This morning, I looked at my Facebook memories and realized that one year ago, the world lost Christine McVie, the luminary singer, keyboardist, and songwriter for Fleetwood Mac. As I remembered my shock at the sudden departure of McVie, a musician I’ve admired for most of my life, I remembered that one of her former bandmates was also recently on my mind.
Lindsey Buckingham, legendary guitar player, songwriter, singer, and former member of Fleetwood Mac, is running an ad on his Facebook page that I happened to see. I fully support Lindsey’s decision to support Planned Parenthood through Wear Your Music, an organization that makes and sells jewelry from guitar strings. In fact, I applaud it. For the most part, Planned Parenthood does good work, offering reproductive healthcare to people– men and women– who need it. Yes, Planned Parenthood offers abortions, but abortion is a very small part of what Planned Parenthood does… and if you’re a regular reader of my blog, you already know how strongly I feel about the need for safe and legal access to abortion healthcare. I do not, by the way, wish to argue about this point. I won’t be changing my mind.
It always amazes me how many trolls come out when an artist expresses support for something like reproductive healthcare. While many people were congratulating Buckingham’s decision to support a very worthy cause, plenty of other people– many of them men and older women who no longer have to worry about unintended pregnancies– were chiming in on how awful Planned Parenthood is, and how wrong it is for Buckingham to support it. Lots of people were commenting about how Buckingham’s decision changed their opinions of him… as if that is going to matter a whit to Lindsey Buckingham. I doubt he’ll lose any sleep over their outrage.
Poor Bill had to listen to my outrage at some of the braindead comments on Buckingham’s ad. It infuriates me to read the sanctimonious, slut shaming, and just plain clueless remarks made by people who insist that they care about the sanctity of life, as they vote for people who don’t give a fuck about anyone but the super wealthy. One woman commented repeatedly about how she’d rather Buckingham donate money to pay for ultrasounds for pregnant people who are considering abortion. When someone asked her how many babies she’d adopted, she responded that she hadn’t adopted any… but gives money to “organizations that do.”
That struck me as a strange comment. This woman is no doubt a Republican, and Republicans constantly yammer about how government needs to be smaller and less involved in people’s personal decisions. And yet, she feels perfectly fine about inserting herself in one of the most private and personal decisions a woman can make. I also didn’t see her commenting about what she does to make sure the babies born to women who aren’t ready to be parents have a good start in life.
I NEVER see pro-life people ever offering to help pregnant women with anything that would make pregnancy safer, and parenthood more feasible for them. I don’t see them offering to hire pregnant women, helping them pay for food, rent, or medical bills, or otherwise trying to make pregnancy easier for women who find themselves facing parenthood when they aren’t ready. They repeatedly bring up adoption as a good solution, but never seem to consider that pregnancy is physically and emotionally risky for some people.
Some of those babies born to mothers who aren’t ready for them are going to suffer from abuse, neglect, poverty, and other social ills, because, at this point, we don’t force people give up their babies to “good” parents. Moreover, left to their own devices, a lot of women who would want to have an abortion for the sake of convenience would do it as early as possible, if people would just leave them alone and let them make the decision without interference. The people who speak of carelessness and convenience don’t seem to realize that pregnancy shouldn’t be a punishment. Life is hard enough as it is. I wouldn’t want a very irresponsible person maintaining a pregnancy, especially if they don’t have any support. Republicans don’t want to support anyone or anything but the wealthy and the religious.
I have repeatedly stated that, personally, I don’t think I would have ever chosen to have an abortion. Thankfully, I was never in a situation where I would have needed to consider it. But that’s me– and that’s my choice. And I was lucky enough to grow up at a time when I still had the choice, if I needed to make it. Today’s young women are no longer guaranteed that choice. While a lot of pro-lifers remind everyone that pregnancy is prevented by abstinence, quite a few of those folks are men, and as almost every woman knows, men can be very persuasive when they’re in the mood for sex. Unfortunately, not all of them are willing to wear condoms.
Planned Parenthood has helped many people with reproductive healthcare issues that have nothing to do with abortion. The organization offers affordable, accessible care to people who really need it. As someone with master’s degrees in public health and social work, of course I support the valuable work they do. Someone else’s choice to have an abortion is NONE of my business. It’s none of yours, either.
Someone who doesn’t support Planned Parenthood posted that they were glad Lindsey was upfront about where the money would be going. I thought that was a reasonable comment. If you choose not to support Planned Parenthood, of course that’s your prerogative. I highly doubt the man who posted his thoughts on this was going to buy any guitar string jewelry, anyway. I mean, I support Lindsey’s choice in charities, but I’m not interested in buying guitar string jewelry myself. It makes me think too much about what a pain it is to change the strings on my guitar.
I have donated to Planned Parenthood, though, and maybe it’s time I did so again. That’s a cause I believe in, wholeheartedly. I just wish there was a way to donate that didn’t potentially put my credit card at risk. Last time I donated to a cause, my card got hacked, and it was a huge pain in the ass. Just a few days ago, someone got ahold of my old number and tried to use it for nefarious purposes. I wish those criminal dirtbags would get jobs.
Anyway… it saddens me that so many Americans think they need to weigh in on other Americans’ reproductive choices. Especially when MOST of them have no desire to do anything more than slut shame, scream about their gun rights, and vote for people like Donald Trump. It really saddens me how very ignorant people are. And frankly, it reminds me that I’m glad I don’t have any children to worry about… especially daughters.
I am very glad to see women in Texas suing the state over the ridiculous and extreme abortion bans there. I wish most of them would simply leave the state. It’s so dangerous to be a woman in a state where doctors are afraid to do what is medically correct, because they don’t want to go to jail, get sued, or lose their license to practice over the abortion issue. IT IS A DECISION THAT SHOULD BE PRIVATE… just as private as John MAGA’s prostate surgery is. And just as sacred as John MAGA’s guns are…