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And we have a winner!

By Amanda Marcotte
Tuesday, October 13, 2009 14:35 EDT
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For the most asinine argument against Obama winning the Nobel Peace Prize.

Interesting that she would quote Mother Teresa as a prize-winner, using a quote that I would point out is a barely-veiled threat in a country where the attempts to “stop” abortion involve threats, harassment, bullying, bombing, and shooting doctors. So to say that there won’t be peace until we stop abortion in that context is yet another threat, and it’s blaming the victim, too, by saying that anti-choicers are forced to harass, threaten, bully, bomb, and shoot until abortion “ends”. If they really want peace, they’ll stop showing up at clinics and screaming at women trying to get abortion care, stop calling 40% of American women murderers, stop running websites that give personal information about doctors so they can stalk them and potentially shoot them, and stop encouraging angry, broken men to view women who control their fertility as the source of all their problems. Which is another thing that Rachel Campos-Duffy is doing. The anti-choice tendency to hold women who have abortions/use contraception as the source of all evil in world makes space for broken, fucked-up people to hold women, doctors, and the pro-choice community at large responsible for their own personal failures. That doesn’t do much for peace, as we know, but of course, I’d imagine that Campos-Duffy would suggest that we could all make the pain go away by merely submitting to their demands.

And that’s why I see the larger cultural tendency to treat anti-choicers like serious people instead of unhinged misogynists and contributing to the rape culture. Why on earth do we not immediately denounce people who are willing to make arguments that sound a whole lot like, “Give your sex organs to us so we can do what we want with them, or we will keep threatening and occasionally acting out violently, so you know we’re serious.” I’d suggest it’s because our culture hasn’t completely embraced the idea that a woman’s sexuality belongs solely to herself and no one else.

Of course, that Campos-Duffy blamed women who have abortions for the existence of war itself right in front of Whoopi Goldberg shows how much the anti-choice mentality wipes out any understanding that women are human beings. Goldberg is a victim herself of anti-choice policies, since she had to self-induce an abortion with a coat hanger in junior high school. That’s the world where abortion is “stopped”, by the way. At all times, we must remember when anti-choicers talk about “stopping” abortion, they mean stopping safe abortion. There must be much more severe consequences for their female scapegoats, and a gruesome death by septic abortion fits the bill. Wishing that on women in front of a victim of these attitudes is just, yeah.

Of course, what she’s doing—beyond blaming all the world’s ills on women who have had abortions—is engaging the right wing noise machine’s favorite tactic, which is throwing mud against the wall and seeing what sticks. They don’t really give a shit if their complaints about this Nobel Peace Prize make a lick of sense. The idea is to create a lot of smoke, so that people mistakenly think there’s fire. There’s no drawbacks to sitting around generating nonsensical accusations like you were a computer program designed to put words together randomly to see if a sentence is eventually created by accident. You see how this works on this segment. Campos-Duffy blames a huge percentage of the world’s women for all war because they had abortions, and instead of saying, “Are you absolutely fucking crazy? Do you just realize what you said?”, they all murmur about the greatness of Mother Teresa. There are no consequences for saying something that turns 40% of American women and god only knows what percentage of women worldwide—and women sitting at that table—into demons that have the magical power to cause war and strife by not gestating. Hell, she’ll probably get invited back to spout some more hate speech towards women who have had abortions. No one is willing to call bullshit, and so wingnuts can spin it all day and night, in hopes of creating the illusion that some of it might have some value.

There’s a dark irony to all this, as well. If the world suited the anti-choice philosophy, and every woman had as many children as she possibly could, that would be the worst possible thing for world peace. The mass disease, drought, and starvation that would result as the world’s people grew exponentially past what the world resources could handle would basically force people to wage war on each other to steal their resources for sheer survival. There’s two ways that nature can control a population so that it doesn’t outstrip resources—lowered fertility or mass death. The former has always seemed more humane to me, but of course, it doesn’t do much to demonstrate the virility of permanently insecure men.

Amanda Marcotte
Amanda Marcotte
Amanda Marcotte is a freelance journalist born and bred in Texas, but now living in the writer reserve of Brooklyn. She focuses on feminism, national politics, and pop culture, with the order shifting depending on her mood and the state of the nation.
 
 
 
 
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