Monument to What?

Laurie and Debbie say:

Pro-Life is taking credit for Britney Spears giving birth. And they have the sculpture to prove it.

We’re entirely in favor of sculptures and art featuring women giving birth. What’s more, we’re entirely in favor of women giving birth … when they want to. It will be no surprise to readers of this blog that women giving birth predates the Pro-Life Movement by more than a few millennia. What’s more, most women who get abortions are not anti-birth; many already have children, others plan to have children in the future.

We are hugely opposed to using the symbol of birth as a “pro-life” symbol. We see nothing especially charming about a movie star on a bearskin rug (where her naked baby would have been portrayed 75 years ago), nor do we see anything particularly “rare” or “brave” about Spears’ decision to have a baby. (We rather hope that the (male) artist was in fact working from a bootleg birth video; wouldn’t that just fit?)

This would only be a silly example of hijacking important experiences for a single political purpose, if it wasn’t for the ongoing full-court press against abortion, starting in South Dakota. We’re living in a time when a U.S. Senator can describe the only “appropriate” exceptions to the bill as

… a rape victim, brutally raped, savaged. The girl was a virgin. She was religious. She planned on saving her virginity until she was married. She was brutalized and raped, sodomized as bad as you can possibly make it, and is impregnated. I mean, that girl could be so messed up, physically and psychologically, that carrying that child could very well threaten her life.

on national television and not be challenged (South Dakota Senator Bill Napoli, on NewsHour). Other commentators have pointed out, so we don’t have to, not only that a religious married woman wouldn’t be an exception under Napoli’s description, but that sodomy doesn’t generally result in pregnancy.

These people are not just anti-abortion, they’re starting to talk about mandatory marriage and mandatory birth, concepts that should have been erased from our national vocabulary forty years ago. In this climate, statues of superstars giving birth aren’t just funny any more.

Link (as so often) courtesy Arthur Hlavaty.

<br /> Britney Spears<br /> abortion<br /> South Dakota<br /> feminism<br /> sculpture<br /> art<br /> Pro Life<br /> pro choice<br /> <a href="" rel="tag nofollow">Body Impolitic</a><br />