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Columbia County Observer

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GOP Takes its Lady-Parts Jihad to Planned Parenthood

From the people determined to bring you Unplanned Parenthood, another fiesta of misogyny.

On July 29, Rick Scott loudly announced investigations of Florida clinics that perform cancer screenings, HIV services, Pap tests, contraceptive care, stop-smoking programs, STD treatment, gynecological exams, and yes, abortions. The state Agency for Healthcare Administration cited four clinics: one for improper labeling of fetal tissue and three for performing unlicensed second trimester terminations.

Gov. 10-Watt was gearing up to perform his strange stork-like victory dance when it turned out that the heartless feminazis of Planned Parenthood had not committed such heinous crimes after all.

The Pembroke Pines clinic indeed failed to correctly label and date fetal remains. For exactly one day. The clinics in St. Petersburg, Naples and Fort Myers did not, however,  perform second trimester abortions – not according to the definition of second trimester used by the National Institutes of Health, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, and every doctor in every maternity ward on the planet.

Mathematically eccentric though it seems, “first trimester” is defined as the first 14 weeks from a woman’s last period. The governor and AHCA pitched hissy fits about abortions performed at 13 weeks and 13.6 weeks, which means they don’t understand their own regulations. Here’s what AHCA’s rules say: First Trimester. The first 12 weeks of pregnancy (the first 14 completed weeks from the last normal menstrual period).

Maybe it’s a reading comprehension problem. Maybe it’s just that old Republican War on Women.

Hey, speaking of menstruation, how ’bout that Donald Trump! The sometime resident of Palm Beach County, GOP frontrunner, and vulgarian extraordinaire, actually whipped out the old time-of-the-month slam on Fox anchor and right-wing wet-dream girl Megyn Kelly for bringing up his long history of insulting and belittling women.

After the debate, Trump told CNN’s Don Lemon, “You could see there was blood coming out of her eyes, blood coming out of her — wherever.”

Um, yeah, wherever. Because when a woman justifiably kicks you in the rhetorical balls, you should do one of the following: say, “Smile, sweetheart;” suggest she’s flat-chested and bitter about it; or imply she’s on the rag.

Evidentially, mean old Megyn hurt trumpery Trump’s delicate male feelings. Obviously just another crazy chick driven by hormones–amirite?

At least she’s blond and “cute,” not like Arianna Huffington (“ugly inside and out”), New York Times columnist Gail Collins (“a dog”), or Rosie O’Donnell, who Trump called “disgusting” and a “fat, ugly slob” because she referred to him as a “snake oil salesman.” Conservatives have risen up to defend Megyn Kelly’s honor. RedState’s Erick Erickson barred Trump from his Tent Revival this past weekend, inviting Kelly instead.

This would be the same Erick Erickson who once insisted on Fox, to Megyn Kelly, that when women are the breadwinners in a family, it’s “bad for kids and bad for marriage.”

Though Fox “News” is maintaining a posture of chivalric outrage on behalf of its wronged employee, it’s also the network where one genius joked that the United Arab Emirates’ first female fighter pilot couldn’t park her plane after bombing ISIS, as another asked whether she counted as “Boobs on the ground.”

And the network where Lou Dobbs claimed the high divorce rate should be blamed on working mothers, as well as (what a coincidence) the network where Bill O’Reilly regularly wonders if a woman is tough enough to be president of the United States.

Irony is a bitch.

Here’s the real point: Conservatives spend way too much time being interested in other people’s lady parts. Contraception? Keep your legs together. What’s up in that uterus? If it’s a baby, it’s sacred – till it’s born. Then you’re on your own, you feckless slut.

Their view of women’s sexuality is disturbingly Talibanish: The body is a dirty and destructive force that must be controlled. An unplanned pregnancy is just too bad.

In the first Republican debate, Marco Rubio insisted that he wouldn’t allow abortion even in cases of rape and incest (he seems to have changed his mind on that). Scott Walker said there’s never a need for abortion to save the life of the mother. (Walker did not finish college, can you tell?) Jeb Bush boasted that he cut off funding for Planned Parenthood clinics in Florida, money that would not have been spent on abortions but on family planning for poor women.

Other candidates piled on, boasting that they had cut Planned Parenthood funding or would if they could. As if that’s some kind of badge of honor.

Meanwhile, Donald Trump still tops the polls.

Diane Roberts teaches at Florida State University in Tallahassee. Column courtesy of Context Florida.

Image added by the Observer

This piece was reprinted by the Columbia County Observer with permission or license.

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