Say it ain't so: As (mostly) White male republicans rant against women's health issues and medications, did you know that our government—our military—grants "disability" benefits for men with erectile dysfunction...or, what they call "loss of a creative organ"? I mean...really? Yes.

While it's been said that "a good man is hard to find," (as I say in one of my sex lectures), "a hard man is good to find." But I ask...should we pay tax-funded disability benefits to men (even our illustrious troops) just because they can no longer get, or maintain, an erection? I'd be really interested to see just how much money is doled out each year for that specific "disability."

Yet, the past few weeks, women's health issues have been brought to the fore, which makes me ask another question: What year is this? What century? What is the psyche of our nation?

Although there is some recent improvement, since 2008 our country has been faced with high unemployment rates, home foreclosures, high gas prices and closed businesses; given that, is "women's contraception" what people—or, more correctly, the far right—want to debate and rile against right now? If so, we obviously need more women legislators, and we need gender equity regarding the benefits afforded men versus those afforded women in our society.

In Virginia, some legislators wanted all women considering an abortion to get, not only transabdominal, but actual vaginal probe ultrasounds. Well, I read that a government official is now asking for men to undergo rectal exams before being prescribed ED medications such as Viagra, Levitra and Cialis. Other legislation is being offered in other states.

You'd think this women's health/contraception debate wouldn't even be what's in the news these days, and I really don't like the seeming tit for tat. But, fair is fair.

If Congress is going to hold a hearing addressing women's health, and not one woman is on the panel...that's illogical. Nonsensical. That is a throwback to the eighteenth century.

Amidst Rush Limbaugh's comments about Ms. Fluke, and the cowardice of republican presidential candidates to not call Rush out for his vile, improper, derogatory comments, how any self-respecting woman on that side of the aisle can support anything that Limbaugh said is beyond me. I don't understand the psyche of that, especially in this 21st century.

I totally support our troops. But we're not talking about disability benefits for being maimed, or rendered an amputee. We're not talking about compensating for mental illness, such as PTSD, schizophrenia or borderline personality disorder (all of which needs more attention within the service). We're not talking about a traumatic brain injury. So unless the penis has been shortened or blown off by an IED, do we really need to pay because you "can't get it up"?

If, as part of their insurance package, women can't obtain hormonal contraception—which is often used in important ways other than birth control; it's used to treat many gynecological medical conditions—then surely we should not pay "x" number of dollars to thousands/millions of men just because their penis can't get hard. Again...how much in tax-funded military benefit is paid for this condition? Does the American Legion, The Department of Veterans Affairs or MOAA wish to share that information?

Copyright © 2012 Dr. Melody T. McCloud. All rights reserved. Any excerpts from this article should include a hyperlink to this—my original post on Psychology Today, with author credit. Feel free to post the link to this, and any of my PT posts, to your social network pages. Follow me here at PT, and now (I've finally joined the fray) on Twitter: @DrMelodyMcCloud.

Living Well, Despite Catchin' Hell, a book about health, sex and happiness, with a foreword by Pauletta Washington, musician and wife of Academy Award winner, Denzel Washington; and endorsed by psychologist Dr. Jeff Gardere and others. The book includes current comparative data for Black, White, Hispanic, Asian and Native American women. The first book in 8 years addressing Black women's health; also addresses the effects of negative stereotypes. (print and eBook).

Melodies of the Heart: Poems of Life & Love (eBook with erotic love poems and more)

Medical Bloopers! Amusing & Amazing Stories of Health Care Workers (foreword by Dr. Neil Shulman, author of Doc Hollywood). (a little levity, now as an eBook. Doctor's Day is March 30th!! Treat yourself or your doctor to an electronic delight, sure to tickle his/her funny bone!)

About the Author

Melody T. McCloud M.D.

Melody T. McCloud, M.D., is an obstetrician-gynecologist and the author of First Do No Harm: How to Heal Your Relationships Using the Wisdom of Professional Caregivers.

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