Proof positive that feminists don’t care about women

There is a medical condition that is easily corrected, is debilitating if not corrected, is generally cheap to correct, and only affects women. It is a huge problem in the developing world, currently thought to affect over two million women.[1]

Many developing countries lack the infrastructure to correct this condition among the many women who are impacted. Despite being easily and cheaply corrected, many of the women who live in these countries can’t afford to pay for the operation to correct this condition.

The condition is known as an obstetric fistula. It normally occurs as a result of complications in giving birth and results in a tear between the vagina and the bladder or the vagina and the rectum. This results in urine or feces being discharged by the woman through the vagina. Women afflicted by this condition are unfortunately often ostracised by their communities. Even those that are not excluded from their communities are effectively housebound due the nature of the condition. Naturally this can result in a variety of mental and physical ailments.

In contrast, women in wealthy countries rarely have to concern themselves. Although very rare, obstetric fistulas still happen occasionally as a result of birth complications in wealthy countries but they are normally fixed quickly after the birth with a small operation.

The cost to correct an obstetric fistula is estimated to be around US$100-400 per patient in the developing world.[2]

That’s a tiny price to pay to give someone their life back. So here we have a condition that:

  • Is easily corrected
  • Is debilitating if not corrected
  • Is generally cheap to correct
  • Only affects women

Given these characteristics it would be an ideal issue for western feminists to focus on. They could raise money for their sisters in the developing world, allowing hospitals and the medical clinics to buy the equipment and medicines they need and train staff so that they could work on fixing this serious problem today and in to the future.

But that hardly happens. Hospitals and clinics in the developing world are devoid of resources and have a shortage of staff trained to deal with this problem.

Feminists, as it turns out, do very little to help correct this problem.

There are clinics that specialise in this condition of course. One notable clinic in Ethiopia, the Addis Ababa Fistula Hospital was started decades ago by two physicians, a husband and wife team from New Zealand and Australia respectively, and continues to function today.[4] It continues to function with a shortage of resources to address this problem. Where are the feminists?

The fact that obstetric fistulas are a common and well known problem among the medical fraternity around the world means that feminists cannot explain their inaction through ignorance. There are many feminist doctors who would know of this condition and who could make the problem known among the wider feminist community. In any case, feminists do occasionally talk about the topic.[5] Apparently this doesn’t extend to actually doing much about it.

They even occasionally mention organisations like the Fistula Foundation that do work to correct this problem.[6][7] The response from feminists, though, seems to be mild disinterest at best.

An operation to easily and cheaply correct this condition has been available for decades and yet we hear little from the feminists.

If feminists focussed on this serious issue rather than telling us all about mansplaining, manspreading and manslamming they might actually help some women who are in desperate need.

The lackadaisical approach of feminists to the problem of obstetric fistulas is proof positive that feminists don’t care about women.

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