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2013 or 1950? Conservatives Rail Against Having Sex Outside of Marriage

A full 95 percent of Americans have sex before getting married, and 93 percent have sex before the age of 30. 70 percent of sexually active Americans 21 and under have had a casual sexual encounter. In American culture, we've largely come to see that there's absolutely nothing wrong with people making that choice.

But this reality is clearly lost on (or disliked by) many conservatives. Blatantly misrepresenting my post, "Bro-Choice: How #HB2 Hurts Texas Men Who Like Women," many right-wingers have taken to attacking it on Twitter and various blogs. They are are up in arms about one of the ways Texas' anti-choice bill will affect not only women's lives, but men's as well. In the post, I explain that the bill hurts men by (a) endangering their significant other's life, (b) forcing a decision on couples when they decide together whether to carry a pregnancy to term, and (c) forcing thousands of men into fatherhood when they are not ready or desiring of it.

The fourth point I made is that it will also significantly affect both women and men's otherwise healthy sex life. This is undeniably true. Conservatives are enraged that it would be included as a reason to oppose the bill. As I note in the post, the Republican bill will incentivize dangerous back-alley abortions by taking away almost all access to safe abortion facilities in Texas. Women will rightfully worry about this danger among the others, as will men, and it will instill cruel fear into Texans' sex lives whether they are in a relationship or not.

There is nothing wrong with sex, or mentioning sex when showing how this bill affects both women and men's lives.

Sex is important to both men and women (and yes, women happily engage in casual sex too). We deserve to know what this Big Brother bill will do to endanger women's lives, hamper free choice, force Texans into unplanned parenthood, and affect their sex lives. These are not all equally weighted because the first three clearly outweigh the last - but they are all true.

Republicans have wanted to get in the way of Americans' sex lives for a while. This year alone, they have pushed to defund the family planning services of Planned Parenthood, criminalize women getting abortions following a rape for "tampering with evidence," re-criminalize sodomy, and cut sex education funding. Last year, conservatives across the country joined Rush Limbaugh in calling a woman named Sandra Fluke a "slut" and a "prostitute" for fighting back against her employer's refusal to provide health care coverage for birth control, even for non-preventative purposes. Republicans across the country are using sex in a divisive, fearful way to gin up votes from both religious and non-religious voters.

This war on sex does nothing but shame women, put them in danger, and hurt families across the country.

Despite the paranoid fantasies of anti-choicers, no one wants abortions to take place. The smear that women use abortion as "birth control" is an attempt to distract from Republicans' efforts to curtail access to birth control or make it economically feasible for women to raise a child. If anti-choicers really cared about anything other than forcing their own judgments on other people, they'd push to expand access to birth control, ensure equal pay for women, expand Medicaid so that women and families have better health care, strengthen sex education, and fund family-planning facilities - all of which would reduce the need for abortions. They can join the Texas Senate Democrats' efforts to do exactly that.  

The point of my post was to encourage men to stand up for Texas women. "Most of us have female friends, mothers, sisters, roommates that we care about, and who we think know better what to do with their reproductive health than a bunch of legislators. Obviously we should stand up for them," I wrote. I wrote "Bro-Choice" - merely a catchy term to draw people to the post, by the way - to encourage men to stand up for Texas women. Many have responded very positively to this call (among many others) for additional support in the fight against SB 1. I will continue to work on the crucial effort against this terrible bill.

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