• Fri, Jun 15 2012

Video: Republicans Ban Female Rep From Speaking For Saying ‘Vagina’ During Abortion Rights Debate

A Michigan state representative named Lisa Brown (D) was recently banned from speaking on the house floor indefinitely following an “outburst” she made during a debate about reproductive rights. Her crime? Saying the word “vagina” to make a point. Another female democrat, State Rep. Barb Byrum, has been banned from speaking for saying the word “vasectomy” while proposing an amendment that would subject men’s reproductive rights to the same ridiculous restrictions as women’s. Because keeping people from discussing something is the best way to control them re: that thing. Way to take a page from the book of Queen Victoria, American defenders of freedom.

As you can see in the video, Brown made an eloquent case for separation of church and state by talking about her own religious beliefs, by which she keeps different sets of silverware for different food groups and holds the life of the mother as being more important than that of the fetus. “I have not asked you to adopt and adhere to my religious beliefs,” she said. “Why are you asking me to adopt yours?” Granted, she was giving the Medieval priest-kings of Michigan the benefit of the doubt by assuming they consider Judaism a real religion.

Brown continued: “And finally, Mr. Speaker, I’m flattered that you’re all so interested in my vagina, but no means no.” Provocative statement? Perhaps. But it was also true. And isn’t that the whole point of debate? To state the facts in such a way that people decide you’re right, and the other side is wrong?

For their crimes, Brown and Byrum are no longer allowed to speak in debates. (You can see Byrum trying, and failing, to speak about an amendment she herself authored in the beginning of the video.) Not surprisingly, the pernicious anti-choice legislation passed in the Republican-controlled state legislature with ease.

In response to all of this, State Rep. Rashida Tlaib has proposed a novel solution: for Michigan women to stop having sex with men, Lysistrata style. It might sound drastic, but if men aren’t going to let women control our own reproductive organs, why should we let them interact with them in the first place? If these lawmakers are going to penalize us for having female sex parts, we might as well use said parts to gain an advantage over them.

(Via The Raw Story)

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  • Ashley Cardiff

    “Granted, she was giving the Medieval priest-kings of Michigan the benefit of the doubt by assuming they consider Judaism a real religion.”

    I laughed out loud.

  • Martha Macias

    Lysistrata reference! I love it!

  • Miss C

    It seems a vagina ceases to BE an actual, in fact, vagina aka female sexual organ, and becomes a “birth canal” the moment a real or imagined baby is involved.

    That way it’s more like, y’know, a highway – communal property sort of thing, to which the owner’s main relationship is one of responsible stewarding for other users – than like something a woman might want to have a specially protective kind of relationship with, or derive fun from, solely for the sake of it.

    Source of my opinion: friends’ pregnancies, for a start, and sundry online reading of pregnancy/birth articles. Also ref the way various feminist authors have made a case that men view women as a kind of penis sheath, which they then (very reasonably) might want to control access to, and not lavish too many resources on a “used” one… not to mention getting the most decorative one available.

    Okay, I’ll stop there!

  • Steve P

    Sharing with my Facebook friends and Tumblr followers. This is too good not to share. I hope this article goes viral!