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GOP ignores children once they're outside the womb..
June 22, 2013 at 2:01 AM

G.O.P. IGNORES CHILDREN ONCE THEY'RE OUTSIDE THE WOMB

A recent road trip took me into the precincts of rural Georgia and Florida, far away from the traffic jams, boutique coffeehouses and National Public Radio signals that frame my familiar landscape. Along the way, billboards reminded me that I was outside my natural habitat: anti-abortion declarations appeared every 40 or 50 miles.

"Pregnant? Your baby's heart is already beating!" "Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you. -- God." And, with a photo of an adorable smiling baby, "My heart beat 18 days from conception."

The slogans suggest a stirring compassion for women struggling with an unplanned pregnancy and a deep-seated moral aversion to pregnancy termination. But the morality and compassion have remarkably short attention spans, losing interest in those children once they are outside the womb.

These same stretches of Georgia and Florida, like conservative landscapes all over the country that want to roll back reproductive freedoms, are thick with voters who fight the social safety net that would assist children from less-affluent homes. Head Start, Medicaid and even food stamps are unpopular with those voters.

Through more than 25 years of writing about Roe vs. Wade and the politics that it spawned, I've never been able to wrap my head around the huge gap between anti-abortionists' supposed devotion to fetuses and their animosity toward poor children once they are born. (Catholic theology at least embraces a "whole-life" ethic that works against both abortion and poverty, but Catholic bishops have seemed more upset lately about contraceptives than about the poor.) While many conservative voters explain their anti-abortion views as Bible-based, their Bibles seem to have edited out Jesus' charity toward the less fortunate.

That brain-busting cognitive dissonance is also on full display in Washington, where just last week the GOP-dominated House of Representatives passed a bill that would outlaw all abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy. After the bill was amended to make exceptions for a woman's health or rape -- if the victim reports the assault within 48 hours -- U.S. Rep. Paul Broun, R-Ga., withdrew his support. The exceptions made the bill too liberal for his politics.

Meanwhile, this same Republican Congress has insisted on cutting one of the nation's premier food-assistance programs: the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or food stamps. GOP hard-liners amended the farm bill wending its way through the legislative process to cut $2 billion from food stamps because, they believe, it now feeds too many people. Subsidies to big-farming operations, meanwhile, remained largely intact.

The proposed food stamp cuts are only one assault on the programs that assist less-fortunate children once they are born. Republicans have also trained their sights on Medicaid, the health insurance program for the poor. Paul Ryan, the GOP's relentless budget-cutter, wants to turn Medicaid into a block grant to the states, which almost certainly means that fewer people would be served. About half of Medicaid's beneficiaries are children.

The Pain-Capable Unborn Protection Act, whose name implies more medical knowledge than its proponents actually have, has no chance of becoming law since it won't pass the Senate. Its ban onabortion after 20 weeks, passed by the House along partisan lines, was merely another gratuitous provocation designed to satisfy a conservative base that never tires of attacks on women's reproductive freedom.

Outside Washington, however, attempts to limit access to abortion are gaining ground. From Alaska to Alabama, GOP-dominated legislatures are doing everything they can think of to curtail a woman's right to choose. According to NARAL Pro-Choice America, 14 states have enacted new restrictions on abortion this year.

That re-energized activism around reproductive rights slams the door on recent advice from Republican strategists who want their party to highlight issues that might draw a broader array of voters. Among other things, they have gently -- or stridently, depending on the setting -- advised Republican elected officials to downplay contentious social issues and focus on job creation, broad economic revival and income inequality. Clearly, those Republican lawmakers haven't gotten the message.

Still, GOP bigwigs get furious when they are accused of conducting a war on women. But what else is it? It's clearly not a great moral crusade to save children.

(Cynthia Tucker, winner of the 2007 Pulitzer Prize for commentary, is a visiting professor at the University of Georgia. She can be reached at cynthia@cynthiatucker.com.)

http://news.yahoo.com/g-o-p-ignores-children-once-theyre-outside-050010443.html

Replies

  • MissTacoBell
    June 22, 2013 at 2:11 AM
    Interesting.
  • Aestas
    by Aestas
    June 22, 2013 at 2:21 AM

    Still, GOP bigwigs get furious when they are accused of conducting a war on women. But what else is it? It's clearly not a great moral crusade to save children.

    Exactly.

  • DestinyHLewis
    June 22, 2013 at 2:35 AM

    I suppose it would be far too much for people to grasp PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY in their actions or in actions as it may be, and expect them to take precautions, or be ready to take care of the child they chose to have? 

     Nope. It's everyone else's  problem and monetary responsibility. That is the core problem here. Not a problem of evil republicans forcing women to have babies. MOST of those chose their path. I am not talking about rape or incest victims. The problem in general with our society is that our government has convinced a crap ton of people they have no personal responsibility for their children, and if they have them, everyone else will pay the bill. It's owed. 

  • Mommabearbergh
    June 22, 2013 at 2:36 AM
    I never understood their logic on issues like that be pro life but then screw these programs that benefit these kids. Makes no sense to me
  • meriana
    by meriana
    June 22, 2013 at 8:19 AM
    It's not so much that they don't care about the poor, they simply care a whole lot more about the very wealthy. They've allowed themselves to become convinced that people are poor because they wish to be after all, if they wanted to be very wealthy they could be simply by working a little harder. They also suffer under the illusion that if they do everything they can to benefit the "job creators", then there will be plenty of jobs, everyone will be able to support their families and no one will need any assistance.
  • garnet83
    June 22, 2013 at 8:33 AM
    What I keep seeing in these posts consistently that no one has addressed is the expectation of government leadership to offer remedy unfortunate circumstances some children are subject to and also the underlying suggestion that the only people who can successfully give a good home to a child are the affluent. Yet there is no call to people to take personal responsibility for their reproductive actions. And its horrible and unthinkable to suggest that anyone suck it up and do whatever is necessary to provide for their child. And there will always be a shortage of personal responsibility as long as there are safety nets.
  • idunno1234
    June 22, 2013 at 8:38 AM

     Life isn't that black and white. 

    The point of this post is to say that Republicans tend to wave the anti-abortion banner, usually based on religious reasons, then want to take away support for poor children.  How does this make sense when charity and caring for our fellow human beings, especially innocent children, is supposed to be the basis of the same religion these short sited individuals use to justify their anti-abortion stance??  Do you really not see the nauseating irony in this??

    Regardless of how an unwanted pregnancy happens, if a woman doesn't have the means or ability to take care of a child and chooses abortion, then THAT is the responsible thing.  Forcing her to have the child and then saying tough shit, you're on your own is counterproductive at best, morally specious at worst.

    Saying what people SHOULD do helps nothing because the story behind each pregnancy is different and once its done, we need to deal with the reality of what is in front of us-  the fact that a lot of women are left high and dry to deal with the pregnancy and the aftermath.

    Everyone makes bad decisions, have lapses of judgment on occasion.  EVERYONE.  The ones that we know that tend to make them more than others also tend to be somewhat broken people and as frustrating and destructive as those people may be, if any children end up being born to them, those children deserve our support and compassion because its the right thing to do.  Otherwise the odds are that these children will be the next generation of broken people and the cycle continues.

    Get it now?

     

    Quoting DestinyHLewis:

    I suppose it would be far too much for people to grasp PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY in their actions or in actions as it may be, and expect them to take precautions, or be ready to take care of the child they chose to have? 

     Nope. It's everyone else's  problem and monetary responsibility. That is the core problem here. Not a problem of evil republicans forcing women to have babies. MOST of those chose their path. I am not talking about rape or incest victims. The problem in general with our society is that our government has convinced a crap ton of people they have no personal responsibility for their children, and if they have them, everyone else will pay the bill. It's owed. 

     

     

  • Carpy
    by Carpy
    June 22, 2013 at 8:38 AM
    Let's keep dividing with bullshit
  • Donna6503
    June 22, 2013 at 8:42 AM
    Carpy, if you don't think it's a "war on women," do you really think it's a "peace on liberty."

    No, the GOP and the right will give lip-service to the concept of liberty ... Yet, their action is just their hateful attack on liberty.


    Quoting Carpy:

    Let's keep dividing with bullshit

  • momto3B
    by momto3B
    June 22, 2013 at 8:44 AM

    Not news. The hypocrisy of their position has been the ugly cornerstone of their whole "right to life" movement for years

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