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​Supreme courting disaster

A HANDFUL OF old men in Washington stood poised on Friday to take us all back into the Dark Ages by taking the first step – the appointment of an alleged attempted rapist to the US Supreme Court – in their battle to restrict women’s reproductive rights.

For decades, all over the world, women have been advancing so rapidly, they’ve not just left men behind, but left men drowning in their turbulent wake. Google “graduating class images” and spot the men in the photographs of law school, medical school, even engineering faculty graduands. Find out who won all the academic prizes at your own child’s secondary school. Leap from Montessori school valedictorians – they have them now – to nation states and count the number of women leaders.

There are three notable exceptions to rampant, widespread female dominance in every field, from politics to philanthropy: war; business and dictatorship, in which, to a man, the top dogs are all male.

Left to nature – Mother Nature, if you notice – all young things gravitate to their mothers; think of Scarlett, the cat who had her face burned off in rescuing her kittens from that Brooklyn fire. Fathers are more likely to kill their own offspring to preserve their own status/territory; consider any families you know and count the fathers who, in their mid-50s, handed over the reins of either family or business leadership to their 30-year-old sons; you don’t need one finger.

Something had to be done to stop the slide of power and control away from old white men to young, beautiful women of all colours.

And that was church.

If you can get people to reject the facts that the Earth is 4.5 billion years old and that human beings have been around for 100,000 years, minimum, and accept that it all really started 6,000 years ago with some Middle-Eastern dirt and an angry almighty being, you can get them to believe anything.

The most basic human urge after the instinct to preserve oneself is the one to procreate. The instinct to mate in human beings is no different from that of dogs, cats, birds and/or bees. It’s got, if you allow the expression, firetruck-all to do with God.

But, if you can get people to accept that every erection is intended by some all-powerful and vengeful God to result in a baby, you can sanctify what is entirely unholy. Monty Python, in their film, The Meaning of Life, put the concept best in a lyric representing the Vatican’s diktat: “Every sperm is sacred/ Every sperm is great/ If a sperm is wasted/ God gets quite irate.” If spermatozoa were indeed sacred, and with each ejaculation containing as much as half-a-billion sperm, the average teenaged boy would be committing genocide; several times every day.

Some of the ideas religions require their believers to accept, actually go against human nature, Mother Nature and all our experience so far. The very notion of “a Chosen People” shatters and negates what is best about us: the instinct to save one another.

Regrettably, women’s reproductive rights have been unfairly tied – by men who declare themselves to be holy even as they act in an evil way – to what has been presented as a sacred duty to God himself. (It is no accident that God is male for three out of four of the major extant religions.)

Abortion is a devilishly difficult issue. It is hard to think of a more important decision any woman could make in her lifetime than whether or not to carry her pregnancy to term; the decision to leave a man or a job is a joke by comparison. It is so hard to decide because a pregnant woman knows, in a fundamental, entirely natural way that no man could ever begin to comprehend, that she carries life itself inside of her. To decide to end that growing life is the most difficult act imaginable for those of us without wombs.

Who dares interfere with such a personal decision?

It’s no surprise that the answer should be, today, the same as it has been for centuries: a handful of old white men besotted with their own power and privilege – as well they should be, having presided over the genocide of Native Americans, the enslavement of Africans, the selling of life-and-death itself in “for profit healthcare” and the exploitation of wage-earners.

Despite his hypocritical posturing, it is plain that not even his own alleged history of sexual predation will stop that crybaby from rushing to reverse Roe V Wade, the US Supreme Court that legalized abortion; this is why those evil old men are themselves rushing to confirm his appointment.

And take us all back to the kind of “holy” ignorance that prevents girls from going to school or women from making their own decisions; and a world that was threatening to move from sacred to secular, from superstitious to rational, will be stopped dead in its tracks towards the natural dominance of women.

It’s not about powerless babies yet to be born.

It’s about powerful old men who should have died years ago.

BC Pires is writing a calypso in which he will rhyme “embryo” with “placebo”

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