If it feels like your humanity is up for debate, that's because it is
I am turning 80 this year and so I came of age before both birth control and abortion were legalized.
I come out of college with a technical degree, fully qualified for any number of professional positions. Except I am told over and over and over in interview after interview that I'm not qualified because "I could just get pregnant" . It was explicit and blatant.
I finally secured a job in the brand new field of computer programming, because they were desperate for anyone who could do that job and they could get women really cheap. But the personnel manager still told me he didn't want to give me the job because of course I would just get pregnant and leave. In desperation I finally pulled my brand new bottle of birth control pills out of my purse, told him I had no intention of getting pregnant, and if he didn't believe me he could feed me my pills every morning.
He shut up and he hired me. That's what it took for a woman to get a job before birth control and abortion.
And yes 60 years later that is still seared into my brain. And yes I am livid. And I will stay livid.
Yes! I feel this whole heartedly. I even wrote about it on my substack this week, namely about how early we start policing women's bodies (fifth grade for my daughter when she came home and talked about the dress code). https://cindyditiberio.substack.com/p/the-insidious-policing-of-our-bodies/
We must have someone who can figure out an even better law than roe v wade by now, and I’m waiting for that person to step up. RBG seemed to think that was possible. I want to see something even stronger then roe v wade as a result of this moment
This is a brutal piece but I don't think there's anything here that's an overreaction.
I don't know what the answer is for race; I don't know how to get white people to care about people who aren't (identified as) white.
But since it seems pretty clear that, likewise, the only way to end misogyny is to get men to think differently about women, the one thing that occurs to me is that almost every man had a mother at some point in his life. Maybe it has to start there or otherwise it's too late. I don't know, it's really hard to wrap one's head around the truths about men that Jessica describes so well here.
I couldn't read any news today because I'm so depressed. I feel with you, Jessica.
But I am not so sure abortion rights will be overturned. We have six months for those "partisan hack" justices to remember they aren't supposed to vote their beliefs and political ideals, but they are to interpret whether laws are constitutional. I need something to hold on to as this country sinks further into a sticky, mean, violent morass.
The more we keep expecting the worst, the more miserable we will be. Why not reverse the predictions that are constantly thrown about in the media with the belief that the SCOTUS is a reputable institution and recognizes women as members of the human race and not just means to an end? Let's demand that the media do its job of reporting and upholding rights as the only thing to do because talking repeatedly of the worst things to come make it seem inevitable that they will happen.
"News" is mostly opinion and repeated headlines and stories with a new twist of different tag line just to get us to click on it. Let's just stop assuming the worst of everyone (except Trumpers and white supremacists) and demand the best, the truth. We heard what the justices asked and said but we might try believing that they are looking for angles to overturn the right to self-determination for women, but as part of their way of exploring the issues on the table from MIssissippi. They are not immune to having their reputations undermined. Let's not make it easy for them to reduce women to second-class citizens any further.
Thank you for writing this.
I hadn’t intended on listening to the oral arguments – but I happened to be in the car and turned them on to catch the last hour. It was painful to listen to – and I can’t get it out of my head.
I was pregnant for 41.5 weeks. I was in the hospital for a traumatic labor, delivery and recovery for 7 days. Now, approaching my sons second birthday my postpartum depression is again not under control and the C-section scar still pangs when I move a certain way.
The arguments made at the Supreme Court regarding the only imposition on a woman if abortion is not available is being pregnant for the time between “viability” and birth, when the baby could then just be dropped off at a safe haven, is completely asinine.
“I feel too defeated to move.” Is a good way to describe how I’ve been feeling as well. Thank you.
A few days back I read an article about sexism in sport and the author said that the fierce backlash against athletes who fought (or even named) sexist attitudes had a lot to do with men hating intelligent women.
When I read that I thought the (male) author was slightly missing the point: sexism and other forms of misogyny are, overtly or covertly, about men hating women with agency - and yes, that's what 'pro life' as a political movement is all about: controlling women in their bodies and their minds.
Couldn't watch or read either -- for the same reasons as yours. Thanks for saying the truth clearly.