Tuesday, August 21, 2012

The female commodity

Throughout history, a woman's body has been a commodity. Men have used women to buy, barter, and force their way into power.

It's not a new thing.

The Old Testament is full of women being traded for land or livestock. Fathers bartered with their daughters and sought out valuable deals to obtain wives for their sons.

Monarchies used marriages to create allies and gain strength in their kingdoms. Marriages needed to create sons because the son could take the throne, whereas the daughter was possession for trade. A negotiating tool.

Even in Jamestown, the first English settlement in America, a group of women from England were auctioned off as brides to the men who had settled there. For 150 pounds of tobacco, they bought themselves a new wife.

We didn't belong to ourselves for a very long time, ladies.

Now, the Republican party wants to use women's bodies to barter again. They are selling us out to try and gain votes. They are trading away ownership of something they don't own unless we give it to them.

Do you hear that part? We have to give it to them. Republican women, especially. I won't tell you how I think you should vote. That is up to you. What I will tell you is that if you are a woman, and you still want to be a Republican, then you have to start demanding more from them. You have to maintain ownership of yourself and insist that they quit using you as a commodity.

The economy is a driving force in this election. The economy should be about dollars and cents though, not about rights to the female body.

Y'all, it's not an abortion debate. It's not a contraception debate. It's about the fact that Republican men are using women's bodies to buy votes. It's insulting, it's wrong, and we have to make sure that it does not work. We cannot let them continue to pimp us out for their right wing smoke screen.

Terms like "forcible" and "legitimate" in front of the word rape have got to stop. Blaming women for being victims has got to stop. Impeding access to contraception has got to stop. And while we are at it, abstinence only sex education has got to stop. AND let's go ahead and start reforming the birth industry in this country, because I'm pretty tired of that woman as last priority business model too.

The choices a woman has to make regarding her body are so much more than abortion. We have to be free to choose what kind of birth control we will use. We have to be free to choose if, when, and how we will have children. We have to be free to choose the kind of prenatal, labor, and delivery care we will use, birthing those children. We have to be free to feed our children whenever, wherever, and however we see fit.

Perhaps above all else, we need to be free to be women. Free to be women who are not sexually abused and then attacked over and over again for it for the rest of our lives. It's time we were safe, strong, and respected in our own country.

We can do better than this, y'all. We can do much better.


  1. Well said. And people ask me why we still need feminism.

  2. We will do better. Every time we speak up instead of stand down, we move toward better. Thanks for moving us forward with this post.

  3. Well said. I'm so pissed I can hardly contain myself. Thanks for writing what needs to be said.

  4. Bravo! I couldn't have said it better!

  5. Anonymous3:34 AM

    You have zero details or facts in this articke, making it a rant with no base. Thanks for spreading iseless shit with no supporting evidence.

    1. There are several facts and many details in this article (You may want to consult the Websters Dictionary for the definitions of "fact" and "detail". Then get yourself a history book, and do some reading). It is not a rant, it is someone calmly and rationally expressing their opinion after hearing the outrageous comments of Todd Aikin, who, by the way is the one you should be directing this comment at. His comments were fraught with ignorant details and facts about a subject that has been studied and validated by the scientific community.
      Had you any real convictions about the topic, you would have had the guts to not comment as "Anonymous". Also, when you are going to take the time to to write a ridiculous comment that brings nothing to the discussion, please at least take the time to proof read your submission prior to sending it. The fact that you can not take the time to ensure you have correctly spelled 25 words, makes me think that you probably did not take the time to research the topic you are commenting on.
      Have a nice day.

    2. Hi Stina,

      The phrase, take the log out of your own eye... seems to apply here. You should probably check your glaring spelling error before insulting someone else for obvious typos.

      Agree that mr. anon. did not add much to the conversation, but neither did you.

  6. Anonymous3:31 AM

    Hi Marty,
    I have been meaning to write this for a while now, and have never seemed to find the right words. I guess I will have to settle for these words.

    I found Susan's blog just as she was saying her good byes. I could see that she was an amazing person and I regretted not getting to know her earlier. I am not sure exactly how, but I came to know that Susan had a best friend who must be suffering terribly. And that is how I came to your blog.

    Since February, I have been visiting here periodically, to give you my silent support and sympathy and to check in to see if you were okay. I meant to let you know, that somewhere out there, there was a random person who you had reached through your blog. Someone who cared how you were doing and shed some tears for your pain.

    I can't give you any more than my long distance caring but am glad to hear that you have people in your life who are able to do it in person. That you are finding ways to continue on, to live, to love, to meet friends.

    You have my continued well wishes.

    Jeanette Lester

  7. Well said, and so true.

  8. Anonymous12:10 PM

    I feel dumber for having read this idiocy.

  9. Marty, I'm sorry I didn't get to meet you at BlogHer (I went just one day, the HealthMinder event)--I would've loved to give/get a hug from you (if that's something you'd be OK with, hugging strangers!), so I could've imagined hugging Susan again as well.

    I'm also sorry you are attracting trolls to your site with your well-written, well-supported post! Only cowardly idiots comment without identifying themselves.

  10. Amen, sister, AMEN!!

    I am the mother of three daughters, and watching some of the Republican NON-SENSE on television has made me even more proud to be Canadian.

    Marty, you hit the nail squarely on the head when you make the important point about "GIVING" control of women's bodies away... Well said!! ALL women must speak up, vote, and demand what is rightfully theirs: the right to make their OWN decisions.

    This post belongs on a front page, everywhere.

    Bless you. xoxo CGF

  11. I agree, we can do better than this. We can do much better.very well written.

  12. Amen! I cannot fathom how women can support the Republican agenda when it is obvious how they feel about women. I keep waiting for those women to wake up and scream "this is not right" in support of all women. What is happening in this country & to sisterhood?

  13. Anonymous6:04 PM

    It's a rant. Look it up in Webster's. Last I checked, by the way I handle my self, treat myself and teach my daughters how to handle and treat themselves, has a lot of bearing on how society as a whole, and men in particular view me and treat me; and how they will view and treat my daughters.