I've always maintained that so-called pro-life advocates for the unborn have little science to back up their cockamamie theories concerning abortion and rely, in most cases, on religious intolerance, bigotry, and slavish devotion to dogma. All three of the solar phallic monotheisms, the Abrahamaic faiths, preach male dominance and female submission, paternalistic hegemony that by now should be consigned to the dust heap of history. Allowing a woman to have total control over her bodily functions is offensive to these crypto-misogynists (I only use the qualifier because they claim to be heterosexual) because their belief system disallows critical thinking, depriving them of the ability to see their presentist arguments as valid, to acknowledge that what might have been a fine policy in, say, 5,000 BCE, has no rational application in the 21st century.
If anti-abortion types are so concerned about fetuses why are they the same homophobes who decry same sex marriage, often using the same argument: that the species must be propagated ("Go forth and multiply"), and abortion kills babies, babies that gays and lesbians cannot have by "natural" means. It all boils down to their definition of "natural." As if it were natural to microwave dinner, drive an automobile, or observe the origins of the universe through a telescope. It is only because of religion that people like Mike Huckabee and Rick Santorum have wives that put up with their hatred of women, wives who accepted the dogmatic nonsense that a woman is no more than a "help-mate" to her man. Stepford wives. To some of us, that really is unnatural.
The Texas abortion debate rages on. Bills to limit abortions to 20 months of gestation and force the closure of over 90% of the state's abortion provider clinics are guaranteed to pass now that Bigot #1 and Bigot #2 (Gov. Rick Perry and Lt.-Gov. David Dewhurst) have beefed up congressional security in Austin to clear the gallery in the event protesting pro-choicers create the kind of chaotic scene that came to the aid of Wendy Davis when she fell a few minutes short of filibustering the draconian bill the last special session in Austin. Our state has become a lightning rod for right wingnuts of a religious persuasion. Last Monday, July 8, 2013, an anti-abortion rally was held that included Fox Noise talk show host Mike Huckabee, the man who bowed out of presidential primaries a few years back and uttered as a parting shot his continuing dedication to seeing to it that all laws in the United States "are interpreted according to the Holy Bible." Small wonder that these geeks push state legislatures to pass anti-Shariah measures: it takes a theocrat to know one. If Huckabee had his way, no woman could have an abortion -- period. No excuses, not even a threat to a mother's health, an impossibly deformed fetus, rape, or incest. None.
At about the same time, a news conference was held by former U.S. senator Rick Santorum, who, unlike Huckabee, did not have to fly in for the events: the local paper noted Santorum "now lives in Texas making family oriented movies." ("Family" when used by the religious right translates to anti-women, anti-gay. If you don't believe it, check out the agenda of the Family Research Council and its spokesman, Tony Perkins. These people always find a way to turn a perfectly nice word into an obscenity.)
OK, so we now have Huckabee and Santorum to deal with. Who's next? Ralph Reed? It would be perfectly logical to have Reed fly in. That way, he could kill two birds with one stone: appear in an anti-abortion rally in Austin, then go over the Houston suburb of Sugarland and see his old buddy, exterminator Tom DeLay, the disgraced former speaker of the U.S. house who found himself embroiled in various scandals, some involving himself, Reed, and Jack Abramoff. Before DeLay left D.C., he helped in the gerrymandering of our state into districts that made certain a GOP majority would take over the state legislature and control it for generations to come. And where the GOP goes, religious bigotry is sure to follow. And because state politics are so dominated by a Republican presence in the capitol, the attraction of people like Santorum is a foregone conclusion.
Demonizing Senator Davis of Fort Worth, the newspaper account said, Santorum told reporters that "the reason I am here is because Texas is at the enter of the anti-abortion debate in the country right now." Then it came the turn Texas Senator Craig Estes of Wichita Falls to add his two cents. Pointing to the "reason" why the 20-week limit for choice was being rammed through the legislature, the debatable notion that a fetus can "feel pain" after five months, Estes (any relation to Billie Sol?) was asked if religion had anything to do with his position in the matter. His answer: "This is a nonreligious, scientific fact: many times, the fetus has a different blood type. So how can you say it's a mass of tissue in the mother's womb? It's a human being."
Huh? If you see some logic to this, you are delusional yourself. Of course, Estes also believes Noah took seven pairs of every living thing on his ark, an ark bigger than the Ritz, perhaps as big as Asia, as indeed it would have to be considering that the Lord created all the animals, including dinosaurs, in less than a week some 5,000 years BCE. One can just see those tyrannosaurs, sauropods, pliosauris, and therapsids marching up the ladder with camels, lions, monitor lizards, and dodos. Estes watches too much Bill O'Reilly, whose factual evidence for the existence of "God" consists of observations such as his recent gaffe, that "the tide goes in, the tide goes out," proving beyond peradventure that there is a supreme being. The fact that Estes feels it necessary to eliminate religious beliefs from arguments in support of his anti-abortion stance evinces an inkling that it is the sole motivator in the matter. It might be pointed out that the notion a fetus feels pain is without scientific basis as well.
Santorum was flanked by religious figures, including Pastor Rick Scarborough of Tea Party Unity and Vision America, who observed, "This is a small, important step toward beginning the end of abortion in America." In case you've not heard of Rev. Scarborough, I urge you to check out the nine pages of posts in the archives of People for the American Way's Hate Watch site: http://www.rightwingwatch.org/category/people/rick-scarborough Just make sure you do so on an empty stomach. Puke can be awfully hard to clean off one's keyboard, mouse, and monitor.