The real Sandra Fluke vs. conservative cartoonist’s Fluke

That’s Sandra Fluke on the left, and next to her is conservative cartoonist Gary McCoy’s depiction of her. “I thought this right wing cartoon was pretty nasty,” writes Daryl Cagle. “In fact, it made me wince.” Check out the “nasty Sandra Fluke cartoon.” || Here’s more from McCoy.



  1. Kevin Gregory said:

    Jim, I’m trying to recall your posts about the offensive, racist cartoons depicting Condoleeza Rice. One of the worst, from Jeff Danziger, is here:

    Daryl Cagle himself has a lot of distasteful Rice cartoons on his own site, here:

    And some of Cagle’s collection are pretty offensive. Here is one example:

  2. I don’t think Romanesko is getting the whole story here, but that’s okay.

  3. Let me help you out Jim, since research is so difficult these days:

    • Fluke is a liar: during her testimony, she claimed that birth control had cost a stunning $3,000 during her three years of law school. Unfortunately, it turns out that Walmart and a nearby Target have offered $9-a-month birth control since 2007. Not to mention the fact that there appear to be four Planned Parenthood offices within walking distance of Georgetown Law School, where they seem to dispense contraceptives like candy.

    • Fluke is a kook: among her prior positions (policy positions, that is…), she argued that insurers be required to cover sex-change surgery and other “transgender services”.

    • Fluke is a professional abortion rights activist: and that’s her own description of herself – “A Feminist, Gender, & Sexuality Studies major at Cornell, [she] is also a past president of Law Students for Reproductive Justice.”

    No, Fluke is an activist and a plant.

    My only question: what did George Stephanapoulous know and when did he know it?

    Embedded Links at:

  4. Glenn Fleishman said:

    Vanderleun: Not all birth-control medicine is equal, and the “$9/month” price is a red herring. Birth control medication, along with doctor’s appointments for prescription and medical complications (not referring to pregnancy here, thank you) can be substantially more. I’ve seen the “$4/month” and “$9/month” figure all over. I asked women of my acquaintance, the figure of $60 to $80 per month is fairly accurate. The cheap pills aren’t necessary the best medical option for all women, which is why a doctor is typically involved in these sorts of things rather than right-wing radio hosts.

  5. Still not getting the point? Here’s some more help from another student at Georgetown:

    Ms. Fluke is not mollified. Why? Because at the end of the day this is not about coverage of a medical condition.

    Ms. Fluke’s crusade for reproductive justice is simply a demand that a Catholic institution pay for drugs that make it possible for her to have sex without getting pregnant. It’s nothing grander or nobler than that. Georgetown’s refusal to do so does not mean she has to have less sex, only that she has to take financial responsibility for it herself.

    Should Ms. Fluke give up a cup or two of coffee at Starbucks each month to pay for her birth control, or should Georgetown give up its religion? Even a first-year law student should know where the Constitution comes down on that.

  6. Garry said:

    vanderleun: No, Fluke was specifically talking about fellow students that use birth control pills for purposes other than birth control. Many women use them to prevent endometriosis, to regulate an very irregular cycle, for a number of skin conditions & numerous other problems related to female hormones.
    Plus there are numerous birth control pills on the market, the cheap ones are suitable for only a small number of women, that’s why they’re cheap, few take them.

  7. Dan said:

    Speaking of cheap hacks. Hi, Jerry!

  8. Heidi said:

    vanderleun – Perhaps you didn’t know that there were different types of birth control? I can’t take the pill because of various bad side effects. I use The Ring which costs $90 a month. That, interestingly, adds up to $3,200 over three years.

    Yes, it would be cheaper if I went to Planned Parenthood. However, I donate to Planned Parenthood so less fortunate women can get the birth control that I can still (thankfully) afford out of pocket.

  9. Heidi said:

    Additionally, like the situation Fluke was talking about, I have been on birth control since I was 13. I was not having sex at 13, mind you. I also have endometriosis. For five days a month, I had periods so painful that I threw up, fainted, and couldn’t go to school. Midol and other over the counter drugs didn’t help.

    Nevertheless, birth control is used by millions of women for various reasons and even those who use it to not get pregnant are not “sluts” or “prostitutes.” I am married but we are not ready to start a family. I have had sex with less people than Rush Limbaugh has been married to, but I am a “slut” for thinking birth control is a basic medical necessity?

    And here’s a news flash. Women don’t start popping more birth control pills if they’re interested in sex. Birth control pills are something you have to take every day whether you’re having sex or not. You should be taking birth control for a month before having sex without an additional back-up method. So you think women who have sex once a month are crazy nymphos who should learn to control themselves?

  10. Heidi said:

    Nice misogynist topics over at your site, vanderleun. The first one on the Fluke article promotes rape. Good ol’ conservative values.

  11. Dan said:

    It should be noted that vanderleun’s former job – for some years, in fact – was posting pictures of women urinating on each other and pretending to enjoy it for the onanistic edification of sexually immature, emotionally stunted men. I think this fact helps put his declarations of who is and isn’t a “slut” in perspective. Similarly, Rush’s Viagra-fueled jaunt to Costa Rica helps us understand where HE’s coming from.

    There are not men we’re dealing with by any definition other than the (increasingly pathetic) chronological one.

  12. Dan said:

    whoops – Dominican Republic. I think Costa Rica is much more tourist-touristy than sex-touristy.

  13. Glenn Fleishman said:

    Glad other folks have leaped in. The men who are trying to dominate the discussion in this area focus on the contraceptive portion of birth-control drugs and on the notion of shaming women for having sex.

    Contraceptive drugs have purposes for many women (including several of my acquaintance open enough to state that) unrelated to birth control and sex. The men who obsess about sexual activity of women don’t know that and don’t care.

    I have had many discussions about the cost of birth-control medication with friends in the last day, and while $9/month prescriptions are available, those drugs only work for some women. Many women I know are paying (some even with full insurance coverage) $60 to $100 per month for the drugs that work for them, whether for the legitimate purpose of birth control (the men in this debate don’t understand that the women with whom they have sex use birth control beyond condoms) or for other medically necessary purposes.

    The misogyny is as bad as the misinformation.

  14. Dan said:

    Glenn: right you are. But when it comes to professional character assassins (really, that’s a job), facts are there only to be dodged, ignored, or mischaracterized. Nobody’s on the fence on this one: you either acknowledge the reality of the situation, or you try to subvert it. Reality subversion’s a good gig if you’re not saddled with a human conscience.

  15. Sponge bob said:

    Heidi, is to possible to respond to your narcissistic diatribe w/o insulting you? Your non-sexual medical reasons excuse is a canard. Not that it’s not real, but that somehow it should exempt you from financial responsibility. why should you get to go to the front of the line when there are millions of people everyday suffering in pain from migraines, diabetes, auto immune and arthritic joint pains. You have no credibility when you play that card. I guarantee you there are more college girls today worried about the cost of their teeth whitener, tanning time, and cell phone bill than this manufactured bs.

  16. Dan said:

    Who said they should go to the “head of the line?” Which line? Canard, you say?

    Also: college girls, teeth whitener, tanning time, and always yackin’ on the phone — yack yack yack, eh bro? Amiright? High five, bro!

  17. Sponge bob said:

    Why stop when I’m on a roll-
    How many women use the medical reasons as an excuse so as not to disclose their real intentions to their peers, faithful dumb husbands and or boyfriends.
    How many younger women in college that are covered already under their parents ins. plans choose to go and pay outright so that they can keep their college life more private.

  18. Sponge bob said:

    Dan, the Obama money line

  19. Sponge bob said:

    I’ll give you the number to the Obama Freemoney Crisis line-
    1-727-398-4310(1-screw the 1%)

  20. Wow, this discussion is really deep. All these ad hominem attacks over birth control pills. I have to wonder about the guys who are obsessing over sex.
    @Glenn I’m glad to read a man who know so much about birth control. Perhaps you can tell your brothers that the pills are actually doses of hormones. They can be prescribed for all sorts of ailments. I paid $50 a month to control my period – there, I said it – and to ease the hot flashes that plagued me during menopause.
    I would go on about the benefits of the pills, but I’d be talking about healthy bones and lowering the risk of heart attack. For some reason, I don’t think Sponge Bob, Vanderleun and Rknil want to hear about those topics.

  21. Jake said:

    Wow, the ‘keep ’em barefoot and pregnant’ mob is out tonday.

    Gentlemen, try a little basic economics: It is far, far less expensive to include contraceptive coverage in health insurance than it is to cover the cost of delivering a baby.

    Throw in problems, like a premature birth, a medical issue, a month in neo-natal intensive care… and the cost skyrockets.

    Then there’s those years and years the little bugger is on Mom & Dad’s insurance, further driving up the cost for everyone.

    Far better to pay for the ounce of prevention, no?

  22. said:

    I hope and pray that people like Sponge bob are just radical internet trolls and don’t represent the values of most conservatives in the country.

    Cause if so, wow.

    (And Rush is pretty much the radio equivalent of a radical internet troll).

    I love how, in all the demonization of women who are in consensual sexual relationships, none of the men are shamed for wanting to have sex as well. These women aren’t having sex with themselves you know (or else, no contraception would be needed, logically speaking).

    Sponge bob, you truly think it makes more sense for women to have an unwanted pregnancy then to have an insurance company pay for preventative care? Cause that often times results in an abortion…

    But keep calling the vast majority of people in the country who are sexually active “sluts” and go on your merry, delusional way. Hope you never have daughters.

  23. wubbly said:

    This is not about birth control, it’s about money. Why should I pay for birth control for a woman who has the financial and other wherewithal to get into Cornell and Georgetown. If you are an able-bodied adult, the government should not be paying your bills — any of them! There is no “right” to housing, food, clothing, etc. You progressive leftists can have all the social justice you are willing to pay for. But keep your taxfunded Utopia away from my body and wallet.

  24. swish said:

    So, wubbly:

    Should anyone making over, say, $200,000 a year have to pay out of pocket for things like yearly physicals and eye exams?

    Furthermore, should smokers even be getting insurance coverage at all for smoking-related illnesses? After all, they chose to smoke didn’t they? Why should you have to pay for someone who chose to smoke all those years?

    Or for someone who develops heart disease because they ate McDonald’s every day for the last 20 years?

    Or someone who breaks their leg while riding a bike? I don’t support bicycling, I’ve never ridden a bike in my life. Why should I or you have to support that lifestyle?

  25. wubbly said:

    If they freely enter a contract with an insurer or health care provider — they can do whatever they agreed to. A provider may charge a higher premium for various risk factors.
    What’s the magical $200K figure there? At what point do you, swish, feel it is appropriate to have your affairs put in order by a government minder?

  26. swish said:

    Oh, wubbly, I’m just replying to your comment “Why should I pay for birth control for a woman who has the financial and other wherewithal to get into Cornell and Georgetown.”

    I’m just saying anyone making over $200k should be able to afford basic health care. It may even be that one could make less then that and still be able to afford it, I’m just pulling out a comfortable amount.

    Wubbly, whatever kind of liberal androgonyous name that is, have any of your partners ever used birth control? Cause if so you’re a whore.

  27. Heidi said:

    Spongebob – The difference is that there’s no debate about covering medications for migraines, diabetes, auto immune and arthritic joint pains. For some reason, birth control IS an issue.

  28. wubbly said:

    The left used to be satisfied to advocate for social accomodation for the actual needy. Now the Ivy League need subsidized birth control. This will not end well.

  29. Jake said:

    wubbly, at what point is “the government” paying for ANYTHING in this case? This is about the health insurance provided to students by a private institution, and what minimums it should be required to meet.

  30. Heidi said:

    Health insurance that the students pay for as a part of their tuition, meanwhile. When did this debate get twisted to make some commentators like wubbly and Spongebob to think that Obama’s Department of Wanton Sex will be handing every woman in the United States over the age of 12 a pack of birth control pills every month?

  31. swish said:

    Wubbly, answer the question about whether you think the government is paying for anything.

    Also, you still haven’t answered my question about whether your partners or you have ever used birth control. If so, you realize that insurance companies likely paid a portion of that bill, right? And that under Rush’s logic that woman is a whore (but the man isn’t cause men will be men?).

  32. wubbly said:

    Good point. I made a leap of faith, if you will, extrapolating to the obvious conclusions of ObamaCare. That when employers do not cover whatever the gov’t again deems “correct,” they will be forced to via fine or diktat. To your point, Jake, a private Catholic institution that is opposed to birth control on doctrinal religious grounds (read: freedom of speech/association, 1st Amendment) is NOT obliged to provide it in a suite of student healthcare options.

  33. wubbly said:

    And swish, it’s none of your bee’s wax if my partners used BC. Did you attend a Jesuit school, given your fondness for inquisition?
    Any contractual arrangement made between two free persons is OK by me. Other people’s sexual activities are of no concern to me. But the Catholic Church should not be forced to pay for them.

  34. Heidi said:

    Wubbly, I find two problems with your presumption. No one is asking the Catholic church to pay for anything except when they go beyond the reigns of a religious institution and become a business institution. If they employ or educate non-Catholics, that’s when they would have to pay for standard medical care (including birth control).

    If we let individual employers pick and choose what kinds of coverage they would provide based on religious feelings, the could deny coverage of blood transfusions, psychiatric care, ANY “medicine” (regardless what it’s used for), or anesthesia.

    Let’s face it – birth control is only a concern because of an idea that women on birth control are sluts (as so eloquently put by Rush), not because you’re advocating for religious freedom.

  35. wubbly said:

    Heidi that’s ridiculous. If Georgetown is going to enter into some kind of group health insurance policy for its students, leveraging its size and funding, they control what they will and will not cover. For ANY procedure or medicine. They may not chose to cover cancer treatment or whatever. It’s Georgetown’s decision. It is certainly not the government’s job to force them to cover what the government chooses for them. If Georgetown’s religious doctrine informs them not to cover birth control, they don’t have to. The progressive left discredits itself with such emotive arguments that have nothing to do with the free speech questions at hand. Please try again.

  36. swish said:

    Oh, look at you wubbly, getting all defensive when someone tries to pry into your sex life. Makes you uncomfortable to be judged, doesn’t it?

    Look, I grew up Catholic (and yes, I’m your classic cafeteria Catholic at the moment, but I like to think of it as a healthy religious journey). And like many Catholics nowadays, I’m having a crisis of faith at the moment given the current political climate and the church’s role in it all. It used to be that the more evangelical Christian faiths played a bigger role in the political arena and in trying to foist their beliefs on others, but no more.

    The church will not have to pay for birth control. Private insurance companies will. That’s what compromise is all about. Compromise doesn’t mean the church gets to dictate what non-Catholics do with their bodies.

  37. wubbly said:

    I don’t care about your sex life or your religion because they are irrelevant to this discussion. As are my religion and sex life. I’m not being defensive. I’m simply not indulging your red herrings. No one “forced” Ms. Fluke to attend law school or Georgetown. Surely she was familiar with the school’s history and affiliations. If birth control coverage was a front burner issue with her, she could have gone to whatever non-Catholic institution suited her. The Catholic church in no way “dictated” Ms. Fluke options. If Georgetown’s students and employees knowingly and freely become part of that institution, they are obliged to follow the tenets of what is a Catholic institutions whose opinions on matters of reproduction have been established for centuries. Whose identity is more threated here: a religious institution being forced by government to abrogate a founding religious principle central to its followers relationship to God — or the law student who could attend another school, pay out of pocket for her own danged expenses or just do something else with her life completely. There is no “compromise” here at all. The left is insisting that Catholics break their covenant with God or shut their doors.

  38. swish said:

    The discussion of individual sex lives and religion became relevant to the overall contraception “debate” when Rush started calling Fluke a “slut” and a “prostitute” essentially based on his assumption that she and her partner are sexually active (which wasn’t even brought up in her testimony, by the way).

    And again, the church will not directly be paying for anything. Insurance companies will. Insurance companies are by in large not affiliated with any religious institution as far as I know.

    I only bring up my individual religious beliefs because conservatives like to make it seem like liberals all hate religion or something which is just not the case. I know some pretty loud, obnoxious atheists who insist that they are intellectually superior to those who believe in God, and that bothers me. But again, they are entitled to their opinion.

    Churches don’t have to give their blessing to those having premarital sex. No one is asking them to do that.

  39. wubbly said:

    How in your mind is Georgetown not paying for this? As a Georgetown employee (or any employee) healthcare benefits are included as a part of overall compensation. As a student, the school no doubt provides clinics and subsidized care — if only because they have a large student body with whom they can negotiate with providers. Progressive liberals like to make it seem like procedures that involved highly paid doctors and expensive medicines are somehow costless, should be run by the government and are a natural right akin to free speech and association.

  40. swish said:

    When you pay into a larger insurance system, there are always going to be certain individual medications or medical procedures that you aren’t going to always agree with 100 percent.

    If you don’t like it, why don’t you pay out of pocket for all medical services or opt out of health insurance plans in your place of employment.

    Just like my point earlier that I don’t agree with smoking. Does that mean that I don’t want people who smoke to be eligible for health care? Of course not, because I’m compassionate to the fact that they have an addiction and the fact that the smoker is perhaps paying for my annual physical exam even though they don’t care whether I live or die.

  41. Heidi said:

    Wubbly – Likely, premiums would actually go DOWN because unplanned pregnancies cost more than regular birth control. Birth control is even considered preventive medicine in some plans.

    I think you need to do some research before you talk about who’s paying for what. The students are actually subsidizing the university’s doctrine.

  42. wubbly said:

    There is a remedy for nonsmoking policy holders with respect to smokers — smokers pay higher premiums in exchange for their choice to smoke. Your compassion for them is economically meaningless.
    This is not a matter of whether I personally agree with what’s covered. It’s a matter of a religious institution being forced by the progressive left to cast off their religious obligations for the greater good.
    The First Amendment used to mean something to journalists. It used to be, “I may disagree with what you say, but I will fight to the death for your right to say it.” Now the progressive left’s slogan is, “Shut up and pay.”

  43. wubbly said:

    So, Heidi, you think the Church’s position on birth control is based upon economics? Uh, it’s not me that needs to do the research here.
    Yes, the students are paying to attend A CATHOLIC university. If they don’t want to abide by the Catholic’s rules, they should go somewhere else rather than try to force the Catholics to play by their rules.

  44. swish said:

    I 100 percent believe that anyone has the right to say what they like. Otherwise I’d be demanding your IP address was banned from posting here simply because I disagree with you.

  45. wubbly said:

    How Stalinist of you. I guess I cannot believe what I want though. The business I run should pay employees to do whatever they decide is their right with my money.

  46. swish said:

    Ah. I need to get back to focusing on my work. I’m not agreeing with you, but I’m acknowledging that you clearly aren’t going to change your mind and I’m not going to either.

    So yeah. On to me being worked up about something else.

  47. Heidi said:

    No, but you seem to think that the university/Catholics would be paying for birth control. I’m telling you that including birth control in the plan would probably make the premiums drop. Just dismissing your argument they they would be paying for it.

  48. Jerkstore said:

    vanderleun got owned