Letter to the editor: Backward

By DANELL SULIK | Kendall

“Backward,” Wisconsin’s new motto. As of June 24, 2022, Wisconsin moved back to 1849 when its abortion law was passed. That law, under which we are now governed, makes no exception for incest or rape. To be absolutely clear, fetal tissue now has more constitutional rights than the woman in which it is growing.

We are being legislated back to a time when women “knew their place.” A time when men ran the show and didn’t have to worry about uppity women. A time when few women were titans of industry because many were perpetually pregnant. A time when women had no say about the size of their family. A time when women had no say in what happened to their bodies.

When the Supreme Court struck down Roe, I was immediately taken back to my junior year in high school. A girl who sat across from me found out she was pregnant. In shame and humiliation, she was whisked away to a home for unwed mothers to gestate until she delivered the child, which was immediately taken from her and put up for adoption. She didn’t return to school, and we never saw her again. The boy who had inseminated her got his varsity letter in football and basked in glory. The girl’s situation was not kept secret. It was more of a “let that be a lesson to you.” It rankled then and it rankles still.

Fifty-some years ago, access to female contraception and abortion gave women the freedom to enjoy non-procreative sex. This was a BIG DEAL. When women were no longer walking wombs waiting to be or worrying about being inseminated, they were able to enjoy sex as men had done for millennia. It was empowering and it was freeing. Women could choose to be mothers — or not. They could have careers — or not. For the first time, women had control over what happened to their bodies. Some men were, and still are, angry about relinquishing that power, which they now have back.

Many truly think abortion is wrong, and that is their right. What isn’t their right is deciding what is appropriate for someone else, especially since here in America we are so lousy at taking care of those already alive. Feeding America estimates one in six children is food insecure. Republicans fought tooth and nail against the Affordable Care Act, which now insures over 35 million Americans. They plan to eliminate Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid. They fought against the token gun law passed last week, which did nothing to address the proliferation of AR-15s, the favorite of mass murderers. And if human life is so precious, why do some states still have the death penalty? 

We have fractured supply lines. We are experiencing critical water shortages, which will only get worse. We have to import formula from Europe to feed the babies already here. Inflation is world-wide. Affordable food, gas, and housing are becoming only a memory. Moral outrage aside, from a practical standpoint, ask yourself, “Is this the best time for a population explosion?” 

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