Sarah Slamen, an amazing 28-year-old woman from Texas, was tossed out of the Texas legislature by troopers for merely beginning a job review of her legislators. Objecting to the obvious non-experts interfering with women’s health on SB1, Slamen told the legislators, “This is a farce. The Texas legislature is a bunch of liars who hate women. These men are paid off –”
Of course, Slamen was silenced as troopers swarmed around her because we can’t have a democracy if women are allowed to speak on issues pertaining to women, or if citizens do not always say exactly what our elected lawmakers want to hear.
Watch the video put up July 9th of a July 8th hearing here:
Transcript via LaFeminista, a commenter at Daily Kos:
Sarah: Thank you, Chair Committee, my name is Sarah [Lastname]. I’m a constituent of Senator Whitmire. I’m here to testify against SB1, because I’m tired of Republican primary politics, misogyny, and greed dominating the state I was born, raised, and schooled in. And you know, I had some really eloquent remarks written out, but you guys have just worn me down all day. With all this terrible science, and glad-handing, and to be frank I get to move to New York next month, so I don’t have to live in fear of you Texas legislators anymore and what you’re going to do to my education system, or my healthcare system, ’cause I’m going to a state that doesn’t kill its own inmates. That’s how pro-life it is, up there. I will thank you, though, first. It was destiny that you would discriminate against us and try to force your way inside the bodies of Texas women. Thank you! For finally working against women so publicly, and not in the shadows like you’re used to. Thank you for every single bad press conference with your bad information. Thank you for every hateful statement degrading women and girls to sex objects, and brood mares, and bald eagles, and leather wallets, like your eloquent pro-life supporters have done today. Thank you for being you, Texas legislature. You have radicalized hundreds of thousands of us. And no matter what you do for the next 22 days, women and their allies are coming for you. Let’s start down the line. Senator Campbell, you’re an ophthalmologist. So I won’t be making you the expert on reproductive health. We can give you all the children with chlamydia and herpes in their eyes, since we don’t have Sex Ed in this state. And Senator Hegar, you are about as helpful –
Senator Jane Nelson: [strikes gavel] I will not allow –
Sarah: Excuse me. This is my government, ma’am. I will judge you. [speaking over Senator Nelson trying to interrupt] I will judge you, ma’am. Is this counting against my time –
Senator Jane Nelson: Yes, it is.
Sarah: — the senator talking against me?
Senator Jane Nelson: Yes, it is. Yes, it is.
Sarah: OK, well I will just go ahead –
Senator Jane Nelson: I will not allow you to disrespect –
Sarah: — and talk over her. This is how big of a fraud I knew you were, for being so proud of these proceedings all night. It’s a low bar that you hold yourself to that you [One State Trooper appears in background.] simply ALLOWED us to SPEAK. And I will speak against an ophthalmologist [Two State Troopers grab her chair.] who says – [Two State Troopers grab her arms. Sarah leans forward to keep speaking.] Everyone on the internet can see what you’re doing right now. This is a farce. The Texas legislature is a bunch of liars [Third State Trooper comes forward to grab her.] who hate women. These men are paid off –
Senator Jane Nelson: Our next witness is Gary Oldham.
Sarah: [illegible] so they can tell us what to do with the inside of our bodies.
What a brilliant speech. Makes me wish I had been there. Here’s a parade of people supporting her on her way out:
She told Daily Kos in a separate interview that they gave her no explanation for why she was forcibly removed:
Did they explain why you were forcibly removed?
There was no explanation. Senator Jane Nelson tried to say I was being disrespectful but how would she know? I barely got to give the complete performance review of every member on the committee. Pointing out that Sen. Donna Campbell is an ophthalmologist is not disrespectful when she asserts in a state hearing that she should be THE expert on reproductive health. What was disrespectful was the parade of anti-choice zealots and misogynists who got up for 13 hours and called women murderers, killers, promiscuous, thoughtless, and selfish. Not a peep from committee chair Nelson on those.
Are you going to pursue legal action for the First Amendment violation involved in removing you and stopping you from petitioning your government for redress?
I haven’t decided yet, I am currently talking with people in Austin about that possibility.
Let’s repeat it because it was an important observation, “What was disrespectful was the parade of anti-choice zealots and misogynists who got up for 13 hours and called women murderers, killers, promiscuous, thoughtless, and selfish. Not a peep from committee chair Nelson on those.”
Republicans want to be known as the losers who force troopers to haul out young women who are exercising their First Amendment rights? REALLY? Republicans must be really frightened by women if they won’t even let us speak. Governor Rick Perry is so afraid of state Senator Wendy Davis that he’s resorted to personal attacks to try to silence her — to no avail.
But for every amazing, articulate heroine Republicans shut down, there’s another one waiting to speak out. That’s the beauty of being on the right side of the freedom fence. We’re all fired up and ready to go.