A few days ago I got to catch up with a friend who recently spent three weeks in India. She showed me a picture of a village that reminded me of Napoli, but flat and clean; houses built against and on top of each other, flowers in the windows with banners of clothing hanging out to dry overhead. I like to think of it as Welcome Home Laundry.
Except in this one photo she casually scrolled past, was an ox. On these narrow streets barely suitable for a simultaneous pedestrian and moped passing was this gigantic hunk of an animal making his daily rounds. At my behest, she scrolled back to the photo and explained that this is a retired ox who now spends his days wandering the village roads seeking handouts of sugar cane and fruit from women who are home.
"Oh! Because he's sacred over there!" I incorrectly figured.
"No. Cows are sacred. They ignore cows. This ox is retired and everybody takes care of him," she explained.
She told me about the sacred cows and how they roam the streets. No one touches them; no care is given. They block traffic, eat garbage, destroy gardens and often have swollen, parasitic bellies, goiters, skin tumors, and festering wounds. Again, no one touches them. They are feral, but sacred cows.
Cows are to Hindu religion what babies are to Christians, I drew the parallel.
I've heard two, unaffiliated sources this week talk about this idea to change the name of the Pro-Choice movement. They tell me that the pro-lifers have damaged the term pro-choice by maligning it with pro-death, baby murdering, and other malicious misnomers.
I don't know if these two friends of mine have separately come to this same idea, or if there is a growing whisper campaign, but I think it ought to stop.
Our name is correct and it is good. We can't be any more plainly spoken about what we stand for - freedom to choose.
It's the Pro-Lifers that need re-branding. I don't think Pro-Birth is a great fit, either, because (their) God forbid you help a woman with the cost of prenatal care and delivery.
And since a woman's right to not choose abortion in this country has never been infringed upon, threatened, or even frowned at - it is clear they have no sense of what it is to have their PERSONAL choice taken. What they actually are is Pro-Imposition-of-Belief. We can call them Pro-Imp for short.
Unfortunately, and I hope you aren't hearing this for the first time - we are going to lose the right of choice. Probably this year. Gird yourselves. Get used to this idea now because we do not have the strength in house, senate, or supreme court numbers (after the impending appointment) to stop it.
THIS is what the GOP has been fighting for since Roe v.Wade. Well, this, and the death of the "gay agenda." When all other tennants of their party - small government, conservative spending, employment for all - fell away, THIS is what remains. They did not get this close to be swayed by the letters and phone calls of a million people who don't vote republican anyway.
And you know what else the GOP believes is choice? Homosexuality.
And to a lesser extent, poverty, homelessness, and disease.
But don’t despair. We are alive. That’s what their God demands of them - headcount. Seat fillers for the shitshow.
In a land of sacred cows, it's better to be an ox.