Grow A Vagina And Get Back To Me

The link I wanted my girlfriends to see…the one that led me to yoga

Today I did something I don’t often do. I posted to my Facebook page a link to something that is a politically charged issue. I usually avoid any sort of post that might in any way be construed as inflammatory. I usually do this because I’m not a big fan of conflict, and I don’t necessarily like to splatter my political, religious, or other personal views all over Facebook for the universe to see. Today, though, I got a wild hair and thought some of my girlfriends would appreciate a link to a web page that interested me. The page offered a petition called The Bill of Reproductive Rights. Created by the Center for Reproductive Rights, the bill’s mission is to let lawmakers in Washington, DC, know that women want safe, affordable, and readily accessible reproductive health care. Call me crazy, but as a woman, I care about this issue. Deeply. So, I posted the link intending to share it with my girlfriends who might also care deeply. The can opener turned. Wouldn’t you know it? Worms. Everywhere.

Within fifteen minutes, I had received a post on my link from a friend I knew from college my freshman and sophomore year. The minute I saw his name, I knew his comment would be contentious. You see, this fellow and I are about as far opposite each other on the political spectrum as you can get. Sure enough. He had seen my post and had something to say. I was already regretting my decision. I read his post and took a deep breath. Against my better judgment, I decided to reply to his comment. My comment was short and sweet. I told him that if he didn’t appreciate my right to my own opinion, he was welcome to hide my posts or block me from his Facebook world entirely. I thought that would end the argument. I mean, how could he possibly take it any further, right? Wrong. He took my comment as an invitation, apparently, to enlighten me about how clueless I am. Cheese and Rice. Are you kidding me? His next comment was 158 words long. Yes. I checked. 158 words to elucidate how clearly misguided I am as to what is important with regard to this election…at least for him. Here’s an exact quote:

This whole war on women is a straw man, a distraction that is used to draw attention away from our economy and ALL people’s freedoms being radically eroded.

Well, I can understand why he would see things that way. There are a lot of issues about which to be concerned this election, just as in any election. But for me, this “war on women” will never be just a “straw man” because I have a vagina. It matters a great deal to me what legislators think is okay for me to do with and for my lady parts. Some people want the government to keep their hands out of business. I want them to keep their hands out of my business, my lady business. I did not, contrary to the beliefs of some, post my link to foster a debate. I was simply sharing information. I was not looking for an argument or asking for input. In fact, after I read my friend’s 158-word post, I did what any good feminist, hippie, liberal would do. I took a deep breath and went to yoga to seek the enlightenment my friend was trying to give me.

This election is close. We all have a lot at stake, but that doesn’t mean we have to get in each others’ faces about it. I see political posts by friends every single day that run counter to my own beliefs. But, I don’t hop onto their personal Facebook pages and vomit my opposition all over the place because I respect their right to their opinions and beliefs. I choose to agree to disagree. I’m comfortable with my beliefs and no one, no matter how emphatic their comments are, will change my mind until it’s ready to be changed. End of story. And, yes, friend…I am receptive to honest, intellectual give and take on the subject of women’s reproductive rights. And, the minute you grow a vagina so you have a legitimate stake in this issue, let me know and I’ll take you up on that offer. I’m not unreasonable. I just think you should know a bit about the subject before you discuss it.

3 comments

  1. While I don’t have the requisite equipment to comment properly, I will say that, as I was driving home, and Katherine Fenton’s comment at the second debate (women’s pay disparity) was ringing in my head, it occurred to be that the *Bullies* are out in full force. I looked at the diatribe against Katherine, a conservative, undecided voter, by bloggers (women among them) who unleashed upon her a surprisingly vicious number of epithets. A lot of folks are starting stories about her, based on nothing. Sound familiar?

    The Bullies believe that if they attack a few people viciously enough, then all those others who are out there of a similar will stop to think “Is it worth the crap I’m going to get?”, and will desist. Wrong-o!!!

    Those among us who can no longer be bullied are not deterred by these low-life insults. Bring It On!

    Justine, keep speaking what’s in your heart. There are a lot of us who believe in your right to your opinion, especially when it is based on your unique perspectives. And your friend; he doesn’t have the right equipment. So, his opinion can be kept, but, as they say, he really doesn’t have a dog in this fight. Not really.

    If they take Viagra and Cialis off of the approved pharmaceuticals for insurance payments, then he can complain about that. And, we’ll listen.

  2. Thanks for speaking your mind. It takes guts to say it and buffer the stream of negativity. Perhaps by sharing the information and starting the conversation you’ll engage those who disagree and just maybe, one kernel of wisdom will resonate with the naysayers and inch by inch they may start to understand why women’s reproductive rights is so important.

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