The Handmaid’s Tale: A Blast from the Past

With the recent Supreme Court Nomination people are bringing out that “We’re heading for the Handmaid’s Tale” BS again so this “Blast from the Past”


It’s apparently a thing where people are panicking over The Handmaid’s Tale and saying how “relevant” it is and “we’re living it now.”

What an utter piece of crap.

The whole thing is based on two, and exactly two points:

  • Some folk think abortion is morally wrong and should, at best, only be allowed in extreme circumstances (with considerable disagreement on what extreme circumstances would qualify)
  • People should not be forced to pay for other people’s birth control.

Really.  That’s it.

Nobody is suggesting that women should not be allowed to work.  Nobody is suggesting that women should not be allowed to own property.  Nobody is suggesting that women should not be allowed to read (a feature of The Handmaid’s Tale).

You might find a few fanatics who would want to actually prohibit birth control or criminalize sex outside of very narrow bounds (and, again, quite a bit of variation where those bounds are, usually “within marriage” but sometimes with further strictures within).  You’ll find more people who think those things are wrong but few of those people actually want to criminalize them.  I know.  I know.  It’s a strange idea to disagree with something, to think it’s morally wrong, and yet be willing to let other people do it anyway if that’s their choice.

It’s called “Freedom”.  It’s a provocative concept, I know.

But there’s a flip side.  It’s called “Responsibility.” It’s up to you to take care of your own wishes in that side.  If you want to have sex without risking pregnancy, then it’s up to you to provide your own birth control.  It’s up to you to ensure that you’re not bringing children into the world that you cannot provide for.  It’s not like birth control is expensive.  Even the expensive birth control pills are on the order of two McDonald’s meals per week in price or less than one daily Cafe Latte (Tall) at Starbucks.  The cheap ones are like one McDonald’s meal a month.  Then there are plenty of places that hand out free condoms. (Hint:  unless you’re in a committed monogamous relationship and can trust that your partner is also monogamous, then use a condom.  It’s safer that way.) And they do it with private money.

You’re not going to lose your birth control.  You may have to make some choices if you want it, but you’re not going to lose it.  Those choices?  That’s part of that “responsibility” thing.

But if you must worry about something, consider the following scenario:

  • All women must have a male guardian and they need the guardian’s permission for
    • Marriage and divorce
    • Travel (if under 45)
    • Education
    • Employment
    • Opening a bank account
    • Elective surgery
  • Special police to ensure that women are properly covered (everything except hands and eyes)
  • Women forbidden to drive cars
  • Women must have a man to swear for them in a court of law
  • Must have guardian’s explicit permission to work outside the home.

Sound like what you think Conservatives want for women in the US?  Well, actually, it’s what women face today in Saudi Arabia. And yet, the UN just elected Saudi Arabia to the Women’s Rights Council.

If you’re worried about The Handmaid’s Tale becoming reality, then rather than building illusionary fantasies about the Republican Party, you might want to take a look there.  It would seem a more productive approach.

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