Freedom, independence...but not for all

“It’s not a day for work
It’s a day for catching tan
Just lying on the beach and having fun
She’s going to get you.”
“All That She Wants” — Ace of Base

Swedish pop group Ace of Base released their Happy Nation album in 1992. It was later re-named for its U.S. re-issue a year later to highlight the top single on the album “The Sign” and many mistakenly call Ace of Base a one-hit wonder, but the group had two platinum singles and two gold singles in its recording career. Heck, they still release new music and tour the world today.

“All That She Wants” was the first hit for the group, describing a woman who is in seek of another guy as she goes through life. Many took the song literally as the lyrics state “all that she wants is another baby.” However, the writers of the song indicate that “baby” was meant to be synonymous with a boyfriend or male lover, not a child.

That song was about a woman exercising her freedom as a woman to make choices with her body. That freedom has been significantly changed in the last week.

I could get into how much of the anti-abortion push is really a manipulation by Jerry Falwell, orchestrated in the 1970s as a way for Falwell to convince Evangelicals to support a move toward a patriarchal, white nationalist agenda.

Falwell, a man who said feminists simply “need a man in the house” and that AIDS was the sign of “a just God against homosexuals,” also had very intentional goals to push a political agenda with the movement that would end up being called the Moral Majority — despite how immoral his own behavior and the behavior of his family would prove to be.

I could get into the fact that because of the anti-abortion push, many legitimate, life-saving procedures will no longer be allowed for mothers who wanted their babies, but something happened during the pregnancy and the baby died in utero in such a way that it can affect the health of the mother.

That mother instead will have to suffer, perhaps even die, because the needed procedure to save her life is now illegal in this state.

Heck, I could get into the fact that so many opponents of abortion used abortion as a tool early in their business or political career, but now speak out strongly against it.

One Florida doctor said that a desperate woman called his office, seeking to get an abortion before the ruling last Friday. He informed her that in order to protect himself and his staff from any potential issues, no appointments had been taken for the last week.

She begged and pleaded, stating that she needed to get her daughter in before her husband was released from jail — for repeated physical assaults outside abortion clinics to staff and doctors. The phrase “fine for me but not for thee” comes to mind.

David Barnhart, a Methodist pastor, had this to say:

“(The unborn) are a convenient group of people to advocate for. They never make demands of you; they are morally uncomplicated, unlike the incarcerated, addicted, or the chronically poor; they don’t resent your condescension or complain that you are not politically correct; unlike widows, they don’t ask you to question patriarchy; unlike orphans, they don’t need money, education, or childcare; unlike aliens, they don’t bring all that racial, cultural, and religious baggage that you dislike; they allow you to feel good about yourself without any work at creating or maintaining relationships; and when they are born, you can forget about them, because they cease to be unborn.

You can love the unborn and advocate for them without substantially challenging your own wealth, power, or privilege, without re-imagining social structures, apologizing, or making reparations to anyone.

They are, in short, the perfect people to love if you want to claim you love Jesus but actually dislike people who breathe.

Prisoners? Immigrants? The sick? The poor? Widows? Orphans? All the groups that are specifically mentioned in the Bible?

They all get thrown under the bus for the unborn.”

Sadly, Barnhart’s quote has become true not just from a political action group but now from the highest court in the land.

In the last week, the Supreme Court has put many lives in danger in pursuit of a political agenda, something that no court should ever push.

In his concurrent opinion written with Friday’s abortion ruling, Justice Clarence Thomas stated that “in future cases, we should reconsider all of this Court’s substantive due process precedents, including Griswold, Lawrence, and Obergefell.”

Griswold is the ruling by the Supreme Court protecting the right of people to purchase and use contraceptives.

Lawrence is the ruling protecting the right to have intercourse for reasons other than the purpose of procreation.

Obergefell refers to the ruling by the Court that protected the right of same-sex couples to marry.

One due process ruling that Thomas failed to mention?

The Loving vs. Virginia case that legalized interracial marriage. Thomas, a black man, is married to a white woman.

Curious he’d not mention that particular case but would mention the others.

Or maybe it's just that he’s worried about his own freedom, but is more than willing to take it from anyone who doesn’t look like, think like, or — especially — vote like him.

That’s not the country our Founding Fathers fought for, and certainly that’s not an attitude that anyone should be celebrating this Independence Day, so when you hear that there are large swaths of people who are not planning to celebrate “independence” on July 4, and instead are choosing to use the day as an opportunity to exercise their Constitutionally-protected right to protest?

Perhaps, you should consider your rights, and whether they also could quickly be removed before speaking negative words about protests.

None of us can truly claim to be free until we all are.


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