Thursday, March 15, 2012

A strike that underscores a lack of dignity

In an effort to garner support for mandated contraceptive coverage, a group of women has decided to embark on a strike. A sex strike. No sex for a week, they say, to prove to men that men benefit from women having "reproductive choices"too.

So, what's ironic about this?

Well, to start with, these are the same people who would say that Natural Family Planning is a laughable endeavor because it involves periods of abstinence. Times of abstinence, in fact, that average about a week to ten days each month. So, if they can abstain for a week to prove a point, then why is it "impossible" to abstain for the same duration (or a few days more) every month for a greater purpose?

Secondly, do these women realize what they are saying by this strike? "I realize that you value me for the sex I give you. I am a dispenser of sex, not a unique and unrepeatable woman with dignity." Who wants to be treated as an object? Yet, this is precisely what these women are saying: "I am going to strike against being treated like an object, which ironically proves that I allow myself on a regular basis to be treated like an object." How sad!

Thirdly, what is the vision of men here? Men who make their decisions based on a week without sex? And men who must abstain involuntarily. That's a far cry from women who embrace Natural Family Planning ... they can't go it alone. If it becomes necessary for serious reasons to abstain, then both husband and wife unite together in their abstinence. It's not a matter of one person greedily grabbing for control for some sort of power trip. It's a matter of two people discerning how to love one another and their family in the best way possible. Abstinence doesn't become the lack of a gift; it becomes a gift of self in a different way. For "Liberal Ladies Who Lunch," where are the men with courage, self-control, generous hearts and self-sacrificial desires?

Fourthly, do these women realize what they are saving about sex? It's a bargaining tool. It's something useful that can get me something. Where is the dignity, sacredness and mystery of sex? If sex deserves such flippancy, then why is it worth withholding as a bargaining tool anyway?

So, as the "Liberal Ladies Who Lunch" gather women to strike for a week, I'm left feeling very sorry for them. They see their bodies as objects. They see men as sex-hungry monsters. They see sex as a bargaining tool. And contraception? Well, apparently, they see that as the key to freedom.

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