“Half of the population should not be financially penalized for their needs.
This is unbelievable. California and other states (see below) want to make women have to pay taxes on necessary items for women like tampons and other necessities we must buy monthly. As women are already underpaid, it is not fair for women to have to pay for something that is out of our control.
Just as food, shelter, health care and the like are necessities and should not be taxed. Nor should items related to women and our monthly ‘visitor’ aka our menstrual cycle be something we are further punished for by having to pay additional money most of us don’t have, for products we require.
Trust me, this isn’t something any woman desires or chooses with pleasure to go through every month. Who are these out of touch law makers that care so little about our basic rights and needs?
In the following article it is discussed how we need these needed items to maintain cleanliness and prevent infections, rash and infections. One thing the article fails to mention, though, is that
by adding taxes to this necessity it not only creates a fiscal burden which too many of us struggle with, but also by not being able to access required items such as pads, tampons, pain relievers…; we are being insulted. Lawmakers are putting us below them, rather, trying to.
They are trying to make us feel below them by saying it’s okay to risk our health. By attempting to make us feel unclean and unworthy; we cannot stand for that, we deserve equal treatment at the very least. Denying us access to health care products is an attempt to demoralize us, one that I refuse to let work.
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The Merriam-Webster online dictionary gives the primary definition of “necessity” as a quality or state of being necessary. In common usage, everyday items deemed essential such as food taken to go, hygiene products, and certain sterile medical products are considered necessities. In states that have sales tax, many of these items are not taxed. Such is not the case for female hygiene products such as tampons and pads.
Like food, sanitation and hygiene are necessary. Females can testify that these products are so indispensible to them because they prevent great health risks, keep conditions sanitary, and allow a woman to perform day-to-day tasks without being burdened by the weight of these very health and sanitary impositions.
Biologically, when the menstrual fluid leaves the body, it can get contaminated with the body’s innate organisms. Without tampons or pads, bacteria can multiply and lead to conditions like infections, skin rashes, and at its worst, urinary tract infections, proving to be a peril to life itself on the most basic level. These items are a necessity because life without them would be unthinkably difficult.
With that in mind, women are also more likely to live under the poverty line. For every dollar that a man earns, a woman working the same job makes 78 cents. Basic necessities become harder to afford, especially with this tax in place. Half of the population should not be financially penalized for their needs.
Currently, after much protest and petitioning, Canada and five U.S. states, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Minnesota, and Maryland have decided to exempt tampons and pads from sales tax. California is not one of these states.
Historically, California was the only state in the U.S. to pass AB 1088 back in 1995, taking a step towards preventing gender discrimination and prohibiting business establishments from basing the prices of services and products on a person’s gender. However, there is still work left to be done to provide equal consideration and rights for people of all genders. California should be next in considering items such as tampons and pads a necessity and exempting such products from a tax.
The Merriam Webster online dictionary also provides a secondary definition for “necessity” as “an urgent need or desire”. There is an urgent need and a desire for this injustice known as “the pink tax” to be stopped. In a country founded upon equal morals, one whose constitution claims, “liberty and justice for all” justice is not being served to all when fifty percent of the population is still currently being taxed.
Simply put, taxing Californians who menstruate every couple of weeks and those who identify as female for their necessary products is unjust.