There are ghouls in office, and many of them make and help pass laws. In case you’re wondering, I’m actually not talking about the presidency. I’m talking about the people in state-level legislative chambers, those with real power and the ability to pass legislation that directly and immediately impacts people. Sadly we tend to ignore these people. And that matters a lot, because their power is real and immediate. By ignoring them and letting them fester in the dark, we empower them to wreck the lives of their victims all over the country, especially in the south and other regions that lack quality maternal health care.
Ghouls. What are they?
I started this post very aggressively. Before we go any further, I’d like to take a step back. If you’re unfamiliar with ghouls, that’s perfectly fair. Unless you’re someone with an interest in video-games, manga, or folklore, you probably haven’t heard of ghouls before. In folklore, ghouls or ghūls are one of the monsters that come from the pre-Islamic Arabian Peninsula.
Ghūls and ghulahs, the female equivalents of ghūls, are evil spirits whose oldest known oral traditions date back to an era before Islam. In folklore, they are described as shape-shifting monsters who feed on the flesh of humans and who do a range of evil and wicked things. Many young people know about ghūls and ghulahs because of their prominence in some video-games and mangas. For instance, the video game franchise Dragon Quest has featured ghouls as enemies since as early as Dragon Quest II. The Final Fantasy franchise has featured ghouls as enemies since the very first Final Fantasy game published in 1987 which means that video games have featured ghouls as enemies since before I was born.
Ghouls in the Dragon Quest franchise & in the first Final Fantasy
In mangas, ghouls can be very different. Rosario + Vampire has a character temporarily transform into that universe’s version of a ghoul throughout its first season and into early bits of its second season, though he himself isn’t evil or desiring to eat human flesh. An immensely popular manga, Tokyo Ghoul also features ghouls that are a bit closer to their original envisionment by people in the pre-Islamic Arabian Peninsula as intelligent beings that are often predatory towards humanity though their motivations and behavior contain as much diversity as the motivations and behavior of humanity itself.
A ghoul in Rosario + Vampire
Why do I say there are ghouls in office?
There are politicians in office at the state and local level who gain strength by passing legislation that will result in human beings dying. Politicians in the states of Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina, Louisiana and Missouri are in essence feeding on human suffering and growing stronger because of it, if not like a ghoul than perhaps like some kind of misanthropic specter. In many fantasy universes, various types of undead often start off as a manageable problem that is ignored by either the main characters of the story or by the governments of the world until they become an apocalyptic threat or a threat that is capable of at least permanently changing the world order. And we’d be wise to learn from the mistakes characters in those stories make and be proactive in our approach to these frightening threats. If we wish to apply what our fantastical protagonists learn before its too late than the simplest lesson is that we must go after the ghouls in office right now and raise awareness of their existence however we can.
The undead among us, those who feed off of or are at indirectly nourished and strengthened by the dead and the dying are some (please note the some here) of the politicians who call themselves “pro-life”. And when I say some, I mean the worst of the worst. I mean the sort of anti-life people who propose abortion bans with no exceptions for rape or incest. And to be clear I myself am of the stance that for a range of reasons the only acceptable legal position on abortion is that such a painful decision ought to be exclusively an area wherein the state does not infringe on a choice that should be between a pregnant person and their doctor. The state shouldn’t be in the room where abortions happen.
In a range of states horrifying anti-life bans on abortions either have become law or are moments away from becoming law. Many of these bills can be classified as some variant of a heartbeat ban, a type of abortion ban that strips away a woman’s right to choose after a fetus’s heartbeat could possibly be detected, somewhere in the range of 5 weeks to 8 weeks. Many of these laws target the doctors who perform abortions which is terrifying because these doctors in places work in states with extremely high maternal mortality rates and imprisoning doctors will definitely exacerbate an already life-threatening crisis in such states. Based off of the earlier part of this post about ghouls doesn’t that sound like something that ghouls would enjoy?
So let’s say that we’re smart protagonists in a fantasy universe with ghouls. What do we do from here?
Let’s play pretend for a second. You’re a protagonist who is roaming from town to town doing miscellaneous quests and at your next destination, a local villager asks for some help. They tell you that a mysterious plague has struck their town and they need help. You, being the kind-hearted hero and inquisitive sort decide to help out. After some investigating, you find the source of the plague; a ghoul has poisoned the water supply somehow. When you defeat the ghoul, you don’t just keep the source of the plague a secret right? You don’t just tell everyone that the plague is done, do you? No.
A lot of news sources like to keep us in the dark, they’re hesitant to say the names of ghouls behind these bills. Our political rivals, the anti-life community that is pretending to be pro-life, doesn’t experience this same hesitation. They name drop politicians like it’s nothing and that’s something worth learning from them. As an example check out this article by Life Site News that name drops Democratic state senator Yvanna Cancela for supporting Nevada’s SB 179, which Life Site News writer Martin M. Barillas is opposed too.
The reason for this is that the ghouls are stronger in the dark and they like it in the dark. There’s a reason their fellow ghouls don’t namedrop them in press statements but do name-drop governors and do celebrate governors. And our side doesn’t hesitate to name drop governors either, we’re ready to help challenge Governor Kemp and Governor Ivey, but we’re missing equally important folks here. Do you know the names of the sponsors of the range of abortion bans making their ways to governors desks right now?
By refusing to go after the following ghouls, Representative Ed Setzler of Georgia, Nick Schroer of Missouri, Rep. Terri Collins of Alabama, Representative McCravy of South Carolina, Louisana state Senator Milkovich (who is a Democrat by the way so don’t fall into the trap of thinking this is uniquely partisan, though it tends to fall on partisan lines), and many others we aren’t thoroughly combatting this problem.
We need to change our ways and start targetting ghouls who will feed off of the suffering of women and anyone else who can get pregnant. If we don’t get serious about identifying the sponsors of these bills everywhere we can we’re gonna refighting the same ghouls over and over. We need to work to see ghoulish lawmakers be replaced by politicians who understand how hard abortions can be and don’t want the law to interfere with this already difficult process.
So how am I proposing to fight ghouls?
I’m proposing honesty. I say we honestly identify the sponsors behind these bills and point them out to people. When we see ghouls who are waiting for to increase the suffering of pregnant women by denying them access to abortions we point at those ghouls and we explicitly call them what they are. We encourage people to support their political opposition and when we write articles or make videos about this topic we don’t just encourage people to donate to Planned Parenthood (though that’s important and positive), we encourage them to look up the specific figures behind the proposed changes to the law. We look to see who’s running against them and if we can we donate a dollar to those people. We encourage our audiences to follow them on social media and shout them out wherever we can.
I’m proposing proactivity. If we learn to look up bills that would change abortion access we wouldn’t have to wait until it’s too late or almost too late to get involved in work in other states and in other communities.
In the future, I’d like to propose that we support politicians who aren’t ghouls. Politicians who love life and who recognize that dismantling the legal barriers to abortion is something that helps anyone who can get pregnant make careful and considered decisions, which is one of the most pro-life things imaginable. In the future, I’d like to propose a very thorough pro-life agenda that recognizes that being pro-abortion is a necessary component of being pro-life and the idea that these stances are contradictory or otherwise in opposition to each other is in and of itself anti-life.
Hey, my post is done! This is my first post in a long time. I wanted to write something meaningful and I feel like I did. I made a video on this topic wherein I talked about this less glibly than I did here on Patheos, but I feel as though my anger was useful and that I could help people learn and I think I did. If you want to support the writer, me, you can go check out my Patreon which will be linked here, or you can just check out my YouTube channel and subscribe. I learned a lot of the style that enabled me to write this post from reading posts by my pal and fellow Patheos blogger M.L. Clark which can be found on their blog AWAIC, who everyone who reads my work probably already reads but if you don’t you should! Their work is great and I’m a big fan.
I’m gonna get back into blogging somewhat regularly fairly soon, maybe as early as this week. I’d like to do two topical blog posts a week and 1 or 2 blog posts a month that are educational about Latin-America but I won’t make any promises because real life can be hectic.
I’d love to hear how you think we can combat ghouls, and how you propose we work to change the cultural fight we appear to be having about abortion.