healthcare — June 6, 2016 at 6:00 pm

Zika is why America could use an actual ‘pro-life’ movement right now


An open letter to my friends on the religious right


Dear pro-lifers:

I know you’re busy tricking women into thinking they’re getting reproductive health care, trying to deny women access to birth control and making sure teenagers only learn about sex by reading the comments on Breitbart dot com.

But we could really use your help right now.

It’s called Zika and it’s really, really bad news for all the babies you want to force women to have. Scientists think it can cause microcephaly, which just isn’t bad, it’s horrendous.

“Babies with microcephaly often have smaller brains that might not have developed properly,” the CDC warns.

Here’s a story from Brazil, where the disease is running rampant, about a baby with microcephaly abandoned by her parents, who had no sense of the extent of the damage this visibly startling birth defect will do to their child.

Horrendous, right? And avoidable — as long as you don’t get bit by mosquito carrying Zika. And we could be on the verge of a vaccine that could be widely usable soon, if we devoted the resources to it.

Are we doing that? Nope.

And guess what, it’s almost summer.

You know who loves summer? Clue: They suck blood and everyone hates them.

No, not Congress. Mosquitoes.

Why hasn’t Congress funded the president’s request to fight Zika? Because they think the almost $2 billion should not be added to the deficit because it doesn’t go to a great cause like the $700 billion this Congress added to the deficit last year FOR CORPORATE TAX BREAKS.

The money needed is less than we spent in day or two in the Iraq War. Less than 0.1 percent than we’ll spend on the F-35 — a plane that still can’t fly right.

But you know why Congress isn’t rushing to fight Zika: Because Obama wants to do it. And a really cynical part of me believes they’re willing to let it get worse so they can blame it on Obama. See: Ebola.

This is why we have to turn to you.

I know I’ve been hard on you in the past, trying to establish a few qualifications for calling yourself “pro-life.” But we need you now. Babies are your thing and this would be a great chance to make it seem like you care about them and aren’t just a Trojan horse for maintaining patriarchy by denying women basic control over their own bodies.

Make Zika your thing. You can have all the credit. You can put it on your scary signs you flash to scare school children. I’ll even stop calling abstinence education my favorite oxymoron.

Seriously, this is sick. It’s avoidable and it’s our chance to unite against a disease no family or child should have to deal with.



[Image by Kenneth Lu | Flickr]