Pregnant Women Are "Child's Host," So Not Really People, Explains GOP Senator Steve Martin

ULAAN BAATAR, MONGOLIA - MARCH 16 : Zolzaya, 18, is 7 months pregnant, her huge belly is covered with what she says is an allergy, insect bites from living amongst the bacteria in the sewer March 16, 2010 in Ulaan Baatar, Mongolia. Since 70 years of communist rule ended in 1990, Mongolia has become one of the most pro-business countries. While economic reforms have brought prosperity to Ulaan Baatar, there is still widespread unemployment, some used to work in the now defunct state industries. Approximately over 35% of Mongolians live below the poverty line, many unable to buy basic food needed to survive. Social problems include depression, alcohol abuse, domestic violence and crime. Mongolia suffers with a very high number of alcoholics, all consuming cheap Mongolian vodka that is readily available to the poor and the unemployed. Many Mongolians have migrated to the capitol city from the far away provinces seeking employment. For the homeless during the winter this means extreme hardship, for some homeless living in the sewers means warmth verses dealing with temperatures dropping as low as -25C mid- Winter. This year Mongolia has experienced the worst winter in 30 years. (Photo by Paula Bronstein /Getty Images)
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Anti-abortion members of the Republican Party are sometime accused of viewing women as fetus-carriers; mere vessels through which to birth a child, as opposed to flesh-and-blood human beings. Usually, that's going too far. But not all the time! In a recent Facebook post, Virginia Republican Senator Steve Martin (no, not that one) bluntly admitted that he sees a pregnant woman as “the child’s host,” adding, in a snarling parenthetical, that “some refer to them as mothers.”

“I don't expect to be in the room, or will I do anything to prevent you from obtaining a contraceptive,” state Senator Steve Martin wrote in a defiant Facebook post to pro-choicers in Virginia. “However, once a child does exist in your womb, I'm not going to assume a right to kill it just because the child's host (some refer to them as mothers) doesn't want it.”

The logic here is odd, as it implies that individual human rights actually regress as a person gets older. After all, Martin defend the rights of a fetus in a womb, but once that fetus becomes a baby, grows up, and gets pregnant with a child of her own, she’s merely a “host.” At what point between birth and pregnancy, then, does a woman lose her status as an actual human being?

Then again, looking for logic in such an impetuous attack is probably a lost cause. At least we can commend Martin for being upfront and honest with his ghastly brand of sexism, right? Actually, no, because after he published the original post, he went back and edited it. He changed “host” to “bearer of the child,” but kept the “some refer to them as mothers” part, thus ensuring that he’d alienate both supporters and opponents of his original sentiment.

In all likelihood, Virginia Republicans are still fuming about their disastrous performance in the last election, which resulted in Democrats holding every statewide elected office and winning control of the state Senate. That defeat was due largely to the party’s anemic support amongst single women; Martin apparently believes that the key to winning back that support, and thus having the power to actually enact laws again, is to brand pregnant women as “hosts” and smugly deride the preposterous notion that they’re actually mothers, and human beings.

It’s stuff like this that turns a purple state blue.

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