Idaho state representative Vito Barbieri should probably take an anatomy lesson before he speaks up on women’s health again. While discussing abortion, the lawmaker asked if women could swallow a small camera to get a gynecological exam. The only problem, of course, is that a woman’s vagina and her stomach are not connected. Duh.
I kind of feel bad for Barbieri, to be honest. The man clearly just isn’t that smart. And that’s fine. But when you are making decisions for a woman’s body? Then it’s not.
He claims to have been asking a rhetorical question, but the damage is done. According to the Spokesman Review:
Dr. Julie Madsen, who was testifying in opposition to anti-abortion legislation, said no, explaining, “When you swallow a pill, it would not end up in the vagina.”
“Fascinating,” said Rep. Vito Barbieri, a Dalton Gardens Republican and supporter of the bill. “That certainly makes sense, doctor,” he said, amid hoots of laughter from the crowd.
Pretty damning stuff, no?
There is simply no excuse for being so ignorant. On many levels. This man is apparently married. He is a lawmaker, governing both men and women. And he can’t discern whether or not a woman’s vagina and her stomach are connected? He is getting mocked today, but the scarier truth is that this isn’t even close to the first time this has happened.
Apparently, the female anatomy is super confounding for many lawmakers. So what does this mean for us as women? Personally, I think it means we need more women in positions of power. I have never been comfortable going to a male OB-GYN. All my babies were delivered by women midwives and all my health care comes from women. It’s just how I feel comfortable. Women know their own bodies. And the only people policing our bodies should be ourselves.
I am not sure how Mr. Barbieri had the children some news outlets are saying he has. Did they grow in his wife’s stomach? Did he think they did?
It should be required that every man elected to any higher office be required to read Our Bodies, Ourselves. Or, you know, any man marrying an actual woman. Because, let’s face it. I feel sorry for his constituents, but I feel way worse for his wife.