Guest Opinion by Sawyer Crenshaw
The late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg correctly stated, “Women belong in all places where decisions are being made.” I am strongly compelled to agree with Ginsburg, but a growing number of far extremists in Idaho would argue the contrary. As extremism and the number of far-right sympathizers grows in our beautiful state, their abhorrent views are becoming not-so-subtle. Not only are they coming for the typically contested women’s rights such as abortion (yes, it is a RIGHT), but they’re likewise attacking women’s rights we take for granted, as well as their image.
The Idaho Freedom Foundation, essentially a fascist organization, who claims to be “...exposing, defeating, and replacing the state’s socialist public policies” (maybe they mean public education, food stamps, medicaid, medicare, or social security?) is led by individuals such as Brian Almon—their communications director—who made his views on women quite clear in two tweets where he stated, “If you find a woman who says ‘Repeal the 19th’ then put a ring on her” and “If women were not allowed to vote we would have a supermajority of Republicans. Strangely, most Republican women get angry if you point this out. It’s almost as if they’re more concerned with participation over winning”. Classy, right? Maybe not so much if you, like myself,, have never for a second entertained the notion that women should not have the right to vote.
This comes on the heels of BSU professor Scott Yenor attending a high school in Boise where he gave a speech expressing his views that our modern society does too much to encourage women to have careers, and that it is damaging the family unit. In his tirade, he describes career-oriented women as, “medicated, meddlesome, and quarrelsome”. I personally have the opportunity to work two different jobs, at both of which I have been the only male employee, and both of which are owned or agented by women; coincidentally, not one of the women I work with could be described as “medicated, meddlesome, and quarrelsome”. Their work ethic speaks for itself, and working alongside these women has given me the tremendous opportunity to confidently say that Mr. Yenor has no idea what he is talking about. My coworkers and supervisors are the most dedicated and consistently committed individuals I have ever worked alongside throughout my working life.
All this, following the overturning of history, when the U.S. Supreme Court reversed Roe v. Wade, criminalizing life-saving medical procedures for women across the United States. Now, day after day, more legislation in Idaho is being brought forward, stripping women of their fundamental health rights, and incriminating those who attempt to help them.
Unchecked extremism cannot be ignored. It cannot be allowed. It cannot be supported. I have no doubt that the fundamental rights of women, transgender youth, members of the LGBTQ+ community, and minorities across the state are under attack, and we have a duty to protect them and provide the United States with liberty and justice for ALL, not some.