Tags: abortion/reproduction, discourse/language, gender, government/the state, inequality, contraception, feminism, fertility, slut-shaming, 00 to 05 mins
Summary: In this clip of Seth Meyers and Amy Poehler's classic sketch called "Really!?! with Seth & Amy," the comedic duo rails against the rash of recent politicos, who seek to restrict the ability of women to control their own fertility. Seth and Amy refer to the hearings held by a House Oversight Committee on religious liberty and insurance coverage for contraception on February 16th. In the hearings, representatives Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.) and Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-D.C.) accused Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) of manipulating committee rules to block women from testifying as witnesses. Seth and Amy also mention Foster Friess (a major donor to the super PAC backing Rick Santorum's presidential campaign), who recently joked in an interview on MSNBC about contraception. "Back in my days," Friess remarked, "The gals put [Bayer aspirin] between their knees, and it wasn't that costly." Not mentioned by Seth and Amy is Georgetown law student, Sandra Fluke's recent testimony before Congress in favor of contraceptive coverage. Political commentator, Rush Limbaugh, responded by calling Fluke a "slut" and a "prostitute," and he made her the following proposition: "So Miss Fluke, and the rest of you Feminazis, here’s the deal. If we are going to pay for your contraceptives, and thus pay for you to have sex, we want something for it. We want you to post the videos online so we can all watch." These recent news stories, many of which are touched on in Seth and Amy's comedy, illustrate the ambitions of men to continue to exercise power over the reproductive lives of women. In the first congressional hearing, the experiences of women were formally excluded from the congressional record. The remarks from Friess and Limbaugh, in contrast, amount to slut-shaming, which is a discourse that similarly attempts to control women's sexual lives. While the above comedy sketch may not be intellectually rich on its own, it works well as a means of broaching a discussion about why contraception is a feminist issue, and how formally controlling women's sexual behavior through law works in concert with informal controls, such as slut-shaming.
Submitted By: Lester Andrist
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