kept the flowers

wait, this river of tears iz unequal

Nancy Boehner cryingPelosi has arguably been the most effective House Speaker ever, but also the most demonized. She’s been called a witch, had her picture photoshopped among ‘evil’ flames, and made the villain in hundreds of attack ads.

But can you even imagine the malicious, gendered insults that would fly if Pelosi had cried at the drop of a hat?

It would be out of control. Why? Because she’s a weepy woman who can’t control her crazy emotions, of course! I bet it would cause Congress, pundits, and voters to immediately write her off as ineffective and ridiculous.

Now of course people are making fun of Speaker John Boehner’s recent and recurring episodes of turning on the water works.

But are they approaching him the same way they would a woman doing the exact same thing? Of course not. Fox pundit Bill O’Reilly spent maybe 35 seconds on it; his guest saying the “third time is a little too much,” and O’Reilly thinking it’s genuine.

Had O’Reilly been talking about a woman—Hillary, Pelosi, or Boxer, for example—I’m sure none of his adjectives of choice would include ‘genuine.’ A woman leader with a reputation of bawling frequently would be called weak, annoying, pathetic; her ability to lead would be questioned and her reputation forever tainted.

On the flip side, since it’s still not kosher for men to cry in our society, having our House Speaker weep repeatedly is rather out of the norm. He will continue to receive male-specific flak for his sobbing spells, which isn’t fair either.

The lesson for today, kids? Gender stereotypes hurt everyone.

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Medicaid should stop paying for Viagra

I know no one expects our government to make sense anymore. Recent polls show the public has no faith in our political system–calling it ‘broken.’ We’ve been lied to, driven to economic collapse, and beat over the head with partisan arrogance. We could spend days just pointing out the hypocrisy in our laws and the way Washington is being run.

But humor me for a moment. I’d like to present what is possibly the largest political hypocrisy in existence: The fight to de-fund Planned Parenthood clinics while simultaneously paying for Viagra.

Yes, some of Virginia’s finest elected officials agreed with the outrageous and dogmatic statements from conservative Chrstian groups in their attack against Planned Parenthood: Governor Bob McDonnell, Lieutenant Governor Bolling, and Attorney General Cuccinelli. All men. Shocking.

The argument against using government funds for Planned Parenthood clinics? Public funds shouldn’t be used to pay for abortions – or even to support organizations who provide abortion services. (Remember: This is a legal procedure).

Gotcha. So even though Planned Parenthood provides birth control, which prevents unwanted pregnancy, which reduces abortion rates, they still shouldn’t be funded.

One could assume, then, that these folks would also oppose the use of public funds for anything that might lead to unwanted pregnancy and abortion…such as Viagra. Certainly we wouldn’t want our tax dollars paying for a man’s erection, which will be used to have sex, which, if done with a woman who doesn’t have access to birth control can lead to an unwanted pregnancy, which can lead to abortion.

Oh wait. Medicare funds do go toward funding Viagra prescriptions? My tax dollars are paying for erections – but they can’t be spent on preventing the inevitable unwanted pregnancies that will result from said erections? I don’t get it.

So Planned Parenthood “promotes promiscuity” and Viagra promotes…not having sex? What could possibly be the rationale behind this? Well, Bill O’Reilly has argued:

Viagra is used to help a medical condition. That’s why it’s covered. Birth control is not a medical condition. It is a choice.

But the medical condition is an inability to have sex…which is a choice. Now, certainly our homophobic society did not intend for Viagra to be used in homosexual relations. Therefore, we can only assume that the men who use Viagra will be having sex with women (that’s what the commercials would suggest, anyway).

So we use public funds to ensure men can get erections to have sex with women who’d better not get pregnant from the sex. We won’t be providing them with birth control, so I hope they either want children or know of a magical fairy who turns off their reproductive system until they’re ready.

You know what? I have yet to meet that magical fairy, so until I do, I think Medicaid should stop paying for Viagra. I don’t want my tax dollars contributing to men’s erections, which could lead to unwanted pregnancy and abortion.

What say ye, McDonnell?

PS: I’d also love for you to point me to an affordable clinic where I can get annual exams and cancer screenings. Thanks.

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