Patriarchy? What patriarchy? I was saying to my good lady wife just the other day how impressed I was that she’d got herself a job, and that with the odd exception, her housekeeping hadn’t suffered. I did have to mention that a little more effort in the bedroom wouldn’t go amiss. Frankly, I’m of a mind to ban grooming and beauty treatments until things improve.

What? We’re a long way from equality? Nonsense!

Equal pay? OK. I’ll give you that one. There’s still work to be done. They do keep nipping off to have kids though, don’t they?

Women in positions of power? Look, we’re getting there. There must surely be some good women for the boardroom - they’re just so hard to find. Don’t you think? At the school gates? Ah now, there’s an idea.

Sovereigns of their own bodies? Of course they are! Do you know that in 1970s it became possible to be convicted of raping one’s own wife? How’s that for women’s lib? These days a chap has to cajole, bribe and blackmail to get access to one’s own property. Outrageous!

Abortion? Well, that’s a terrible thing. But not my problem. My youth? Unprotected sex? Of course! It can all get a bit energetic at that age. Unwanted pregnancy? How would I know? Up to the woman really.

Oh? Not allowed in the States any more? Hmmm…that’ll be those Christians. Po-faced lot. Swerve them at parties, if I were you. They take that sort of thing very seriously. As I said, not my problem.

Religion and the State? Good lord. I’ve never given it any thought. Women in university? Now that you mention it - there are rather a lot of fillies in tertiary education. Are they taking places from chaps? Tithing? You mean another tax? I think I pay enough. What? No working on Sunday? What - even the poor people? Who’ll make brunch? Or park the car? Masturbat… look. What business is this of yours? A sin you you say? Well you can go forth and multiply, my friend. If a chap fancies a hand shandy, that’s between him and his laundry-wallah.

I have Christian friends, and Muslim friends. Agnostics, atheists, there’s even a chap with a hint of the Buddha about him. I’m all for it. I was brought up as a Christian myself. Only my opinion, but the search for meaning tends to be universal and is, in my experience, not exclusionary.

I enjoy and welcome all faiths and religions. It’s a wonderful discourse.

However, entwining any religion with the state necessitates passing edicts that impose articles of faith on those without faith. That’s authoritarian. It runs contrary to the very essence of the USA.

If there are elements of Christianity who wish to form a Taliban, very well, but I won’t stand silent.

In our modern world, if we are to successfully coexist, we can only do so by accepting that every person has sovereignty over themselves. A woman must have the right to determine for herself whether to bear a child or not. You might believe pregnancy is an act of God. That’s your choice, protected by the laws of the USA. Her choice should be protected too.

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