Friday, September 27, 2013

Creepy Uncle Sam Videos

A conservative organization called Generation Opportunity  has been running ads discouraging young people from signing up for health insurance through the Affordable Care Act.  There is one aimed at young women and another at young men.  Both go in for a medical exam, and after the doctor hears the patients have signed up for ObamaCare, the doctor leaves the room.  The woman is in a hospital gown lying on an exam table with her feet in the stirrups for a gynecological exam.  The young man is asked to take off his pants and lay on his side on an exam table, clearly being positioned for a rectal exam.  In both, after the doctor leaves the room, someone in an Uncle Sam costume and an oversize mask or head sculpture showing a face frozen in a creepy smile / grimace, who seems to have been crouching behind the patient, slowly rises.  He is behind the young man and between the young woman's legs.  It is clearly the prelude to a sexual assault.  You can watch the videos online.

There has been a political effort to interfere with women's gynecological health but it has not been part of ObamaCare.  It is the result of Republicans, primarily at the state house or senate level, but some congressional or senate action, trying to limit women's access to health care or force them to look at ultrasounds they did not want.  (Remember Gov. Corbett's "just close your eyes" comment?)

Two women's organizations have also chimed in on this; here is the press release via the inbox:

Leaders from women’s rights advocacy group the Women’s Law Project and its action arm WomenVote PA, expressed strong condemnation today about the anti-Obamacare ad from the group Generation Opportunity and has called for its immediate stop.
“We join other women’s organizations today in expressing our outrage at Generation Opportunity’s new online ad ‘Want Creepy Uncle Sam?” said Kate Michelman, co-chair of WomenVote PA.  “This ad represents a profound violation of a woman’s personal privacy and blatantly uses a woman’s most vulnerable situation – an OB/GYN exam - for political purposes.  It left me nearly speechless for the shocking insult it is to a woman’s dignity.  Further, this ad makes the case for removing government interference in health care, yet is brought to you by the same people who work day and night to insert government into decisions affecting a woman’s right to privacy and access to abortion and contraception,” said Michelman. 
Carol Tracy, executive director of the Women’s Law Project and co-chair with Michelman of WomenVote PA, said, “This ad is beyond offensive.  The strange Uncle Sam character is not just creepy; it is menacing and, with a leering grin and speculum in hand, it a clear depiction of sexual violence  .  Those media outlets choosing to run this ad should be forewarned: the gender gap will undoubtedly grow larger with ads like this and women will be watching.  We believe this ad should be removed from circulation immediately,” said Tracy.
The ad produced by conservative group Generation Opportunity and funded by the Koch Brothers, depicts a horror-movie version of Uncle Sam rising from between a young woman’s legs at her doctor’s office and assuming the doctor role himself — a satirical jab at President Obama’s government being allowed to “play doctor.” 

About the Women’s Law ProjectThe Women's Law Project joined the fight for women's rights in 1974, founded by a group of feminist attorneys devoted to equality and justice.  Since its establishment, the non-profit organization has challenged sex discrimination in employment, education, athletics, and insurance; advanced the rights of lesbian and gay parents; advocated on behalf of impoverished women; worked for fair and accessible procedures in child custody, child support, and protection from abuse actions; and championed the rights of sexual assault survivors.  For more information, visit

About WomenVote PAWomenVote PA is the non-partisan action arm of the Women’s Law Project that connects a woman's right to a full-range of reproductive health choices, economic security, and freedom from violence, with the importance of civic engagement, including the exercise of her vote.  For more information, visit  

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