so. obama is planning on cutting $2.5 billion dollars from LIHEAP. i work for LIHEAP; about 3 million families in america use the program; about 65,000 in the county i work for/live in. planned parenthood is slated to lose $327 million in federal funding. one of my besties and three of my other friends work there; millions of low-income and uninsured women are served there every year.
what will happen to us five? what will happen to us millions? i guess we’ll figure something else out, make it work somehow, stretch the unstretchable until it snaps. what else can you do? lay down and die? tempting, but that would be letting the fuckers win, the fuckers (oh aren’t i so dignified in my language choice?) with their suits and their suites and their power, who don’t think my life as a living breathing woman is as valuable as that of a fetus i am incubating? oh my god, that link, if you haven’t heard of it already…if you, as a woman, did not already have enough evidence that your life means nothing to the people in power, that link will be all the proof you need.
so, what to do. the previous post made me upset but empowered, the community response around that issue was amazing, so many people willing to do what it takes in such short notice. the first time i saw the powers of facebook used for good and not the mundane. truly inspiring and heartwarming.
but what do you do in the face of bills on the brink of passing that invalidate your humanity, that state that your life has no value? go to law school? write a letter to your congressperson that gets thrown in the recycling immediately? call them and get branded a wingnut? what happens if you are tired of explaining to men who will never get pregnant that choosing whether or not to be pregnant is really, really important, and really, really not their business? what if the air rushes out of your lungs. what if all this arguing with people who don’t care robs your cells of the oxygen they need to live. don’t you need to live?
and what do you do, every day, in the face of that tidal wave of paperwork, all those heating applications, all those sad stories, and your co-workers who’ve had good jobs their whole adult lives, who tell stories of their spouse turning down the thermostat to, gasp, 68 degrees!, say they’re lying, say, they’re just trying to get your sympathy, what do you say in the face of that? especially when they have your empathy, not sympathy, because you know their stories. because you’ve lived them, or witnessed them. you’ve shivered through winters because you couldn’t pay your heating bill and you know these people aren’t lying, or, if they are, they have a damn good reason. but what do you say to those gray cubicles to make them understand?
what do you do. you fight in the small ways. you find ways to stay sane. you write and you hope. you keep living. what else can you do.