Back in February, the Republican controlled Oklahoma Senate passed a bill that defines life as beginning at conception, which would effectively ban all abortions in the state, even in cases of rape and medical emergency. The bill would even ban many forms of contraception such as the morning-after pill. Because Republicans are trying to legislate what women do with their reproductive organs, Democratic Oklahoma state Senator Constance Johnson proposed an amendment that would ban men from depositing semen anywhere except inside a woman’s vagina. The amendment basically makes it a crime for men to masturbate. The amendment was defeated by the Republican Senate.
The bill has now passed a House Committee and Republicans are salivating over the prospect of killing women’s rights in Oklahoma. Now enter The Daily Show with Jon Stewart.
On Wednesday night, the April 11th edition of The Daily Show ran a segment all about the Oklahoma Personhood Act. Al Madrigal went to Oklahoma to sit down with Constance Johnson and a Republican supporter of the bill, Senator Ralph Shortey. The interview reveals the incredible hypocrisy of Republicans and their views of women. Madrigal sat down with Johnson first:
JOHNSON: I put forth an amendment that outlaws the depositing of sperm anywhere other than in a woman’s vagina.
JOHNSON: If we’re talking about protecting life, then let’s talk about life at its very basic beginning.
The segment then switches to Ralph Shortey as Madrigal tells us that Republicans believe Johnson’s amendment is an overreach.
SHORTEY: I think the Johnson Amendment is an egregious attack on personal liberties from the government. And quite frankly it’s embarrassing that this was even brought up because it’s a ridiculous notion. One, it would be a huge free choice issue. Basically, the government is telling a man what he can and cannot do with his body.
SHORTEY: There’s not another individual that knows what’s better for you than you.
MADRIGAL: And who are women to think that they can control our bodies?
SHORTEY: Right, just like there isn’t a man who thinks they can control a woman’s body.
SHORTEY: Um, well I don’t know, that would be, uh, you know, it’s not about the government trying to control a woman’s body. It’s about protecting a life. When you have life inside your body, it should be the government’s place to protect that life, even if it does infringe on your liberties.
MADRIGAL: But Senator Johnson’s view of when life begins is earlier than yours. Shouldn’t we play it safe?
SHORTEY: I don’t think it’s necessary. A single sperm cell on it’s own cannot create life.
MADRIGAL: So your all about protecting the product and not the ingredients?
SHORTEY: Right, yeah.
Here’s the clip, via The Daily Show:
Senator Constance Johnson says that “if killing a zygote is murder, wasting sperm should also be murder.” And she is absolutely correct. There is clearly a double standard being practiced by male Republicans. This stunning segment demonstrates the incredible hypocrisy of those male Republicans. To them, it’s a violation of personal liberties for the government to try to regulate the reproductive rights of men, but it’s absolutely fine to violate the personal liberties of women. Shortey doesn’t think the government has the right to tell a man what can or can’t do with his body, but it’s apparently acceptable to tell women what they can and can’t do with their bodies. It’s utter hypocrisy. And Republicans wonder why they’re being accused of waging a war on women and why women are flocking to support Democrats. They should watch this Daily Show segment. The fact is, if men could get pregnant, each of these male Republicans would be the first to line up at an abortion clinic.
“If men could get pregnant, abortion would be a sacrament.”
~Florynce R. Kennedy