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Teen Voice - 11/11/2012

Women and Politics
updated: Nov 10, 2012, 12:00 PM

By Kelsey Abkin

It's no surprise this recent election had the largest gender gap in recorded history. From Mourdock's "God intended" controversial statement to Akin's idea of "legitamite rape", it was inevitable that the Democratic party would take a sizable lead in the eyes of American woman. We've acknowledged women's fight for equality in the 50's and 60's as a thing of the past. However, now in 2012, it seems there is a new and notable "War on Women".

It is a small minority that expresses extreme far right views on issues such as abortion, planned parenthood and rape, yet it proved to be a powerful minority. Each Republican Senator who stated something controversial on women's rights was booted out of their seats. What surprises me is the fact that these men were able to obtain ANY votes from women when it came time for re-election. The fact that some men believe they have a say when it comes to a woman's body is completely absurd, and wholly un-American.

It's unfortunate for the Republican party that men like these act as a representation for their grounds and beliefs. I believe that some women who voted against Romney in this recent election would have done differently if their views of the Republican party were not dominated by anti-choice and anti- women ideals.

Nonetheless, it appears Republicans need to make some changes in order to remain prominent figures in government, starting with women's rights. This election hopefully sent a powerful and unmistakable message to extremists that American women do not want politicians to interfere in our personal decisions. It seems to me, the worst thing about women's rights being debated is that women's rights are still even being debated.

Comments in order of when they were received | (reverse order)

 COMMENT 341341 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 12:17 PM

You sound like a really fun gal to be around! lol


 COMMENT 341348 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 12:26 PM

Women's rights? Are we in living in the 60's here?


 COMMENT 341350P agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 12:30 PM

The Tea Party and ultra right wing conservatives would like us to be living in the 60s again. We need to move forward, not backward.


 COMMENT 341351 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 12:31 PM

This election sure felt like it, 348. :(


 COMMENT 341364P agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 12:42 PM

Ah, 348, _you_ are living in the 60's. Planned Parenthood (a proper noun that should be capitalized, Ms. Abkin) is under attack and being defunded, as are other female health, birth control and abortion providers. **PP provides birth control that prevents abortion.** Yes indeed, they also provide abortion procedures. Have you looked at the availability of abortion procedures nationwide lately? We're simply spoiled on the west coast and don't always realize what goes on nationwide.

Planned Parenthood also provides STD screening and treatment for men and women, Pap tests for cervical cancer, treatment for cervical dysplasia (pre-cancerous cell changes), and teams with cities, counties and states to provide breast cancer screening and mammograms to un- and under-insured people. Early diagnosis and treatment saves money and lives.

SCOTUS may have overturned Roe v. Wade if a social conservative had been elected. The state and future of the Supreme Court is a major reason I vote, and I vote socially liberal.

If you're interested in stats or info, google "availability of abortion" or "availability of abortion by state."

Yes, I did get pregnant on birth control, for which I always took full responsibility. I never met a man who did so.


 YIN YANG agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 01:06 PM

Start with Wikipedia, "State-by-state legal status." Guttmacher Institue is generally respected, even to some extent by conservatives.

Here's a map of abortion availability:

I do not believe a zygote is a child, but that's just me, a female.


 COMMENT 341382P agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 01:27 PM

it baffles me why legislature inspired by religious ideology isn't immediately discredited/thrown out. am i misinterpreting the first amendment to the constitution? i thought that government was not allowed to impede on the rights to practice your religion, and conversely religion had no place in public policy. "no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States." wouldn't marriage be considered a public trust, as well accessible health care? so sad that there are still hungry families living in the united states and yet our politicians concern themselves with matters that do not have a place in governmental discourse....


 COMMENT 341402 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 02:26 PM

Don't confuse a war on depravity with a war on women. That said, there certainly are some crackpot Republicans that should at least keep their traps shut.


 COMMENT 341407 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 02:47 PM

War on Women - Kool aide -

We just want you to be responsible for your actions and we don't want to pay for the consequences. The Majority don't care - what you do - how you do it - and with whom U choose to do it with -

Both sides have nutz -

The rest is all election BS to get re elected -


 COMMENT 341414 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 03:04 PM

You might think it's Kool Aid but when there are millions of women who rely on the services of organizations like Planned Parenthood for basic needs (breast cancer screenings, pap smears, etc.) and a great number of people in one of two political parties want to completely de-fund said organization, it's not just election BS or Kool Aid. Sorry. It is a legitimate war on the rights of women to have control over their bodies, instigated and waged by men who have no right to make said decisions.


 COMMENT 341417P agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 03:13 PM

holy ignorance 407! the societal benefits of these services infinitely outweigh the costs to the taxpayer. you want to complain about a costly endeavor with no tangible benefit to humanity, take a look at the wars we've been waging for the past decade.


 COMMENT 341422P agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 03:25 PM

How can you all call this a NEW war?

This "war" is simply the remnants of the past! It's NOT new, it's NOT growing, and the point of view is on the way out, quickly, with other old school trains of thought. You are drawing attention to something that a topic that is so completely tired and nearly OVER.

Another pointless tirade...


 COMMENT 341430 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 03:35 PM

182: Sounds like legislation inspired by religion to me: "...they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights..."

How dare they invoke the Creator in a public document!

JK, but statements such as yours stifle discourse. For example, the establishment clause does not in any way prohibit religious influence in public policy. Most law is derived from English Common Law, which in itself comes from ancient Judeo-Christian theology. A better avenue of argument would be to discuss whether or not a fetus deserves the unalienable right to life, or at what point do we obtain that right.


 COMMENT 341457 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 04:24 PM

414 - some of us don't want to support (via tax dollars or otherwise) the murdering of unborn children. If that means completely de-funding PP because they won't remove this heinous procedure, then that's too bad.


 COMMENT 341461 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 04:29 PM

Fetuses aren't children, but you're welcome to come back and have a reasonable, scientifically informed discussion that doesn't involve you enforcing your religion-based morals on people who may not share your beliefs.


 COMMENT 341474 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 04:52 PM

If you cant afford a condom, or a test when you forget to wear one.....Why should I pay? I feel like if you cant afford very inexpensive and readily available contraception, you should hold off on sex until you can afford it.....try foreplay instead!

No different if you like traveling, but cant afford airfare....you stay home, or do something local.....you dont legislate a travel tax.


 COMMENT 341475 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 04:52 PM

Can we move past the basics? Firstly as women have moved into the work place they are more in line with Dem positions. No getting around that. Republicans should have shut the H up and just focused on the economy. Women are often used as tools and Dems do it once again. No way in H is abortion going away, yet guillible women got all riled up about it, instead of seeing that they and their families have been harmed in real life ways by Obama's tenure (real money and real jobs, not fairy tale boogie men) As for fetuses aren't children, wo the H do you or any scientist knows what REAL or not. Everyone has an OPINION,so get off the liberal high horse. Somone mentioned Guttmacher. That place will tell you the like 96% of abortions are to get out of screw ups not rape incest or medical. That's millions or screw ups that have real implications to people and our society (tax base for one). Feminists love to yell about rape, incest and medical, but aren't honest about it's really far majority use and that's to kill consesquences for actions.


 COMMENT 341478P agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 05:02 PM

457, you are VERY close minded. What it boils down to is if you can't have your way, then NO woman can get the other services they need. How can you possibly think that PP's abortions outweigh the rest of PP's benefits??? It's a very, very selfish point of view, in a very, very misguided way.


 COMMENT 341479 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 05:07 PM

478 - I'll gladly keep my mind closed, rather than let it drain out like so many others. Thank you very much.


 COMMENT 341481 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 05:09 PM

402: Upset that your tax dollars support things that you don't believe in? *Welcome To The Club.* Where do i stand in line to get my war money back?

Or is using tax dollars to kill "unborn children" appalling, but using tax dollars to kill thousands of *born* children, and adults, ok?


 COMMENT 341483 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 05:21 PM

The discussion has centered entirely on social issues that are primarily decided by the supreme court. I thought the main issue of the election was financial responsibility but I wouldn't expect a teen voice to have interest in that topic.


 COMMENT 341512P agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 07:03 PM

UCLAFANATIC - women used as tools by Democrats - that is a complete distortion.

Since the 2010 election, women's issues including the defunding of PP has been at the top of the republican agenda - NOT jobs. They would not support Obama's jobs bill, but many states introduced anti-abortion measures, including the infamous ultrasound bill.

And in the 2012 election - “If Rick Santorum is not the nominee, all the attention to these issues is going to evaporate,” said Whit Ayres, a Republican pollster. “The probability of social issues playing a significant role in the general election is minimal.”

Many women who were going to vote Romney in this election changed their minds when Republicans started talking about rape - and those people were defeated.

Please point the finger of blame in the right direction.


 COMMENT 341517P agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 07:10 PM

483 - I think you are mistaken to the tune of 80: 0 for states versus the supreme court in 2011 alone.

80: NUMBER OF ANTI-ABORTION LAWS PASSED BY THE STATES IN 2011 | Via the Guttmacher Institute: “In the first six months of 2011, states enacted 162 new provisions related to reproductive health and rights. Fully 49% of these new laws seek to restrict access to abortion services, a sharp increase from 2010, when 26% of new laws restricted abortion. The 80 abortion restrictions enacted this year are more than double the previous record of 34 abortion restrictions enacted in 2005—and more than triple the 23 enacted in 2010. All of these new provisions were enacted in just 19 states.”

What should I say about an adult not having enough interest to get the facts.


 COMMENT 341529 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 07:28 PM

The "War on Women" is a non-issue made up from whole cloth by liberal strategists. Looks like it worked! Too bad, lemmings. Abortion restrictions are produced by State legislatures, reflecting the will of their constituents. Not a Federal issue at all.


 COMMENT 341538P agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 07:44 PM

341529 - fortunately the votes by women in the election completely debunk your claim.

And the only reason women's issues are in the news is because after the 2010 election, republicans in power decided to go after abortion. Thus it is not made up from whole cloth but by the very real actions and statements of republicans. My guess is you are a man.


 COMMENT 341546 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 08:03 PM

I'm personally against abortion but to think it will go away in this country is ridiculous (straw man by Dems). I personally don't care if abortions are legal, I just hope more wouldn't do it. I completely agree that Republicans were total aholes about womens stuff. Just say it's not going away and we'll decide as a nation (we have representatives for states and people right?) how to manage it. It's not going away. ANd talk about what really is impacting all which is the economy and jobs. Total screw up by Republicans. What scares me as a conservative is "This is the best people we have" Complete jackwagons and stupid people Weird. The good thing (good for the country too) is I think the next gen of Republicans will be younger, minorities, more worldly, etc. Good for Republicans but also good for America since we could use moderates.


 COMMENT 341558 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 08:59 PM

348, it sometimes feel like we're living in the 60s, yes. What with the large wage gap between womens' and mens' and the recent laws passed in a lot of states that regulate a woman's body and even punish her for seeking medical treatment that even pertains to an abortion (see ultrasound bills that passed in 2012 for this)....yeah. It does seem like we're back in the 60s.

I am not under the illusion that you mean that, but maybe think about it next time you make a flip response about women's rights. It's an important subject and deserves more than the response you gave it.


 COMMENT 341561 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 09:11 PM

529: To quote Romney: "I am in favor of having the Supreme Court overturn Roe v. Wade". So yes it IS a presidential issue rather than a strictly Supreme Court issue. Learn the facts.


 COMMENT 341562 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 09:15 PM

Mitt's abortion flip-flop here:



 COMMENT 341564 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 09:45 PM

Here's a question for the ladies. What is the problem with a minors parents having any ability to know that their child is having an abortion?

Here's my deal. The parents love the child. PP doesn't. The parents understand their ability to help or not and they can all make a decision based on a relationship.

Help me understand why women fight that, because they don't love the kid. The parents do.

BTW I think it's easy for a stranger to plant seeds or fear into a child when things are confusing for the child. The child and parents live with the consequences, whereas PP doesn't.


 COMMENT 341567P agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 10:04 PM

I wish all parents did love their children. Not all do. Some physically and emotionally abuse their children -- even torture and kill them. A pregnant girl might not feel safe telling her parents. I'm glad Planned Parenthood is available.


 COMMENT 341568P agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-10 11:17 PM

UCLAFANATIC - that was not the issue about abortion. It was the banning of abortion in all cases including rape and incest. The decision should be made by family and doctor - not by family and government.


 COMMENT 341577 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-11 06:01 AM

407 here - I have 2 daughters - This topic involves me - I have a very large dog in this fight - They can't get an aspirin (at school) with out some one calling me for permission - yet they can get an operation for free from a gov funded facility - are u all nuts - '
PP makes its money from abortion - The largest part of their income - My oldest daughter's friend has had 4 abortions in (2 yrs) here local - it is birth control with an operation - for convenience - after the fact - that we (tax payers) pay for - their decisions to have unprotected sex - yet they state - PP is increasing access to contraception - Fact - PP activity - leading to more abortions -yea this is working - its about the money -


 COMMENT 341579 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-11 06:19 AM

577 - Way to blame bad parenting on Planned Parenthood. Ridiculous. I'm glad to live in a state where thinking like this is the exception.


 COMMENT 341590 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-11 07:28 AM

Thomas Friedman sums up the limited "pro-life" argument very well in this: Google: Thomas Friedman Why I'm pro-life


 UPONTHEHILL agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-11 08:14 AM

Kelsey, thank you for a well written, thoughtful article. I am very relieved that your generation is concerned about women's rights. I was fearful that those who had not worked hard for change in the 60's and 70's would not know that they need to be ever vigilant.


 COMMENT 341601 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-11 08:20 AM

Abortion and drugs: Any young person of this generation or the previous one that isn't aware of how to use protection is a fool. Same with drugs. Gee,
what happens when you use drugs....you die but at least you've known that for years. That's CHOICE, use them and die. Any woman/man
that claims "it just happened"....didn't use birth control is a fool. CHOICE. They've been throwing condoms at you for years, birth control pills for years. You have unprotected sex..you get pregnant. That's CHOICE. Women that have late term abortions are idiots and women who use abortion as "birth control" are beyond stupid. YOUR CHOICE.


 COMMENT 341602 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-11 08:22 AM

Why is it that the GOP's constant refrain is to limit the "Freedom, Liberty and Justice for all" or just to change it to "those freedoms, liberties and justice for those we see fit and deserving"?

Why do conservatives equate same sex marriage with the right to marry animals?

Why do conservatives profess love of unborn life while hawkish to take the lives of those human beings living in other parts of the world and dying under the rain of US made ordinance?

Why do conservatives want to curb the self determination of women?

Who are we to tell others how they should live when our lives aren't so perfect?

How different are we when we invoke the will of God than the Taliban or other extreme Islamists when they curb the liberties of the people who want to live differently than their oppressors?

In my view, a registered Republican, conservative extremists are embracing the "our way or the highway" attitudes that are anti-American and anti-Christian.


 COMMENT 341603 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-11 08:28 AM

Hey 407/577: Abortions make up only 3% of the total number of services offered and carried out by Planned Parenthood. They are required BY LAW to record and report this information on an annual basis. So no, they do not make their money from abortion and it is NOT their largest source of income.

It's very hard to have a rational, sensible debate when people can't even get their facts straight and choose to willfully lie or distort the publicly available truth. That's just shameful. Educate yourself.


 COMMENT 341605 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-11 08:43 AM

603 - those numbers are smoke and mirrors and U know it - research the facts - all to generate more fed dollars -


 COMMENT 341612 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-11 09:06 AM

You're right on!


 COMMENT 341622 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-11 10:02 AM

407, did you also know that the sky is actually orange? And that whites only make up 15% of the population? Or that "fossil fuels" actually refers to processed elderly humans? I know these facts are true because the "official" facts are smoke and mirrors, and you know it.

See how ridiculous this is? If you want to argue from a position of "the established, verifiable facts are wrong" then why are we even having a conversation? You will simply say that all of the statistics and publicly available facts I quote are wrong or misdirections, which will result in me calling you disingenuous and borderline willfully ignorant.

Also, for what it's worth, Planned Parenthood is prohibited from using federal funds for abortion. It's called the Hyde Amendment.


 COMMENT 341629 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-11 10:24 AM

622 - the real number is over 35% of their income from abortions -

Have fun with your rose colored glass's and nonsensical rebuttal that is like a bucket full of holes -


 COMMENT 341630 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-11 10:25 AM

These ought not be legitimate presidential talking points. It's not necessarily a presidential power. If Roe v Wade were truly on the chopping block then I'd bet that the streets would be filled with protestors and picketing unless of course, the Jersey Shore was on or there was a double food stamp day and then all the Dems would be in line for the handouts and not be able to protest.


 DULCE agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-11 12:04 PM

Dear Red States:

We're ticked off at your Neanderthal attitudes and politics and we've decided we're leaving: "Legitimate rape." is almost reason enough!

We in Oregon intend to form our own country and we're taking the other Blue States with us.

In case you aren't aware that includes New York, Hawaii, California, Washington, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, Illinois and the rest of the Northeast. We believe this split will be beneficial to the nation and especially to the people of the new country of The Enlightened States of America (E.S.A).

To sum up briefly:
You get Texas, Oklahoma and all the slave states.
We get stem cell research and the best beaches.
We get Andrew Cuomo and Elizabeth Warren. You get Bobby Jindal and Todd Akin.
We get the Statue of Liberty. You get OpryLand.
We get Intel and Microsoft. You get WorldCom.
We get Harvard. You get Ole' Miss.
We get 85 percent of America's venture capital and entrepreneurs.
You get Alabama.
We get two-thirds of the tax revenue. You get to make the red states pay their fair share.
Since our aggregate divorce rate is 22 percent lower than the Christian Coalition's we get a bunch of happy families.

Please be aware that the E.S.A. will be pro choice and anti war and we're going to want all our citizens back from Afghanistan at once. If you need people to fight, ask your evangelicals. They have kids they're apparently willing to send to their deaths for no purpose and they don't care if you don't show pictures of their children's caskets coming home. We wish you success in Afghanistan, and possibly Iran as well, but we're not willing to spend our resources in these sorts of pursuits.

With the Blue States in hand we will have firm control of 80% of the country's fresh water, more than 90% of the pineapple and lettuce, 92% of the nation's fresh fruit, 95% of America's quality wines (you can serve French wines at state dinners) 90% of all cheese, 90 percent of the high tech industry, most of the US low sulfur coal, all living redwoods, sequoias and condors, all the Ivy and Seven Sister schools plus Harvard, Yale, Stanford, Cal Tech, Long Beach State, CAL, San Jose State and MIT.... [ more ]


 COMMENT 341644P agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-11 12:06 PM

407, I just did a Google search regarding what percent of PP's income comes from abortions. I guess you are using a reference from an anti-abortion group. I'll quote Wikipedia, "3% of Planned Parenthood's income comes from abortion services."


 YIN YANG agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-11 01:27 PM

Thank you 622 for pointing out the Hyde Amendment, in effect since 1976, a rider, not a law, that has been continued since its introduction.


 YIN YANG agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-11 01:31 PM

And I feel just as Nature Boy does about my monies going to fund a war /wars that I do not support. Yes, I've paid for other's abortions.


 COMMENT 341836 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-12 07:06 AM

Dulce is whats wrong with America
What do we get - when do we get it and make it free -

generations of in debt and the same sorry fate as All of Europe except Germany -


 COMMENT 342011P agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-12 03:53 PM

407, you're still not getting it. Dulce has pointed out that the contributions from the citizens on the grossly outweigh those from citizens living in red states. it's already been well established that the wellfare states consist of the bible belt as their use of social services and tax dollars are much higher than their inputs back into the system.


 COMMENT 342013 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-12 03:58 PM

Don't bother. There is really no point in trying to have a debate with someone who says that 3% is really 35%.


 COMMENT 342081 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-12 07:32 PM

011 P - unemployment is a fraction ( Mid west States) of what it is in the so called HAVEN states - and most have balanced budgets - OH THE HORROR OF IT ALL _ NOT SPENDING THE GRANDKIDS INTO THE NEXT 100 YRS ,,,,,,,

keep slinging the Santa Claus theory - everything for free - as the states on both coasts go bankrupt -


 COMMENT 342376P agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-13 04:49 PM

If anyone is still reading this thread, reading the Google News page today made me think of it. Texas is most into secession, but so are many other red states. Reminds me of the north vs. south SB County battle! Google "state secession"
A sample:
"The administration's "We the People" website showed at press time Tuesday evening petitions filed by individuals seeking permission for 40 states to secede from the union, up from 23 the day before.

Petitions filed on behalf of four states — Florida, Georgia, Louisiana and Texas — had reached the 25,000-signature benchmark."


 COMMENT 342379 agree helpful negative off topic

2012-11-13 04:51 PM



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