On the Twitter doohickey yesterday, the Rude Pundit got into the kerfuffle over the efforts of Kevin D. Williamson justifying why he thinks women who have abortions and the doctors who perform them ought to be hanged. Like by a rope. Until dead. Williamson is a random conservative spoogebucket who writes for the National Review (motto: "When abortions are illegal, we will dance on the bloody graves of women").
If nothing else, it was unusual to see such unfiltered hatefulness so honestly displayed. It's like when a hog fucker no longer tries to hide it and just says, "Watch me fuck this hog." Or, in Williamson's case, when he said, "I believe the law should treat abortion like any other homicide," which is the same thing. Williamson will never be in the position to decide whether or not to have an abortion, but he knows exactly how to treat anyone who does.
What led to Williamson's totally not-joking wish to kill women - sorry, whores who have abortions was a comment on his latest National Review Online blog post, "Five Reasons Why You're Too Dumb to Vote." That was itself a response to an editorial the writer/actress Lena Dunham wrote for the Planned Parenthood Action Fund, where, believe it or not, Dunham said that protection of women's reproductive rights is important. Crazy, right? That a Planned Parenthood piece would be concerned with contraception and abortion?
Williamson was absolutely livid that Dunham would dare make a case for voting because "Voting is the most shallow gesture of citizenship there is, the issuance of a demand...imposing nothing in the way of reciprocal responsibility," which is why conservatives are absolutely determined to keep as many people as possible from voting. The fun part is when Williamson attempts to get snarky. Dunham's piece is "a half-assed listicle penned by a half-bright celebrity and published by a gang of abortion profiteers." And "Our national commitment to permanent, asinine, incontinent juvenility, which results in, among other things, a million or so abortions a year, is not entirely unrelated to the cultural debasement that is the only possible explanation for the career of Lena Dunham."
Now, the Rude Pundit's no writer for a magazine that's been trading on its faded glory since William F. Buckley wore his first Depends, but he's pretty sure that the only reason you would attack Dunham's career is if you don't have enough to say to attack her opinion. Williamson goes on, "It’s not for nothing that, on the precipice of 30, Miss Dunham is famous for a television series called Girls rather than one called Women. She might have gone one better and called it Thumbsuckers."
What the fuck did Dunham say? Did she punctuate the article with photos of her vagina? All Dunham did was write a straightforward, fun column about how great it is to vote and how it's incumbent on young women to do so. It's cutesy, sarcastic, and, in its own way, passionate: "Rather than go deep into a rage spiral, I vote. It’s healthier, more effective and infinitely more pleasant."
Williamson will have none of it. How dare this famous twat "express" an "opinion" that is different than his? And he reveals his game when he writes, "It is the so-called Affordable Care Act that has involved us in subsidizing birth control, abortifacients, surgical abortions, and who knows what else, for the strong, powerful, self-actualized American woman...If you get your politics from actors and your news from television comedians — you should not vote. There’s no shame in it, your vote is statistically unlikely to affect the outcome of an election." Ah, yes, that is a problem, innit?
See, what Williamson and all those who agree with him fear is the empowered woman, not just self-empowered, but government-empowered, the voting woman who has control of her body and demands that those in power protect those rights. Dunham scares Williamson and so he lashes out. Women having the power to determine their reproductive destinies, even with the financial assistance of the government, are so offensive that they must be stopped, even with the threat of death.
There is a sickness in such beliefs, a sexism and misunderstanding of history that goes beyond the usual right-wing spite for all freedom that is actually free. He doesn't want women to be free from patriarchal standards for female actions in creating their own destinies. Lena Dunham offends because she refuses to acknowledge that the old playbook ought to still exist.
(Note: The Rude Pundit is no Dunham cheerleader - he hated the trajectory of Girls this past season, but that's a dispute with an artist over her art, not a personal attack.)
(Note 2: Yeah, she should pay the people who are opening for her on her book tour.)
(Note 3: Speaking of abortions that deserve hanging, did you see that Family Guy/Simpsons thing? Fuck everyone involved.)