There are probably many similarities between Mitt Romney and Tony Abbott, however one has become apparently obvious over recent weeks, being the complete disregard both politicians have towards women.
As Annabel Crabb puts (http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-10-24/crabb-tony-abbott-clueless-or-calculated/4331806):
There are two ways to look at Tony Abbott’s growing collection of accidental foot-in-mouth moments.
One is to view them as non-accidental, which is to assume that when the Opposition Leader referred to the Government “dying of shame” in Parliament, he intended to provoke Julia Gillard into an epochal, white-hot assault on his gender attitudes.
And that yesterday, when he referred to the Government’s lack of “experience” in the matter of raising children, he meant the comment to be a reflection on the Prime Minister’s childlessness.
And that when he insisted on the need for the PM to “make an honest woman of herself, politically speaking”, it was a deliberate reminder of her historically unorthodox personal circumstances.
And that when he suggested in 2010 that “When it comes from Julia, ‘No’ doesn’t mean ‘No’,” his choice of that charged term was completely intentional, and part of a nasty, subterranean agenda.
As I said, that’s one way of looking at it.
Mitt Romney on the other hand is doing nothing less than supporting a return to the dark ages for women with his support of candidates, who, quite frankly should return to those dark ages.
“The only exception I have for, to have an abortion, is in that case of the life of a mother,” Richard Mourdock, the Republican Party’s nominee for Indiana’s Senate seat, said in a debate on Tuesday. “I struggled with it myself for a long time, but I came to realize life is that gift from God. And I think even when life begins in that horrible situation of rape, that it is, uh, something that God intended to happen.”
Although these two examples obviously concern vastly different circumstances, there is no question that they stem from the same source, an attitude which sees women as inferior to men and not entitled to live lives of their own choosing, but rather to remain at the mercy of structures which confine them in traditional roles and expectations. Some of these expectations are merely unjust, others, such as being required to bear the child of one’s rapist, potentially life destroying. Either way, these attitudes prevent a woman from leading the life of her choosing.
Why does this attitude matter? It matters because we should elect representatives, as well as for the policies they support, on the basis of their character, especially as we elect them essentially to make decisions on our behalf. Misogynists represent a narrowness of view unacceptable to women. Supporting representatives such as these risks not only taking a step backwards for women, but also electing people who will not bring a fair and balanced view to the decisions they make on behalf of the population.
When it is time to vote, think about the type of person you are voting in.