Believing in Birth Control Doesn't Make Me Un-American | 2Ps in a Pod

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X-posted in AOC Sexual Politics

Hi Bro. Dennis,

I look forward to speaking with you and Paul tomorrow about your excellent trip to New York. I’ve just been so overwhelmed emotionally and psychologically with everything that is going on that I haven’t been able to write a response to your last blog post. Nor have I read Bro. Solomon’s article on feminine principles in the church — only due to lack of time. Our traffic is up 50% in the last three months. I’m working on my jewelry project — filled with problems, but I totally took over the design.)

You know that I’m working on getting asylum for my friend who stood against the flogging of 40,000 women a year in Sudan. We collaborated in smuggling this video out of the country and I was able to post the movie I made for Vimeo, when YouTube kept taking it down, deluged with complaints from Khartoum.

This woman was arrested for improper dress. I understand that even Pope John Paul used self-flagellation, according to Monsignor Slawomir Oder, John Paul’s postulator. But I simply can’t believe that this cruel flogging punishment is just for the 40,000 women of Sudan deemed to be not modest enough each year. 

Flogging of Sudanese Woman in Khartoum

Because I speak out on these issues, I am now banned in the Arab world, Bro Dennis. And soon I will be banned in America.

The minority is superb at silencing crimes against women in today’s digital world, even when they boo hoo incessantly that they have no power and are the victims of the Stalinist tactics of women like me.

Truthfully, Bro. Dennis, I don’t believe that I am the gestapo, no matter what the social conservatives say.

Because I am independent, I was able to keep the flogging video alive, while sending it on to Bloomberg News. Mayor Bloomberg’s company is one of the easiest to work with in broadcasting the horrors of violence against women. As you probably know, he put a $250,000 matching grant on the table last week for Planned Parenthood, when Komen moved to join the fight to shut down Planned Parenthood in America.

Declaration of Independence

I realize now that I must generate my own salary and living without depending on advertisers and even foundations, although I do believe there are grants out there for me. Watching the tactics of the prolife people, I realize there will come a time where if I have advertisers, the people who want me dead will try to shut down my financial support.

The only way for me to succeed financially is to receive my money from a group or organization that can’t be pressured to withdraw their support of me. That will be readers.

In the name of a higher calling to God and not the laws of America, the prolifers say that I have no right to express my ideas and beliefs in America. These very words should be silenced. FOX News says that I am a totalitarian feminist, an immoral and self-absorbed woman, and that I only care about myself.

I am the enemy in America, and it breaks my heart. The young girl who was so proud of her country and cried when she heard the song “America the Beautiful” is now the immoral, unpatriotic traitor to this country. My heart is awash in the condemning words of Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich, Mitt Romney and John Boehner, telling me that I am an immoral person and un-American.

So I will get to all these matters, including a writing a 2Ps in a Pod post in the next day or two. I fear it will be quite a cry of anguish but I will try to make it powerful and meaningful.

Anne’s Nightmare of Black Cats and Nursing Maggots

Last April before I went to Washington to meet with legislators on behalf of Planned Parenthood, I had a terrible nightmare. I who have only the most wonderful, profound dreams woke up screaming over the Republican War on Women. I had black cats, maggots and white mice running all over my body. (See The Republican War on Women Gives Me Nightmares.)

I dreamed that I woke up in my bed and there were tiny black cats the size of white mice everywhere. They were crawling and wriggling like maggots and there were a few black cats nursing them. The mother cats just lay there and endless little kitties, really tiny and some a little bigger but still very small were lying everywhere suckling on the mothers. They kept coming everywhere in my bed. I would move a pillow and there were more everywhere. I was screaming for help but I couldn’t move because they were crawling on me.

That vision of black cats and maggot babies devouring me has been very deeply buried in my psyche for months now.

Watch Turning the Population Tide in the Philippines on PBS. See more from PBS NewsHour.

About the time of your last blog post, I had just watched a PBS segment on family planning in the Philippines. In it the Catholic bishop spoke aggressively against controlling population, saying that it was fine that women have as many children as possible. We both know the Catholic Church believes it is a woman’s duty. It’s the world’s challenge to figure out how to feed all these babies, not for women to have fewer children argues the bishop who has never had a baby in his life.

Life As An Incubator

As Stupak said on the steps of Congress during the health care debate: women (he did not address us as women) are incubators (that’s the word he used for women). Every day, I feel like we women are just bodies for men to rule over, and everything is getting worse, not better. I’m terribly depressed over this situation.

Newt Gingrich can do whatever he damn well pleases and no one is upset over all his infidelity and lies because he’s a born again Christian in the same Catholic Church that condemned me as a young woman for being sexually assaulted in my sleep by the father of the six year old girl lying next to me.

Did I scream? No. I knew that Mickey would be ruined for life if she woke up and saw this horrific scene of the real lives of women in her own house.

It’s so easy for the bishop to say a woman should have 12 children. There is no concern about maternal mortality with the bishop. There was a scene of women lying in the maternity ward in the Philippines with babies everywhere. They can’t get proper care. Yet there is no concern about a better life for the children that already exist and the mother herself in the bishop’s words.

Science tells us that the food supplies especially the fishing stocks in the region are severely depleted. But the bishop says babies, babies, we need more babies. Women must make babies. It is our duty.

When I saw the images in this video, it triggered my nightmare of the black cats running all over my body — the visualizations were so similar. Those images have haunted me for weeks now, apart from all the commotion over AOC with your now resigned board members saying that I an immoral woman because I have tasteful nudity on AOC — and for a purpose.

I admit that it is an act of defiance on my part. And I want American women to understand that the Europeans do not have this obsession with a woman’s skin, that these images come from fashion magazines.

America is much more like the Arab world in our thinking about women.

Do you know that in Utah, both houses moved in 2010 to make miscarriage a felony in the state? If a woman slipped on ice in winter (not that there is much snow in Utah), her husband could have her imprisoned for not wearing proper shoes and causing the miscarriage with her negligence. Only the governor’s veto kept this legislation from passing.

In South Dakota last year, legislators worked on a law to make it justifiable homicide for a man to shoot his wife if she assisted her daughter in ending a pregnancy. Insanity has taken over the demand of American men that they control women’s bodies. And there is no end to the new legislation in sight.

Under the weight of your controversy over me, I’ve had to return to my own inner psychological roots, locking down the essence of my own identity and principles. This fight for me as a good woman of honor comes at a time when the Komen/Planned Parenthood problem is the topic of every Republican candidate for president, along with the new argument that birth control shouldn’t exist for women in America.

Anne Is Hunted

I don’t recognize my own country anymore. You know that I was in police protection for a year over a prolifer who wanted to kill me. He kept sending me the rope he would use to hang me, the bloody knife he would use to cut my throat, dead bloody animals. I don’t even know what I said that made him crazy. I was part of a panel talking about women’s issues on TV. Roe vs Wade was law, and I would have answered that I supported the Supreme Court decision.

We had to change our phone # and my husband was often away on business. We had a two-story house, and I worried that I couldn’t get out of my own house to escape this man, when he came to kill me. His pursuit of me went on for a year until he finally flew across the windshield of my car one night. He was wearing a mask and scared me to death. I didn’t care if I killed him, Bro. Dennis, as I tried to run him down, speeding away into the night.

The police were wonderful the whole time and that last confrontation ended his harassment of me.

Men Rule Bro. Dennis

The reason Father Ben didn’t believe my version of my sexual attack by my father’s best friend but would explain for hours why Newt Gingrich is now a good Catholic is because men rule in the Catholic Church. It’s a simple as that fact, Bro. Dennis.

Women are incubators and that’s the end of it. We can write all these nice words and phrases about the sanctity of women, but at the end of the day when any discussion about women’s freedoms as human being arise, we are put in our place.

Devoted Catholics rationalize that the church does so much good work — and they do — that people must live with these incidental complications around church doctrines. But these doctrines dominate the essence of our souls and spirits. How does a Catholic woman taking birth control embrace her faith while living in a state of mortal sin and receiving communion every week? I do not understand these fundamental contradictions embedded in her faith. When she stares at herself in the mirror, who is looking back at her? Does she see deceit in her own eyes or a grand rationalization that she is doing the best that she can under the circumstances?

The Great Morality Rationalization

Even my great woman friend on Facebook, who I thought would be good for our panel, doesn’t believe in birth control — or so she says. I was stunned to listen to this modern woman who is always talking about sexy lingerie argue that even a husband and wife shouldn’t have sex if they’re not prepared to be parents.

Once I heard her explain why Newt was totally forgiven and is a fabulous Catholic because redemption is a core belief of the Catholic Church, I just lost all respect for her.

There is no redemption for me, Bro. Dennis, unless I give up everything that I believe in for women. Only when I confess to being the bad, immoral woman that the church has painted me will I be worthy of redemption. Well I will not confess to any priest on my death bed, when millions of women are dying of AIDS in Africa because the Catholic Church doesn’t permit the use of condoms.

I read last night that using birth control is a mortal sin in the Catholic Church. Does that mean that no matter what good works a woman has done in her life, even if she has 10 foster children in her care but is on birth control when a car accident that takes her life without a last opportunity to confess her sins, she will burn in hell forever?

I don’t know how to bridge these gaps, Bro Dennis.

And now I just saw a profound editorial in a magazine, which I will post shortly. It sums up so magnificently everything that I am trying to say in my fight for women to have any kind of self-identity in the world, an existence beyond being an incubator as Stupak calls us. So I feel that I am prepared to write again. Maybe this email is a blog post, and then I will follow it with a calmed down version.

I believe that my ability to express my own nightmares gives me a voice that resonates with women. But watching what is happening to my own country is just so depressing and upsetting. I feel that women would be in chains if men thought they could get away with it. If our blog is to have any validity, then I must be able to write my true feelings.

All of these thoughts have been churning around in me and I feel that I am finally able to give them voice.

Sincerely, Anne — the profane one compared to your awesome profundity in 2Ps in a Pod. As always, no disrespect is intended, Bro. Dennis. I am just a very confused, frightened American woman trying to make the world a better place for all of us.