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March Comments of the Month

April 1, 2010

Here are some of the comments that we’ve found thought-provoking over the past month. Be sure to follow the links and join in the conversation!

Whit on Between a Rock and a Hard Place: Women’s Health in Health Care Reform:

Thanks for the stats and the excellent post.

As someone uninsured, I cannot say “hooray” for this bill, even in theory. The bill hurts women in ways aside from abortion/reproductive rights.

The bill, from my understanding, will allow for age-rating, the practice of imposing higher premiums on older people. This practice affects women disproportionately.

The bill also will allow for the continuation of gender-rating, the practice of charging women higher premiums simply because they are women.

Add that to two additional ways, aside from reproductive rights, that women lost (the battle, the fight is NOT over!).

Another issue is that the bill–as it stood when it was passed–imposes harsh restrictions on the ability of immigrants to access health care, such as a 5-year waiting period on permanent, legal residents before they are eligible for assistance such as Medicaid.

But perhaps what it most disgusting to me about the bill, aside from the fact that women were sold out, is that it is almost identical to the plan written by AHIP, the insurance company trade association, in2009.

I just don’t see this bill as reform or change. It seems to me to be a victory for the insurance companies, and that’s about it.

The Dream of Overturning the Hyde Amendment, never fear, is something many of my activist friends and I share. I will not settle until it is overturned.

sherri on Depicting Choice: Pregnancy and Abortion in Film:

Hello. I had an abortion (And I’m very happy I did), and I know a lot of other people who have. Myself, and many others who I have spoken with in an attempt to open up the issue and discussion and reality of abortion have had very intense reactions. My own I would definitely say was severely psychological. The reasons for this are complex, and range from personal to the undeniable fact that abortion is so taboo in our culture that when I went to the abortion clinic the doctors, nurses, and assistants were cold and disengaged, adding to the psychological and bodily fear that I already felt. It has taken me years to process the experience. I think there is a wide continuum of reaction, with absolute ease at one end, and utter darkness at the other. I think most people fall somewhere in between. But with abortion being so utterly misunderstood and looked down upon by large segments of the population, I think that there is an inherent lean toward having a negative experience. And that is why forums like this are so important, as you probably know having created it, so we can communicate, become more open, and connect with one another- shedding more awareness so to work to make abortion not taboo and terrifying. But I would disagree with the statement that severe psychological reactions after abortions are uncommon. Depending on where you are and who you are they will be more or less common, but everyone is going to react differently to such an emotionally charged experience that comes with the baggage of an entire culture’s ignorance. I read about all of those studies, and I think that studies do not speak for everyone, and that many women (post-abortion) having a hard time do not seek out or psychological help. I did not. Thanks for this forum!

EG on Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland is Almost a Great Feminist Fairytale:

I actually thought there might be 2 themes running through the movie; 1 of feminism and the other slightly anti-capitalist.

It was the second that I associated with the Red Queen’s large head – greed, selfishness and anger are traits all associated with capitalism whilst tolerance and forgiveness (the white queens traits) are not. I thought perhaps Burton was trying to say that capitalism is ugly and unnatural but yet we all try to fit in with it (ie the fake noses, large chins etc) but actually we are just disguising who we really are so as not to be hurt (or beheaded) by the the capitalist system. I thought this was also highlighted (or enhanced) through the obsession with size (which would be growth in capitalism) and also the scene where the queen is excessivey angry about the loss of her tarts.

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