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A Plea for Menstruation Without Taxation

For as much as our society disdains women on their periods, we sure are reaping the benefits of their bloody, bloody suffering.
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Feminine hygiene
Feminine hygiene

On the sixth day, God (allegedly) created Man. Then he created Woman, and then He proceeded to punish that woman for not explicitly following his instructions, thereby setting a precedent in which women are punished for every little infraction or, sometimes, for no reason at all.

Several D.C. lawmakers are currently in the process of introducing a bill that will lift taxes on tampons and other feminine hygiene products. Experts estimate that women in California alone spend $20 million annually on taxes for feminine products. Which is clearly ridiculous. Getting taxed on your period is kind of like going to a restaurant, being served something you didn't order, and then being told that you have to tip anywhere between four and nine percent.

Americans are not exactly known for being chill about unfair taxes, and yet women have thus far refrained from dumping crates of tampons into Boston Harbor. Primarily because we actually use those things and secondarily because each individual tampon can only absorb between six and eighteen milliliters, so they'd be largely ineffective against the entirety of the Atlantic Ocean.

For women, getting a period constitutes many things: a feminine rite of passage, a normal biological function, a monthly excuse not to wear real pants. One thing menstruating is not, though, is a "luxury." And yet, women who use food stamps are forbidden from using their federal aid towards buying feminine hygiene products, as these are not considered necessities.

For as much as our society disdains women on their periods, we sure are reaping the benefits of their bloody, bloody suffering.

So while we wait for 40 states to get their respective acts together and stop punishing women for doing what women are biologically programmed to do, here are some suggestions of what women in California could have spent their $20 million on.

  • Covering some of the wage gap. I'd have to do the math on this, but I imagine every woman in the country will get at least a few fractions of a cent in restitution.
  • Buying 571 Tesla Model 3s (starting at $35,000 each). And then crashing them into each other in the desert.
  • Building more abortion centers for all their pals over in Texas. You know, because the fully functioning ones they had in place weren't cutting it by idiot standards.
  • One very kick-ass, cross-country pool party.
  • Electing more female politicians into office. Laws like this one are only upheld because women are still not accurately reflected in government.
  • A really sweet pad in a centralized location.

Written by Ilana Gordon. This post originally appeared on

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