Texas professors sue to prevent students taking time off for health care

Two Texas university professors are suing because women shouldn't be allowed to take time off for health care.

This is one of the stupidest things I have heard in ages, and these two Texans do not attempt to hide what this is all about: controlling others. What if the student is hung over from a football game and misses class? Do they get excused, then?

"Pregnancy is not a disease, and elective abortions are not 'health care,'" University of Texas at Austin professor Daniel Bonevac sneers in a federal court filing with professor John Hatfield. Instead, Bonevac writes, because pregnancy is the result of "voluntary and consensual sexual intercourse," students should not be allowed time off to get abortions. If the students disobey and miss class for abortion care, the filing continues, the professors should be allowed to flunk students. Additionally, Bonevac asserts that he has a right to refuse to employ a teaching assistant who has had an abortion, calling such women "criminals."

Even though the plaintiffs suing for the right to flunk female students for abortion include boilerplate arguments in which they feign concern that abortion is "killing," the legal filing makes it clear that what really outrages Bonevac and Hatfield is that Title IX prevents them from controlling the private lives of students. Along with their anger about abortion, they grouse about not being allowed to punish students "for being homosexual or transgender." They also argue they should be able to penalize teaching assistants for "cross-dressing," by which they appear to mean allowing trans women to wear skirts.

As Jessica Valenti at Abortion, Every Day wrote, the language of the legal complaint is "downright petulant." The picture painted is of two men obsessed with controlling student lives based on what they're packing inside their underwear. It should be common sense that college students should be graded on their performance in class, not whether or not their professor resents their sex life or sexual identity. Alas, because the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade and Texas banned abortion, it's created a pretext for every busybody who wants to spend less time grading papers and more time working himself into an angry froth over the imagined sexual exploits of his students.


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