Kansans Stand Up for Contraception
What’s a lady gotta do around here for a little respect?
I mean, we’ve all heard about the Republican War on Women. You may have even felt its effects. It’s gotten so bad that at least one GOP lawmaker has urged women to give money to Democrats. The past several months have been pretty bad for people with uteruses and people who love people with uteruses.
I don’t know about you, but I’m super tired of all the bad news. Luckily, a group of kick-ass citizens of Miami County, Kansas has given me a much-needed silver lining. But first, the background.
In March, the Miami County Commission decided to decline any Title X money that would go toward
sluts contraceptive services. According to RH Reality Check, this means that Miami County probably won’t get any Title X funding because the system doesn’t allow picking and choosing. As a result, more than 100 women served by the Miami County Health Department won’t have access to necessary contraception.
So that sucks, right? BUT all is not lost. Because people can be awesome, and Kansas people can be double awesome.
At a recent Miami County Commission meeting, a check for more than $9,500 was presented with the express purpose of continuing contraceptive coverage for the next fiscal year. The money was donated from across the political spectrum, and it was accepted by the county commission.
Can I get a cautious woot woot? This is great news. Low income women can get their birth control for another year! However, it’s only a bandage, a stop-gap to a permanent solution. Residents of Miami County understand this. As reported in The Miami County Republic,
“To be absolutely clear, this is an emergency gesture to provide for next fiscal year’s contraception needs only. It is not a way to remove your responsibility as commissioners to reverse your position on contraception for the health department in the future,” [Denise] German [who spoke for the group that presented the the money] said. “Dismay at your decision is growing. At a time when so many people are struggling to make ends meet in a dismal job market, rejecting this grant was inexcusable. Miami County women deserve the same public health care options and support found in the rest of the counties of Kansas.”
This is true, but that doesn’t mean that there is nothing to celebrate in this. Over 100 residents of Miami County Kansas gave their own money because they believe in a woman’s right to control when and if she has a child. This is fabulous! And it’s in stark contrast to the barf-inducing, anti-woman, anti-doctor and anti-science tripe the state legislature spent so much time discussing this session.
As a lifelong Kansan, I’m encouraged by the willingness of this community to stand up for a woman’s basic human right to control her body. The struggle to keep strangers — almost exclusively white men — out of our collective uterus is something that women don’t have the luxury to ignore. But in that struggle, we can’t forget the men and women who make a real difference in the lives of people who need it most.
Photo credit: Women's eNews