Tuesday, June 19, 2012

2012 will be remembered as the Year of The Vagina

Via Strong Intelligent Women Choosing Equality & Freedom Instead Of Religion
Vagina, vagina, vagina. Rhymes with "Regina". Comes from the Latin word for "sheath". And it has become the defining word of the partisan split over women's health rights in the United States.

The word, both naughty and deeply personal, has been enjoying a renaissance of late, as advertisers have used it as the final frontier of sexuality in advertising. But surprisingly, it isn't usually aimed at men. Thanks to 16 years of The Vagina Monologues, the word has become an empowering shibboleth for women, inevitably being exploited to sell feminine hygiene products. Even cynically so.

But now it's political. With the "War on Women" being a defining issue in the 2012 US Presidential Election, "Vagina" is everywhere. In February, Oklahoma Sen. Judy McIntyre (D) protested the intrusiveness of that state's pending "Personhood" bill with a sign that read "If I wanted the government in my womb, I'd fuck a Senator." In May, a woman wearing that slogan on a tee shirt was refused boarding by American Airlines.

It seems that "vagina" is now symbolic of the divide between those who believe that human rights begin at conception, and trump the adult woman's, and those who think the opposite.

It has led to some really ridiculous scenes. This month, Michigan Rep. Lisa Brown (D) was officially banned from speaking on the house floor after stating (in response to a debate on restricting access to emergency contraception) "I'm flattered you're all so interested in my vagina. But no means no."

Republican Rep. Mike Callton, The Week reports, said Brown's choice of words "was so offensive, I don't even want to say it in front of women. I would not say that in mixed company."

Vagina. (Just needed to get that out of my system.)

In retaliation, a number of women State Representatives joined Vagina Monologues author Eve Ensler for a command performance of her groundbreaking play about women's sexuality.

As well, the incident has inspired some empathetic men to join in on the fun, via YouTube:

I am enjoying the mockery. Hopefully, it will motivate those who are already predisposed to this side of the issue to get more politically active, via groups like Rock The Slut Vote. Because it sure won't change the mind of anyone on the opposite side. When you're dealing with religious convictions, mockery only makes them stronger by validating their own fears of religious persecution.

This is going to be an interesting year in the United States. A year in the hands of people who have vaginas. And I wish them the best of luck. Not only because I support them politically, but also because they are reclaiming the true meaning of the word "vagina" — that is, the internal organ.

As a word man, I wince whenever people misuse the word when they mean to say "vulva"...


  1. I can believe that there's movement like this in the US, just to protect the tiny little thing called vagina.

  2. Thanks for mentioning Rock The Slut Vote -- we are still out there raising hell to stop the Republican war on women!

    Susan McMillan Emry
    Founder, RTSV United
    Rock The Slut Vote Campaign
    Twitter: @rocktheslutvote

    1. Thank you for taking the time to read and comment, Susan.

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