can Lee Bright focus on decorating that tree with little mangers when he is imagining all the infinitesimal little tiny babies in all the women and girls that might not be born?  And his buddy in all things despicable, Kevin Bryant, can't hardly say his prayers for imagining what goes on in a woman's body when she has an abortion.  Let's not forget Wendy Nanney who represents all the women who want to control women, and her fact-free "pain capable" anti-abortion bill which is likely to start the session right where it left off in June, attempting to force its way into passage.

As half-time of the two-year legislative sport approached, Kevin Bryant tossed out a bill that would ban "dismemberment abortions."  And chomping at the bit, during the prefile period, a whole plethora of lunatics signed on to the comedically entitled "Defunding the Abortion Industry and Advancing Women's Health Act."  Thanks to the Americans United for Life this bill is spreading around the states like ebola.  So as well as pretending the goal of killing Planned Parenthood is to save "babies," the anti-abortion movement has now taken the absolute galling stand of claiming they are protecting women's health.

Well, here's my point.

We need to fight these idiots.  They are very small, bitter people who are incapable of seeing the irony or the falsehood of any of this legislation.  The same legislators who would like to force women to bring a pregnancy to term work just as hard to make sure that she does not have adequate health care.  In the case of working to kill Planned Parenthood, they also want to make sure that women of limited means don't have access to birth control.  Many of them will fight to prevent medically accurate sex ed.

Gee, it's almost as though the radical right wing wants to punish girls and women for having sex by making them bear children.  And then make them work a low paying job with inadequate child care.  And then blame them -- and the kids -- when they have problems.

Family values just don't get screwier than that.

Here in Charleston County, we have a group of Democratic women that are fighting for sanity in our legislature.  They support representatives that will work for us, that will fight to protect us from the rabid and rage-filled radicals of the right.  And this year they have a goal of joining forces with us to advocate for us in Columbia.

Charleston County Democratic Women (CCDW) meets once a month, on the first Thursday, at the Charleston - Riverview Holiday Inn.  You don't have to be a member to enjoy the $20 buffet dinner and the speakers, and you don't have to be a woman.  You do have to support the goals that will make lives better for women, which in fact, will improve all our lives.

Membership is $20 annually, and January is membership renewing time.  While the cost of the meeting pays only for the dinner, membership goes toward supporting the candidates that will move us forward in South Carolina.  Better education for our children, freedom from reproductive tyranny for women and families.

On Thursday, January 7, the speaker will be Dr. Donna Johnson, first female Chair of the MUSC Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology.  She will talk about why South Carolina gets an "F" in women's care.  And what we can do about it.

Start the year off right by supporting Charleston County Democratic Women, and by joining in the effort to make legislative changes that will in fact advance women's health, and improve the lives of all of us.

You can find Charleston County Democratic Women on Facebook, and get more information about Thursday's meeting.

I hope to see you there.

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