Friday, January 28, 2011

Your Federal Dollars and What Constitutes Rape

The Scream by Edvard Munch and Bettina Tizzy

This afternoon I happened on an article, posted on Facebook by a friend, that just about made me apoplectic.

The House GOP's Plan to Redefine Rape

was published today in that Leftist-so-far-around-the-bend-they-are-really-Muslim-Nazis magazine Mother Jones. It details the newly submitted House Bill HR 3, literally titled No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act.

The language of this bill is striking, as regards sexual acts that could potentially render women pregnant against their will or despite their inability to successfully carry a child to term who would then remain in their care. Some types of rape and incest just don't count for federal dollars spent on healthcare according to this bill. Namely, acts of rape that do not involve force that don't count: sexual acts on drugged or unconscious women who cannot give consent to sex, let alone impregnation, sexual acts on women who lack the mental capacity, i.e. they are mentally retarded, or so severely hampered in intellectual capacity that they do not understand the actions that they are asked to engage in. That's right, unless you're demonstrably harmed, it's not really enough rape, folks. Drug related date rape, unless the woman presumably was beaten to a pulp, would not meet the standard. Incest, for a woman over the age of 18, does not either. (Problem? Hmmm. I can think of circumstances in which really sicko fathers have forced incestuous sex on their daughters well past adulthood, even for decades as in the case of Elizabeth F, held hostage by her father for decades and forced to father six children with him.) The ultimate slap from Bachmann and company on this bill? In many states, rape is not categorized as forcible or non-forcible. (Wow, you mean rape is just rape in some states? OMGosh you are kidding me? Really?) That leaves open the possibility that if a state doesn't specify a difference between forcible and non-forcible rape that they may not be able to use any federal healthcare dollars on abortion in that state.

Outcomes that I can foresee if this little gem is passed by our Republican House? (Edited to note: And not retooled by our spineless Democratic Senate.)

1) The number of welfare children will increase, because guess what, if you can't afford a private pay abortion, you cannot afford to raise a child.

2) The overall educational level to be obtained by all these not-quite-raped-enough women will be curtailed and thus their earning potential will be curtailed and they will be more reliant on the welfare and other public assistance that the Republicans so despise and say we must eliminate. It's the perfect storm- more poor women, less public assistance. I'm-a thinkin' that likely equals still more babies. How 'bout you?

3) The number of children entering foster care will likely increase because, in general, people who don't really want babies usually don't do an especially fine job with taking care of babies. (Being unhappy because you were raped and had a baby from that rape might have a few correlations with subsequent substance abuse and mental health issues like depression. It might leave you a little edgy on the whole mommy thing.)

4) If there are two classes of rape and only one deserves our federal dollars for assistance in terminating an unwanted pregnancy that stemmed from a rape, exactly how long will it be before women start hearing that "that wasn't really rape"? How long before laws start to change, or at least enforcement of them changes because of this perception? How long before maybe that guy who dumped roofies in that girl's drink at that club gets to drag her to the alley or his car and have the not-so-bad rape sex with her and get away with it? How long before that's not rape but the woman's fault for drinking at a bar? Hey, if she'd been with a male relative, who drove for her, this never would have happened, right? Maybe she should not go out. Maybe she shouldn't dress that way. Maybe she should never be anywhere alone with a man. Maybe she was asking for it. Yeah, asking for that rum with coca cola clearly meant I want to have your baby, dude!

All I can say is that if Republicans want to force women to bear children of rape, every damn one of them had better line up and start taking in those children. Representative Bachmann, you get two, honey! That's right, you adopt those rape babies, you a**holes, so that these women can get own with their education, their youth, their longterm care, their lives. Let them recover as they wish.

Don't try to make the choice to abort after rape a privilege available only to people with the money to pay for it.

© Bright Nepenthe, 2011

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