The South Dakota Patriarchy, er, politicians strike again. This time, they are making sure of no protections for pregnant workers. After all, women really shouldn’t be working in the first place, they should be at home, waiting on a man.
On Monday, eight male lawmakers in South Dakota voted down a bill that would have required reasonable accommodations for pregnant workers so they can safely stay on the job.
Instead of offering protections against discrimination, unsafe conditions, and getting fired, one of the men had a different solution for pregnant employees. “It’s not prison. You can quit,” Republican state Rep. Wayne H. Steinhauer, who voted against the bill, said during a hearing, according to Rewire.
“You’ve got a choice every day. You make a choice whether you come to work,” he went on. “And I’m here to tell you, if a person’s not allowing you to breastfeed at work or making appropriate accommodations at work, we can pass this law, but you don’t want to work for that guy. Get the heck out of there.”
Oh, sure, you could pass that law, but you didn’t, because it’s ever so much more important to grind women into the dirt. Much more necessary to drive home just how subhuman you think women are in the first place. It wasn’t quite enough to pass draconian laws stripping women of their bodily autonomy. This is such blatant misogyny that it’s on the stunning side. Nothing like baldly stating that people in the workplace definitely don’t need to aspire to being better human beings. Interesting to note the assumption that the boss would be male. Also the assumption “you don’t want to work for that guy!” Nothing like assuming you know what any given woman should think or want. The fact that people probably need their job doesn’t seem to factor in, either. Seems to me that a whole lot of people would prefer to “not work for that guy”, but they do anyway, because they need their job, and a person can still like their actual job while not liking their boss.
This isn’t about bosses, though. This is about broad workplace policies. It’s about removing discrimination. It’s about protection and recourse in the face of harassment. Little things, y’know. Mr. Steinhauer, you have a choice every day, too. You could show up at work and actually do your job. As that seems inimical to you, perhaps you should get the heck out of there. Go home and wait on the little woman or something.
Think Progress has the full story.