January 21, 2014 — We've compiled some of the most thought-provoking commentaries from around the Web. Catch up on the conversation with bloggers from the Center for American Progress, Care2 and more.
ABORTION RESTRICTIONS: "Congressman's New Jobs Plan: Deny Women Access to Abortion So They Can Make More Babies," Tara Culp-Ressler, Center for American Progress' "ThinkProgress": "During a debate over an anti-abortion bill [HR 7] currently advancing in Congress, Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) suggested that Republicans support restricting access to abortion because it will ultimately benefit the economy if women have more children," writes Culp-Ressler, adding that the bill would "dramatically restrict women's access to affordable abortion care by imposing restrictions on insurance coverage and tax credits for the procedure." Culp-Ressler argues, "In reality, denying women autonomy over their reproductive lives is not a wise economic policy," adding that "[w]ithout access to affordable family planning services, women are less likely to be able to finish their education, advance their career, or achieve financial independence." She also cites a Guttmacher Institute study that found the government saves $5 for every $1 it invests in family planning services (Culp-Ressler, "ThinkProgress," Center for American Progress, 1/15).
What others are saying about abortion restrictions:
~ "5 Absurd Reasons Why Conservatives Want To Force Women To Give Birth," Robin Marty, Care2.
~ "'Protective' States? How Anti-Abortion Organizations Patronize and Infantilize Women," Marty, Care2.
~ "Kentucky Lawmaker Attempts To Define Abortion as Domestic Violence," Emily Crockett, RH Reality Check.
ROE V. WADE ANNIVERSARY: "'Roe v. Wade' Let Me Become a Mother," Sarah Erdreich, RH Reality Check: "[T]oo often abortion is talked about as something entirely separate from the rest of the reproductive care continuum," which "has helped perpetuate the myth that abortion is something so rare and repugnant that no rational and compassionate woman would ever choose it," Erdreich writes. She adds, "Such a narrow, judgmental conversation does no one any favors, and ignores the positive ways in which the entire spectrum of reproductive rights affects personal lives and helps create healthy families." She notes that "only since Roe, women and men have been able to plan their lives with the assumption that they won't become parents until or unless they want to." Erdreich continues, "Like millions of women, having control of all my reproductive choices has meant being able to complete my education, participate fully in the workplace, and establish a solid relationship with my partner before becoming a parent" (Erdreich, RH Reality Check, 1/20).
What others are saying about the Roe anniversary:
~ "41 Years of Fighting Over Roe," Martha Burk, Huffington Post blogs.
VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN: "Supreme Court Will Decide on Re-Arming Domestic Abusers," Gaylynn Burroughs, Ms. Magazine blog: The Supreme Court recently heard oral arguments in a case, United States v. Castleman, that "could limit the effectiveness of the [1996 Domestic Violence Offender Gun Ban (PL 104208)] and place domestic violence victims further at risk," writes Burroughs, director of policy and research at the Feminist Majority Foundation. She explains, "If the Supreme Court upholds the lower courts' interpretation of the gun ban, it will immensely cripple the law and the protection it affords" because "none of the abusers convicted under [state misdemeanor assault and battery laws] would be subject to the gun ban if their convictions did not specifically mention 'physical force.'" She continues, "There is no reason to wait for an abuser to exhibit 'strong and violent force,' as the lower courts would have us do, before we prevent that abuser from owning a firearm" (Burroughs, Ms. Magazine blog, 1/16).
What others are saying about violence against women:
~ "Stripping Parental Rights From Rapists May Be One Place Pro-Life and Pro-Choice Can Agree," Marty, Care2.
~ "Meet Dick Black, Who Thinks Husbands Can't Rape Their Wives and is Running for Congress," Amanda Marcotte, Slate's "XX Factor."
WOMEN'S ECONOMIC SECURITY: "Marital Status Doesn't Cause Poverty -- Not Having Money Does," Amanda Marcotte, RH Reality Check: "[G]rowing income inequality and startling statistics ... are making the discussion of economic justice unavoidable," but "conservatives have decided to blame a favorite scapegoat -- women who make sexual choices they disagree with -- for the 'choice' not to get married," Marcotte writes. She notes that the "strangest thing about the attacks on single women, especially single mothers, is how much conservatives seem to believe that women are actively avoiding marriage." She adds that people are poor "[b]ecause they don't have enough money" and that people are single because they "don't have anyone suitable to be married to," not because there is "a widespread marriage boycott organized by welfare offices, feminists, or some combination of the two" (Marcotte, RH Reality Check, 1/20).
What others are saying about women's economic security:
~ "The Shriver Report and Access to Breast Cancer Care," Judith Salerno, Huffington Post blogs.
GENDER RATING: "Four Major Insurers Accused of Discriminating Against Women in Long-Term Care Plans," Sy Mukherjee, Center for American Progress' "ThinkProgress": Mukherjee comments on "sex discrimination complaints" being filed by the National Women's Law Center "against four of the largest American insurance companies for discriminating against women in their long-term care insurance plans." The suit accuses the insurers of charging women more than men for the policies, thus violating the Affordable Care Act's (PL 111-148) "protections barring sex discrimination in insurance plans," he explains. While the "long-term care industry has long maintained" the provisions do not apply to them, NWLC argues that "this form of discrimination only exacerbates the financial strains of the lifetime of wage discrimination that most women experience," Mukherjee writes (Mukherjee, "ThinkProgress," Center for American Progress, 1/16).