DeVos and School Choice- The Good, the Bad, the Reality

So I’m hearing a whole lot of back and forth about our new Education Secretary, Betsy DeVos, and whether or not she’s the savior of our education system or the nail in its coffin. As it turns out, the issue is a lot more complicated than partisan politics. Republicans tend to frame the argument in terms of a free market scenario in which competition breeds better choices. Devos said as much in an interview back in 2001. In the interview she and her husband are asked directly if they want to “destroy our public schools.” She responded, “No, we are for good education, and for having every child have an opportunity for good education…We both believe that competition and choices make everyone better and that ultimately if the system that prevails in the United States prevails today had more competition- there were more choices for people to make freely- that all of the schools would become better as a result.” The thing is, our education system isn’t exactly a free market scenario because- government funding. Democrats see government funded “school choice” as the death knell for public schools because public schools already struggle to perform with the funding that they have. What would they do if funds were to be diverted to private and charter schools? Good question. From the perspective of a parent, everyone wants to have the ability to provide their child with the best education possible and the fact of the matter is some public schools do NOT fit that bill. Where does the complication come in? Government funding. Essentially, this is an issue of privately funded school choice vs government funded school choice and the realities of each.

Let’s look at DeVos and school choice from the liberal perspective. The first thing that really stood out in my research is that the left absolutely HATE Betsy DeVos and the thought of her as Education Secretary. They do have one valid concern which is DeVos’ lack of experience. She has never overseen a public office and now she is over The Dept. of Education with nearly 5,000 employees. She has never worked at a school district, so her experience with education is limited to her perspective as a student and a parent. That being said, DeVos has never attended public school and her children haven’t either. Is this a big deal? According to education analyst Jay P. Greene from the University of Arkansas and Lisa Shell from the Reason Foundation, the Education Secretary really doesn’t have much to do regarding federal funds as they are already pre-committed through funding formulas that aren’t easy to tamper with. What DeVos CAN do is set a broad agenda and a tone, which is really what the left are up in arms about.

Agenda and tone- herein lies the rub. Betsy DeVos is a very outspoken Christian and as such is a proponent of making government funded religiously based school choices available to everyone. This is truly where the left shifts into complete freak out mode. You don’t need to spend much time listening to their point of view to realize that. Here’s a little sampling of their rhetoric:

      1. Gizmoto contributor Rae Paoletta says, “DeVos has repeatedly supported Republicans who have waged war against climate change and evidence-based education. Her family supports the notoriously anti-science evangelical group Focus on the Family, and other fundamentalist Christian organizations. Unsurprisingly, DeVos also supports vouchers that can carry taxpayer dollars to religious schools, which could be teaching creationism. In effect, taxpayers could be sending their children to school where evolution is regarded as—to quote Trump—’fake news’.”

      2. Quoted in the same article is Allie Sherman, a biology teacher from California, “DeVos may try to push some backwards anti-science curriculum, and that’s going to be tough for science teachers in places that already struggle with anti-science culture,” Sherman said. “But I think those of us who really understand and care about science are going to laugh at any attempt to tell us what to do in our classrooms.”

      3. In this Newsweek article entitled “Betsy DeVos is coming for Your Public Schools, two section headings read, “Christs Agent of Renewal” and “Advancing God’s Kingdom”. Dramatic much? The author goes on to use Devos’ quotes out of context to make a faux point.

      4. This article in Politico states, “The Devos family has a long history of supporting anti-gay causes — including donating hundreds of thousands to “Focus on the Family”, a conservative Christian organization that supports so-called conversion therapy aimed at changing a person’s sexual orientation.

        -This example strikes me as a little Buzzfeed vs Chip and Joanna Gaines if you know what I mean.

I emphasize this point to bring to light a blatant irony. The left wants to determine what is taught at the institutions their tax dollars support. Hmm, what a novel idea! You might think the left would welcome school choice! An excellent opportunity for them to have control over what their children are exposed to. But no, they are opposed on the grounds that their tax dollars would support any institution with a curriculum they disagree with. Which, by the way, Christians have been doing for decades…

Let’s draw another mind boggling comparison. The left just supported a massive Women’s March in which women demanded that the government give them full autonomy over their bodies while also demanding federal funding for these autonomous decisions.

What is DeVos championing? The right to governmentally funded school choice with respect to the institution you send your child to be educated and that institution’s right to be privately run. Good grief, if DeVos was a Democrat they would have asked her speak in the time slot between Madonna and Ashley Judd at their march. Hello hypocrisy!! If you’re conservative this may leave you feeling a little uneasy- and it should. That’s your inner logic trying to get your attention.

So what does all this mean? Is school choice bad?? The answer is no. Let’s take a look at charter schools because the left tries to give them a bad name even though they are pretty much an innocent bystander in this whole debacle. This is the header from an actual anti charter school website:

Oh. The. Drama.

Ok, back to reality. Let’s look at how charter schools are similar to public schools:

      1. They take the same state mandated standardized tests

      2. They don’t charge tuition.

      3. Can’t discriminate by race, sex, or disability in their enrollment.

      4. Accountable to the city, state, county, or district that granted their charter.

Here’s how they are different:

      1. Varying leadership, or staff organization structure.

      2. They can be run and operated by a nonprofit Charter Management Organization.

      3. They can be run by private, for profit entities that also provide the school’s curriculum.

      4. They can have an educational philosophy which determines the curriculum and teacher training.

      5. They can hire teachers who are not part of a union and who aren’t credentialed. The latter is something you should DEFINITELY check into with the specific charter school you may be considering. California law requires all charter school teachers to be credentialed.

      6. Typically charter schools allow their teaching staff more leeway regarding their curriculum and teaching style.

How do charter schools stack up against public schools? Well, just like public schools, there are good ones and bad ones. According to this article at greatschools.org , “A 2012 study by the California Charter Schools Association found that charter schools tend to fall on two ends of the spectrum- high performing or low performing- rather than somewhere in the middle. The study shows positive effects are strongest at charter schools serving low-income students than there are high-performing traditional public schools serving low-income students.”

Now we come to the reality of where DeVos gets it WRONG. As a parent, I’m all for being able to choose the school I want to send my child to without having to shell out mega bucks I can’t afford to get them there. As a realist, I know there is always a give and take- you can’t have your cake and eat it to. This is exactly what DeVos is trying to do, and as much as I would love for it to be possible- it just isn’t. As Daren Jonescu puts it in his blog post on the subject, “What kind of ‘private options’ come at public expense? The short and obvious answer: the kind that meet with government approval.” What is the huge problem with our public education system now? The fact that the government has way too much control over it. DeVos’ answer to making private and charter schools affordable for the masses is a voucher system. This excerpt from a Brietbart article sums it up, “School vouchers are the transfer of taxpayer funds from a public school to a private or charter school. Grassroots constitutionalists know that school vouchers as a means to bring about “school choice” are associated with the greatest amount of regulation for the schools that agree to accept them. In some states with voucher systems, the schools that accept these vouchers, have been forced to use the same Common Core standards and have their students take the same Common Core-aligned tests as their counterparts in the public schools. This is done in the name of ‘accountability’ for use of public money. This situation, however, begs the question, “Why bother, then, to move a child from a public school to a private school?” Schools that want to be included on a state’s alternate school option list will have to conform to learning parameters dictated by the current government administration. This is what government intervention in our school system currently looks like:

And this:

‘Sorry, kid…that’s it.’

And this:

Is this what we want to turn our private and charter schools into?

Two things cause me to suspect that DeVos is in fact a part of the establishment “swamp” when it comes to education. The first is her backing of Common Core. Don’t be fooled by her recent claims that she isn’t a common core supporter. According to Michelle Malkin in this article for the Daily Caller DeVos is, “…a woman every last grassroots activist in Michigan knows was not just mouthing words of support for Common Core, but funding the main state non-profit organization that was pushing it on them.” American Principles Project senior fellow Jane Robbins had this to say about DeVos’ denouncing of Common Core, “ Though, upon her nomination, DeVos quickly dismissed any notion that she has been supportive of Common Core, her statement that she calls for ‘high standards’ and ‘accountability’ are ‘sleight of hand’ words that describe the unpopular nationalized standards.” Indeed, DeVos supports what is effectively the “rebranded” version of Common Core. The second sign is the fact that DeVos’ has expressed the desire to implement the massive Every Student Succeeds Act (the just as boondoggledy successor of the boondoggle No Child Left Behind) Jane Robbins had this to say, “[ESSA] enshrines the progressive-education agenda of national standards, workforce development, competency-based education (the modern term for discredited outcome-based education), digital training, government preschool, and non-academic ‘social emotional learning.’” These are the chief factors that lead me to believe DeVos is what I would consider to be an establishment Republican when it comes to her push for government funded school choice.

What does that mean? When it comes to DeVos herself, she may truly want to make school choice (and religious school choice) a reality for those who currently cannot afford it- which is commendable. However, she is attempting to accomplish this by effectively maintaining or increasing the role of government in our already ailing education system. That may work out well for us now, while we have a pro-Christian Education Secretary and President of the US, but what about when we don’t? By taking private and charter school education under the wing of the federal government, DeVos opens the door for even these school options to be wrested from our control. Democrats and Establishment Republicans are two doors to the same room. Both want a larger government, they just disagree about how to run it.

So, sometimes being a realist really stinks. I mean, I can’t jump on the government funded school choice bandwagon, which at this point excludes me from being able to take advantage of a private or charter option that I would love to be able to provide for my kids. The optimist in me, however, sees this as an opportunity. An opportunity to fight for my children to receive the kind of education I want them to have- in public school. And if I’m fighting for my kids, then the underprivileged kids in my zip code benefit as well. I can do that by being an activist in the fight against governmental overreach in the public education system and lobbying to reform how our schools are run. Dale Rogers, a teacher in Michigan with 32 years experience who achieved National Board Certification for Career and Technical Education in 2007, wrote an article detailing how we need to revolutionize our education system that I think a lot of us can get behind. Here are some of the high points in his article entitled “Run Schools Like Businesses? Sure. Here’s How.”:

      1. Utilize the intern model used by the medical profession by having quality internships for new teachers.

      2. Redesigning a school calendar that recognizes the quality benefits of time for teachers to plan and evaluate student work.

      3. Develop techniques for education that aren’t built on a foundation of standardized curriculum developed by 10 elite men in the 1890’s.

      4. Not placing blame on the workforce (teachers) who are only responsible for 15% of the problems where the system designed by management (politicians) is responsible for 85% of the unintended consequences.

Rogers goes on to stress three important points that education reform currently overlooks:

      1. Quality goes down when ranking people.

      2. Cramming facts into students’ heads is not learning.

      3. People talk about getting rid of deadwood (bad teachers), but there are only two explanations of why the dead wood exists: A. You hired dead wood in the first place, or, B. you hired live wood, and then you killed it.

I’m definitely no education expert, but if our aim is reform, this seems like an excellent place to start.

Mainstream Media Malfunction

So very many well intentioned people want to embrace our mainstream media as beacons of truth whose journalists bastions of integrity. These people watch the nightly news and assume the stories proclaimed have been researched well with all sources verified. So here, I have posted some of the most notable “fake news’” scandals that have been uncovered from our trusted news sources, not just in the past year, but spanning back a few decades. Come to your own conclusions and please feel free to research each one on your own. Here they are in no particular order:

  1. Newsweek’s Flushing the Koran Story: In 2005 Newsweek issued a report asserting that United States prison guards or interrogators at Guantanamo Bay had deliberately damaged a copy of the Quran in order to torment the prison’s Muslim captives. On May 10 and continuing the following week, many violent anti-American protests took place, and in some areas these turned into deadly riots. In Afghanistan, demonstrations that began in the eastern provinces and spread to Kabul were reported to have caused at least seventeen deaths. The UN, as a precautionary measure, withdrew all its foreign staff from Jalalabad, where two of its guest houses were attacked, government buildings and shops were targeted, and the offices of two international aid groups were destroyed. Demonstrations also took place in Palestine, Egypt, Sudan, Pakistan and Indonesia, leading to the death of at least 15 people. White House press secretary Scott McClellan said, “The report had real consequences, people have lost their lives. Our image abroad has been damaged.” In the May 23 issue, editor Mark Whitaker admitted that its sourcing was suspect and stated, “We regret that we got any part of our story wrong and extend our sympathies to victims of the violence and to the U.S. soldiers caught in its midst.” On June 3, 2005, a U.S. military investigation by the base commander, Brigadier General Jay Hood, reported four (possibly five) incidents of “mishandling” of the Quran by U.S. personnel at Guantánamo Bay. Hood said his investigation “revealed a consistent, documented policy of respectful handling of the Quran dating back almost two and a half years.” The report laid out the circumstances of these incidents and disciplinary actions taken. It also stressed that such mishandling was rare, and that guards were usually respectful of the Quran, following strict regulations the military laid down for handling the Quran. The Hood report also listed 15 reported incidents of detainees mishandling their own copies of the Quran, including complaints made by other detainees. One of these cases involved a prisoner “attempting to flush a Quran down the toilet and urinating on the Quran.” The statement did not provide any explanation about why the detainees might have abused their own holy books.
  2. CBS “Rathergate”:The Killian documents controversy involved six purported documents critical of President George W. Bush’s service in the Air National Guard in 1972–73. Four of these documents were presented as authentic in a 60 Minutes II broadcast aired by CBS on September 8, 2004, less than two months before the 04′ Presidential election, but it was later found that CBS had failed to authenticate the documents.Subsequently, several typewriter and typographyy experts concluded the documents were blatant forgeries. The purveyor of the documents, Lt. Col. Bill Burkett, claimed to have burned the originals after faxing copies to CBS. CBS News producer Mary Mapes obtained the copied documents from Burkett, a former officer in the Texas Army National Guard, while pursuing a story about the George W. Bush military service controversy. The papers, purportedly made by Bush’s commander, the late Lieutenant Colonel Jerry B. Killian, included criticisms of Bush’s service in the Guard during the 1970s. In the 60 Minutes segment, Dan Rather stated: “We are told [the documents] were taken from Lieutenant Colonel Killian’s personal files” and incorrectly asserted that “the material” had been authenticated by experts retained by CBS. CBS fired producer Mary Mapes, several senior news executives were asked to resign, and CBS apologized to viewers.
  3. NBC and CNN George Zimmerman Trayvon Martin 911 tape debacle: Here’s the transcript of the audio NBC played:
    Zimmerman: This guy looks like he’s up to no good. He looks black.
    -Here’s the actual transcript:
    Zimmerman: This guy looks like he’s up to no good. Or he’s on drugs or something. It’s raining and he’s just walking around, looking about.
    Dispatcher: OK, and this guy — is he black, white or Hispanic?
    Zimmerman: He looks black.NBC News reportedly fired the producer who was involved in the production of the misleading segment.
  4. NBC’s Phony Exploding GM Truck: Dateline’s report featured 14 min. of balanced debate, capped by 57 seconds of crash footage that explosively showed how the gas tanks of certain old GM trucks could catch fire in a sideways collision. Following a tip, GM hired detectives, searched 22 junkyards for 18 hours, and found evidence to debunk almost every aspect of the crash sequence. In a devastating press conference, GM showed that the conflagration was rigged, its causes misattributed, its severity overstated, and other facts distorted. Two crucial errors: NBC said the truck’s gas tank had ruptured, yet an X ray showed it hadn’t; NBC consultants set off explosive miniature rockets beneath the truck split seconds before the crash — yet no one told the viewers.
  5. Stephen Glass: The enduring icon of fake news is Stephen Glass, whose fall from grace was chronicled in a major motion picture, Shattered Glass. The truth caught up with him in 1998, when it was discovered a great deal of the content he produced for The New Republic and other publications was wholly or partially falsified. In recent times, Glass has revealed that he repaid The New Republic, Rolling Stone, and Policy Review at least $200,000 for over forty fabricated stories.
  6. The adventures of Brian Williams: Brian Williams’ anchorman career at NBC News came to an end in 2015 after he was accused of lying about taking enemy fire while helicoptering into Iraq in 2003. The accusation came from soldiers who were aboard the helicopter. Williams told the story repeatedly, over a span of years, before he was called out. NBC executives recalled having a great deal of difficulty getting Williams to admit he lied, and offer an unqualified apology. Amazingly, Williams still has a career in broadcast journalism.
  7. Washington Post, New York Times, Newsweek, CBS: Operation Mockingbird: Operation Mockingbird was allegedly a large-scale program of the United States Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) that, beginning in the early 1950s, attempted to manipulate news media for propaganda purposes, and funded student and cultural organizations and magazines as front organizations.. According to writer Deborah Davis, Mockingbird recruited leading American journalists into a propaganda network and oversaw the operations of front groups. CIA support of front groups was exposed after a 1967 Ramparts magazine article revealed that the National Student Organization received funding from the CIA. Congressional investigations and reports in the 1970s also revealed Agency connections with journalists and civic groups. Davis writes that Mockingbird was a response to the creation of a Communist front organization, the International Organization of Journalists which “received money from Moscow and controlled reporters on every major newspaper in Europe, disseminating stories that promoted the Communist cause.”However, none of these reports mention an Operation Mockingbird controlling or supporting these activities. Interestingly, a Project Mockingbird is mentioned in the CIA Family Jewels report, compiled in the mid-70s. According to the declassified version of the report released in 2007, Project Mockingbird involved wire-tapping of two American journalists for several months in the early 1960s.
  8. CBS 60 Minutes Lara Logan Reports Fake News Story About Benghazi, Leading to Her Suspension: In 2013, CBS 60 Minutes aired an “eyewitness” report from a security contractor who turned out not to have been present for the events he claims to have witnessed. In an investigation that was in the works for a year, Logan trotted out one “Morgan Jones,” a pseudonym for Dylan Davies, a security contractor who “60 Minutes” said was on the ground for the events of the Benghazi attacks, which claimed the lives for four U.S. personnel. Davies talked about the poor U.S. preparations, the chaos of the night and so on. As it later turned out, Davies wasn’t even around; he’d stayed at his villa. The account that he gave to CBS News differed from what he’d told the FBI. His version of events, such as it was, stemmed from a book that he’d written for a publishing house that’s part of the CBS corporation, a little detail that 60 Minutes had left out of its broadcast.
  9. The Associated Press, Boston Globe, CNN, Fox News: FBI criticized the media for false reports regarding the Boston Marathon Bombers. In the aftermath of the Boston Marathon Bombings in 2013, with the perpetrators still at large, several news sources falsely reported that an arrest had been made. The FBI released a statement scolding the media for its inaccurate and premature reporting on a sensitive terrorism investigation still in progress.
  10. The Daily Mirror’s Piers Morgan Fired From UK Newspaper for Hoaxing Photos of Iraqi Prisoner Abuse: Before he got his cable television show on CNN, Piers Morgan was the editor of The Daily Mirror, one of the UK’s biggest newspapers, which in 2004, published photos of Iraqi prisoners of war being abused by British Army soldiers from the Queen’s Lancashire Regiment.When they turned out to be fake news, Piers Morgan was sacked from the publication, not for his editorial slip, but for refusing to apologize for it. BBC’s Nicholas Witchell said it appeared Piers Morgan remained unrepentant right to the end. “According to one report Mr Morgan refused the demand to apologise, was sacked and immediately escorted from the building,” he said.  

    In conclusion, you are welcome to laud these news sources as reliable, but please forgive those of us who aren’t convinced.

Modern Radical Feminist Movement: Torchbearing or Torching History?

I recently read a popular article entitled “You are not equal. I’m Sorry”, by a woman named Dina Leygerman. In the article, Dina first urges me to “Say thank you” to all the women who fought tirelessly, faced extreme persecution, yet refused to back down. All so that I can have a voice, the right to vote, the right to work, the right to an identity outside of my husband, the right to prenatal care and birth control, the right to humane working conditions, etc. She then points out that I am not equal, even if I feel that I am. She goes on to label those of us who proclaim #notmymarch, to be fighters for complacency, acceptors of what we have been given, , deniers of facts, who are wrapped up in our delusion of equality.

My first inclination was to laugh, but then I realized that it’s not funny- it’s horrific. It’s horrific because these women claim to be the torchbearers of these historic women whom they mention by name: Susan B. Anthony, Elizabeth Stanton, Alice Paul, Maud Wood Park, Rosa Parks, Margaret Sanger, on and on and on. Then they invoke these powerful names to deceive other women into full support of their deranged agendas by insinuating that these pillars of history would have approved. What a farce! Do they even know how these women went about affecting change and what they believed in? Let’s see…

    

Let’s compare Alice Paul (pictured above top) to these participants in the Women’s March of 2017 (pictured above bottom). Anyone noticing any differences? This is Alice in the procession that took place the day before Woodrow Wilson’s inauguration in 1913. The New York Times described this as, “One of the most impressively beautiful spectacles ever staged in this country.” If I could caption the picture on the bottom I would simply say, “You’re doing it wrong.”

Susan B. Anthony brought attention to her cause by voting (which was illegal for her at the time). She refused to pay the fine imposed, so she was arrested, which led to a widely publicized trial bringing national attention to her cause (the good kind of attention). Susan was not one to conform, so she began wearing the controversial “bloomer” dress instead of the traditional dresses that dragged the ground. After a year, however, she returned to conventional dress stating that it gave her opponents the opportunity to focus on her apparel rather than her ideas. Interesting concept.

Maud Wood Park fought for our right to prenatal care and our right to our identity outside of our husbands. Maud had this to say in a statement regarding the aim of her League of Women Voters, “It has chosen to be a middle of the road organization in which persons of widely differing political views might work together a program of definite advance on which they could agree.” Admirable indeed, yet not a view shared by today’s version of “suffragettes”. As a matter of fact, pro-life marchers were not allowed to participate.

What about Margaret Sanger, the founder of Planned Parenthood? She has got to be the poster woman for today’s feminist movement- right? Not so fast. Margaret has been purported to be a heroin by the left and a racist by the right. According to my research she’s neither. Margaret was primarily a birth control activist and we are all in debt to her for her successful fight to legalize birth control. However, Planned Parenthood supporters will be surprised to learn that she strongly condemned the practice of abortion referring to it as “vicious.” Furthermore, she believed abortion was an evil that would become obsolete once birth control was practiced and understood. (source- The Sanger Papers- non-profit org hosted by NYU) Ironically, the organization she founded, has become most notable for the very practice she sought to make obsolete. You probably won’t see that on any posters or listed on the PP website. You have rendered her life’s work a failure.

What else did Margaret Sanger hope to achieve through the advent of birth control? Apparently social engineering. YIKES! Margaret was a well known proponent of “negative eugenics”, which aims to improve human heredity traits through social intervention by reducing the reproduction of those who were considered “unfit”. Who was considered “unfit”? This is where some claim that Margaret used race as a determining factor, but I have found very little evidence to support that. Instead she sought to improve the “genetic stock” by discouraging those with undesirable traits to “breed”. (Yes, she referred to people like livestock) So does anyone have a history of birth defects or mental illness in your family? Margaret doesn’t advise you to procreate. Still loving Margaret? The left will probably be shocked to find that she stressed limiting the number of births to live within one’s economic ability to raise and support healthy children. (Not a belief shared by the left) The left will be even more shocked to learn that Margaret firmly believed that the responsibility for birth control should remain in the hands of the able-minded individual parents instead of the state. Say what!? That’s right- Margaret would tell you if you want the government out of your uterus, stop inviting them in by demanding their funding.

Well, if these women are NOT the “mothers” of the modern feminist movement, who gets the credit? I’ve got three that are all yours! Gloria Steinem who has always been a proponent for abortion on demand. These are Gloria’s words describing her experience with abortion, “It (abortion) is supposed to make us a bad person. But I must say, I never felt that. I used to sit and try to figure out how old the child would be, trying to make myself feel guilty. But I never could!” This is the very definition of depravity. Angela Davis is an advocate for your brand of change. She is a Marxist and associated with the Black Panther Party. She was also a candidate for vice president on the Communist Party USA ticket twice in the 80’s. Angela was prosecuted for her involvement in an armed takeover over a CA courtroom in which 4 people were killed. Third, your cause is lauded by Ruth Bader Ginsberg. In a 2009 interview with Emily Brazelton of The New York Times, Ginsberg gave this quote regarding Roe v Wade, “Frankly, I had thought at the time Roe was decided, there was a concern about population growth in populations that we don’t care to have too many of.” In other words, “socially undesirable”. Today’s feminists are the legacy of these women- the Gloria Steinems, Angela Davises, Ginsbergs. They are not the legacy of the women who fought so valiantly and selflessly for our rights.

My goal is to strip away the veil of decency today’s feminists hide behind and expose them for what they are. They are activists for abortion on demand that they insist be funded by our government, activists for the right to objectify themselves in any obscene manner they choose. Today’s feminists recruit unwitting supporters by claiming they stand for the right of abortion for those who have been raped or those who’s health is endangered by the child they carry- and it works. I hear people all the time say, “But what about______ circumstance?” To that I say- if that is your only barrier to a pro-life stance, then get out and lobby for it! Lobby for safe abortion options available to those individuals, only under certain circumstances. Do anything but cast in your lot and march next to the lady in the “I love abortion” shirt! Another despicable tactic is deliberately confusing women’s safely and women’s rights. The fact that there are women who are victims of domestic violence, who must take precautions when traveling alone, who may run into an instance where a boss discriminates against them on the basis of gender are not issues for women’s sufferage! These are examples of criminal behavior in our society! Women’s sufferage does NOTHING to affect these types of changes. These are rights that you already have. If they are denied to you- you are a victim of a crime and as such may prosecute! This is how you affect change in these areas. Prosecute! Regarding women’s safety- how about you take off your vagina hat and go march in support of our law enforcement!