Along time ago, the late 1980s, to be exact, I went with my college friends to Washington DC. We’d graduated a few years earlier, from college in Boston, and weren’t roommates any more, but we gathered at S.’s house for a mini-reunion weekend just around Halloween.
The reason for our pilgrimage? A pro-choice rally. We were instructed to wear white, as the suffragists did in their marches for equality–our white t-shirts say “Choice!” on them.
We thought this march would be the final march. It was 1989 and we were optimistic twenty-somethings in high tops and a lot of hair.
Now all of us are moms and I’m not sure any of us still have high-tops, but today in New York (and elsewhere in the country) was another march for choice, in support of Planned Parenthood. Seems there are some Republicans in Congress who think that the $75 million dollars allotted to Planned Parenthood in the federal budget will be the salvation of the country’s economic woes. I think that’s what my old therapist used to call “magical thinking.”
I wanted to go to the rally today but I had to stay home and help Liam with a big social studies project that’s due on Tuesday (hasn’t he had all the previous vacation week to work on that, you might ask? Why yes, in fact, he has. But that’s a post for another day). I sat and listened to him talk about his project, offered some help with scissors and glue, and actually we had sort of a nice time.
It would be funny–if it weren’t so tragic–that those who would strip funding from Planned Parenthood don’t have any alternatives for the babies produced from unwanted pregnancies. Will there be funding to feed, clothe, and educate those children? Will there be a parent or care-giver waiting for those children, someone who will give up a Saturday afternoon to help cut out pictures about the Sahara Desert? Seems like still more magical (okay, nightmarish) thinking, frankly: we’ll make women bear children they don’t want, can’t care for, or have life-destroying illnesses…and then not fund schools, hospitals, day care centers, or health care.
Parents unable to care for children, children with few or no options, the social safety net in tatters. Is that how we’re defining “family values” now?
(Hey! I’ve got a post up on technorati.com, too.)