Born In the USA
Males seem to feel free to declare what females should do in almost every aspect of human life. Elected Congressional and state legislative officials are particularly frank about proscribing female choice in matters of sexuality and reproduction. As with all displays of arrogance, such actions reveal more about the actors than the targets of the pronouncements and actions.
With this preamble, I am going to say something to and on behalf of my sister-citizens. Despite the prevalence of the terms and the topics the keys of the matter are not contraceptive access or the availability of abortion services. The true keys are the full and unequivocal human and civil equality of the female segment of the citizenry.
The Constitution of the United States, as amended, is unambiguous on this matter. On July 28, 1868, was modified to declare: “All persons born or naturalized in the United States and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.” It is utterly impossible to contend that female Americans are not “persons born or naturalized”. Anyone who did this explicitly would be revealed a either a moron or a maniac. Therefore, on a constitutional basis there is not possibility of sensible dispute.
As of December 6, 1865, one of the equal protections of the laws to which all citizens are entitled is “Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.” In light of the clearly declared equal citizenship and the ban on involuntary servitude “except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted,” how can any official sworn to preserve, protect and defend the constitution and bear true faith and allegiance to the same suggest or require a female citizen to the involuntary servitude of enforce pregnancy? Do they believe this is “punishment for a crime?” If so, what is the crime and when was the unwillingly pregnant woman “duly convicted” of this undisclosed crime?
The plain truth is that men who would dictate to women and the women who provide cover for such men act as though sex is a crime for which unwanted pregnancy is a fit punishment. It is impossible to discern what these people truly believe, but it is impossible to avoid what they actually do. These people propose and enact legislation and platform planks which deprive all female Americans of equal protection from involuntary servitude. They routinely dismiss the ability and the right of female Americans to make decisions regarding their sexual activity and their reproductive outcomes. Even more appallingly, the people who violate the constitutional rights of female Americans typically portray and present themselves as stalwart champions of the constitution.
While the constitution can be and has been amended, it cannot be ignored by any truly patriotic Americans and/or any honorable elected and appointed officials. Private citizens and public officials who trumpet their devotion to the constitution while plainly contradicting clear constitutional provisions and callously abridging constitutional guarantees are hypocrites at best and scoundrels at worst. True patriotism hates injustice in its own time and its own land more than at anywhere or anywhen else. If any American regardless of gender is indifferent to the deprivation of clear constitutional rights from any other American then he or she is no true patriot. Twenty-first century private citizens or public officials who deprive female Americans of full formal and operative civil equality are direct descendants of nineteenth century Americans who believed blacks had “no rights which the white man was bound to respect.” Today’s reactionaries have shown repeatedly they believe female AmericanIf any among us would profess to be truly patriotic Americans, we should live out the words of Harriet Ward Beecher, “”A thoughtful mind, when it sees a Nation’s flag, sees not the flag only, but the Nation itself; and whatever may be its symbols, its insignia, he reads chiefly in the flag the Government, the principles, the truths, the history which belongs to the Nation which belongs to the Nation that sets it forth.” Many failures litter the history of the United States in terms of living out the true meaning of its stated principles and achieving its stipulated purposes. Past and present generations have not always been true to the better angels of our nature. None of that excuses any of us now. s have not reproductive and sexual rights a man is bound to respect. Such miscreants are no less wrong now than their ancestors were 160 years ago.
The crucial issues of the threats to full civil and human equality posed by the rigid authoritarians who dominate the Republican Party today are most starkly revealed in regard to female Americans. Regardless, these issues also pertain to African, Latino, and Asian Americans. The pale riders of reactionary Republicanism deny all such Americans their full and unquestioned citizenship and humanity. As Jan Brewer, Republican Governor of Arizona has made clear a zygote is more esteemed than many “persons born or naturalized in the United States.”
In this most perilous hour, “we the people” must finally and fully be the people we have long boasted of being. If we stand our country now in these times that try our souls, we will earn the love and thanks of men and women. If we fail to do so, there will come a time when we must look into the eyes of young people we love and admit that we had the chance to make a positive difference, but lacked the commitment and the courage to try. Let us rise up and live out the true meaning of our creed. If we are to be the people we have long hoped we could be, we must from now through November 2012 rise above our personal concerns and forgo any suspicions and fears. We must stand up and speak out for the full civil and human equality of our sister-citizens and all other “persons born or naturalized in the United States.”
This video makes the issue of full civil equality starkly clear in regard to female Americans.
Tags: Abortion, duty, Election 2012, equality, Fourteenth and Thirteenth Amendments, Larry Conley, patriotism, Reactionaries, Republicans, women