As a victim of date rape, I am FURIOUS over the GOP bill attempting to redefine rape and limit access to federal aid for abortions in certain cases. This is a moment when you can hear the collective outrage and questions of “What were they thinking?” Do the lawmakers behind this kind of absurdity think their wives, daughters, mothers, etc., are safe and immune from this kind of trauma? The Huffington Post, along with many other media outlets, breaks it down. A blog on our site by agitation also breaks it down thoroughly, with good feedback.
The focus of the proposed bill is completely misguided. Protecting women and girls from unwanted pregnancies as a result of rape or coercion should be an undiluted national goal. However, it is not. This issue comes down to one basic thing: money. If federal dollars are of such concern, then they should stop throwing billions of it at the war machine in Afghanistan and Iraq. But they won’t. So they’re trying to take a piece from Medicaid, affecting women and girls who should rightfully have access to those funds? Unbelievable!
The discourse about not being able to define "forcible rape" is equally frustrating. Any person who is drugged, forced, or coerced is a victim. No means NO! Period. One thing many men fear more than anything is forcible rape. They might be safe from worrying about unwanted pregnancy, but the shame and trauma is a real factor, and they know it. Men trying to limit a woman's access to choice is a battle we will NEVER stop fighting. Women are the true warriors of this movement, not the men who think they have any clue what it's like to be put in this position.
Speak up about this issue. Sign the petition from MoveOn.org and share it with your friends and family. I did. This bill can't advance because even though Republicans are always saying they want less government interference with a woman's right to choose, this is clearly the government intruding on a personal matter. We will fight this one and every other insane piece of legislation that comes after it. Don't be afraid to share your thoughts, your story and to protest. That's how we stay in control and resilient for the next battle.
Dr. Appelbaum is a certifiable, if self-trained, doctor of love, lust and of those things often found to resemble amour. She takes your questions at firstname.lastname@example.org