I wrote this in my book I just filed:
“Let’s bring it back to motherhood: After all, bearing children is the central role women are expected to play in a patriarchy; the one thing that men cannot do. What is the Maternal Wall if not the enforcement of a patriarchal idea that to be a good mother you must be 100% devoted to your kids or to be a good employee you must be 100% devoted to your job?
If you are in a heterosexual marriage and have a male boss, two patriarchs are essentially coming into conflict when you try to have a career and a family. Which patriarch do you owe your allegiance to? The one who asks in the job interview if you are planning on having children or the one who says he just doesn’t “want strangers raising his kids”?
And this is why the right wing feels so much ownership over what goes on every American uterus. Because the battle for control over those uteruses are ground zero of whether we continue to live in a patriarchy or not. A woman’s clearest role in a patriarchal society is reproductive. Her ability to control that is a threat to that order, beyond the fact that it is necessary for her ability to work, to control her economic destiny, and in religious societies whether or not she’s even forced into marriage.
It’s all about the uterus.
Consider how abortion became the Southern evangelical wedge issue. It wasn’t a “grassroots” movement. Abortion was historically a Catholic issue, not an evangelical issue. Until Nixon. Nixon set out– consciously– to make it the issue to unify Southern evangelicals behind the republican party, according to Manne. “The cultural conflagration over abortion did not begin at the grassroots level; nor did it have an organic religious or moral basis,” she writes. “It was deliberately lit by political leaders, who intended that it be fueled by anxieties concerning women’s role within the family.”
As women have steadily gained more rights to their own uteruses, the patriarchy has gone into panic mode. It’s not so much women that need to be dominated, as much as it’s the uterus that has to be dominated.”
That sounded a little agro-feminist– even for me– until I saw this.
An Oklahoma Lawmaker:
“I believe one of the breakdowns in our society is that we have excluded the man out of all of these types of decisions,” he said. “I understand that they feel like that is their body,” he said of women. “I feel like it is a separate — what I call them is, is you’re a ‘host.’ And you know when you enter into a relationship you’re going to be that host and so, you know, if you pre-know that then take all precautions and don’t get pregnant,” he explained. “So that’s where I’m at. I’m like, hey, your body is your body and be responsible with it. But after you’re irresponsible then don’t claim, well, I can just go and do this with another body, when you’re the host and you invited that in.”
“they feel like that is their body.” = battle for the uterus is so extreme now that the talking point is when it is no longer part of our body…. just in shock.