Georgia Republican Compares Women To Livestock (VIDEO)

On Thursday, the Georgia House of Representatives debated HB 954, which if enacted would reduce the window of time for women to be able to have an abortion from 26 weeks to 20 weeks. During the debate on the floor, Republican Rep. Terry England took his turn and in a southern drawl, compared women to cows and pigs.

“Life gives us many experiences. It give us the experience- or I’ve had the experience of delivering calves dead and alive, delivering pigs dead and alive, and I want to tell you, Rep. McCall, Rep. Roberts, all of us, Rep. Anderson, that have done that, Rep. Black, that have done that, it breaks our hearts to see those animals not make it. Ya know a few years ago, I had a young man come to me in our store, and it was when we were debating- talking about dog and hog hunting I believe- and at that point there was some language inserted in there that dealt with chicken fighting. And young man called me to the side and said ‘I want to tell you something.’ And y’all, this is salt of the earth people I’m talking about. Someone I would never have expected in 100 years to tell me what he told me that day. ‘Mr Terry, I want to tell you something. Tell those folks down there that when they stop killing babies, I’ll give them every chicken I’ve got.'”

Here’s the video via The Young Turks:

Can you believe this guy? That had to have been the strangest and most aggravating thing I’ve ever had to listen to. And believe me, I had to listen to it a few times to write down the entire transcript. This guy is comparing pregnant women to livestock, which is PROPERTY of the farmer. And then he compares fetuses that have only been in the womb for 26 or less weeks, to piglets and calves. Now, I used to help run a farm. Let’s talk about how farmers manage cattle.

Like human females, cows are pregnant for just around nine months. The difference between pregnant cows and pregnant women, however, is that men allow abortions to be performed on cows. According to UC Davis Veterinary Medicine Practices,

“Pregnant heifers may calve in the feedlot, depending on the stage of fetal development when they are received by the feedlot and the length of time they remain in the feedlot. This creates a stressful situation for the heifer and a high probability of mortality for the calf. To prevent this situation, producers can castrate (spay) heifers not selected for breeding or induce pregnant heifers to abort soon after entering the feedlot. Inducing abortion involves the single injection of an FDA approved drug which affects the physiological function of the ovary during pregnancy. When the drug is administered early to midterm, the pregnancy can be terminated with little observable stress or discomfort.”

So, when the life of the fetus or the life of the mother is in danger, abortion is the method of choice, a choice made by the farmer because the cow is incapable of choosing for herself.

Women, unlike cattle, have fully functioning brains and the ability to make choices. Abortion is never a desired outcome, but for a vast number of reasons, including life and death, it is sometimes not just the best, but the only option. Not only is England comparing women to livestock, he’s assuming that women are incapable of choosing and that like livestock, he will have to make choices for them. But I digress, let’s get back to Terry England’s floor speech.

England then talks about a guy who offers to give them all of his chickens if they stop killing babies. I don’t know who ‘them’ is, but I’m assuming the guy is offering pro-choice advocates his chickens as a bribe if they’ll join forces with Republicans to strip women of their free will. It’s either that or he’s offering pregnant women a chicken to stay pregnant. In either case, this is lunacy. One, bribes are illegal and it’s unlikely that advocates of choice would turn away from their beliefs for a chicken dinner. Two, these kinds of bills mostly affect poor women, and a chicken is simply not going to solve the economic woes of a poor woman who has to care for herself and the unwanted children she had because some jackasses in the government made contraception for cows easier to access than contraception for women. And lastly, fetuses are not babies. A baby is what a fetus is AFTER it is born. And most abortions occur within the first trimester, which is around 12 weeks. And when Republicans claim that contraception is abortion, they are claiming that a microscopic group of cells is a baby, which is plain ridiculous. And they know it. These Republican men just want to force their will on women. That’s really what this whole battle is all about. Whether or not men are allowed to dominate women by law.

At any rate, England’s floor speech was odd at the least, and insulting at the most. Women are NOT cows or pigs. They are human beings with God given free will to make their own decisions about their own bodies. Women are NOT property. And they certainly are NOT the property of the state. Men can’t decide what women are allowed to do with their reproductive organs. To make those decisions for women would make them no less than livestock being bred to replenish the herd. And apparently, that’s exactly what Republicans think women are.