Written By: Reverend Anton Sawyer
If the Chinese Zodiac were based on real-life events instead of various animals, then for the women of America, 2022 would be the year of the Iron Fist. Seriously, the rights of women across the fruited plane have been completely shit-hammered in a multitude of different ways. We’ve seen judicial failure run the gamut from essentially exonerating our sports heroes from accountability when it comes to some of the most dehumanizing acts that can occur, to the highest court in the land playing politics with the reproductive rights of half our society. In each case, we find the same culprit: expediency of agenda.
Whether it be the case of Cleveland Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson’s pathetic punishment doled out over his sexual assault charges, or the Supreme Court overruling the Roe v. Wade case, everyone started from the target goal and worked backward to find the best way to achieve the desired outcome. Each of these examples is going to be scrutinized in the article today, along with how they are each unleashing a torrent of Hell for their respective women’s rights. Also, I’m going to examine a 2020s trend where good old-fashioned talking points from the 1920s have been making the rounds once again. Talking points whose sole purpose is to take women’s rights back to the time of their origin.
In an attempt to maintain complete transparency, all research and statistical fact-checking for all articles can be found in the bibliography linked here.
If you can spare a few bucks to support a starving artist, buy me a coffee!
Though I know a popular talking point made after the verdict came out in favor of Johnny Depp in his defamation case against Amber Heard was that the verdict set back the Metoo movement years, I disagree. To be honest, the ruling/punishment issued in the case of Cleveland Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson is truly what set the movement back immensely.
For those of you not in the know, allow me a quick recap.
Watson had 24 lawsuits brought against him for sexual assault by female massage therapists he had seen. 23 of the women eventually settled with one civil lawsuit still pending at the time of this publication. The NFL brought in Judge Sue Robinson to hear the case. In her ruling, she stated that the NFL had proven that according to its own definition, he committed sexual assault against the four women whose cases were presented to her. It’s important to recall that around the same time as the ruling was announced, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell called Watson's behavior "predatory." Her ruling stated the best punishment for Watson would be six games. Though Goodell originally called for a full-season suspension (with more games pending after), he finally settled on an 11-game suspension, to which Watson agreed.
The fine is laughably small in the context of the fully guaranteed contract (worth $230 million) the Cleveland Browns lavished on Watson in the spring of 2022. After the punishment had been revealed, Watson came out with the most milquetoast non-apology ever. Watson claimed that he was innocent and never sexually assaulted or even disrespected anyone—that he was apologizing because so many people were "triggered." His words indicate that this settlement is, for him, not accompanied by remorse or even self-awareness, but merely a desire to get on with his life. The 11 games are significantly more than what Robinson first levied, but it is clear this agreement was all about this being over, about getting Watson and this lurid case out of the headlines and far away from the kickoff to the new season at the beginning of September. Had the NFL simply imposed the discipline it wanted, it was expected that the union would have taken the league to court. A league source explained the NFL's rationale for accepting this agreement: "It's significant, definitive, immediate, and final."
Now let’s talk about Matt Araiza, former punter for the Buffalo Bills.
In August 2022, the Buffalo Bills released punter Araiza mere days after he was accused in a single civil lawsuit of raping a teenager at a college party. Araiza, 22, whose powerful and precision kicking in college earned him the moniker “Punt God,” was accused of having sex with the minor outside the home and then bringing her inside to a room where she was repeatedly raped. The lawsuit, filed in San Diego County Superior Court, alleges that the then-high school senior went in and out of consciousness but remembers moments as the men took turns assaulting her. Bills General manager Brandon Beane and head coach Sean McDermott announced the move. Beane said that Araiza needed to focus on the accusations and that the alleged behavior would make the player "a no-go for us" if it is true.
24 vs. 1? This is utter hypocrisy.
Anybody who knows anything about football understands that the position of the quarterback is vastly more important than that of a punter. So, for most people, the release of Araiza would come as a no-brainer. This however doesn’t negate the sickening level of tolerance the NFL is showing towards sexual assault through their actions. By not sticking to their guns, the NFL is openly condoning the actions of Watson and saying that they are more than comfortable with picking and choosing whose lives have been worthy of destruction—when the deciding factor is monetary riches. I understand that as an incredibly talented player, Watson is going to put butts in seats and therefore increase the league’s bottom line. Araiza was never going to be able to have the same level of fiscal impact as Watson. However, I do have a sneaking suspicion that the ruined lives of the victims won’t be able to tell the difference.
SCOTUS VS. CANCER
Though I’ve written about the Supreme Court overturning Roe v Wade previously, as time progresses, we’re seeing a whole heap of unintended side-effects from the overturning start to rear their ugly heads. It always makes me laugh whenever I hear any politician claim that to be on the Supreme Court, you have to have one of the nation’s greatest legal minds. If this were true, then the SCOTUS of 2022 would surely have realized that by overturning Roe, pregnant cancer patients will now be forced to succumb to their dreaded disease as cancer treatments could kill the fetus. With the woman dead, this, in turn, would kill the fetus, thereby defeating the entire purpose of reproductive rights strangulation in the name of saving the unborn life … some great minds.
When it comes to pregnant cancer patients a 2022 NY Times report laid the data out pretty clearly. One in a thousand women who get pregnant each year are diagnosed with cancer, meaning thousands of women are facing a serious and possibly fatal disease while they are expecting a baby. About 40% of women who are pregnant and have cancer have breast cancer. But other cancers also occur in pregnant women, including blood cancers, cervical and ovarian cancer, gastrointestinal cancer, melanoma, brain cancer, thyroid cancer, and pancreatic cancer. Women with some types of cancer, like acute leukemia, often can’t continue with a pregnancy if the cancer is diagnosed in the first trimester. They need to be treated immediately, within days, and the necessary drugs are toxic to a fetus.
Before the Supreme Court decision, a pregnant woman with cancer was already “entering a world with tremendous unknowns,” said Dr. Clifford Hudis, the chief executive officer at the American Society of Clinical Oncology. But post-Roe, new challenges have arisen. Cancer drugs are dangerous for fetuses in the first trimester. Although older chemotherapy drugs are safe in the second and third trimesters, the safety of the newer and more effective drugs is unknown and doctors are reluctant to give them to pregnant women. “If a doctor can’t give a drug without fear of damaging a fetus, is that going to compromise outcomes?” Dr. Hudis asked. “It’s a whole new world.”
The reason this loophole of death bothers me so much is that I watched cervical cancer take my mother at age 16. Watching what she had to go through left a deep impression in my mind: I never wanted to see ANYONE befall that ghoulish fate. Now, to live in a world where there is the potential for cancer to take thousands of more lives due to the “moral” ideologies of those who sit in ivory towers makes me nauseous. I promise you that if we truly did have the greatest minds pulling the strings of justice, this never would have happened.
DENNIS PRAGER AND THE 1920s
Dennis Prager and the phrase “great mind” is something I’m sure I never have to worry about hearing anyone say. With that said, it’s key to remember that Prager has A LOT of sway with Republican voters. His video-based "university," PragerU, has a current subscriber count of almost 3 million. And according to a 2019 Los Angeles Times report, their view count had surpassed 2 billion views. With how massive his pulpit is, along with how incredibly wrongminded his messages are, he has become somewhat of a gatekeeper to the world of conservatism for those who live on the internet. It also wouldn’t surprise me if the conservative members of the Supreme Court watched his video “The Most Important Question About Abortion” to get inspiration for their overturning.
With this large of a platform, you would think that he would want to help advance the rights of all Republican women and would therefore avoid espousing talking points back from a time when women couldn’t vote.
As with most people who hold any positive ideation towards Republican political leanings, you’d be wrong.
On August 30, the Daily Signal published an op-ed by Dennis Prager that was infamously headlined, “Women Are Disproportionately Hurting Our Country.” As you can surmise from the title, it is a misogynistic tirade of pathetic proportions. In the op-ed, Prager writes, “It’s true that females are not inclined to violence or predatory sexual behavior as men are, but this hardly means that girls and women don’t have to learn to control their natures…. It should be obvious that at least two generations of parents—especially among the well-educated—did not teach many of their daughters to control their emotions and think rationally. The result is that women are disproportionately active in doing damage to our society.” Prager goes on to list some of the reasons why he believes that women, who comprise the majority of the US population, are “disproportionately” tearing down American society—and he cites “education” as the “most obvious example.” Prager writes, “American schools teach less and indoctrinate more than ever before. Big-city public, and most private, schools are damaging young Americans to an extent and in ways no one imagined just a few years ago. Young children are prematurely sexualized…. And who is facilitating all of this? In virtually every case, a woman.” He also claims that “disproportionately,” women are “perverting the medical profession” by “advocating the teaching of woke ideologies in medical schools,” and he blames “women clergy” for being “at the vanguard of pushing Christianity and Judaism to the left.”
So, all women (including conservative women), are emotionally hysterical and this has directly led to the downfall of our nation?
Since we know the conservative-leaning SCOTUS of the 2020s seem to be big fans of Prager and his teachings, it wouldn’t surprise me if they opted to take cases that could directly impact a woman’s ability to vote.
Though that last sentence may come off as a bit hyperbolic, there is some truth to be found in its contents. We have seen money be placed above human dignity coming from those who operate a sport that draws in tens of millions of viewers weekly. This sends a clear message to everyone—no matter how non-political they might be. For those of us who do follow politics closely, we have seen one tragedy after another when it comes to women aged 10 up systematically being thrown back decades when it comes to body autonomy. This is all being followed up by a pseudo-intellectual carnival barker selling the equivalent of snake oil when it comes to political ideologies … and A LOT of people are buying it.
So, do I honestly believe the right to vote will somehow be stripped from women? No.
But do I believe that their voices will somehow be legally silenced on most matters that pertain to them? Yes, oh yes.
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