Monday, March 19, 2012

Crazy Politician Update #1

Last week, I wrote about the drama that it currently going on in my state with our local government. If you haven't heard, there is a bill that has already passed the state house of representatives stating that an employer can choose to not cover birth control pills in their company insurance if they wish. While there are loopholes in the bill, it is still a terrible set back for women's rights in this state. Similar bills are being pushed in other parts of the country, it's getting particularly ugly in Virginia right now, so apparently coming after women's rights is the trendy thing to do.

Since this whole issue has been constantly weighing on my conscious, I decided to do something about it. First, I wrote a lovely email to the state representatives (it's great that you can get their emails from our state's website). I also wrote a stronger version of the email and sent it to everyone directly involved with sponsoring the bill to their facebook pages. (You can click here to see the one I posted on one of their walls, I'm amazed it's still up!)

After sending all these emails, at least 60 emails, I didn't really expect any responses. Amazingly, I got two!
  • Response #1: Daniel Patterson, a Democrat rep for Tucson emailed me saying that he completely agreed with me. I was so excited when I got that email because it made me feel like there might actually be redeemable politicians in my state. They all aren't crazy. 
  • Response #2: Terri Proud. Rep Proud was one of the quoted sponsors in my last post. She believes people are blowing this out of proportion. Her email basically said that all my information was wrong and I didn't know what I was talking about. Well, Ms. Proud, let's say your were able to prove all my facts were wrong (which she was NOT able to do), it doesn't make this bill any better. It still comes after the rights of women. It still targets women, not only their reproductive rights, but their rights in the workplace. This bill doesn't target vasectomies, which are also a method of birth control covered by insurance. It targets women and their right to make decisions about their own bodies without being judged, or worse, being fired. I still have yet to reply to Ms. Proud's email. I figured I would wait a week, let her think she got the last word in, build up a bunch of evidence, and let her know I came to play ball. 
The biggest victory in this battle came this morning. Former Republican presidential candidate and Arizona Senator John McCain has spoken out against this bill. AGAINST IT! Yay! This is a huge victory for a whole bunch of reasons!
  1. John McCain is highly respected in Arizona. Whether or not you agree with his politics, he is definitely a good politician. He's an upstanding citizen. He's been a senator here forever. He makes smart political moves. He often goes against party lines to represent what his constituents want. He's just on the ball. And while he's been a politician forever, he doesn't just sit on his ass, he gets things done. 
  2. He went against party lines, yet again. This bill was sponsored by a Republican committee in the House. He's a Republican senator in a Republican state with a Republican governor, but he spoke out against the stupidity of this bill. Just because Arizona is a red state doesn't mean we always vote that way. We elected Napolitano as our Democratic governor before she abandoned us. Republican voters don't always agree with the Republican party and just don't vote blindly. 
  3. His points are true and awesome.
McCain thinks there's no way this bill will get passed. I hope he's right. I have to think the fact that he's throwing his weight behind our side will be a great help. My next steps will be to respond to Ms. Proud (bleck) and to email the state senate before they vote.

I've lost a lot of faith in the political system because of this whole ordeal and I would love for the universe to prove me wrong. 

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