“Don’t forget, we’re crazy!” – Michigan

Thanksgiving is over. So what’s next?


Good answer, but not this time. There will be no Christmas this year, nor ever again, because the world is ending on December 21.

I watched a show this weekend about people who believe that – like, A LOT – so I’m now all a-flutter trying to decide how best to witness their reactions to waking up on December 22 with dishes in the sink. (Though I do hope no one kills themselves or their families, which apparently some people are considering. Please no one do that.) 

I bring up the whole nutty apocalypse thing as a segue between the holiday break and today’s Vagina News – KooKooPants Edition. You may recall my prediction that, in light of the election’s likely consequences for The Supreme Court, we’d see a decrease in nutty state laws aimed at outlawing abortion. Boy, was I wrong.

Michigan is considering a law that would allow a fetus (of a minimum of 12 weeks development) to be claimed as a dependent on state income taxes. That’s a $3700 credit. (Thanks to my husband for sending me this story.)

This sparkly-new take on personhood comes on the heels of Michigan slashing state funding for child-care and the Earned Income Tax Credit, both of which helped children in low-income families. (And Michigan has a lot of low income families; The state ranks 44th in the US for number of children living in poverty.) So aside from the ‘when you’re a fetus, you’re valued, but once you’re born, you’re fucked’ message Michigan is trumpeting, I have a few pesky logistical questions. 

If the mother suffers a miscarriage, does she have to pay the money back? (I assume they’d make her pay it back if she had a legal abortion, but Michigan would much rather just make abortion illegal. (In fact, it was during debate of Michigan’s extreme anti-abortion bill that State Representative Lisa Brown was banned from the House floor for saying “vagina”, the story of which led to the birth of Vagina News.) Are any tests required to confirm the viability of the fetus in order to be eligible? Wouldn’t this create a financial incentive for low-income adults to get pregnant for the short-term tax benefit? And wouldn’t that family then be much more likely to need government assistance when child care costs kick in, especially in light of the recent aforementioned budget cuts?

The answer to all of those questions, of course, is ‘We didn’t think about any of that because it’s not really about taxes, it’s about defining a fetus as a person so we can overturn Roe v. Wade.‘ I’m still hopeful that this kind of nonsense is just the sad final trickle of what was put into the pipeline by those who were preparing for Romney’s crushing victory. Then again, if I’m wrong, the “slut vote” may have another chance to make itself heard in 2014. That would be fun, no?

Incidentally, I wonder how much overlap there is between those who were preparing for Romney’s crushing victory and those who believe the world will end on 12/21. And while we’re at it, those who actually went shopping on Black Friday, which would make very little sense in light of the end of the world. I plan to mull it all over at brunch on December 22.

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