Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Oh damn

Here is your 110th Supreme Court Justice. He's going to be sworn in any minute now. HOORAY! Yes -- that's sarcasm. No, it's not even sarcasm; it's a statement of total bitterness.

How did this happen? How did Bush get elected twice so that this could happen in the first place?! UGH.

Does it strike anyone else as odd that Bush found it impossible to find a qualified WOMAN candidate to replace O'Conner? I mean, let's be realistic, Harriet Miers was a ploy. He knew she would be rejected by both parties. By dems for not being qualified enough and by the republicans for being too "liberal." It was brilliant for Bush, really. Once she was easily defeated, he brought in the staunch, conservative, Christian MALE waiting in the wings.

Now we have an all-male, politically stacked ideologically RIGHT wing court.

I realize not everyone shares my views-- fine, get in line. But it makes me so angry, I don't care who I offend. At the heart of this abortion argument is essentially the idea that women are not fully human, and therefore not fully capable of making the right ethical decision about their body. You hear it in the sneer the way most people talk about abortions.

-- "Well, she should have kept her legs together."
-- "They can't just run around having sex and using abortions as birth control."
-- "If she's old enough to have sex, she's old enough to be an adult and take responsibility for her actions"

Do these people understand how hard it is for low income women to gain access to effective contraception? Let's talk about having fair and REAL sex education in schools, available birth control for women-- and then MAYBE we can condemn women for getting abortions, huh?

Even then-- let's face it. Now and then, the condom breaks, the pill fails and you have a woman who cannot have a baby--for economic or emotional reasons. Maybe she has a father who will pour acid on her for "shaming" the family-- and YES that happens in America. Maybe she will be ostracized from her family, community or church. Maybe her doctor told her to never get pregnant again because "this time the delivery could kill you." Maybe she's a rape victim!

But none of those situations come into play in the debate our country keeps having OVER AND OVER. We're always talking about some little stupid slut who just wants to "murder her child." Well I'm sick of that debate. It's offensive to women. We are not stupid or immoral and we are capable of making decisions about our bodies.

The original Roe V. Wade was supposed to give women the right to an abortion within certain medical timeframes (unless mother's health was at risk). It was NOT set up to be a quickie "vacuum job" (pardon the crudeness). Women don't just have abortions on a whim. It's a very personal, heart wrenching decision and contrary to what you hear from Pat Robertson, polls show that the vast majority if women report feeling “relieved” after it’s over—that’s right RELIEVED. You can never fully appreciate their situation so let them make this decision within the privacy of their doctor’s office.

But now I fear those days are over. There are no women speaking for you on the Supreme Court. In fact, February 1st the U.S. House of Reps is voting on a bill that would cut Medicaid and essentially end coverage for low-income women to seek contraception. I believe Viagra is still covered. Does this show you how MUCH WE NEED WOMEN IN OFFICE!?! What is the logic in saying “men can still get it up, but women can’t protect themselves from unwanted pregnancies!”

As a woman, I am sickened by a court packed with men who choose what decisions and discussions I can and cannot have with my physician.

I learned something important at the public policy seminar I went to in Minneapolis. It's not enough to be opinionated. Women need to vote, run, lead!

Well, I don't know if I have it in me to lead (much less run --campaigning sounds like hell) but I know that women need more representation.

I shudder to think what the next few court decisions will be and how they will shape my country and my rights as a woman.

Sunday, January 29, 2006

Let's ask the men

1 Jessica Alba
2 Sienna Miller
3 Angelina Jolie
4 Brazilian model Adriana Lima (No. 1 last year)
5 "Access Hollywood" correspondent Maria Menounos
6 Charlize Theron
7 Jessica Biel
8 singer, Amerie
9 Natalie Portman
10 Eva Longoria.

According to an online survey from "askmen.com" these are the top ten women that men would most want a relationship with, would consider marrying or thought best-suited to be the mother of their children.

Okay, I don't blame men. All those women seem very attractive to me. Although I had to look up #8. But what does that have to do with having a relationship or what's more-- raising children with someone?

I mean, I like Joaquin Phoenix and all but the guy is clearly crazy. How and more importantly why would you pick someone from Hollywood to have a relationship with?

I was sad to find out that there is no such site as "askwomen.com" but I think it would be a curious experiment to repeat this same survey but do it asking women. I'd cast my vote for a Dennis Quaid or Tom Hanks type. They seem more marriage material than say, Justin Timberlake. They're older and they seem more stable and yet, still cute.

On that same note, do any of the guys I know have any input on who their #1 celebrity woman would be?

I can already guess for the sexy boyfriend... Scarlet Johanson anyone?

Monday, January 09, 2006

Sex for One... the M word

Recently a conversation I had stimulated (no pun intended) a desire for me to do some research into the ever taboo subject of masturbation...

Now, there are plenty of sources that should convince you that masturbation is healthy. It's not something that should be shared (unless with an intimate partner) but it's not a sin and nothing to be ashamed of!

If you look online you find many sources that support this. Obviously many health care sites and surprisingly, many parents’ websites address these issues since infants and toddlers discover masturbation. One parental website discussed this issue (http://parenting.ivillage.com/) and said,

"Masturbation does not cause physical injury or harm to the body, promiscuity, or sexual deviance. Your child is normal. Masturbation is not abnormal or excessive unless it is deliberately done in public places after the age of five or six. Masturbation can cause emotional harm (e.g. guilt or sexual hang-ups) only if adults overreact to it and make it seem dirty or wicked."

But while I was researching I found the most shocking source ever--- Christianity. Or more specifically, James Dobson, the man behind the conservative Christian non-profit "Focus on the Family." His views are very, very Christian oriented and generally conservative in every way, but his stance on this subject was fascinating. I can’t cover it all here, but for the full discussion visit http://www.layhands.com/IsMasturbationASin.htm

Dobson carefully examines the Bible to develop a view on masturbation. He says,

"Some of the arguments against Christians masturbating are that it might involve pornography, it might involve sinful fantasizing, it might decrease the desire for one's spouse, it might become addicting, and so on. However, these arguments do not prove that masturbation is a sin. After all, masturbation can be done without any of those things happening. For example, driving a car might involve exceeding the speed limit or running a red light (both of which are wrong), but this doesn't mean that driving a car is wrong in itself. In a similar way, masturbation can involve certain things which are wrong, but this doesn't mean that masturbation itself is wrong. Masturbation can be done without any of the above things happening, so those arguments do not prove that masturbation itself is a sin."

What I gathered from Dobson was that he didn’t condemn masturbation but talked about "reasonable faith." When Dobson was a pre-teen boy, his father, a conservative minister talked to him about masturbation...

“Jim, when I was a boy, I worried so much about masturbation. It really became a scary thing for me because I thought God was condemning me for what I couldn’t help. So I’m telling you now that I hope you don’t feel the need to engage in this act when you reach the teen years, but if you do, you shouldn’t be too concerned about it. I don’t believe it has much to do with your relationship with God.”

For more visit http://www.focusonyourchild.com/develop/art1/A0000553.html

Way too often people treat the subject of sex and masturbation like they would a dirty joke. These acts are not disgusting and shouldn’t be treated as such. People are way too uncomfortable about sex because we let people make it bad. We need to reclaim the joy and innate goodness of our bodies!

It's funny the amount of controversy masturbation can create… In1994 Dr. Jocelyn Elders (the first woman appointed to the position of U.S. Surgeon General) lost her job because she dared to say that masturbation was a healthy act.

MORE FUN HISTORY OF THE "BAD TOUCH" (facts found at http://www.coolnurse.com/masturbation.htm)

-Around the turn-of-the-century, some adults were so against masturbation that they forced their daughters to wear gloves made of a steel-wool-like material at night and put a powder on their genitals that made them painful to touch.
-They made their sons wear metal chastity belts at night that made it painful to have an erection.
- It was said that if you masturbate you will go blind, bald, develop acne or grow hair on your hands
- Some people attributed insanity to masturbation

The point to this lengthy post is…

What you do with your body is your own business!!! You are not perverse or morally wrong if you enjoy yourself and explore your sexuality to see what makes you happy and comfortable. And you are not abnormal if you would rather abstain from it. Just PLEASE remember, this subject is not taboo or dirty, it is simply something better left private... Not for dinner conversation.

A Woody Allen quote to leave you with,
"Don't knock masturbation, it’s sex with someone I love."

A poem worth sharing

Autobiography in Five Short Chapters
by Portia Nelson

I. I walk down the street.
There's a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I fall in.
I am lost.....I am helpless;
it isn't my fault.
It takes forever to find a way out.

II. I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I pretend I don't see it.
I fall in again.
I can't believe I am in the same place;
but it isn't my fault.
It still takes a long time to get out.

III. I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I see it is there.
I still fall in....it's a habit.
My eyes are open.
I know where I am.
It is my fault.
I get out immediately.

IV. I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I walk around it.

V. I walk down a different street.