If anyone could school the Republicans on reproductive rights, it'd probably be Susie Essman's no-bullshit character on Curb Your Enthusiasm. She'd insult them so hard their heads would spin, and then she'd have them under her command. It's too bad she's fictional, but fortunately the real Susie Essman also has a smart idea on how to protect ourselves: turn our uteruses into corporations.
DCist interviewed her when she emceed NARAL Pro-Choice America's annual Roe v. Wade Dinner, and Essman discussed how worried she is about the future of our reproductive rights. She's the stepmother of two daughters, and she herself had an abortion—a fact she was refreshingly frank about:
I had an abortion when I was 16. I got pregnant the first time I had sex but I was lucky. … It was 1971 and abortion had just become legal in New York in 1970. I was fine. We were middle class and I went to a physician and I still would have gone to a physician if it wasn't legal. But what about all these other people who don't have options? The very people who need these choices and options.
So she knows firsthand how much these issues matter, and she worries—as we all do—that the Republicans don't exactly have our best interest at heart. So she's come up with a way for us to protect our rights should the Republicans assume the presidency and come gunning for Roe v. Wade:
If any of these candidates reach the White House the only way to protect my reproductive rights will be to declare my womb a corporation.
She may be kidding, but she is onto something. This has come up before, but now that the threat of GOP rule is looming right in front of us, perhaps we need to think more seriously about it. We'll need to figure out a way to make it actually legal while we still have some friends in government. And just think about the benefits this could have:
Unlimited Protection: Gone would be the myriad attempts to restrict and regulate our reproductive rights. Yes, previously all the GOP candidates would have been happy to dictate which options we have for birth control. But now that we've incorporated our uteruses, they wouldn't dream of trying to limit our God-given freedom to conduct business in any way we see fit. After all, our reproductive organs are sacred job creators—I mean, those fetuses need someplace to go be productive all day, right? And as for abortion, when our uteruses were just plain organs, the GOPers had no problem telling us we shouldn't be able to get rid of unwanted or unhealthy pregnancies. But now? The choice is ours. After all, choice is at the heart of capitalism. Hiring, firing, expanding, contracting—we can do it all.
Cool names. Previously we just called our reproductive organs something boring like "uterus" or "womb." But part of forming a corporation giving it a name, and this would be a great opportunity to rechristen our organs with more personalized business names: Lady Oven, LLC; Worldwide Womb; Esposito & Sons; Baby Cave, Inc. Really the possibilities are endless.
Boards, Stocks, Annual Meetings. There's all sorts of logistical stuff involved in being a corporation, but we could make it fun. You could pick a Board of Directors made up of your favorite family and friends. It'd be sort of like asking someone to be a bridesmaid, but a little more intimate. These trusted advisors would meet and vote on the business your uterus conducted. You could sell shares of stock in your uterus. Yes, paying taxes on your womb might be kind of complex, but just imagine how invested your community could be in your reproductive health!
Political influence. Now that corporations can spend unlimited amounts of money to get people elected, we could direct our uteruses to start donating to SuperPACs, etc. By incorporating your uterus, you double your political influence over night. You personally could donate and then you could figure out a way to funnel however much you could through Uterus, Inc. and voila! You're twice as close to electing candidates who will fight for what's important to you.
It'd be nice if it doesn't come to this, because it would definitely be a pain in the ass to figure out how to turn a body part into a company—not to mention all the paperwork that's probably involved. But at least we know, should we be faced with a Republican president, that we have options.