By Francia McCormack
I am still perplexed at the sheer number of human beings that think that because I am a woman, I have no autonomy over my body. My womb and what I choose to hold there should not be political. The patriarchy is designed to see women, particularly women of color, as possessions that need overseers. White supremacy seems to be ruling the minds of the Supreme Court and the 30 percent of voters in favor of overturning Roe v. Wade. The debate about when life begins has never been about the sanctity of life. If this was true, the children of today would have legislation protecting them in their schools from gun violence. I would also say that SNAP would be available to every American parent needing to feed their children. It shouldn’t be so hard. Universal childcare and healthcare would be a priority if it was truly about the sanctity of life. Education for PreK to college would be free and accessible to all.
This is about creating an underclass of citizens that are subservient and completely dependent on the will of the wealthy. This underclass will not be able to afford college. They will work in jobs that barely pay the bills. They will not be homeowners. They will have a hard time having access to voting. They will not have healthcare and die early from illness. They become the lowest rank of the American caste system. I know mothers who could not afford to go to college struggle to maintain their high rent and utilities on minimum wage jobs. I see the mothers without family support struggling to find childcare and resources for their children and themselves.
What bothers me the most is that men face few penalties for not caring for their children until adulthood. So many men shirk their responsibility in raising children, especially unplanned children, and the work falls mostly on the backs of women. How many girls in sexually abusive situations will be forced to carry fetuses from rape? How many more children will be added to the already bursting foster care system that rarely finds homes for children of color?
Forcing women into motherhood is not the answer to any of today’s social ills. This is a power move by the corrupt minority of white supremacists with leverage in American politics. I, Black and educated, threaten the hierarchy set by the founding founders and their creation of the ruling class of slaveowners and wealthy barons. Women of color are a threat to the patriarchy because our work has always been free or almost free. When we become powerful, we change things. We fight for justice for those with little access to resources. We lead in a way that challenges the status quo that has justified abuse and corruption of politics for as long as this country has endured. The fight against equality for women and people of color is as old as George Washington and his cronies. The strides we make as women and people of color are often taken away once powerful men feel threatened and want to be able to hold onto their minority rule.
Our only power isn’t voting, it’s organizing. Instead of sending out requests for donations (Pelosi), I wish Democrats would send out newsletters on key races across the country, how to get involved and how to make a change. I would like a voice that would get rid of the filibuster. Shame on you, Biden, for supporting it. How about following the money? Who in the Democratic party is getting money that keeps them voting against their constituents and the majority of voters? How can we get them out when we find out? Follow the money and don’t just leave it up to the newspapers to share that information. Newsletters should be sent out regularly on these issues. Actual news should be shared on the work being done locally and nationally, not just on a plug for more money for candidates. Organizing the people and fighting the fight the people need cannot continue on this path. I fully support voting out this geriatric generation not willing to fight for the youth of this country in a way that makes change. The Senate and the Supreme Court have too long in their positions and that leaves them with too much power. The House of Representatives is called to fight for their elected positions way more often, diluting the voice of the people. So much needs to be done. Roe v. Wade should have been made legislation decades ago and inaction has left it vulnerable and now decimated.
We have so much work to do, but the first step is not seeing the women coming into power as a threat to the country’s stability. Placing women as people who cannot control their bodies is the same as slavery, no less. I refuse to sit here and say it is anything, but a dismantling of the power women steadily gained through educating themselves, taking on leadership roles, and controlling their reproduction. Power to the people only comes from first establishing power to women. Power to women. Power to women of color. Power from the white supremacist patriarchy is the only way. I’m ready to fight. This country will not be made a playground of the rich on the backs of women and the unspoken majority, progressives, and people of color.