Amid all the attention lavished upon ladies like Miley Cyrus and Kim Kardashian (guilty as charged), there are a lot of strong, smart women out there fighting the good fight. Among the most badass? Wendy Davis.
This Democratic state senator (currently running for Texas governor) took the Lone Star State by storm last year when she filibustered a state anti-abortion bill for nearly 11 hours. Fun fact: Texas filibuster laws are harsher than federal ones, so Davis, bedecked in pink running shoes, had to discuss only the bill and could not even lean on a podium. Though the bill was eventually passed, Davis' courage and physical strength were inspirational to women everywhere—(mostly) regardless of political affiliation.
Except, apparently, for some. Yesterday, Davis made a trip to L.A. for a fundraiser and was greeted cruelly by a sea of horrific posters. The text: "Hollywood Welcomes Abortion Barbie Wendy Davis." The photo: a pregnant Barbie with Davis' head, a white fetus inside her, and a black baby lying beside her. Oh, and a pair of scissors. (As Jezebel pointed out—newsflash!—scissors aren't actually used in abortions.)
Let's dive into everything about this that's horrifying . . . shall we?
For starters, abortions haven't always been so hated on; in fact, they've been practiced for thousands of years. In the 1800s, however, a variety of factors led the practice to become criminalized. Doctors wanted to push out midwives, who they saw as "untrained" and who posed a competitive threat. There were also eugenics concerns about "inferior" races overtaking the country. And there were legitimate fears about the safety of the practice (procedures, as you can imagine, have come a long way since then).
Yet while they were illegal, the rate of abortions did not drop. Out of desperation, some women even did it to themselves. Today, it's estimated that about 40% of women will get an abortion at some point in their lives, and the U.S.—thanks, Roe v. Wade!—has of course come around (to an extent) on the issue.
And good thing, too. In countries like the U.S. where abortion is legal, the chance of dying during the procedure—as long as it's done by a legitimate doctor—is almost nonexistent. By contrast, illegal abortions make up approximately 13% of deaths for all women worldwide.
Think about that: 13% of all women worldwide. You know what causes 13% of all deaths worldwide (so not just women): cancer.
So seriously folks, get your facts right and stop with this deeply troubling "Abortion Barbie" nonsense. (And we haven't even touched on the feminist issues with calling an accomplished female politician "Barbie.")
For one thing, it's dangerous to propagate a message that abortions shouldn't be allowed. For another—to reiterate—can we please acknowledge that scissors are definitely not used?
Image: Just a Barbie girl, in her Barbie world. Courtesy of, Facebook