Hello again! I know, I haven’t been posting as often as I should. What with the RNC and the DNC and my increased fervor for finding a job I got a bit distracted. But, don’t worry, I’m back now.
Recently, I learned that my partner’s parents are voting for Mitt Romney. I was, to say the least, horrified. At the time I was furious and disgusted and mystified (still am, in fact). So, I wrote them a letter. And I will share this letter with you. I’ve removed all names and identifying items – it would be wrong to share them. Feel free to use this letter if you have someone in your life that you feel needs a little push away from Romney and towards a more reasonable candidate. I’ve gotta tell you, this letter is a bit long (I may have gotten carried away) so I’m going to give it to you in two parts.
Since I learned that you would be voting for Mitt Romney in the upcoming election, I have been… distressed. Under Obama your business will be required to offer health insurance to all of your full time employees or pay a penalty of $2K per full-time employee. I know this is a serious consideration for you as it will impact your business. However, I want to impress upon you the importance of looking at all the issues in this divisive election. To vote for president based solely on one, rather minor issue is like buying a house because you like the bathroom tiles without checking the foundation. It would be expensive to update in a different house, but are you willing to pay the overall price for one upgrade?
Before I continue, you need to understand that I do not love everything Obama says and I do not agree with everything he does. But I do believe that he is much better than Romney. I believe this for a number of reasons. This election will decide many things: welfare, women’s rights, health care, and the overall future of our country.
- Under Romney, civil rights will be stripped away. This is not an assumption because it is already happening. In Pennsylvania (and other swing states) Voter ID laws (also known as voter suppression laws) have been enacted to prevent low-income and people of color from voting. The GOP has specifically stated that their intention in doing this is to insure Pennsylvania will go to Romney. This is not democracy.
- Women’s rights will be reduced.
- As of now, Obama has signed the Lily Ledbetter fair pay act into law. This is a law that requires that women receive equal pay for equal work. Prior to this law, women were receiving 77 cents to every dollar a man made doing the same job. Some people argue that this is because of childbearing and leaving the workforce for years while raising children. But, even with these factors taken into account, women still earn 77 cents to every dollar. Romney does not support this law.
- Women currently enjoy hard-won access to contraception, preventative care like pap smears, and abortion. Romney will work to limit access to these services. He intends to defund Planned Parenthood based on the claim that it provides mostly abortion services. Only 3% of what Planned Parenthood does is abortion. The rest of their services are free or inexpensive OB/GYN services that many women would not be able to afford otherwise. Many of these services were not included under health insurance before Obamacare – now they are.
- Since Romney believes life begins at conception, Plan B will be illegal. As will certain types of birth control that don’t prevent sperm from fertilizing egg, but rather prevent a fertilized ovum from implanting into the endometrium. This could also pave the way for women who suffer miscarriages to be criminalized – this too, is already happening in some conservative communities.
- Romney will enforce the Defense of Marriage Act, restricting marriage to one man and one woman. This means that it will be illegal for all gay couples to marry and all gay couples who are currently married will not have their marriages recognized. People who spend their lives together will not have the same rights that you currently have. They will not get tax breaks or social security. They will not get to see their loved ones in the hospital if they are sick or choose what happens to them when they die. They will not be able to adopt children (children that will become plentiful due to restricted access to abortion and contraception).