Privilege in US Politics

Much controversy has surfaced over the contraception coverage campaign the Democrats have recently launched. This campaign directly targets insurance companies to offer completely contraception coverage, and as many religious institutions are self-insured, they would be forced to provide contraceptives to students and employees if the mandate is passed. Republics are refuting this as a battle against “religious freedom”, some liberals argue that this is a “war on contraception itself”.

This is an example of privilege operating within politics, masked behind claims of religious freedom. These claims lose sight of women having the freedom of choice for her body. These conservative claims essentialized gender, assuming that all women are mothers and should be having sex for that reason alone. It recognizes gender relationships framed within grids of legibility determined by male representatives and experts.

 

Resisting these forms of proposed social programs presented by the Democrats directly targets and disproportionately impacts women, who suffer in restrictions to health care in the US. Decisions to prevent birth control to be readily accessible to all women exacerbates the divide in the autonomy in men and women’s health. This disadvantage women face economically though decentralization, dispersion and lack of social support for these programs perpetuate bigger issues within socially funded programs that lack focus on women’s economic independence.

Men who are in positions of authority have the power to make decisions to target social programs that directly affect women and women alone. This fight over contraceptive health is a branch of the foundational problems occurring globally that reinforce essentialized ideas of women to keep us silenced, passive and domesticated.

What is a woman to do when her government will not recognize her right to paid birth control?

What is a woman to do when her government will not provide these contraceptives to encourage female liberation?

What is a woman to do when her government will not address the medical benefits of access to birth control?

What is a woman to do when her government will not pay for birth control, or fund an abortion?

What is a woman to do when her government will not provide her assistance through social programs for her children?

What is a woman to do when her government exacerbates her economic inequality through drastic cuts to programs that directly affect women?

What is a woman to do when she becomes part of the growing percentage of the population who is dependent on welfare, and has children dependent on welfare, and so on?

What is a woman to do when our women lack the autonomy to make decisions for their own bodies?

What is a woman to do when she feels she does not have power, or her empowerment is used as a development tactic for mobilizing globalization?

And what are we to do about it?

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