Dr. Patti Feuereisen speaks on teenage girls recovering from sexual abuse. Also, the Jasmine Fiore murder is sadly not unusual, and why abortion is legitimate health care.
Links in this episode:
On this episode of Reality Cast, I’ll be interviewing Dr.
Patti about the second edition of her book on helping teenage girls survive
sexual abuse. Also, abortion won’t
be covered under any health care bill, but should it be? And the most recent murdered wife
scandal results in another missed opportunity to talk about domestic violence.
The National Advocates for Women has put out a video
chronicling and refuting the language anti-choicers use to describe women who
- napw *
But National Advocates refutes this nonsense, pointing out
that 61% of women who have abortions are already mothers, so anti-choicers are
calling mothers murderers and Nazis.
That the mother you see on the street snuggling her baby is a Nazi who
would just as soon kill as snuggle a baby. It’s ridiculous.
Even though the federal government expressly forbids federal
funding for elective abortion under the Hyde Amendment, and even though there’s
not even a whiff of a hint that any potential bill would reverse the Hyde
Amendment. Representative Massa of
New York addressed the issue in forceful language.
It’s the tone that most of the coverage of the issue has
taken on this show, primarily because I’m not a fan of liars, and the
anti-choicers spreading this story are, above all other things, pants of fire
liars. No matter how many times
the lie about abortion funding is debunked, they spread it. God, I hate lying. And so most of my attention has been
focused on the fact that this is just a plain, old lie.
But what’s getting lost in this discussion is an opportunity
to ask whether or not we should be paying for abortion. And as much as it’s important to debunk
the lies, every time we do so forcefully, we fall into the trap of assuming
that the people who are hysterical over the possibility of funding abortion are
in the right. But let’s take a
moment and listen to what they’re saying, and how it’s wrong on many
levels. I got this off Anderson
There’s two separate claims and one implication that this
hysterical wingnut screaming at a town hall is making, and all are wrong. First, that the health care bill will
include funding for abortion. This
is wrong, as I’ve already stated.
The second claim is that abortion is not health care. This is also wrong. The implication is therefore that we
shouldn’t fund abortions under universal health care, and this is also
Of course abortion is health care. The fact that a procedure is technically elective doesn’t
mean it’s not proper health care.
Contraception, for instance, is elective, but all but a few loonies
accept that it’s a proper use of the health care system to prevent
pregnancy. A lot of the time
people come down with conditions that can be dealt with in two or more ways,
and what they decide to do depends on a number of factors, and not all of them
are health-related. For instance,
people with blood sugar or cholesterol problems often have a choice between
going on drugs or trying to control their problem with diet and exercise
first. Pregnancy is a condition, a
medical condition. You can choose
to continue or abort.
Ironically, from a strictly medical viewpoint, the healthier
and less expensive choice is usually abortion, since childbirth is expensive
and very stressful on your body.
But we don’t pressure women into abortion, because we respect that one
has a right to choose what’s best in a holistic sense, and of course, if every
pregnancy ever was aborted, that would be the end of the human race. But still,
something to think about.
Of course, the other side of this is that women will get
abortions whether they can get safe, medical ones or not. Which often means they end up in
emergency care for septic abortions.
From a medical viewpoint, then, providing federally funded abortion is
about saving women’s health and money through prevention.
I’m sure by now you’ve heard this tragic story.
The suspect, Ryan Jenkins, was found hung a couple days
later in a hotel room. Cause of
death was suicide. Jenkins was married to Fiore for a short time, and it
appears that he killed her so she couldn’t leave him. Jenkins was a reality TV
star, and Fiore was a swimsuit model, however, and because of these facts, the
news is going bananas. That, and
Fiore’s body was so mutilated that they had to identify her with the serial
numbers off her breast implants.
When something like this happens, it’s always a twofold
nightmare. Once, because it
happened. But also because when
the victim was young and beautiful, and especially if she worked in an industry
like modeling and had a lot of plastic surgery, the public and the media don’t
seem to be able to realize that what was lost was a human being’s life. She’s objectified, and her half-naked
pictures are flung about everywhere.
But perhaps what’s most worrisome is that the TV and modeling aspects of
this entire escapade are overshadowing the fact that this crime is far from
unusual. Every day in the
U.S., an average of three women are killed by intimate partner violence. But most of them aren’t models, and so
most of their deaths get very little media attention.
What was disturbing to me is that the coverage largely
ignored this context, and instead of treating Fiore’s murder for what it was,
which is a classic domestic violence case, they’re basically grasping for any
other explanation. For instance,
CBS had Michael Welner on during a segment that was titillatingly titled "Fatal
Attraction". The CBS interviewer tried to make this more about Jenkins being a
reality TV star than the sadly banal truth, which is he’s a classic wife
batterer who uses the ultimate tactic to try to control his victim.
To his credit, Welner tries to get the interview closer to
the real point, which is that Jenkins, who already had a history of beating
Fiore and a girlfriend before her, isn’t some super special psychopath, but the
garden variety wife beater who resorts to murder. It happens on average three times a day in this country,
But the interviewer insists that this is somehow special,
somehow beyond, because Jenkins cut off her fingers and pulled her teeth. Again, a man murders his supposed loved
one three times a day in this country.
Just most men who murder their lovers and wives weren’t on TV, so we
don’t consider it news. Luckily, Welner’s not having it.
I wouldn’t usually take the time to do a segment on the
celebrity crime of the week, but I had to call attention to the fact that this
segment wasn’t unique, and most of the coverage I’ve seen is studiously trying
to ignore the fact that what Ryan Jenkins did to Jasmine Fiore isn’t all that
unusual, and that we have an epidemic of intimate partner violence in this
country. This was an opportunity
to educate, but instead you’re just seeing more covering up of the problem.
And now for the Wisdom of Wingnuts, old school style. I could have kept going with more
wingnut lies about health care reform, but once in awhile, you need to break it
up by playing some unvarnished hate speech. Pam Spaulding found these sermons from Pastor Steven
Anderson of Faithful Word Baptist Church in Tempe, Arizona.
This dude is obsessed with Barney Frank, and he’s also
suggested that the President should be murdered for his pro-choice views.
Unsurprisingly, he is one of those homophobes who describes pictures of naked
men as unbearably tempting, and assumes that all other straight-identified men
agree with him.