When you hear someone say they’re “pro-life,” what comes to mind? Do you instantly think this person is anti-war, anti-death penalty, pro-helping the poor? Or do you hearken back to the past thirty years or so, and immediately wonder if they are simply anti-choice/pro-zygote? Is there any such thing as a conservative who is truly pro-life?
Many on the right enjoy attacking the poor, even poor children. A few years ago, a Michigan Republican tried to pass a bill that would have forced poor kids to only shop at thrift stores for clothes. In 2014, California assemblywoman, and single mom, Lorena Gonzalez, created a bill that would have allotted funds to low-income families for disposable diapers. Republicans responded:
Instead of expanding our welfare system and keeping millions dependent upon government, we should implement business-friendly policies enabling those out of work to obtain a job and provide for their families,” Republican Assemblywoman Shannon Grove from Bakersfield said in an email statement to the Bee.
Business-friendly policies don’t help parents if they can’t afford diapers, because in order to enroll your little person in daycare, you need-wait for it-disposable diapers. The good news is the bill passed in January of this year, although Gonzalez’s original $80 a month was cut down to $50 a month. From The Sacramento Bee:
There was a little less agreement on Assembly Bill 492, which would allocate a $50 per child monthly diaper-buying stipend to parents who are receiving subsidized childcare as part of their participation in a welfare-to-work program. The bill passed 60-5, with all the no votes coming from GOP members, though several Republicans also backed the measure.
And who can forget Newt Gingrich’s solution for poor children: make them janitors.
Fox News’ resident “expert” on all things poverty, Stuart Varney, has said things about poor people that are staggeringly cruel. He holds desperately to the myth of the “Obamaphone” (no such thing), he hates the Earned Income Credit, spews filth like poor people aren’t really poor because they have refrigerators, and is pretty much one of the worst people in the world. But in 2013, he outdid himself (well, for that year/month/week) when he went after assistance programs for kids:
That’s an extraordinary situation. You’ve got nearly 47 million on food stamps. That’s one in six of the population. You’ve got 32 million getting school lunches, free or at virtually no cost. 10 Million get school breakfast free or at virtually no cost. Women, infants, and children, the WIC program, 8 million there. The milk and summer food program goes to 2 million people. Farmers’ market coupons are given away to nearly 2 million women and children. (source)
The message here is: If a woman gets pregnant, she has to give birth. She has to. Abortion is murder, contraception is icky, and women are basically just here for breeding. If she’s too poor to care for the baby conservatives forced her to have, well, tough shit, get a job you moocher, and your kid doesn’t deserve diapers, or health insurance, or safe water, or safe housing. The government shouldn’t help families who are struggling, and we most certainly shouldn’t raise the minimum wage one red cent to make it easier for people to eek out a loving, but we also must overturn Roe v Wade, and defund Planned Parenthood, and keep women from accessing affordable contraception.
How is any of that “pro-life”?