Dear Nadine Dorries

Posted: September 1, 2011 in Feminism
Tags: ,

Dear Nadine,

It seems you have been receiving a lot of letters recently, about women and their wombs. Some of the letters even make out they are written by a womb itself. That reminds me of The Vagina Monologues and the ridiculous display of women ‘speaking’ their vaginas.

Anyway. I don’t really know why these women are writing to you, when they know they are not going to change your mind about your attitude to abortion services. From what I have seen of you, you are a bit like me, in that the more people criticise you, and not just criticise you but personally insult you, and call you ‘mad’ and ‘crazy’ and a ‘witch’, the more steadfast you become in your mission.

As it happens I do not agree with your amendment. But if I wanted to campaign against it, I’d lobby MPs who are sympathetic to my views, in the hope they might oppose your amendment in the vote in the Commons. And I might disseminate information about abortion services so the public can find out more about them. This letter campaign is making politics about personality, and I don’t like that.  It’s also about the ‘sanctity’ of women’s bodies, and the identity of woman as ‘she who has a womb’, and I don’t like that either.

I think this blogpost  by someone who was a teacher, who had direct experience of Christian pro-life  ‘abortion counsellors’ and the way they treated young women students, is worth reading though.

The thing I don’t get Nadine, is why feminists, who are supposed to be pro-women, get so nasty to individual women, like you (or in fact me), just because they disagree with their views.

It’s like being in the sisterhood without any sisters.


(I still don’t agree with you, about anything much. I just think you get treated really rough by all your opponents).

  1. impeus says:

    I don’t think I’ve ever been nasty to you.

    And while the woman=womb therefore !womb=!woman argument is sometimes relevant, since we’re talking about abortion I don’t think it is here.

    I’m still writing a letter to Dorries. I’m writing to my MP too, but I don’t think I’ll send him a copy of my letter to Dorries. As you say, it’s personal – and that’s exactly how I don’t want my relationship with my MP to be.

    • Hi impeus

      You most certainly have never been nasty to me! Quite the opposite in fact.

      You say – ‘it’s personal -and that’s exactly how I don’t want my relationship with my MP to be’ – but Nadine Dorries is an MP – she is the MP for many women. Why is it ok for some women to have a ‘personal’ dialogue with Dorries, but not her constituents?

      I don’t understand!


      • impeus says:

        It’s a personal response to Dorries herself, which is why I don’t want to specifically share it with my MP. It would be a different matter if my MP was embarking on a series of baby steps to a total abortion ban. I’d feel different about making it personal with him then.

        I suspect it may actually have been different had Dorries been my MP. I might have turned up at her house with photos.

        • I just think abortion is one of many issues feminists take as being all about the ‘personal’ when for me it is no more personal than any other gender issue. And nobody is criminalising abortion! Abortion is established as a normal medical procedure for women in the UK, as is contraception including emergency contraception. There are parts of the world where all these things are much much harder to come by.

  2. redpesto says:

    From what I have seen of you, you are a bit like me, in that the more people criticise you, and not just criticise you but personally insult you, and call you ‘mad’ and ‘crazy’ and a ‘witch’, the more steadfast you become in your mission.

    Maybe… but then you don’t claim to have a hotline to God as the reason for everything you do. And you don’t have a history of bullshitting when called out on errors of fact or judgement. Dorries also isn’t averse to shouting ‘Sexism!’, going ad hominem and appealing to the feminist gallery whenever she’s criticised. Plus, you’re not a Tory (as far as I can tell). I don’t see that much in common myself, which is why I read your blog and not hers.

  3. stavvers says:

    Hi there!

    I’m genuinely pleased that you contributed to this project and you disagree with Dorries’s views on abortion. I agree with redpesto that you’re nothing like Dorries, and impeus has made some very good points.

    A womb doesn’t make a woman any more than a lack thereof makes a man–we have two letters to Dorries up which demonstrate this–one from a trans woman without a womb and the other from a boy with a womb.

    As for lobbying, etc, I have tried this. I have done this. Generally, it doesn’t really work. A side effect I hope will come from this project is awareness-raising: present information in a slightly off-beat manner, and perhaps it will have more impact.

    Re: targeting Dorries herself. Like you, I don’t really agree with anything she says. I am sick to the back teeth of seeing her name pop up in the media, always with another policy that pisses me off attached. It’s not a gender thing. The Pope pisses me off just as much, and you should have seen me going off on one about him this time last year.

    Once again, heartfelt thanks for getting involved and promoting this project!


  4. stavvers says:

    P.S. Feminism is not about blind support for all women. To me, it’s what you do that counts. You’re a better feminist than Dorries in that respect.

  5. […] Quiet Riot Girl feels some empathy with Dorries but disagrees with her nonetheless […]

  6. Emelyn says:

    If you are interested, I’ve had a think about some of the things you’ve brought up and I’ve responded on my blog (

  7. […] Quiet Riot Girl feels some empathy with Dorries but disagrees with her nonetheless […]

  8. stavvers says:

    By the way, I’ve decided to set up a dedicated blog as I have so many of these. Can I put this letter on?

    Also, if you’d like to write an extended one about wombs and womanhood, I’d really like to see that!

    Z x

  9. […] ETA : In response to Quiet Riot Girl’s letter I have added another post.  My use of woman in this letter was not meant to be exclusive.  […]

  10. […] Original Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:LikeBe the first to like this post. […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s