- The Enterprise
- The Recorder
“If particular care and attention is not paid to the ladies, we are determined to foment a rebellion, and will not hold ourselves bound by any laws in which we have no voice or representation,” First Lady Abigail Adams, 1797-1801.
On April 25, Robert Jackson regaled Enterprise readers with his absurd, anti-women treatise on deception and truth (I’m still yawning) and a cut-and-paste composition taken from the Catholic male hierarchy’s propaganda machine regarding why women should not have access to contraception. It does not matter that contraception is the greatest breakthrough in women’s health or that it gives women greater freedom in planning their families (reference low-income women, please) and in realizing their career goals on their own terms.
Secretary of State Hillary R. Clinton offered the following at the recent 2012 Women in the World Summit: “Why extremists always focus on women remains a mystery to me. But they all seem to. It doesn’t matter what country they’re in or what religion they claim. They want to control women. They want to control how we dress, they want to control how we act, they even want to control the decisions we make about our own health and bodies.” This statement includes our own homegrown extremists.
Jackson, evidently a constitutional fundamentalist, defends the First Amendment rights of employers who refuse to offer contraception through their employee health plans because it may impose upon their religious freedoms. Funny though, that Jackson doesn’t defend women’s constitutional rights to terminate a pregnancy within guidelines. And as a purist, it is also a bit of a mystery as to why Jackson does not berate the Catholic Church for its opposition to the Second Amendment, the right to bear arms.
The Catholic Church opposes the use and ownership of handguns unless you represent the military or some form of recognized authority. This opposition to handgun ownership and consequently to the nonpartisan NRA, which predominately endorses the GOP, is not nearly as loud as the opposition is to contraception. Think about it, guns vs. birth control. Could it be because the Catholic Church and the GOP are riding piggyback on many social issues?
Jackson concludes his condescending letter by writing that Catholicism views women and men as “co-equal,” except for in one little area and that is that women may not participate in the church hierarchy, which is where all the true power is held and decisions are made. This is followed by an assortment of exaggerated reasons why women should not take birth control, terminate a pregnancy or choose to have intimate relationships with whom they desire. Simply said Mr. Jackson, you insult women’s intelligence and our fully functioning capability to manage our own lives.
For you Mr. Jackson, for the Catholic Church and for any other like-minded Christian institution or people who assert that only men shall be leaders in churches and in homes, I offer you this quote from a woman born into slavery and who later advocated for abolition, temperance and women’s rights, Sojourner Truth: “Where did your Christ come from? From God and a woman! Man had nothing to do with him.”
And until you Mr. Jackson, or any other man, is deemed female, know that women’s reproductive rights and liberties are not yours to control.
Diane Fadeley, Lexington Park