On Tuesday, Texas state senator Wendy Davis took to the floor to filibuster Senate Bill 5, which would restrict abortions to 20 weeks of pregnancy and mandate certain safety requirements for clinics that perform them. She was joined in the chamber by a rowdy mob who, though the filibuster itself failed, succeeded in delaying the vote on the bill until just after midnight, thus negating it and ending the special legislative session.
The filibuster and mob tactics drew national media attention and subsequent fawning admiration. Internet memes were (ironically) birthed. Probably the simplest and most powerful shows Davis with a dragon on her shoulder.
For my non-geek readers, this is an adaptation of Daenerys Targaryen
, from HBO’s Game of Thrones
. The character is a teenage female who is sole heir to her family’s dynasty and becomes leader of a vast army partly through the power and majesty of her three newly hatched dragons. Whether you agree with her or not, the image and comparison is striking.
Unfortunately, it’s also hilariously wrong. Daenerys suffered through famine and death in the wilderness and freed hundreds of thousands of slaves from bustling slaver ports in the fantasy realm of Essos. Wendy Davis, on the other hand, stood up for a few hours in an air conditioned, well-furnished legislative chamber in order to ensure that the wanton slaughter of viable unborn children would go on unimpeded.
Actually, there is a much more apt comparison for Wendy Davis in Game of Thrones: Joffrey Baratheon, the uncontrollably violent boy king. Specifically in one episode of the second season, Joffrey orders all black-haired young boys in the city, from infants to teens, slaughtered in order to prevent possible bastard offspring of his late father from challenging his own claim to the throne. The ensuing montage of infanticide is brutal to watch, but that fictional horror doesn’t even come close to what goes on in abortion clinics across the country on a daily basis. Wendy Davis is now the face of this morbid crusade. All that’s missing is the golden antlered crown