American Culture

Urgent: stand up for a rapist’s right to choose [trigger warning, as if that’s not obvious]

Paul Manship's bronze, Eve (#1)

Seriously, how could you not “rape” this?

The Sanctity of Human Life Act is back.

In a new year only 3 days old at the time, Rep. Paul Ryan, fresh from seeing his chances at VP aborted, wasted no time trying to breathe life back into the Sanctity of Human Life Act.

As reported by Laura Beck at Jezebel:

But now it’s baaaaack, which is scary because not only is the above terrifying, there’s all sorts of other creepy shit hidden in this monster. Like, if a woman who was raped in a state that banned abortions went to a state that didn’t ban abortions and had an abortion? Her rapist could theoretically sue to stop the abortion from happening, and probably win. And it doesn’t stop there with the reproductive weirdness, if passed, it’ll probably make many forms of IVF illegal.

As of today he has sponsored zero bills and has only co-sponsored this one according to the data available at  We can see where his priorities are, and they clearly aren’t focused on the economy, thank goodness.  I can understand, however much I may disagree, how pro-life/personhood advocates are so zealous on the issue.  As a matter of faith, I’m sure it’s of paramount importance to them.  But seriously, the assault on the other rights of women really needs to come to an end.

For the sake of argument, let’s just assume for a moment that even when a woman becomes pregnant from rape she shouldn’t have any say, legally, morally, ethically, or otherwise over the fate of her body or the undesired progeny of a rapist, replete with all of the possible genetic predisposition to sociopathic traits it may have instilled in it by the rapist’s insinuation of DNA into the mix.  How in the ever living fuck does this translate into a violent criminal’s right to intervene in the legal proceedings involving his victim’s rights, or lack thereof, before the law?

Stop.  Right there.  Let’s cut right to the chase here.  When a rapist decides to obstruct his victim’s access to abortion, let’s be really clear about what’s happening.  This isn’t a morally ambiguous character in some graphic crime drama generated by Hollywood.  We are talking about a man who, for a host of pathological reasons, takes it upon himself to overcome a woman’s objections by spewing his diseased sperm into her body.  Suddenly we’re to believe that this paragon of virtue is only interested in preserving the life of a zygote he created without the consent of the incubator he raped?  No.

Whoever may have standing in such a case, the rapist is the very last person who should have it.  This is not about fatherhood.  This is about a violent sociopath asserting more power over his victim, but this time, to compound injury with injury, it is legal power, the power to have his victim faced by police with guns, the power to have his victim caged like an animal, the power to potentially ruin her finances, her self-sufficiency.

Think that far-fetched? Then I humbly submit that you are not following the ramifications.  A rape victim, served with a subpoena or an injunction, runs afoul of the legal process stacked against her by not playing according to the rules established for her by people more sympathetic to the rights of a rapist than they are to her suffering as a victim.  At some point, a police officer will be involved.  Should she resist enough, she faces the very real and tangible risk of being tased or looking down the barrel of a drawn weapon, to say nothing of charges ranging from resisting arrest to assaulting a police officer, depending on just how adamantly she defends herself from this incursion by the state into her womb, all because a man forced his semen into her against her will.  Taken into custody, she will most certainly be behind bars, whether for an hour, a day, a week, or longer.  Getting out under any circumstances other than solely on her own recognizance will result in costs.

So, again, assume that the birth of the child is the singlemost important outcome in your worldview.  Just how many other ways do you feel it necessary to violate this woman’s person?

Of course, it’s not just Paul Ryan who, one might imagine, feels that his inner Fortress of Rectitude looks suspiciously like the walls of a vagina defended by the pristine Gates of Labia, both major and minor.  He is but one knight at this round table, lance at the ready.  King Arthur, in this demented twist of chivalry, is Paul Broun of Georgia.  The other knights that stand tall and proud in their desire to plant flags for Christendom in vaginas across the country are: John Carter (TX), Michael Conaway (TX), Blake Farenthold (TX), John Fleming (LA), Trent Franks (AZ), Bob Gibbs (OH), Phil Gingrey (GA), Tim Huelskamp (KS), Walter Jones (NC), John Kline (MN), Stephen Palazzo (MS), Stevan Pearce (NM), Martha Roby (AL), David Roe (TN), Harold Rogers (KY), Lee Terry (NE), and Lynn Westmoreland (GA).

What fevered impulse puts one token woman on the side of the rapist is beyond me.  Try as I might to put myself in the shoes of a pro-life zealot, I just cannot fathom this.  Maybe, in this worldview, the victim always has it coming, what with being the spiritual heir of Eve, first temptress, and bearer of a foul cesspit of wanton promiscuity.  No cry of “rape” is ever true and just.  To be cursed with a vagina is to be subject, forever, to the caprices of men.

So, since these political knights (and their fair lady) fail to see just how very personal this is to the women they prefer to beat into submission with sociopaths’ penises, let’s turn the tide for just a moment and flip their script.  Let’s make the same kind of horrid assumptions about them and their characters as they clearly make about rape victims.  It’s okay for Rush, right?  And we’re not ones for double standards, are we?

With her espousal for absolute subjection to men, one can only wonder just how lucky Ms. Roby is to not have an extensive brood of rape babies.  Has she never been alone in the presence of a man (or men) before?  Surely her vagina is clearly labeled “open for business,” right?  After all, if the “rapist” is to have the kind of rights she sponsors in this bill, we’re not actually talking about “legitimate rape” and we are indeed talking about the prerogatives of genuine and authentic fatherhood.  That kind of willingness to fully embrace the personal responsibility for what goes into her vagina, even without her express consent, must be an aphrodisiac to every swinging dick within 500 feet, and who is she to say no or allege rape, after the fact?  With that kind of spiritual purity, one might be led to think that her well-trafficked bed is the best kept secret in town.  Just how did she fund her election, anyway?

As for the men in this Society for the Creative Protection of Rapists, we may be led to wonder as to the ultimate source of their defense.  Could it be that each and every single one of these gentlemen has a problem with understanding the nature of consent?  Could it be that, according to the definition of rape as updated by the FBI, every single one of these men is a rapist with a vested interest in protecting the rights of their kind?

As long as people of this particularly troglodytic bent keep calling the shots, we may never, ever know for sure.  Me?  Were I to have a daughter, I think I’d make sure she gave all of these politicians and their associates a wide berth.


Image credit: Photo of Paul Manship’s bronze, Eve (#1) by cliff1066, licensed under Creative Commons.

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