I was surprised at my state attorney general's theme for a speech to the Republican State Convention. Had he asked, someone might have warned him about the reaction women might have with one more middle-aged man assuring us that as women we have misunderstood those issues that concern our lives.
In his speech he reduced my concerns, my daughters' concerns and those of most women I know to forced prostitution and too much exercise of reproductive rights. Wage inequity, cultural abuse, access to quality education, and quality health care — issues women share — he marked "solved." This reassurance by marginalization amounted to a verbal pat on the head.
Reducing the issues women face to sexual exploitation (certainly an important issue) and victimization by the abortion industry is indicative of a narrow 1950's view of women and what constitutes their "problems." This attitude can be found in Montana but hearing it from our state's chief law enforcement officer is a surprise.
A visit to shelters serving homeless women and children might broaden his view; a conversation with county attorneys who field domestic-violence complaints might clarify what is meant as the war on women.
Our top cop will be more successful with his list of what Montana women consider concerns by asking us. I hope our future holds better choices than his personal perceptions and his party have given us this far.