Apart from the Catholic Church and many in the "pro-life" movement, contraception is considered a very good thing as it improves a woman's health and welfare by allowing her to reproduce if and when she chooses. For women who need to avoid life threatening pregnancies, it is vital. For many women, the ability to plan pregnancies is a lifeline out of poverty. The CDC and the World Health Association consider it one of the 10 greatest health achievements. In addition to its importance for women, it serves the greater society as unfettered reproduction has dire socio-economic ramifications. Only in the strange, alternate universe of Fox's "The Five," is birth control considered a plot by the "left" to "get rid of the poor." Yep, the not poor Greg Gutfeld and Dana Perino think that birth control is some kind of eugenics plot on the part of the Obama administration and "the left." So in Fox bizarro world, providing free birth control to poor women, which prevents children from being born into poverty is a bad thing because it's "getting rid of the poor?" WTF? We have truly gone through the looking glass.
Last week (February 15th) the panel discussed the HHS birth control mandate which has surpassed the Fox patented "war on Christmas" as the ultimate outrage. From her point position in the "leg chair," the childless Andrea Tantaros, who has said that this policy is about population control rather than women's health and who has defended Darell Issa's all male Congressional panel, sneered that Obama is "not backing down." The icy blonde and childless partisan Dana Perino parroted the standard Fox/Catholic Bishops/GOP agitprop that "it's not about contraception" but about "religious liberty." The chyron reinforced the agitprop: "Fight for Religious Freedom." Video of Sarah Palin, nattering about how "this is an un-American act," was shown. There was more cross talk about how the GOP should handle this issue prior to the election.
Dana Perino must have been briefly possessed by an "Occupier"when she asked why the federal taxpayer should be subsidizing women in the 1%. Tantaros invoked the slippery slope with her question of what the government will subsidize next. She mentioned "condoms for men" which is ludicrous because condoms are not prescription drugs as are birth control pills. (As a right wing Christian, one would expect that she's abstinent but if she's not, one would assume that her partners would be able to afford their own condoms). The childless Gutfeld agreed with the "why not condoms" argument. In one of his most idiotic comments evah, he asked about subsidizing alcohol which, for a lot of people, "enhances sexual performance" (speaking from experience?) and added "perhaps that's contraception." WTF?
After Bob Beckel asked if every woman has access to free birth control, Gutfeld said that Beckel brought up how "the left is making this about availability for the poor" but "it's more about getting rid of the poor." (This isn't the first time he has voiced this opinion.) Perino agreed with him. Tantaros chimed in "population control." Gutfeld continued: "the difference between the left and the right is that the right wants the poor to get rich and the left wants the poor not to exist." Beckel responded that the right do everything to "make sure the poor don't get rich" and to Perino's challenge to name something, he listed a number of programs which have been cut. Perino didn't believe him.
Given that Greg is a member of a patriarchal church that classifies birth control as a sin, it's not surprising that he opposes birth control. (He and the wife practice "rhythm?") But to claim that it's a bad thing because it helps lift women and families out of a life of poverty is insane. He cares about poor women so much that he wants to prevent them from accessing free contraception. Excuse me? And word to Gutfeld, it's not just the left that support birth control for the poor. Former NJ Governor Christie Todd Whitman, Sen. Susan Collins, Sen. Lisa Murkowski, all Republicans, support Planned Parenthood as do many other old school, non teabagging Republican women.
I suppose if poverty is eliminated, the right wing and those on Fox won't have poor people to scapegoat anymore. On "The Five," however, "the rich get rich and the poor get babies." Ain't we got fun!
Like most things right wing these days, I just don’t get it.