Saturday, October 6, 2018

Republicans On Record On Rape

                                                                                                written 29 September 2018
                                                                                                published 6 October 2018

            Republicans have worked for decades to appoint a Supreme Court majority to insure extremist "Christian" social values and corporate dominance. They held up Obama's Supreme Court choice for more than a year, and are now rushing consideration of Justice Kavanaugh before the midterms.  But the hurried confirmation process has been upset, and the FBI will investigate allegations of sexual misconduct, including attempted rape, by three women.  Rather than taking the time to make sure about this candidate, who is appointed for life, Republicans accuse Democrats of unfair scrutiny over past "misdeeds".  
            For decades, Republicans leaders have minimized rape allegations, trivializing the accuser.  On March 25, 1990, Clayton Williams, gubernatorial candidate in Texas, said this about rape: "If it's inevitable, just relax and enjoy it."1  But rape is not about sex.  It is about misogyny: power and domination over women.  Rape has often been discussed within the issue of abortion, as even people who are generally opposed to abortion feel there should be an exception for cases of rape or incest.  But Republicans are opposed to those exceptions, based on pervasive fiction.
            April 20, 1995, North Carolina State Representative Henry Aldridge said: "The facts show that people who are raped - who are truly raped - the juices don't flow, the body functions don't work and they don't get pregnant. Medical authorities agree that this is a rarity, if ever."2
            1998, Arizona State Senator Fay Boozman said: "It is rare for women to get pregnant during rape because their fear triggers hormonal changes that block contraception, God's little shield."3
            March, 2008, Pennsylvania State Representative Stephen Freind said: "The odds that a woman who is raped will get pregnant are one in million and millions and millions ..... the traumatic experience of rape causes a woman to secrete a certain secretion that tends to kill sperm."4  
            August 19, 2012, Missouri Congressman Todd Akin said: "If it is a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to shut that whole thing down."5
            March 1, 2013, California Assemblywoman Celeste Greig said: "The percentage of pregnancies due to rape is small because it's an act of violence, because the body is traumatized."6  
            June 11, 2013, Arizona Congressman Trent Franks said: "Because, you know, the incidence of rape resulting in pregnancy is very low."7
            February 25, 2016, Idaho State Representative Pete Nielsen said: "I'm of the understanding that in many cases of rape it does not involve any pregnancy because of the trauma of the incident."8  
            This Republican anti-science bias is in conflict with the real world, where 1 of every 20 rapes produces pregnancy, around the same rate as consensual sex.  But if a woman is unlucky enough to find herself in that 5%, Republican values, masquerading as "Christian", further traumatize her.
            April 5, 2011, Idaho State Senator Brent Crane said: "The hand of the Almighty is at work.  His ways are higher than our ways.  He has the ability to take difficult, tragic, horrific circumstances and then turn them into wonderful examples."9
            January 20, 2012, Pennsylvania Senator and Presidential candidate Rick Santorum said: "The right approach is to accept this horrible created, in the sense of rape, but nevertheless ... a gift of human life, and accept what God is giving you."10
            August 20, 2012, Arkansas Governor Mike Huchabee said: "Even those horrible, horrible tragedies of rape... life has come and sometimes, you know, those people are able to do extraordinary things."11 
            October 23, 2012, Indiana Senate candidate Richard Mourdock said: "When life begins with that horrible situation of rape, that is something that God intended to happen."12  
            February 5, 2015, West Virginia State delegate Brian Kurcaba said: "Obviously rape is awful.  What is beautiful is the child that could come from this."13
            May 4, 2016, Missouri State Representative Tila Hubrecht said: "Sometimes bad things happen -- horrible things, but sometimes God can give us a silver lining through the birth of a child."14  
            Like "thoughts and prayers" offered after every mass shooting, these comforts don't include any real support or legislation.  This consistent Republican stance on rape is one reason for the gender gap for the GOP.  For some reason, women don't buy this.
            Quotes gathered from