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The Republic of Gilead, colloquially referred to as the "Divine Republic", is a totalitarian patriarchal theocracy that rules over the former continental United States of America in Margaret Atwood's fictional novel Tne Handmaid's Tale. The name Gilead itself is taken from the Bible, translated as "hill of testimony."

Gilead is a theocratic, patriarchal society, with an inner party of men called "The Committee" and are in charge of the Gilead society, (a more appropriate name would be junta), which is not a democratic republic. The Committee rule from Washington, D.C., which is the capital of Gilead and the former United States of America. Gilead's north border is Canada, and it's southern border is with Mexico.. Texas is not a part of Gilead and has become the Republic of Texas once again.

In Gilead, only men have access to higher education. Girls are not taught to read or write. The only women who are still allowed to read and write are the Aunts. (The female version of an "Uncle Tom.") Although Aunts are allowed to be literate, they are still inferior in rank to the Wives, who are considered the paramount rank a woman can hold in Gilead. Girls leave school when reaching menarche and marrying.

Also in Gilead, women are believed to be the "lesser" sex, who should be subjected to by men. Women's main purpose in Gilead society is bear and produce and raise children, which is given particular emphasis to women who are fertile. These fertile women wear red garments to symbolize fertility, and also because it makes them more conspicuous. A pregnant Handmaid has an elevated status in Gilead society. An "unwoman" in Gilead society are generally infertile women. They work as laborers in the colonies, cleaning up toxic waste. Some in lucky numbers end up in the agricultural fields to produce food and are entirely self-sufficient.

Some civil rights suspended for good in fictional Gilaed, e.g. freedom of speech (which is considered heresy), freedom of the press, freedom of religion and freedom of assembly. The Eyes (snitches) serve as Gilead's political police force and sends spies to detect and punish infringements and political opponents. Women are not allowed to have titles or deeds to property in their name and cannot have a career unless said career is specifically assigned to them by the Gilead leadership. Men are also the only ones eligible to hold political office police national.

The United States of America in 2021

The Republican party has passed regressive legislation that harm women, children, families and societies under their control in the past fifteen years, e.g. morning after pills regulations, restrictive abortion laws chipping away at Roe v. Wade, passing laws increasing childhood poverty, the Republican government of Michigan changing water sources in the Flint metropolitan area causing lead to be leached into the drinking water, and finally, the Republican response to recent gun violence and the COVID pandemic, suggests the GOP is "pro-death," which contradicts their "pro-life" abortion stance.

On Wednesday, December 1, 2021, oral arguments over Mississippi’s abortion law before the U.S. Supreme Court. The law bans most abortions in the state after 15 weeks, which is about eight weeks sooner than the threshold allowed under Roe v. Wade. The consensus among the legal observers is that Roe will be substantially weakened, if not outright overturned when the court announces its decision in June 2022.

Polls show that the majority of Americans want abortion to be legal, but not later in pregnacy. Only 27% of Americans want a full ban on abortion.

The Supreme Court and the Constitution don't “grant” or “give” Americans rights: they recognize rights and define the extent to which they can be infringed upon by our government, theoretically balancing private rights against the public good.

The Court can take away rights, although throughout their over 240 year history, they've only done it in a big way once: in 1896 with their Plessy v Ferguson decision that, until they reversed it in 1954 in Brown v Board, took away the freedom and voting rights of African Americans for half a century.

In the 1973 ruling of Roe v Wade, the Court ruled that women have both the 14th Amendment “liberty” right to control their own bodies and the 4th Amendment “privacy” right to keep it between themselves and their physician

During Wednesday's hearing, Amy Coney Barrett suggested that the state forcing people to carry pregnancies to term in a country that has the highest maternal mortality rate in the developed world, three times higher for Black women than for white women, that it’s no big deal because the woman can just bring the baby to the nearest fire station and give them up for adoption. Brett Kavanaugh who was confirmed stating over and over again that Roe was settled law, and that it was precedent and that was that, then on Wednesday listed off all of the different precedents that the Supreme Court has overturned, These two conservative judges, appointed by Donald Trump, are getting ready to do exactly what they were put on the court to do, which is overturn Roe V. Wade and take away the nationwide right to legal abortion in this country.

If it isn't clear by now, it should be, Roe V. Wade is doomed. The Republican nominated and confirmed Supreme Court’s six conservatives will find ways to sabotage Roe V. Wade without striking it down. That way the 27% anti-abortionists will get what they want, and “moderate” Republicans will be able to say Roe is still the law of the land.

What's at stake here is more than abortion rights. States will be allowed to regulate trans rights, sodomy laws, gay marriage - all civil liberties will be in danger. Roe's demise will signal to states that they have the right to discriminate against their residents - this is already being done as 2021 voter laws passed in Republican-controlled states. Discriminatory legislation will only worsen in Republican-controlled states. Currently reproductive rights are under siege and that is only a gateway to seizing other civil liberties. We are witnessing in real-time, the erosion of fair, free democracy by the political right.

America over time will become a crazy-quilt of abortion laws in which some have rights and some don’t, depending on which part of the country they live in. That reality reflects the notion that America isn’t really one country. (It’s instead a federation of regions with distinct personalities animating opposing political cultures.) And it reflects another thing: American women in their child-bearing years will not be treated equally under law on account of being American women in their child-bearing years.

This is just the first of a series of ideas Republicans have to regulate women’s behavior and roll back the clock to the early 1960s when women couldn’t get a credit card without their father’s or husband’s permission, had no legal right to birth control in some states, and faced fully legal discrimination in housing, education and employment. The next step after near-ban on abortion will be hyper-regulating "morning after pills."

For pro-lifers, access and use of a woman’s body isn’t a byproduct of protecting the life of the fetus. Access and use of a woman’s body is the goal. Outlawing abortion isn’t for the unborn. It’s for the born bent on restoring the right to access and use a woman’s body, a right denied when the state protects a woman’s right to control her destiny, starting with her own body and the erosion of making choices over ones own body.

For the religious right, Eve ate the apple and her god has been angry with humans ever since. St. Paul wrote in his letter to the Ephesians, “wives be subject to your husbands,” a single phrase that became the foundation of British and American law for centuries. In the 4th century, St. Jerome, one of the most influential patriarchs of the early Roman Catholic Church wrote, “Woman is the gate of the devil, the path of wickedness, the sting of the serpent, in a word a perilous object.” Almost a thousand years later, Thomas Aquinas wrote that woman was “created to be man’s helpmeet, but her unique role is in conception…since for other purposes men would better be assisted by other men" - which brings us full-circle back to the United States of Gilead - which is no longer as far-fetched as it sounds.


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The problem with Women's rights is simple. They don't stick to it. Men's rights (few are legislated but they are there) are dealt with by men ALL THE TIME - they never take vacation. I know, it sounds strange, but its true and worth a bit of thought. Women tend to back off for years at a time, they have little consistency and only get worked up when something bad happens. That's what's going on right now and they are all out there screaming about abortion.

The simple fact is that they knew this was coming, and they have known it for years. They just took a little multi-year hiatus. A few spoke out, during that time, but they were actually few, far between, and easily painted as female trouble makers, female extremists, or acting like women sometimes act.

So, now, we are going to be gifted with angry women for, at least, the next few years. Win or lose I can always count on them to eventually back off and then, after the next hiatus, have at it again. This will continue until, finally, they will, for the most part get their way. Remember they have almost got their constitutional amendment. If you doubt what I am saying you should study the life of the constitutional amendment on Civil Rights. Here's a little link to get started with that (I think its still active but they sleep on it, I guess):
https://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/equal-rights-amendment-passed-by-congress

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One interesting thing is women are free to move out of repressive states, to states that honor their freedom to control their own bodies. I think there will be a large demographic shift, so men in Red States are going to have a much harder time finding women willing to submit their autonomy. I certainly would not stay in Texas or Mississippi if the Supremes gut Roe v Wade, if I was female.

And we are forgetting about Prohibition: The Supreme Court upheld the amendment that prohibited alcohol, and later reversed themselves. That was a pretty fundamental right to some people.


We're flying electric helicopters on Mars yet you can't turn on your clothes dryer in Texas. That's because scientists are in charge of Mars, and Republicans are in charge of Texas.
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SCOTUS reversed themselves on Dred Scott as well. When Barrett and Kavenaugh both stated that Roe “is settled law" during each of their confirmation hearings, they both knew that they were through their teeth. I will not label these two fine individuals as lying conniving sociopaths, as I don’t want raise the ire of their and conservative supporters. But, if it walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck - it’s duck. I’ll leave it at that.


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Governor Newsome of California has started a program that will make California a sanctuary state for women who need abortions. Free, for those who can't afford it, maybe even including free transportation and expenses!

"We Will Be A Sanctuary State"

Just another way Blue States subsidize Red States.


We're flying electric helicopters on Mars yet you can't turn on your clothes dryer in Texas. That's because scientists are in charge of Mars, and Republicans are in charge of Texas.
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A large part of the American Right has decided that their overriding concern and political interest is to prevent the country from ever becoming a truly functioning multiracial, pluralistic democracy. Democrats are unwiilling to address this danger America is facing. Most liberals, on account of being liberal, can't or won't see other Americans as enemies who must be defeated - even as the rightwing fascists are coming at democracy with an AR-15s and tiki torches - liberals insist the fascists can be reasoned with.

There are too many liberals normalizing what happening on the American right. The fact that the mainstream media is still largely committed to a both-parties-are-the-same, neutrality-over-objectivity framework of covering US politics certainly doesn’t help. Those effects of normalizing the Right's march to Christian white patriarchy's fascism, is seen here at Reader Rant as well. Too many liberals keep insisting that the political conflict is about arguments, about convincing the other side, and are convinced that the American Right are fundamentally good people and that “fascism can’t happen here," that America is fundamentally good, so how could democracy possibly fall here, in the land of the free? Liberals need to a wake up to the American Right's march to fascism. Simply look at the laws that the American Right has passed in the past 15 years and what they are trying to do to Roe and transgender folks and lying about election results to stay in power.


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Originally Posted by pdx rick
- which brings us full-circle back to the United States of Gilead - which is no longer as far-fetched as it sounds.


[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]


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It's the Despair Quotient!
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Originally Posted by pdx rick
A large part of the American Right has decided that their overriding concern and political interest is to prevent the country from ever becoming a truly functioning multiracial, pluralistic democracy. Democrats are unwiilling to address this danger America is facing. Most liberals, on account of being liberal, can't or won't see other Americans as enemies who must be defeated - even as the rightwing fascists are coming at democracy with an AR-15s and tiki torches - liberals insist the fascists can be reasoned with.

There are too many liberals normalizing what happening on the American right. The fact that the mainstream media is still largely committed to a both-parties-are-the-same, neutrality-over-objectivity framework of covering US politics certainly doesn’t help. Those effects of normalizing the Right's march to Christian white patriarchy's fascism, is seen here at Reader Rant as well. Too many liberals keep insisting that the political conflict is about arguments, about convincing the other side, and are convinced that the American Right are fundamentally good people and that “fascism can’t happen here," that America is fundamentally good, so how could democracy possibly fall here, in the land of the free? Liberals need to a wake up to the American Right's march to fascism. Simply look at the laws that the American Right has passed in the past 15 years and what they are trying to do to Roe and transgender folks and lying about election results to stay in power.

I cannot say that I know any liberals who feel that way or are reacting that way.
Most of them seem extremely frustrated that our Congress is slow-walking justice.
In fact, they're furious about it.


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Originally Posted by Jeffery J. Haas
I cannot say that I know any liberals who feel that way or are reacting that way.
It's not as if Congress is acting with any urgency to slow the Right's walk towards Fascism. Here at Reader Rant, there are some liberals who think that Rightwingers need to be understood and reasoned with, that they're human beings with kind hearts and good intentions. rolleyes

These liberal folks live in their white, male, heterosexual privilege. There's a reason why marginalized people are Democrats and align themselves with liberals. Someone who has never been marginalized just doesn't get it. Hmm


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Originally Posted by pdx rick
Someone who has never been marginalized just doesn't get it. Hmm

Yes. And many times we forgive them because they just "don't know what it's like". I mean, after all what else can you expect? Do you have any idea how defeating that is for someone just trying to level the playing field?

Some of the comments above have rankled me. I don't know if I can explain it.
To suggest that women don't have equal rights because they just don't stick with it and try hard enough. A child who has been raped and is pregnant, can just pick up and move to a more liberal state where she can get the health care she needs, just chokes me.
I don't mean to seem like I'm going after anybody here, honest it's not personal. It's what I (and so many other women) are used to.

Which is the response to those comments.
It's just not that easy.



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