Monday, June 06, 2005

Heatin'on Up

I guess this is to be expected when the television series you've appeared in for years comes to a close and you're hit with the realization that, given your acting ability, it's likely you'll be relegated to performing in ads for the slumlord of major grocery chains for what remains of your career. So, you need a platform, right? These are important issues and yours is an important voice.

First Heaton goes off on her Terry Schiavo soapbox. She pulls a Frist-plus in that she can diagnose long distance, as does he, but she even does it without the benefit of a medical degree. "She is not in a comotose state and she is not suffering from terminal disease", said Heaton at the time and I said nothing. Okay, I laughed but I didn't comment in a post. I did find her idea of this as a feminist issue interesting (translated ludicrous) - "A husband should not be granted absolute control over his wife's fate." Because well only your parents should retain that right -I guess. We've come a long way there - heh, baby. At least, appropiately enough, her interview was on Entertainment Tonight and not some news program (Do we still have those?). But, you know, I left it alone because Heaton also said that "Terry may no longer be perfect or complete" and I figured well ... she knows where of she speaks.

But now, now she's speaking out on abortion alternatives:
Dressed in a slim dark-blue suit, she said a lack of resources often robs pregnant women, typically those in college or with little money, from being able to consider other options beyond abortion. The problem is stark at the collegiate level, she said.

"Students rarely see pregnant students," said Miss Heaton, whose highly successful "Raymond" series run ends this year. "They'll never associate having their children with education."[Nitpicker emphasis -what the hell does that even mean]
But okay, we can argue about college women and whether or not they're robbed of resources or have (or should have) the wherewithal to identify these resources and their need of them for themselves but that's not the point. The point - and it's that feminist angle again -is ...
"The early feminists found abortion to be the ultimate exploitation of women," she said.

That message mutated during the 1960s, a decade when women were told they had to "become men to compete," she said.

"We bought into that. We're smarter today," she said. "It's more empowering to go through with your pregnancy." [Nitpicker emphasis]
Excuse me? I had three pregnancies and three kids. To be frank, abortion was never an option for me. After all, I don't think it's legal anywhere, under any circumstances after the 52nd trimester and it didn't really occur to me before that time. But while I could characterize my pregnancies in a variety of ways, "empowering" does not come to mind. I mean, if it's your first child this period is just a prelude to the approximate 20-year interval in which you have no identity other than that of so and so's mom (it should be noted that this is a gender neutral phenomenon in that he becomes so and so's dad as well). If you're crazy enough to repeat the process you're merely further postponing the return of your independent identity. Empowering, my ass.

Now Heaton's hanging out over at the Huffington Post urging her fellow artists to come together in "supporting our mutual concerns". After all, although they accomplish nothing, she and her liberal friend, can at least talk with one another and Patricia doesn't worry about her reputation being "sullied" in the neighborhood when her friend's car, complete with Recall Bush bumper sticker, is parked outside her home. Okay, in southern California ... sullied - right. But I will give credit where it's due and at least she's consistent - she's anti-abortion and anti-death penalty. So, yeah Patricia, let's "split the difference", you don't interfere with the reproductive rights of other women and they won't interfere with yours - can we get your "support" on that?

Oops - in my rush to get out the door to a meeting I forgot one little notable detail - Heaton and her gal pal were inspired by a David Brook's column. I guess that's all you really need to know about Heaton's thought processes -but Bilmon has a wee bit more to say about their source of inspiration.

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