Gov. Perry stay out of my daughter’s vagina: Pasolinian thoughts on the abortion debate

sweetest daughter

Above: Georgia P and I let mommy sleep in these days. Our new baby will be here any day now and so mommy needs all the rest she can get. Part of our morning fun (after breakfast) is self-portraits. Georgia P has no idea that a battle over women’s rights is being played out just 10 minutes down the street from our house in Austin, Texas.

Some will remember that twentieth-century Italian critical theorist and leftist Pier Paolo Pasolini took a stand against abortion. He saw abortion as one of the ugliest corollaries of the sexual revolution of the 1960s (when he was highly active as an essayist, poet, and filmmaker). I believe that he was right. But I also believe that a rational application of abortion does greater good for our society than its unbridled restriction.

This morning on the Twitter and the Facebook, I wrote, “Rick Perry, stay out of my daughter’s vagina.”

To that, my aunt Dianne — Tracie P’s biological aunt, whom I love because of our relation and because of the fact that she’s a really fun and warm lady — commented as follows:

How about those daughters that are murdered before even being given a chance at life? They are not banning abortion just not after 20 weeks. Why the outrage?

Here’s what I wrote back:

Dianne, like you, I abhor the very thought of abortion and I believe that my generation’s attitudes about it are shaped and misinformed by the sexual revolution of the 1960s.

But the issues at hand in Texas are much more nuanced and can’t be defined in the black and white terms that the current regime paints them.

The core issue for me is the following.

We need to teach the next generation not to abuse abortion as a means of contraception (and we need to recognize how our generation has abused it) and we need to protect women’s right to use abortion as an option to protect their health.

It’s not that abortion is wrong (however abhorrent it is). It’s that the abuse of abortion is wrong.

It is my steadfast belief that a rational application of abortion makes more sense and does greater good for our community.

The Perry regime’s approach is uninformed and misguided. It has its roots in a desire to ignore the way that society and medicine have evolved over the course of the current and last American generations.

Thanks for listening.

2 thoughts on “Gov. Perry stay out of my daughter’s vagina: Pasolinian thoughts on the abortion debate

  1. We’ve been watching and reading about what has been going on in Austin at a distance. Over the past week we’ve developed an incredible respect for Wendy Davis and what she’s doing. One of the most memorable lectures we had in medical school was from one of the older OB/GYN doctors talking about what the GYN ward was like before and after Roe v. Wade. Before the decision, women with means were still able to get safe care but it was done discretely. Women without means had to resort to horrible care, usually not performed by qualified medical professionals, and often ended up in the hospital with lots of complications. I know in Nevada, we’re already having issues with people resorting to care from non-licensed “doctors.” Making abortion illegal would just compound this issue.

    Many people have commented on this, but it is infuriating when Perry et al. scream about the government staying out of people/businesses way on 99% of the issues. Yet they can justify the government directly getting involved in what should be a private discussion between a doctor and a woman.

  2. Andy, someday I’ll tell Georgia P about this incredible week. Supreme court decision about voting rights (which affect us directly in Texas), Wendy Davis and the Texas legislature… and all the while we’re about to have another baby and Georgia P a sister!

    I believe that Perry et alia’s contradictory attitudes are based more in a will to preserve a disappearing way of life than in rational thought. If anything, the current regime’s approach is that of co-opting issues that affect families — prayer, abortion, immigration, social services, voting rights etc. — to serve its own agenda of preserving the status quo and the sanctity of the military-industrial complex (also based in Texas btw).

    I don’t know Perry or his cronies but from what I do know about him, I imagine that his personal attitudes about abortion diverge from his public ones. For the current regime, all of these issues are just tools to instill fear in the voting public.

    Very glad that you shared your professional insights here as a doctor and very glad that you pointed out the inherent contradiction in Perry’s would-be rationale.

    Hope it’s not too hot up in yall’s neck of the woods!


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