Friday, June 28, 2013


I assume the vast majority of you, not just Texans but Americans, have now heard about the epic stand Wendy Davis took in the Texas Senate on Tuesday. The national networks all covered the story on Wednesday and Davis took a well-deserved victory lap on the morning show circuit.

Abortion is among the most divisive issues in American politics. It has the power to rally the grassroots, inspire explosive rhetoric, boost candidacies and raise money for both parties. I do not intend to debate its merits. My thoughts on the matter are of no consequence to most of you, and I am not likely to change your mind if our views do not align.

But suffice to say, yes, I stand with Wendy. I wholeheartedly believe that limiting a state the size of Texas {268,820 sq. miles} to approximately five licensed abortion clinics is not in the best interest of the women in Texas.

That is where I'll leave it on the substance of this issue, because what concerns me {not more than the merits, but concerns me} is what happened after the successful filibuster and what seems to be happening in politics in general.  

While #StandwithWendy went viral across America, and Davis rocketed to sudden, national political stardom, Governor Perry, clamoring for the national spotlight himself, immediately admonished the star of the Democratic filibuster, saying state Senator Wendy Davis's rise from tough upbringing to Harvard Law graduate should have taught her the value of each human life.  

Wait.  Stop right there.  

He did not. 

Certainly the Governor of Texas, and Presidential hopeful, would not be so openly crass and unfeeling as to suggest that a Texas Senator should support ending abortion rights in Texas simply because she was born to anything less than a wealthy two-parent family?!?  

Surely you jest.

Sadly, no. 

"Who are we to say that children born in the worst of circumstances can't lead successful lives?" Perry said in a speech to nearly 1,000 delegates at the National Right to Life Conference in suburban Dallas. "Even the woman who filibustered the Senate the other day was born into difficult circumstances."

And he doesn't stop there. 

He added, “She was the daughter of a single woman, she was a teenage mother herself. She managed to eventually graduate from Harvard Law School and serve in the Texas Senate. It's just unfortunate that she hasn't learned from her own example that every life must be given a chance to realize its full potential and that every life matters."

And further.

"I'm proud that she's been able to take advantage of her intellect and her hard work, but she didn't come from particularly good circumstances," our governor commented to reporters. "What if her mom has said, 'I just can't do this.' At that particular point in time I think it becomes very personal."

Personal, indeed.  

Did he truly insinuate that her pedigree alone suggests her mother may have considered an abortion?

Rick Perry's remarks are not only incredibly condescending to Davis personally, but are also incredibly insulting to all women. These remarks which show so little regard for women are exactly why the vast majority of women believe politicians shouldn't be involved in a woman's personal health care decision in the first place.

Last I checked, abortions are not only offered to poor single mothers. Sadly, in Texas, though, Perry has slashed funding to Planned Parenthood ensuring many poor single mothers do not have access to birth control, and thus, are more likely to get accidentally pregnant.


Thankfully, Davis didn't take it too personally and was able to take the high road, stating, “Rick Perry’s statement is without dignity and tarnishes the high office he holds."


I expect more of my elected officials.

I expect dignity.

I expect a leader who doesn't take cheap shots at other elected officials. Or anyone.


It seems to be in very short supply these days.

Shame on you, Governor Perry.

Shame on you for hitting below the belt.

For making it personal.

And shame on Texas for continuing to allow Perry to hold the highest office in our great State.

Americans, please do not make the same mistake!

To that end, I'd love to get another hashtag trending: #DonewithPerry.

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