Apparently Democrats believe women cannot control their libidos—at least that is what outspoken GOP member Mike Huckabee would have you believe. On January 23rd, 2014, the former Arkansas Governor Michael Huckabee, seemingly riding the momentum brought upon by his own inner narrative, proclaimed that the Democratic Party was persuading women to be “victims of their gender”. During a speech at the Republican National Committee’s winter meeting he went on to claim that President Obama’s plan for coverage of contraception costs, via who he penned “Uncle Sugar”, were insulting to American females, as that sort of help assumes they cannot “control their libidos”.
In Bipartisan solidarity, many Americans were left with differing reactions, all from offended jaws ajar to simple befuddlement, as Huckabee’s statements failed to make much sense. In his proclamations, the former Governor made it unclear other than the ceasing of free/affordable birth control, whether he was calling for abstinence, increasing the population or increasing the sales of condoms. There are many women who use contraception for regulation of their menstrual cycle, dermatological purposes and a plethora of other reasons, none of which are a raging libido—and lessening the burden of that expense is quite the opposite of insulting. In the case of sexually active women, the consensus doesn’t equate any funding to being government dependent victims of our gender. Prescription contraception is, in fact taking ownership and control of our libidos, while ensuring themselves that their reproductive future is in their hands, rather than the hands of their partner. Just as we wouldn’t claim an asthmatic using a free prescribed inhaler of having raging, uncontrollable lungs and just as they wouldn’t be offended by the cost of said inhaler, women don’t seem to find contraceptive funding offensive.
Beyond that fuzzy vernacular, a redundant sense of hypocrisy is palpable. One can’t help but find Huckabee’s comments reminiscent of the proposed de-funding of Title X, (a law passed in 1970 that funds family planning for some 5 million citizens) in 2011. This was when GOP members, attempted to please the right-wing, pro-life sect under the guise of necessary budget cuts. TIME magazine contributor Nancy Gibbs noted:
“Consistency is the true test of conviction; anything less is just prejudice dressed up as principle. If pro-life lawmakers kill Title X, they need to accept either the risk of increasing the abortion rate or the cost of growing numbers of children born to poor parents.”
This sentiment holds true for Mike Huckabee and his recent remarks. Condemning contraception coverage to promote budget cuts, without taking into consideration the cost of government funding for an unplanned pregnancy and subsequent child is abhorrently contradictory. In the age of technology and sound-bytes, politicians must make conscious efforts to not be carried away by the celebratory chants of their supporters. They cannot simply spew utterances, for the opinion of the audience sitting in front of them of does not echo the opinion of the nation.