Open Letter: Female GOP Supporters

4 Nov

NaNoWriNO Day 4

Topic: Open letter to the GOP

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Female GOP Supporters:

As you know, elections are right around the corner, and propaganda information from both parties has been spreading like wildfire for the past several months. As we close in on November 6th, I can’t help but think about those of you ladies who will be going to the polls and placing a mark next to Romney’s name. As someone who considers herself moderately conservative, I can appreciate wanting to elect someone who can actually make change happen rather than use it as a buzzword to slap on a bumper sticker.

However, I’m just not sure how any woman could choose to vote Republican in this election. Don’t get me wrong, the idea of President Obama serving another four years doesn’t exactly get me super excited, but I find the alternative to be much worse. “But Jen, as a moderate conservative, don’t you want someone who sits on the same side of the fence you’re on?” No, and let me tell you why.

“Moderate Mitt” doesn’t have a solidified ideology, and this is alarming to me. I’ll admit that I don’t follow politics as closely as some do, but I do keep abreast of it enough to know who stands for what. Because of this, I’m worried that I still don’t know what Mitt Romney’s real views are on certain key issues. After months of campaigning, and millions of dollars to promote yourself, if you haven’t conveyed how you feel you’ve got problems.

This tells me two things:

(1) He doesn’t have a firm enough grasp on his political principles

(2) He’s a sitting duck for those who do

This brings me to why I’ve targeted women in this open letter. Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you may have noticed the asinine and insensitive things staunch Republicans have been saying while getting all up in our ovaries over the last year.

“I think that even when life begins in that horrible situation of rape, that it is something that God intended to happen” – Indiana Republican U.S. Senate candidate Richard Murdock (endorsed by Romney)

In response to being asked if a woman should be able to get an abortion if she is raped: “The method of conception doesn’t change the definition of life” – Vice President Nominee Paul Ryan (obviously endorsed by Mitt Romney)

“I would hope that when a woman goes into a physician, with a rape issue, that that physician will indeed ask her about perhaps her marriage, was this pregnancy caused by normal relations in a marriage, or was it truly caused by rape.”- Republican Idaho Senator Chuck Winder (endorses Mitt Romney)

When a reporter asked how he would handle a daughter or granddaughter becoming pregnant as a result of rape, Republican Senate candidate Tom Smith said he had already ‘lived something similar to that’ in his family. When pressed to answer what kind of situation is similar to rape, he responded: “Having a baby out of wedlock.”

“Some girls rape easy.” – Wisconsin Republican Representative Roger Rivard while sharing a story about a warning his dad offered him. He later clarified that his father meant premarital sex “may be rape the next morning.”

Are you mad yet? You should be.

While I hate the term “The War on Women”, and acknowledge that these are all sound bites, I do believe we need to read between the lines. These are men who are paid to convey their ideas well enough to sway their peers into voting in their favor. Some, if not all, have “coaches” who help them learn how to do this.

I don’t believe for a second that this was a case of what someone said not being what they meant. I think they are thinly veiled misogynists whose only concern when it comes to women is what time they’ll be making dinner. These are the people who are endorsing, or are being endorsed by, Mitt Romney. I don’t want these men running in a marathon let alone participating in running a country.

Because Mitt Romney is so BLAH on everything, I’m afraid he will succumb to the pressure of his more extreme conservative counterparts.

How can you feel good about standing behind a party that obviously doesn’t care what those with uteruses feel about the matter? That wants to limit your daughters’ rights away if, god forbid, they were to be raped? That think it’s okay to make a victim of rape a victim of a cruel system set up by men?

I also want to be more fiscally conservative. I also want reform. I also want somebody besides Obama. I don’t want these things instead of my rights as a woman. Are you willing to take the risk of Romney winning, and becoming a puppet for men who know nothing of empathy?

I’m not asking you to abandon your party, and I’m not even asking you to vote for Obama. I’m simply asking you to consider who your vote will be helping (or hurting) in the future. I’ve seen so much tunnel vision this election season, people wanting to stick it so badly to the other party that they forgot what causes they were fighting for in the first place. I don’t care what decision you make in a couple of days, I just want you to make an informed one.

Regardless of who wins, I hope we all realize we’re in this together.

Ovaries Before Brovaries,

Jen

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I will confess that I did not draw this from the hat, but chose to write this since the election is near. Forgive me?

Please be respectful of one another when commenting. I know this is a sensitive issue for some, but we’re all intelligent enough to use reason instead of fighting words.

Thanks to the following bloggers for suggesting this topic:

NaNoWriNO Day 3 post

NaNoWriNO Day 5 post

77 Responses to “Open Letter: Female GOP Supporters”

  1. Soul Walker 11/06/2012 at 12:44 pm #

    Jen,

    I am genuinely curious why you threw the Ryan quote in there with all the others. I would actually like to know why you thought it was on par with “rape easy” and the like. Do you have to be familiar with the context the quote is from to understand why that response is so undesirable to you? I am genuinely interested to know.

    -Soul Walker

    • Jen and Tonic 11/06/2012 at 12:47 pm #

      Good question, and one that someone else asked me in a private message. For me, using the term “method of conception” when describing a situation of rape is very callous. It is an act of violence, and a crime, not a way that someone conceives a baby. While he is *technically* correct, I find it to be very telling of his view on rape victims.

      • Soul Walker 11/06/2012 at 12:57 pm #

        Unless you know something else about his views that the use of the word “conception” references I (as a philosopher) wouldn’t agree that it tells you very much about his views on rape… but perhaps you know something I don’t.

        It does however tell you what his views on abortion are. It does tell you what he views as the most important issue of the discussion is. As someone who has been forced to debate issues not my own for years and years I am often saddened at people’s unwillingness to take the time (in public) to show that they genuinely even understand an “opponent’s” position.

        If it was a war of emotional words then someone on his side might very well just say that using the term “fetus” in certain contexts and baby in others was “equally telling.”

        But really, both of those comments go for the heart-strings and avoid the issues themselves. This is only a good thing to do (on either side) if you want to preach to the choir and not actually engage in real dialogue.

        • Jen and Tonic 11/06/2012 at 1:09 pm #

          I agree that it tells you what his views on abortion are. He’s using the line of logic that rape is a method of conception, and therefore a woman should be forced to keep the baby. It also tells me that he is only concerned about the cause, and not the person behind the cause. In my opinion, that puts him on equal footing with the others.

          I agree that using the term “baby” is a way to illicit an emotional response from those who may be on the fence about abortion. I don’t know that it impacts those who already have a solidified viewpoint.

          Aside from this, I find Paul Ryan to be smug and unlikeable. I know some feel he is a good speaker, but there is something about his mannerism and method of speaking that seems so off-putting to me.

          • Soul Walker 11/06/2012 at 1:26 pm #

            I happen to know that that is not really his point. Perhaps he has failed to communicate effectively to you where you are. However, I assume he was answering a question not asked by you or me.. His point was not about forcing anyone to keep a baby. His point was that if it is a baby it is a human being and that is more important than the awful circumstances of its conception.

            Now I assume you are right in inferring that he would “force a rape victim to keep a baby.” That however, was not the point of answering in the way he did. It wasn’t even close. He is a politician (and as such I don’t trust him) and he chose his words carefully (as they often do– even when you think they are being careless). But if you always make everything about the issue you care about (which he may very well have been doing himself in “answering” that question) you often miss the person you are dialoguing with.

            I assume from the very brief quote (and I could be wrong) that his response meant that he thought the question was flawed and missed an important truth. He thought restating this truth was more important than directly answering the question asked to him. Perhaps it was, perhaps it wasn’t. I wasn’t there.

            But I have a strong suspicion that Paul Ryan would crucify a rapist regardless of what he thought about “keeping the baby.” I don’t imagine that you would disagree but perhaps you know something I don’t.

          • Jen and Tonic 11/06/2012 at 1:51 pm #

            I have no idea what Paul Ryan’s intentions are other than to be a major pain in my ass 😉

          • Soul Walker 11/06/2012 at 4:14 pm #

            Ha! It’s hard not be invested in a woman’s ass… so… wait, what?

  2. Summer 11/06/2012 at 7:33 am #

    Great post! You’re absolutely right, Romney would bow to please his right-wing extreme counterparts. He used to have a pro-choice stance and it suddenly shifted to meet the needs of his misogynistic party. He signed the Personhood pledge, yet later claimed to support abortion in the case of rape and incest.
    It’s hard to believe that in 2012, I’m stuck voting to maintain my rights as a woman. The right to choose is the only issue that determines my vote at this point. Because without the right to choose – we have no power, we have no rights.

    • Jen and Tonic 11/06/2012 at 1:30 pm #

      I’ve said this all along, but I just wish Romney would have chosen ANY side. Let’s say he opposed everything I believed in. At least I could respect the fact that he had a viewpoint. It was his wishy washy nature on pretty much everything that really bugged me. It’s such a stark contrast to the other people in his circle who can’t do anything BUT talk about their opinions.

      It’s scary times when we have to prove that we deserve to have a voice about what happens with our bodies.

  3. The Bumble Files 11/05/2012 at 10:07 pm #

    Thanks for writing this, Jen. I hope people go out to vote tomorrow! My feeling is this – if you vote for Romney you’re voting for all the crazy wingnuts that surround him because I think you’re spot on when you say he’s a sitting duck. That’s a scary thought.

    • Jen and Tonic 11/06/2012 at 12:48 am #

      You become the company you keep, and I can’t bear to think of an Akin or Murdock in the White House.

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