The New Agenda is the old agenda
On Widdershins first read about working in The New Agenda here, "Solidarity and the 30% Solution", and then read here," The 30% Solution and Me – Two Years Later".
This quote is from the second post:
Unfortunately, the New Agenda also had another plan – to set aside the “divisive” issue of reproductive rights in order to gain togetherness with women of all beliefs.
However, this idea soon proved unworkable for a woman like me. Liberal, pro-choice beliefs were not welcome – nor were words I thought all feminist organizations used as a matter of course. After my blog posts were reviewed and met with more and more disapproval, and I was told that the word “patriarchy” was no longer to be written at TNA, I decided that I could no longer be a part of the organization.
.......And then, came the Health Whatever Bill. Barack Obama, as head of the Party, decided that any pro-choice Congresswoman who voted against the bill, despite the punitively anti-choice Nelson and Stupak Amendments being attached, would no longer have Democratic support in her next election. [GC notes: Remember when Bo was in the Senate he voted present instead of yes on abortion bills because he is a disguised misogynist.]
That means no money, no appearances, no nothing. She would essentially be committing career suicide. Faced with this pressure, even the most fervently pro-choice Congresswomen caved, and the Health Whatever Bill passed. The implications of this bill are still being felt, but I feel that once the smoke clears, we will see that this was the worst blow to women’s health in decades.
At that point, I realized that as long as Obama was head of the Party, no Democrat would be allowed to stand up for women’s rights. You could have a hundred women in Congress, and he would still be able to threaten the Democratic ones with the loss of their seats if they dared to place gender loyalty over Party loyalty.
As for the Republican women, since they were anti-choice (or at least, their Party’s platform is anti-choice), they wouldn’t stand up for women’s rights in any case. So, in terms of working towards allowing women full equality and control over their bodies, the 30% solution was a non-starter with Obama in the White House. The system was broken, and both Parties were now functionally anti-choice.
You may wonder why I have not blogged about the Paycheck Fairness Act since it was stripped from the Lilly Ledbetter Bill in the first few months of 2009. That is because once the Democrats refused to vote on it when they had a 60-vote filibuster-proof majority, I figured it never had a chance in hell of passing.
It would cost “business” (i.e, the oligarchy-patriarchy) too much to correct the monstrous economic injustices that women have suffered for decades, and the Dems and Repubs are too bought off to ever do anything to jeopardize their precious campaign contributions. Thus, the Paycheck Fairness Act was only brought to a vote when the Dems could blame the Repubs for not passing it.
This kabuki was so obvious to me that I thought everyone else felt the same way. But I suppose some people still hoped that Olympia Snowe, Susan Collins and other Republican women Senators would actually throw them a bone. Just like the Democratic women, however, the Republican women put Party loyalty over gender loyalty. And so the Paycheck Fairness act went the way of the ERA. I don’t expect it to come back for quite some time.
Given that both choice AND pay equity are off Congress’ table, the way to women’s equality is now blocked, not just by an anti-choice President, but also by a Republican Party that is all too happy to play the anti-feminist villain....
In effect, the system is rigged to prevent women from ever reaching parity and equality, and the women who take part in the system are also blocked from helping their sisters do so. It seems to me that in order to reach gender equality and parity, we need to change the system, not just keep voting for more Democratic and Republican women.
I do not agree with her conclusion but this is the beginning of the discussion. SERIOUS FEMINISTS NEED TO READ THESE TWO PIECES OF ANALYSIS AS IT IS THE BEGINNING OF SERIOUS RESISTANCE AND REORGANIZATION WITHOUT THE ILLUSION OF A SAVIOR LEADER SOMEWHERE WHO WILL DO IT FOR US.
A little history from Uppity on No Quarter
To NARAL, NOW, Ms Magazine, Emily’s List, all Clairol Girls who ignored The Signs, How ya doin’? November 15, 2009
Indulge me one more time, here. Let me show you what you missed and what you lost. They are called Signs, girlz. Signs you CHOSE to ignore.
Let’s take a trip to 2007, a little stroll down memory lane. You know, humor the Old Girl, mmmmmkay?:
What’s most interesting about this endorsement from March of Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-NY, which the Clinton campaign is trotting out again this morning, is not so much that Bonnie Grabenhofer, president of the Illinois National Organization for Women Political Action Committee would support “our native sister.”
It’s that Grabenhofer underlines that during his 2004 Senate race against Alan Keyes, Sen. Barack Obama, D-Illinois, did not receive Illinois NOW PAC’s endorsement.
“(B)ecause he refused to stand up for a woman’s right to choose and repeatedly voted ‘present’ on important legislation. As a State Senator, Barack Obama voted ‘present’ on seven abortion bills, including a ban on ‘partial birth abortion,’ two parental notification laws and three ‘born alive’ bills. In each case, the right vote was clear, but Senator Obama chose political cover over standing and fighting for his convictions.
“When we needed someone to take a stand, Senator Obama took a pass,” said Grabenhofer. “He wasn’t there for us then and we don’t expect him to be now.”
I guess Kim Gandy was absent that day. And you fought to keep her. [GC note: keep her as president of NOW]
And OOOPS! That Illinois NOW Clinton endorsement link quoted above is gone.
Aren’t you all bright and wise Know It Alls? No sense of listening to those old hippy wimmin who busted their asses for you (Phyllis Chesler comes to mind), when you were having so much fun with the cool charismatic messiah!