Republicans currently control the House and the Senate, but that authority hardly seems to be enough for lawmakers. Our elected officials don’t want power over the law, per se — they want power over people.
Thus, when one considers the overarching Republican approach to abortion, one cannot help but assume that this pro-life stance actually comes from a position based on malice, not benevolence. These leaders claim they are dedicated to protecting the unborn, but judging by their response to the rampant gun violence in America, they’re willing to stand idly by while grown children die — a stance that runs counter to their supposed platform, as wanting to preserve life shouldn’t apply solely to fetuses in the womb.
According to GOP’s rationale, women are nothing more than vessels for future life. Despite the progress we’ve made toward achieving gender equality, we are still treated like second-class citizens in the eyes of lawmakers, who think they can control our medical decisions even though none of the lives involved are their own. Perhaps they don’t understand that being part of this governing body does not mean they have the authority to govern bodies.
But now, as those children who’ve been directly impacted by gun violence — more specifically, those who saw 17 students and faculty members at Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., die — begin to speak out and protest America’s current gun laws, Republicans seem to believe that these kids no longer have the right to life because, to ensure safety, they might need to take a hit of their own, right where it hurts most: their wallets.
By grabbing the reins on abortion, Republicans demonstrate cowardice because they are merely speaking on behalf of those who have no voice. The only ones who can oppose the pro-life agenda are mothers, and leaders have already done their best to silence them. However, once those children emerge, their first cry leaves them vulnerable to the same oppression as everyone else. And we’ve seen in action, full force, this past week, in particular.
Despite the vigor and determination driving the teenagers of Parkland, the Republican officials in Congress continue to disregard their cries for change because, now that these children have minds of their own, they have the capacity to oppose the GOP agenda. They have the power to influence change — the change that Republican leaders are too stingy to embrace — and that scares those who rely on National Rifle Association donations. These kids can see where these leaders have gone wrong and they’re not afraid to highlight these flaws.
Much like how the GOP tries to undermine women by calling their credibility into question as they fight to govern their own bodies, these officials insist the children will inevitably lose steam and abandon their fight for gun reform because they’re superficial and will become distracted by the prom or some fashion trend. But this time, it’s easy to tell that these students will continue to transform their grief into action.
Democrats — and late-night talk show hosts — condemn the wrongs of the world at every turn, but only Republicans have the majority power to make change happen. However, it’s in their inaction that they reiterate what their actions have already expressed: aside from their pro-life stance with regard to reproduction, American lives are the least of their concerns.
(This post originally appeared on Storia.)