How Dare You

To Congressman Budd, and Senators Burr and Tillis:

This afternoon, I opened my inbox to see a brief message from my congressional representative, Ted Budd.

Today, the U.S. House of Representatives is scheduled to vote on the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, which would ban late-term abortions after 20-weeks. As someone who is strongly pro-life, I am proud to be a co-sponsor of the legislation and will vote in favor of its passage. In addition, I have co-sponsored a number of bills this Congress to protect the unborn, like the Life at Conception Act, Heartbeat Protection Act, and the Sanctity of Human Life Act. I also co-sponsored a joint resolution that was signed into law by the president earlier this year, which used the Congressional Review Act (CRA) and reversed a rule from Health and Human Services that prohibited states from restricting Title X funding to known abortion providers like Planned Parenthood. This rule violated the spirit of Title X because this money was never intended to be given to abortion providers when it was signed into law by President Nixon.

To which I reply: How dare you.

For purposes of brevity, I will not pick apart the intentionally misleading statements in this email. I will instead focus on how you, my representatives from this, the great state of North Carolina, have the utter audacity to pretend to place any value whatsoever on the sanctity of human life.

Less than 48 hours ago, more than 50 persons died at the hands of a lone gunman in Las Vegas. Congressman Budd, you own a gun store and receive financial backing from the NRA. Senator Burr, you also receive financial backing from the NRA. And Senator Tillis? You have received massive support from the NRA, to the tune of $4.4 million in known contributions and offset expenses.

I am not scared of Muslims.

I am not scared of terrorists.

I am utterly terrified of white men with delusions of grandeur and access to firearms.

How dare you promote a culture of gun violence and still pretend to care about human life? This tragedy, as well as the shootings which came before and the shootings to follow, are on your conscience.

Less than one week ago, more than 18 million Americans were about to lose health coverage. Senators Burr and Tillis? I called your office on numerous occasions, and was told that you hadn’t decided how to cast your vote. That’s as well as may be: however, historically you have cast your votes in line with the GOP, and I assume this is how you would vote for the Graham-Cassidy Bill. Congressman Budd? Each time I’ve called your office, the members of your staff who are knowledgeable about health care assure me that you are making the best judgement for your constituents, and health care isn’t a concern. Maybe to you. But to us, your constituents, it is a concern. It is a major concern, especially when the available evidence shows that the ACA–particularly Medicaid expansion–has offset many costs for the majority of participants. You dare to ask me how I feel about the sanctity of life when you openly and aggressively attempt to strip health care from millions of Americans?

This is on your conscience.

How dare you stand idly by as the citizens of Puerto Rico struggle to find the basic necessities? Lt. Gen. Jeffrey Buchanan, the military leader in charge of the relief response, has openly said, “It’s the worst I’ve ever seen,” and has called for additional aid. These are American citizens. None of you have made a move to call for additional action in Puerto Rico. Congressman Budd? You opposed additional funding for disaster relief. There will be a body count in the next few days: this is on your conscience.

And, as we now apparently live in an era in which we must rank the magnitude of both real and potential crises according to potential body count, how dare you stand behind a president who is openly and aggressively pursuing a course of conflict with North Korea? How dare you have the cold indecency to turn your backs on this situation? How dare you allow this to proceed without intervention? Even if we here in the United States never experience any form of physical repercussions from Trump’s ill-advised aggression? Even if the fallout is limited to our allies overseas? Even if the conflict is limited entirely to the citizens of North Korea itself? Millions could die, and you are doing nothing.

This is on your conscience.

All of this is on your conscience.

This open, aggressive hypocrisy that certain lives are deserving of your attention while the vast majority of lives aren’t?

How dare you!

I’m not ending this by saying I want you out of office. What I want is for you to celebrate the principles upon which America was founded in your words and actions:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

The fight for these truths should be the one on your conscience. I am embarrassed and ashamed that you offer hopes and prayers without taking any realistic steps towards making this country a better place for all of its citizens, and this world a safer, more welcoming place for all of its inhabitants.

I am tired of all of this. If you stand for life, then prove it.

Published by KBSpangler

A freelance editor who writes novels, comics, and repairs a disaster of a house in her spare time:

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