[Congressional Record Volume 158, Number 31 (Tuesday, February 28, 2012)]
[House]
[Pages H972-H973]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]




                  WOMEN'S HEALTH IN THE TWILIGHT ZONE

  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The Chair recognizes the gentlewoman from 
Wisconsin (Ms. Moore) for 5 minutes.
  Ms. MOORE. Mr. Speaker, lately, I along with many other women have 
felt like we're a mere supporting cast in an episode of ``The Twilight 
Zone.'' I can just hear the narration of the show saying:

       You're traveling through another dimension, a dimension not 
     only of sight and sound, but of mind. That is the signpost up 
     ahead: Your next stop, the Twilight Zone.

  The rhetoric espoused over the last few weeks by many conservatives 
has me feeling as if I'm in an alternative political universe where men 
say the most oddly absurd things about what women should be doing with 
their bodies. In this universe, the House Committee on Government 
Oversight and Reform holds hearings on women's health and contraception 
with a panel made up completely of men.
  This may seem odd to you folks out there in the real world; but in 
this alternate reality, it makes perfectly good sense that a bunch of 
middle-aged men, devoid of ovaries and uteruses, would be experts on 
women's reproductive health. In this alternate universe, you wouldn't 
dare ask a woman to testify on women's health and what it means to be a 
woman. You wouldn't invite them to talk about what it means to be 
susceptible to pregnancy for approximately 30 years of their lives and 
how important birth control is to women who wish to prevent unintended 
pregnancies and to preserve their health. You surely wouldn't ask a 
woman to testify about how birth control has helped them prevent 
various

[[Page H973]]

diseases or manage diseases like endometriosis.
  While it would be nice to believe we're in the twilight zone, the 
recent ploys of Republicans against women's health are all 
frighteningly too real. In reality, this hearing did take place with 
the House Government Oversight and Reform Committee blocking the 
testimony of women, women like Georgetown University law student Sandra 
Fluke, who later testified during a special hearing convened by 
Democratic Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of a fellow female student at 
Georgetown University who had been denied contraception coverage 
because of the university's Catholic affiliation. Her friend 
experienced complications stemming from ovarian cysts that could have 
been treated with birth control. Sadly, due to nontreatment, doctors 
eventually were forced to remove her ovary.
  There are so many stories just like this that need to be told; but, 
sadly, you won't hear them on Capitol Hill if my Republican colleagues 
in the majority have anything to do with it. They are too busy 
silencing women's voices on these very critical issues.
  What if there was a hearing held on access to Viagra or vasectomies 
with a panel of experts being a group of six women? Could you imagine 
the outrage if women were allowed to legislate what happens to men's 
bodies? The horror.
  Ladies and gentlemen, Mr. Speaker, this twilight zone is real. This 
attack on women's health is real, but the battle is not over. We cannot 
and will not allow a few to silence the voices of millions of women 
across this country. We must continue to stand up for women and their 
reproductive health.

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