Dear Friend Who Voted for Romney:
I’ve spent a week trying to process the fact that you voted for Mitt Romney. I still don’t know what those “conservative values” of yours are – you couldn’t tell me, and I can’t figure out what in the Republican Party platform you could agree with. I’m still hoping that you weren’t well-informed and were just voting how the people around you recommended you vote, because if you’d educated yourself on Romney’s values, lies, business practices, actions as a bishop, and history with gay classmates, and still chose him for President, then I don’t know if I ever really knew you.
But that’s not what hurt most.
The thing is, you’ve admitted you didn’t think of many things. You didn’t think of the damage Romney would do to the economy. You didn’t think of the wars we’d get in to. You didn’t think of how he’d gut FEMA, leaving people in disaster areas vulnerable to rapacious companies – if they could afford help at all. And you sure as shit didn’t think of what would happen to women of reproductive age if the Cons came back into power. You told me outright you didn’t think of me and the other women in your life when you voted for Romney.
Romney tried to backpedal on abortion, but he supports efforts to overturn Roe vs. Wade.
Romney’s Web site says this would require the Supreme Court to first overturn Roe v. Wade. Then “states will be empowered through the democratic process to determine their own abortion laws and not have them dictated by judicial mandate.”
Right now, women are protected by Roe vs. Wade. Yet states with Republicans in charge are currently busy stripping away as many of our abortion rights as they can get away with. With Roe gone, they’d have nothing standing in their way. Even the most extreme Republican stance – no abortion, no exceptions, not even for rape or life of the mother – could become state law.
This is the Republican dream for the nation.
And I want you to take a moment right now to picture all of the women of reproductive age that you love, and then imagine them in the world you would have made possible. Imagine them being impregnated by rape or incest, and told they had to carry that child to term. Read about the complications and risks of pregnancy, and tell me whether your “conservative values” are worth forcing them to endure this against their will. Because your “conservative values” come with that cost to women. You need to understand that.
And you need to know what the world you might have made would look like:
Savita Halappanavar died of septicaemia at University Hospital Galway a couple of weeks ago, because she had a miscarriage and the hospital refused to abort the dying fetus.
“Her husband, Praveen Halappanavar, an engineer at Boston Scientific in Galway, says she asked several times over a three-day period that the pregnancy be terminated. He says that, having been told she was miscarrying, and after one day in severe pain, Ms Halappanavar asked for a medical termination.
“This was refused, he says, because the foetal heartbeat was still present and they were told, ‘this is a Catholic country’.
“She spent a further 2½ days ‘in agony’ until the foetal heartbeat stopped.”
Then she died of a raging infection, because doctors wouldn’t abort a failed pregnancy even to save her life.
And you might say, “But that’s Ireland!” It happens here, too. You might say, “But that’s Catholics!” This is exactly what anti-abortion zealots in this country want, too. Even in places where they, like you, would allow exceptions for “life of the mother,” they don’t much care for mothers’ lives.
And you voted to empower them.
You voted for a world in which women had better be damned good at being pregnant, because their life is at stake.
You voted for death.
Another time, we may discuss the fact that you also voted for financial collapse, the destruction of the middle class, and endless war, but I think this will do for now.
I love you. I will always love you. I will always be there when you need me. But with your values turning out to be so antithetical to mine, we have a lot to work through.
Your Very Upset Liberal Friend