Everywhere you turn these days, people are talking about reproductive freedom.
From the uproar over the Susan G. Komen for the Cure Foundation pulling its funding from Planned Parenthood to the GOP frontrunner warning of “the dangers of contraception,” a lot of people in America are talking about a woman’s right to decide if, when and with whom she has a baby.
A lot of those people believe that a woman should not have the right to make that choice. And a lot of them are men.
In the past few weeks, women’s voices have been glaringly absent from the conversation about women’s health. When the House Committee on Congressional Oversight convened a hearing to talk about the fact that the Affordable Care Act allows women employed by religious institutions to get coverage for birth control, the witness panel was all men.
The one woman witness who was scheduled to testify, Sandra Fluke, was barred. She was not allowed to speak about the need for women’s healthcare, but those five men were. At the most recent GOP debate, in Arizona, the candidates were asked if they “believe in” birth control. All those candidates are men. None of them answered that question in a way that indicated that they support a woman’s right to use birth control.
There aren’t a lot of women’s voices in this conversation, and that needs to change. But there also aren’t a lot of pro-choice men speaking out. We aren’t hearing from enough men who trust women. That needs to change, too.
Luckily, there are a lot of pro-choice men in America. These men believe that women are capable of making their own choices about what happens to their own bodies. These men believe that no man, whether he’s a politician, a priest, or a partner, knows what’s best for a woman better than she does. These men are appalled at the way that the national conversation about women’s healthcare has been dominated by anti-choice men.
These men are men who trust women.
Men who trust women are a group that is ever-growing, but largely invisible. It’s time to end that invisibility.
If you are a man who trusts women to make their own choices about what to do with their bodies, we want to hear from you. Submit your stories to Men Who Trust Women: what made you realize the importance of trusting women? Has a woman you love suffered as a result of policies or practices that limit her access to reproductive healthcare?
We know you’re out there. You need to be part of this conversation. Make yourself heard.