Saturday, January 26, 2013

The Hyde Amendment: 40 Years of Bigotry and Racism

The Republicans claim they are concerned about government spending, and use the excuse of cuts in Medicaid for the poor as one means to accomplish this; and that includes federally funded contraception and abortions.

So in theory, the Republicans are encouraging more poor women to multiple by denying them the means of preventing unwanted children, but at the same time, also denying them the means of supporting those children by making more cuts to welfare and food stamps to those who can't afford to raise children.

What would happen if instead, millions of unwanted children were left abandoned and made wards of the state? Wouldn't it cost the taxpayers far much more to pay adoption agencies 18 years for each child? That's how the GOP presidential candidate Michele Bachmann profited from raising 23 foster children.

The Hyde Amendment bars the use of federal funds to pay for abortions, with some exceptions for incest and rape. The amendment applies only to funds allocated by the annual appropriations bill for the Department of Health and Human Services -- and it primarily affects Medicaid.

The Hyde Amendment, which has been routinely attached to annual appropriations bills since 1976, was named for its chief sponsor, Republican Congressman Henry Hyde of Illinois. The measure was a response to the Supreme Court 1973 case Roe v. Wade that legalized abortions.

Opponents of the amendment assert that it unfairly targets low-income women because the amendment effectively ends the provision of abortions through Medicaid.

Proponents of the amendment assert that using federal funds for abortions is against their religious beliefs, and crosses the line between church and state. But for many other Americans, "thou shall not kill" is also against their religious beliefs, such as the deathly penalty for capital crimes.

And many people also believe that their co-mingled federal tax dollars should not be used to fund illegal wars that are waged by Republican presidents, resulting in the tragic death and/or dismemberment of hundreds of thousands of young Americans.

And after our Veterans (heroes) come home from serving our country in bloody wars, the Republicans in Congress (many who are draft dodgers themselves) would rather cut funding to G.I. benefits (first) before they would ever consider thinking about taking a small cut in their own $174,000 annual congressional salary --- to make a noble and "shared sacrifice" for the good of the country.

As an aside: Why do we even pay members of Congress like Darrell Issa, who has a net worth of $450 million --- just to have him vote against the majority of the American people's will and their best interests --- such as the funding for Medicaid and ObamaCare®?

But I digress. Although Roe v. Wade technically makes abortions legal and constitutional, Republicans have forced their religious beliefs and ideologies upon others who don't share the Republican's short-sighted, radical and Neanderthal views.

And on a State level, besides just financially, the Republicans are also making abortions as difficult as possible for women to obtain (such as using shame, intimidation, ultrasounds, ostracization and threats. Some deranged private citizens have even murdered pro-choice citizens.)

The Republican-dominated gerrymandered House of Representatives in Congress has already passed a record number of anti-abortion bills just since 2010, even while knowing full well in advance that none of them would ever pass the Senate. The GOP has been wasting an enormous amount of precious U.S. taxpayer dollars on hours of these wasted legislative efforts in Congress -- including the repealing ObamaCare. Yet, the Republicans are constantly and hypocritically complaining about government spending (which is actually down).

Many Republican-dominated state legislatures have passed state laws and "personhood" bills to make access to abortion as difficult a s possible, especially for low income women who don't have access to any other healthcare insurance besides Medicaid.

Some states only have one clinic throughout the entire state that offer abortions, and are hundreds of miles away from low income women without cars or who can't afford or physically access a bus for a long round-trip journey.

Most of the Republicans who initially won legislative seats, didn't campaign on limited access to abortions (or union busting or district gerrymandering). But once elected, they passed many of these unpopular measures against the majority of the People's will.

The Hyde Amendment is a tool that the Republicans use to circumvent many women's constitution rights. But the Republicans don't care. If they could, they would rule like dictators, while at the same time, preaching God and country and the values and virtues of our Founding Fathers (even though many were slave owners, adulterers and atheists).

Now, because the Republicans are falling out of favor with the majority of the American people, they are now planning more voter suppression laws and changes to the electoral college to help "fix" the next cycle of elections in their favor.

The Republicans have no dignity, no heart, no compassion, no empathy, no sense of fair play, no kindness and most importantly, no soul. They are the party of hate, womanizers, racism, bigotry, anger, ignorance, evolution deniers, birthers, selfishness, insecurity, conspiracy theorists, lies, deception and cheating.

Republican politicians only care about themselves, their immediate friends and families, and the people who fund their political campaigns -- getting money from the big banks, big corporations and Washington D.C. lobbyists on K Street -- like the NRA.

And that is another reason why Citizens United should be overturned -- and why we should have publicly funded elections. That way, the next time a member of our self-serving Congress goes on one of their many annual vacations, they won't be beholden to a CEO on the other side of the country, but instead, will only have to answer to the average people who work and live in their congressional districts.

The Republicans claim to value life, but once poor women begin having lots of babies, the Republicans will tell these same women that they are all on their own. The GOP won't support the funding of birth control to keep poor women from having any unwanted pregnancies in the first place.

And the GOP won't support an equal pay bill to help raise these poor children after they are born; and the GOP won't support a higher minimum hourly wage to help mom raise her kids; and the GOP won't support Planned Parenthood for the health of these women; and the GOP won't support TANF and food stamps for these moms and their children; and the GOP will always attempt to cut the funding to Medicaid and ObamaCare for the health and welfare of these poor women and children.

The Hyde Amendment should have been named the Jekyll and Hyde Amendment, because it is a sinister bill that's meant to harm poor and mostly minority women. But the Republicans will never admit to that. They'll just say the bill it based on their religious beliefs. (Yeah, right. As though the Republicans were really so Christian and "holy-like").

But the Hyde Amendment did do one good thing. It helped changed the demographics of the electorate, watering down the Republican's ever shrinking voting block. All the unwanted children who were forced to grow up in poverty, and were raised hearing the Republicans call them "takers" all their lives, can also vote when they turn 18 years old.

Pictured Below - Republican Congressman Darrell Issa* chairs the House Oversight Committee holding a hearing to "investigate" President Obama's regulation on women's contraception.

What's missing? Women.

* According to his bio at Wikipedia, Republican Congressman Darrell Issa was guilty of illegal firearm possession, repeated grand theft auto, arson and insurance fraud -- and now he has a net worth of $450 million.

The Watchdog Institute accused Issa (as leader of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform) of building a team with close connections to industries that could benefit from Issa's many "investigations". The American Family Voices filed a complaint with the Office of Congressional Ethics against Issa alleging he had repeatedly used his public office for personal financial gain.

In the photo above, one can easily imagine him as a sinister member of the mafia. Republican Congressman Darrell Issa made his vast fortune in security alarms, but last year his home was burglarized. Was that more insurance fraud?

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