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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Guest Column: Republican women are, in fact, pro-woman

As a woman and current resident of Tucson in these great United States, I would like to personally thank Jacob Winkelman, columnist at the Daily Wildcat, for championing my rights and needs in his recent column, “Women candidates not always pro-woman.”

If not for his critique of female members of the GOP, like Congresswoman Martha McSally, I would have mistakenly thought that women leaders could actually be competent 21st century leaders outside of the Democratic Party.

Silly me.

Putting aside the generally offensive nature of his piece that an entire half of the human species concerns itself solely with topics categorized as “women and children” issues, his critiques also fail on the facts.

In his column, Winkelman faulted McSally for being pro-life but failed to include her stated exceptions for victims of rape, incest or cases when the life of the mother is threatened. He actually said she’s remained ambiguous on the subject. However, an interview with John C. Scott easily accessible to anyone with Internet access proves that her stance, again that of being pro-life with exceptions for victims of rape or incest or when the life of the mother is at stake, is in no way ambiguous.

In fact, McSally has made it clear her focus is on improving the world for future children.

Winkelman must have also missed McSally’s own column for Tucson Local Media in which she not only states her support for equal pay for equal work legislation, but also for achieving equality for women in all senses, including paying the same for the same health coverage.

These oversights, I’m certain, can be chocked up to research errors on Winkelman’s part and can certainly be forgiven. However, there is one aspect in which I believe Winkelman should check himself.

He says, “McSally has an inspiring personal story and history of military service, but simply being a woman or a woman who fought in the military doesn’t make her a champion of women’s rights.”

Our response, and by that I mean the response of the other pro-woman members of the GOP who consider McSally an incredibly competent, intelligent and pro-woman member of the United States House of Representatives is this: You’re right.

Simply fighting in the military doesn’t make you a champion of women’s rights. Taking on harassment and discrimination to become the first woman to fly in combat does. Standing up for women to serve in the same combat roles afforded to men does. Putting your career on the line to challenge a policy that stripped our own women service members of their inalienable rights simply because they were women does.

I personally don’t understand how being pro-life with exceptions for rape, incest and the life of the mother makes a woman anti-women. Or criticizing the Affordable Care Act while still supporting equal coverage for men and women as well as publicly supporting legislation aimed at eliminating the pay gap. 

I suppose just being a member of the GOP can make a person seem anti-women nowadays, but that’s quite subjective now, isn’t it?

So, while Winkelman’s opinion on whether or not you’re “pro-women” rests solely on your political party, that is neither fair nor realistic. Taking that approach would be as wrong as saying someone has no authority to comment on the issue of women’s rights simply because he’s a man.

There are certainly people out there who support ideas harmful to women from all labels and demographics, but saying McSally is not a fighter for women’s rights is not just dishonest, it’s historically inaccurate. 

— Kasey Shores is a member of UA College Republicans

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