Human trafficking has become a major issue around the world. The United States is no exception. Members of Congress advanced a human trafficking bill which had bipartisan support, something of a rarity in itself.
The bill aims to address the human tragedy of trafficking, predominantly in the sex industry. Once rescued from their abductors and abusers, many women are in desperate need of medical services related directly to the crimes perpetrated against them. The bill would allow funds confiscated from and fees paid by the criminals to help offset the costs these needed services would incur.
Then the engine of progress came to a screeching halt. Someone actually read the bill and realized there was language similar to the Hyde amendment which would block funds for abortions, even though the funds do not come entirely from tax payer dollars.
Not wanting to admit that they hadn’t actually read the bill, the Democrats are accusing the Republicans of sneaking the language into it.
Republicans blame the Dems, saying they had every chance to read it, and now are backing out. They also claim that threatening to filibuster this bill will be used against the Dems in the future. Then, in a totally new precedent, they tied the vote to confirm Loretta Lynch to the passage of this bill as it stands, without the removal of the language regarding abortion coverage.
Loretta Lynch has passed her confirmation hearings and is the longest Attorney General in waiting since 1985 and the more than a year wait between Edwin Meese’s confirmation hearings and his actual confirmation. She has passed every hurdle, presents ideal qualifications, and would replace outgoing Eric Holder, who only today, stated he has never felt “more love” from the Republicans than that demonstrated by their refusing to confirm Lynch.
Many critics are asking if the stall to confirm Lynch is because she is a black woman. Others are asking why the Dems would even consider stopping this bill. We are asking a lot more than that.
We want to know if we are the only ones that see this as a trifecta of measures that are a continuation of the war against women. While saying they are helping the victims of human trafficking with this bill, yet not allowing for the full range of services the victims may need, tying the confirmation of a woman to an office she is more than qualified for, and refusing to compromise on any of these issues, we believe it was intentional from the start. They never actually planned on passing this bill in the first place if the language was discovered before passage. Tying Lynch to it after the fact, and after already promising to hold a vote on her confirmation this week, is only more proof.
Women need to get mad. Earlier this month, we wrote about the first nation-wide march for women back in 1970, and pointed out that in the forty-five years since, none of the demands have been met. We need to be as angry as we were in 1970. We need to remind the nation not only of our rights, but also of our power. We need to have a National March & Strike on August 26, 2015, on Women’s Equality Day.