Human beings, at least some human beings, have always felt the need to keep one group or another under their domination either out of fear or religious authority. Today, even though women have made great strides to claim equality they have fought gallantly for, they face a concerted effort by conservatives and their onward Christian soldiers to assign them subservient roles in society, and it is being perpetrated by Republicans in the states, Congress, and their presumptive presidential candidate, Willard Romney. The conservative’s voice of power and influence, Rush Limbaugh, has done his share to demean women, and one might think that since the outrage and push back after his vile remarks aimed at Georgetown Law student Sandra Fluke, that Republicans would step back, give pause, and reconsider the repercussions Limbaugh’s remarks might have for them, but they forge ahead relentlessly to send women back to the kitchen and birthing table to serve their husbands, or in the minds of Republicans; their masters.
When Limbaugh made his misogynistic comments about Sandra Fluke, Willard Romney said “it’s not the language I would use,” but of note is that Romney never said it was not the sentiment I share. It was a telling moment for America’s women and it should alert them that a Romney presidency, coupled with Republican legislators’ agenda, will begin a great movement to subject women to third-class status in a patriarchal society. Rush Limbaugh may not serve in any government capacity, but he does serve as the voice of Republicans’ attitudes toward America’s women.
The StopRush Project’s library is replete with countless examples of Republicans’ sentiments about women whose power frightens the life out of religious fanatics and patriarchal conservatives. Limbaugh has attacked the likes of two Supreme Court justices, the Secretary of State, Chelsea Clinton, and Democratic legislators, and the overriding attitude is that women, especially Democratic women, are ill-equipped to hold positions of power in government and society in general solely on the basis of their gender. It is a belief whose basis is rooted in the Christian bible that says women are weaker vessels and must subject themselves to a man’s will, and in 2012, it is Republican men’s will and it informs that Republicans and religious extremists do not trust women to make the right choices; conservative choices.
It is no coincidence that Rush Limbaugh never impugns Sarah Palin, Michele Bachmann, Ann Coulter, Phyllis Schlafly, Michelle Malkin, or any other conservative woman because they parrot the conservative patriarchs’ agenda with devout allegiance. Republicans have no problem with women so long as they are obedient to their schema, but if they choose when to have children, where to work, and how to vote, then they fall into the category of petulant children who require men, white Republican Christian men, to regulate them. There are religious and conservative men who feel women should never have been given the right to vote because “women lean hard to the left,” or are “voting in people who are evil, who agree with them.”
The assault on contraception, and especially Planned Parenthood, by Republicans is more about keeping women as birth machines than opposition to abortion. It is the same story with the violent opposition to the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and recent attempts by Republicans to hold Stafford student loan interest hostage unless Democrats eliminate preventative care that primarily benefits poor women. One of the features of the ACA is correcting gender inequities in the health care industry and it irks Republicans that women no longer face higher premiums than men and will receive contraception coverage that gives them the right to choose when they give birth and are sexually active. Those choices, according to Mormons, Catholics, and evangelical freaks, are better left in the hands of men who are better served if women are out of the workforce and producing infants yearly; or are abstinent. Last year, to drive home the point that women are at the mercy of men, Republicans attempted to redefine rape and in many Republican-controlled legislatures, rape has been eliminated as a reason for an abortion to teach them that when they are raped, it is their duty to produce offspring and keep their mouths shut.
Rush Limbaugh is the mouthpiece of the Republican and conservative patriarchy because he is able to say out loud what Republicans say in private, and is manifest in their anti-woman legislation. That is precisely why the Republican candidates for president did not condemn Limbaugh’s remarks about Sandra Fluke or his condemnation of Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotamayor as Supreme Court Justices because “they’re women, minority women.” It is also why Willard Romney singles out teacher unions for special attention because women predominate the teaching profession and he has not blatantly attacked police or firefighter unions because men are in the majority in those professions. Romney’s storied, good middle-class income of $19,000 is easily half the median salary of America’s teachers, and Willard is loath to see intelligent, voting women earn a decent living when they can be kept poor and dependent on a man to support and direct their lives.
The war on women is the final solution for Republicans to finally put women in the role the Christian bible commands as subservient to men, and what better way than keeping them pregnant, earning 74-cents on the dollar a man earns, or at the mercy of rapists. Republicans are able to keep a segment of the population clamoring for more anti-women legislation because their voice, Rush Limbaugh, is parroting sexist and misogynistic rhetoric three hours a day, five days a week to men who need slaves and women who are stuck in religious cults and desirous to see every woman in America subjected to the same subservient roles as them.
Republicans depend on Limbaugh’s sexist rhetoric and hateful ad hominem attacks on women to fortify their war on women, but they are facing a backlash that is having a profound effect. The Stop Rush Project and various boycott Limbaugh movements’ primary goal is stopping hate speech, and not, as conservative trolls contend, to silence free speech. The value-added aspect is informing advertisers, radio stations, and Republicans that this elevated war on women has consequences, and hundreds of volunteers in every market in the country are monitoring, reporting, and contacting advertisers and sponsors to alert them that their brands are in jeopardy if they continue advocating for misogynistic and sexist rhetoric that serves no other purpose than impugning women and their rights.
Republicans, religious extremists in the Mormon, Catholic, and evangelical faiths have been complicit in subverting women’s rights, and it is obvious they believe women cannot be trusted to make choices in their best interest. However, women are better educated, more politically savvy, and smarter than the conservative patriarchs lusting to return to a time when women could not vote, hold political office, serve on juries, or own land ,and Republicans will feel their wrath in November. This is a warning to Republicans and religious maniacs that their war on women, like their sexist mouthpiece Rush Limbaugh, has ignited a firestorm they are ill-equipped to extinguish, because not only are women smarter and better educated, they are driven to extend their rights until they are given their due as equal American citizens. Republicans should also fear husbands, brothers, fathers, and sons who are sick and tired of the women they cherish being treated like dogs and yet, the GOP escalates their attacks as if they are invulnerable. Women are patient and have long memories of the persistent abuse at the hands of conservatives and their onward Christian soldiers, and like Limbaugh’s sexist attacks, they have had enough, and with women making up more than half the population, the patriarchy is nearing its demise and it cannot come fast enough. It is ironic that women, who are the recipients of Republican and Limbaugh’s attacks, will be the force that brings this war on women to an end. Visit the Stop Rush Project and peruse Limbaugh’s sexist and misogynistic remarks and reflect on how they mirror the Republican and religious patriarchal war on women and join decent Americans to end the assault on America’s most valuable asset.