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How many years have we lived under patriarchy? It depends on the history of your culture of origin, of course, but either way, at this point, it’s been too long!

A system that, at every turn, says men are better than everyone else and all actions must be taken to raise them up. A system that is designed around the notion that women are not human and therefore do not need to make decisions for anything and can be bought and sold. A system that only barely tolerates women speaking. It is a system that condones violence against women. A system that wants to control women in everything we do and tries to convince us that is because we are weak or inferior. It is time to up the battle because it’s trying to strip us of all of our rights one by one.

We have grown accustomed to patriarchy, but it is changing. We have been changing it and are on the path to eradicating it. I have always heard that saying, “no one likes change” and I have believed it. The truth is that we are creatures of habit, but it is a myth that no one likes change. It can make us very uncomfortable, but change can be good. Right now the system of patriarchy has come to a breaking point because of all the right wing push-back against the strides women have made to have control in life.

We are in a process of de-patriarching ourselves and that isn’t going to come without a battle.

For years, many women and enlightened men have been battling patriarchy, trying to overthrow it. Many others have been resisting it’s end with all of their mights. “NOOOO. I don’t want things to change,” they yell, fearful of what it will mean for their identities. How will they be the stereotype they were taught to be if women don’t have to be at home barefoot, pregnant and making apple pies?

But now, the issue has come to a tipping point. It will either send us backward or it will send us forward and the issue has come down to abortion.

But, it’s not just abortion. It is reproductive freedom. It’s control over women.

Peter, Peter pumpkin eater,
Had a wife but couldn’t keep her;
He put her in a pumpkin shell
And there he kept her very well.

So, the wife wanted to be a woman who does more than wifely duties, I presume, and Peter didn’t like that so he got her pregnant and trapped her.

Women see the trap of the pumpkin shell. Some are even leaving the GOP because of the extreme push against contraception.

I’ve never been a fan of calling it the Grand Old Party and I’m considering the acronym GAP for Grand Abortion Party because that’s all they talk about these days. For the party who wants less big government, they sure have the government all over women’s most intimate parts. That’s right men, you weren’t invited inside. This is a cultural rape. Women did not invite the small parties of men and the big system of patriarchy into our vaginas or into our wombs. Entry without consent, that’s rape. Stop raping women with your bills in the name of protecting us.

Alabama, Arizona, Florida, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas already have ultrasound requirements. Looks like Virginia might be next. Unless women are listened to. On Monday, more than a thousand silent protestors lined the walkways to the state capital to protest two bills: one that says life begins at conception and the other that requires women in Virginia have a vaginal ultrasound before having an abortion. There are many more of us around the country who are against these bills. They aren’t okay in Virginia or anywhere. They aren’t okay in my country. I am an American, though these bills are headed toward making me not one. Little by little they strip my choice, humanity, and then my citizenship.

This fight is part of the process of depatriarching ourselves, but it’s ugly and it’s gonna be brutal. Know what? I am a woman who understands that the more rights women have, the less women are beaten and sexually assaulted, the less sexual harassment there is, the less gender based violence there is, and the more we are able to participate in the larger society, government etc. This is reason enough to continue to unite for the fight.

You don’t have to be for abortion. You do have to believe women can, should, and ultimately will make their own choices.

We must stop using the language of the oppressor. People who are  politically “pro-life” are actually anti-choice and we must name them as such. Pro-life is misleading. I’m pro-life, who isn’t? Hell, I love life. They are anti-choice and they call pro-choicers “pro-aborts,” that’s not accurate either, it’s about choice for women. They are changing the language and we shouldn’t support it.

Grrl Code: The patriarchy wants to keep us in a pumpkin shell, but the pumpkin has begun to rot. Get us out. The patriarchy is going to kill us if we don’t stand up and say ENOUGH!