Bill would fine men for non-reproductive masturbation
Women have been shouldering responsibility for the future of humanity for a long time: we’re told we’re selfish if we choose not have children, that we’re selfish if we try to prevent pregnancies, and that if we get pregnant we must carry that child to term or else we’re murderers. Now, I’m not a doctor, but I’m pretty certain that women don’t make babies without a little help. One Texas legislator is trying to drive that point home with a bill she introduced on Friday.
National hero and our new BFF, Texas State Representative Jessica Farrar, has proposed a bill called the Man’s Right To Know Act. The bill is a response to a Texas law requiring women who want an abortion to have an ultrasound and listen to a description of the fetus first, because apparently Texas lawmakers don’t think women understand what pregnancy means and they want to protect us from ourselves and all those rash, spur-of-the-moment abortions we tend to have.
The Man’s Right To Know Act takes its name from a brochure called A Woman’s Right To Know, which doctors are required to give to every woman who wants to have an abortion in Texas. In these helpful pamphlets, women learn about fetal development and the risks of abortion (which are, they say, death, vomiting, infertility, breast cancer, cramping, suicidal thoughts, and substance abuse.) They think women have a right to know these things because for too long we have been sold these fairy tale stories about abortions and how awesome they are. They’re just trying to stop us from becoming vomiting, breast-cancer-having drug addicts, you guys. It’s only fair that men get treated with the same kind of loving concern, don’t you think?
The purpose of Farrar’s bill is “to express the state’s interest in promoting men’s health” by making sure that men understand their bodies before getting a vasectomy, colonoscopy, or a prescription for Viagra. To ensure that men are able to give informed consent, they must have “a medically unnecessary…digital rectal exam and rectal sonogram” before a doctor can agree to provide the procedures or prescription. It’s important that men get to see what’s going on inside their bodies before making these kinds of decisions because once they see the inside of their colons, they might decide against a vasectomy after all. At the very least, they must be given that opportunity.
The bill also requires that providers create a “Hospital Masturbatory Assistance Registry” which will allow them to offer “fully-abstinent encouragement counseling” as well as physician-monitored masturbation and storage for the resulting sperm. Should men have emissions outside of that setting or a woman’s vagina, they will face a $100 fine for each emission, as those emissions “will be considered an act against an unborn child, and failing to preserve the sanctity of life.” Think about how many millions and millions and millions and millions and millions of babies are lost every single day due to non-reproductive masturbatory emissions. We live in a world where men are encouraged to just toss life away in an old sweat sock or a handful of Kleenex. These men clearly don’t value human life, and we must do something to educate them so that before they start recklessly masturbating they will stop and think, “Is this really what I want? Are my short-term, selfish needs worth the loss of a human life?”
It sounds ridiculous, right? And why is that? These laws would uphold the same values, wouldn’t they? So why does the idea of asking men not to masturbate unless they’re trying to create a life seem like a joke? Because we hold men to a different standard. Because we view men’s sexual needs as more important than women’s. Because we don’t hold men as responsible for the creation of life as we do women. Because we value men’s bodies for what they can do in the world instead of what they can do for us. Because we have a history of trying to control women, and this is one of the ways it continues today.
Farrar knows this bill won’t be passed but wanted to make a point about the different standards we hold men and women to when it comes to our health care decisions. In a post on Facebook, Farrar wrote: “Although HB 4260 is satirical, there is nothing funny about current health care restrictions for women and the very real legislation that is proposed every legislative session. Women are not laughing at state-imposed regulations and obstacles that interfere with their ability to legally access safe healthcare, and subject them to fake science and medically unnecessary procedures.”
HB 4260 is meant to make us laugh, and then ask ourselves, “Wait, what’s so funny?” The answer is “none of it,” and that should make us furious.