The racist Covington Catholic students first hated women

via Esquire

Today, video surfaced of a mob of white male high school students taunting and harassing an indigenous elder veteran. Nathan Phillips was leading a group in an annual drum march to honor deceased indigenous veterans when the mob approached the group. The mob of students had traveled from Covington Catholic High School, located in a suburb outside Cincinnati to Washington D.C. for a march to protest women’s rights to control their own bodies. You see, before the disgusting display of racism, these students proudly marched to display their hatred of women and desire to dominate us.

The media and much of the general public tends to characterize these anti-women marches as “pro-life Christian” movements. They are painted as something that is legitimate and respectable, even compassionate. But this could not be further from the truth. They are not pro-life; they are anti-women. And anti-women groups inevitably turn out to also be white supremacy groups.

These smirking, mocking teenage boys are not compassionate lovers of life. They were in D.C. because they want women to have a lower status than men in our culture, and that starts by creating laws that apply only to women and not to men. When they encountered the group of indigenous people, they chanted, “Build the wall!” They chanted a slogan about a monument to white supremacy, about keeping people out who are looking to survive. They are not pro-life. They chanted at people who are some of the few survivors of a mass genocide. They are not pro-life. They chanted at veterans who were honoring deceased veterans. They are not pro-life. They are the next generation of a white supremacist patriarchy, seeking to keep their power in our culture.

To be clear, the only correct stance on abortion is, “I trust women to make the best decisions for their own bodies, free from government interference.” If you believe there are circumstances in which a woman should remain pregnant against her will, then you believe that women are not equal to men under the law. You are anti-women. If you join a club that seeks to force women to remain pregnant, then you are in a fascist hate group.

The trouble is that our culture fails to characterize anti-women movements as hate groups and then expresses shock and surprise when these anti-women hate groups also turn out to be racist as well. When a movement is “just” against women’s rights to be full citizens under the law with complete bodily autonomy, as men have, it is perfectly fine with most in our culture.

Women across the country face these men every day as they walk into clinics to get healthcare. We face them from the time we are girls who are harassed and assaulted and then blamed for it. We face them walking down the street. We face them in our own government. We face them trying to take our rights away year after year.

It is time that people recognize that anti-women groups are hate groups. I would like it if folks could do this because they care about women, but even if you do not care about women, folks should do this because misogyny seems to be the gateway to white supremacist fascism.

When people protest women’s rights to bodily autonomy and call it “pro-life,” we should be calling it hate speech, calling their movements hate groups, calling their marches fascist rallies, and we should be giving all of the counter-protest attention to them that we do to other fascist rallies.

Until we start taking hatred against women seriously, we will continue to learn time after time that the white supremacist was first part of an anti-choice movement, that the mass shooter was first a domestic abuser, that the fascist leader was first a rapist. And it will be our own fault that death and tragedy happen, because we did not think it was bad enough when it was “just” happening to women.