Ya Got Trouble…. by Nancy Brophy

I watched a portion of The Music Man on television last night and had to turn it off. Not because it was a dated relationship between men and women. Professor Harold Hill states openly he prefers women with a touch of sin because there was less chance of his being dragged to the Altar. Centuries of men have felt the same way.

I snarl, I hiss, how can ignorance be compared to bliss?

I spark, I fizz, for the lady who knows what time it is

I cheer, I rave, for the virtue I’m too late to save

The sadder but wiser girl for me

And I’m willing to believe that maybe the show hit me wrong, coming on the end of a week of controversy now being called Komen-gate.

For those of you who live under a rock, Susan G. Komen Foundation cut off breast screening funds to Planned Parenthood in a “non-political” move because Planned Parenthood was under investigation by Congress, largely based on abortion issues. Despite Sen. Jon Kyl accusing PPA of spending 90% of its services on abortion when the real figure is 3%, facts aren’t important.

Now I know all you folks are the right kind of parents

I’m gonna be perfectly frank

Would you like to know what kind of conversation goes on

while they’re loafin’ around that hall

They’ll be tryin’ out Bevo,

tryin’ out Cubebs,

tryin’ out tailor-mades like cigarette fiends

And braggin’ all about how they’re gonna cover up

a tell-tale breath with Sen-Sen

Now one fine night they leave the pool

headin’ for the dance at the Armory

Libertine men and scarlet women and ragtime

Shameless music that’ll grab your son, your daughter

into the arms of a jungle animal instinct- massteria!

Friends, the idle brain is the devil’s playground, trouble!

Here’s what I know about abortion. There is no winning this debate. People either believe that birth begins at conception or they take the stance it’s not your right to legislate my body. No one is standing in the middle offering a compromise because there is no middle ground.

Regardless of which side you supported on Komen-gate it was a fascinating process to watch. Many people hadn’t realized that breast cancer and women’s health could be politicized. Considering that in December Congress’s approval rating was 11%, the lowest since Gallup began keeping polls, this news did not sit well with the public. And the fact there appears to be a question of whether or not Nancy Brinker lied to the public when she said Karen Handel was not involved and then Karen Handel refuted her statement by taking full responsibility in her own blog.

And I probably need to say at this point that the first job I ever had when I got out of college was working for Planned Parenthood in…. (If you’re following this, the answer will come as no surprise) Gary, Indiana.

Gary, Indiana, Gary, Indiana,

Not Louisiana, Paris, France, New York or Rome,

But Gary, Indiana, Gary, Indiana, Gary, Indiana,

My home sweet home.

As though the Republicans weren’t having enough trouble, Mitt Romney endorsed the Komen decision on exactly the wrong day. So if we close our eyes to the fact that Romney asked for Planned Parenthood’s endorsement in 2002, he’s totally Pro-life. It is difficult to believe that his stance as front-runner is slipping.

But like all musicals, there is a happy ending. Komen and Planned Parenthood did kiss and make up. However, I suspect only Planned Parenthood with it’s $3 million in new donations will be singing:

There was love all around,

But I never heard it singing.

No, I never heard it at all,

Till there was you.



Posted on February 10, 2012, in General and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. I am not usually a political commenter (not that I don’t have an opinion, lol), but what I want to know is when tptb are going to stop using our reproductive systems as a hot button come every election cycle? The Mr. who is hugely forward thinking, says Roe v Wade will never be overturned, so now it’s mission is as a covert weapon used to cause dissension and bring out the vote. In my mind, what this battle does is take our attention off the real issues. IMHO. But, Maggie, I agree. I’m glad this showed we have a voice, and we will be heard.


  2. What a courageous post! I agree that the issue was mammography and the funding withdrawal was unwarranted. I believe a baby is a human from conception, but I support Planned Parenthood. What Maggie said about the things that reduce the demand for abortion hit the nail on the head.


  3. As always you have found a way to weave an important topic into the fabric of past and present values. Good job! No prepare for my rant. 🙂

    I have to say that I’m happy the whole Komen thing became a cause celeb if for no other reason than to remind everyone that women not only matter but can come out in droves to have their voice heard. In my mind, what happened was that the Komen foundation (run by and for women) forgot that rule. In their hubris, they believed women weren’t listening. They believed the story about a small amount of funding wasn’t important. In their hurry to embrace politics of the moment they forgot that the very women they represent do have and continue to need a strong voice.

    I have always had a hope that women in leadership positions would exercise their voice of reason to focus on the big issues–to separate the single issue politics from the bigger concerns. Women, in my experience, are very good at that. Our culture raises us to be peace-makers, facilitators of reason between conflicting parties. (Not that we are all good at it, but I think as a group we are better than men in this arena) When we, instead, fall for the status quo of embracing the now, because it is easy, at risk of the future we fail.

    For me the question is not whether Planned Parenthood supports abortion. They do and a very small percentage of their budget goes to that. The question was always around funding mammograms. Funding breast health. Let’s face it, this abortion debate has been going on since Roe v Wade passed in 1973. I was an idealistic 19 year old then. Can’t we get past the idea that taking away funds from any agency that even says the dreaded word A word will stop the practice? It won’t! Just like refusing to send money to North Korea, or Iran, or any other nation over the past 50 years has not stopped anything the ruling government has done.

    As parents…as women…we have experience in this. We know that the M&M trick to change behavior does not change hearts and minds, it only makes children better at getting M&Ms. What changes hearts and minds is education, not money to buy more M&Ms or to limit M&Ms–particularly not money to heads of governments or institutions. If women want to stop abortions then we need to stop the need for them. We need to educate more effectively about birth control. We need make sure young people know what it is like to have a baby and care for it. We need to educate and counsel young people and adults around drug abuse and its impacts. These are the things that make a difference in the number of abortions performed. Yes they hard to do. Yes attention to them does not change it over night. But just because it’s hard doesn’t mean we shouldn’t do it.

    I think the Komen situation sent a message to all politicians who might listen. I hope they heard the message. Women have a voice and they will use it. I say hooray!

    End of rant. I now return you to your daily lives and this fine blog which is written by three amazing women who care a great deal about writing, women’s health, and politics.


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