I’m a woman and I’m from Massachusetts. I voted for Romney and Brown. Both lost and supposedly their attitudes towards women had something to do with it. Let me tell you why this woman disagrees:
1) As a woman I take sole, personal responsibility for my body. I do not have sex without birth control. I’m not on the pill. I buy my contraceptives at a drug store. Or a grocery store. Or a convenience store. Fortunately, effective contraceptives are cheap and readily available. Were I still a college student, I would pick up as many of the free condoms as I thought I might need from the baskets of them at health services and other places around campus. If I have no contraceptives and am not seeking to conceive, I forego intercourse. I am in complete control. I would never ask anyone to pick up the tab for my birth control (that would mean giving up the key element–control) and I resent that I am expected to chip for anybody else’s.
2) As a working woman, I care about where the money I earn goes. It makes me deeply unhappy to know that even though study after study has documented the failure of programs such as Head Start to make positive, lasting influences on the children they are purported to serve, I live in a country where the majority apparently believes that the solution to a failed program is to continuing funding it.
3) As a working woman who has been discriminated in the work place (in my case, a bastion of progressive ideals) because of sex, age, and sexual preference, I can tell you that being thrown out of a job one’s held for twenty years in a field one’s worked in for thirty-five years is no fun. It is demeaning and soul-deadening. It wasn’t a Republican who pushed me out the door, however, and it wasn’t a bunch of fat cat Republicans who let it happen. It was a bunch of liberals, Democrats all for “protecting women in the work place”…until those protections get in the way of what they want to do. I didn’t sue because I hired a good lawyer who got me a great settlement without the burdensome expense of litigation. Never, ever believe a liberal Democrat who tells you laws will protect you in the work place. The only one who can protect you is you.
4) As a woman I believe that children are our future. I weep for the children who have grown up over the last four decades, schooled as they were, and continue to be, to accept without critique ideas that the country of their birth has more flaws–mostly unforgivable–than positive attributes. I despair at generations of young people who grow up not with a sense of pride and gratitude that they are Americans but rather with a vague sense of shame that they, personally, have done something wrong.
5) As a woman who once hoped to travel widely in her retirement, I am sadly putting those hopes to rest. My country has no interest in making a commitment to secure reliable, affordable energy. How far will I be able to drive as gas prices continue to escalate? Will I be able to afford to fly at all? Living in the Northeast as I do, what will I do when the oil to heat my home tops $6 a gallon or more, as it surely will sooner rather than later? The United States is blessed with resources for energy: coal, shale oil, off-shore oil, Alaskan oil, and the know-how to make safe nuclear energy. Why are we not taking advantage of these riches? The solar panels I have to heat my hot water will not heat my home or fill my car’s gas tank. What has happened to a woman’s right to cruise?
I am sorry that the war on women such as me, a war that has raged these past four years, shows no signs of abating. I picked the losing side. But I wonder why, as a non-combatant, I must suffer dearly for that loss.