The real Republican rape platform

My latest on Mourdock, Republicans and rape in the Guardian:

Some Republicans, like Mitt Romney, have tried to distance themselves from their party’s rhetorical obsession with sexual violation. What they’re hoping we won’t notice is the fact that their party is politically committed to sexual violation.

Opposition to abortion in all cases – rape, incest, even to save the pregnant woman’s life or health – is written into the Republican party platform. Realizing they can’t make abortion illegal overnight, conservatives instead rally around smaller initiatives like mandatory waiting periods, transvaginal ultrasounds and mandated lectures about “life” to make abortion as expensive, difficult and humiliating as possible.

Republicans bow to the demands of “pro-life” organizations, not a single one of which supports even birth control, and the GOP now routinely opposes any effort to make birth control or sexual education available and accessible. They propose laws that would require women to tell their employers what they’re using birth control for, so that employers could determine which women don’t deserve coverage (the slutty ones who use birth control to avoid unwanted pregnancy) and which women do (the OK ones who use it for other medical reasons).

Mainstream GOP leaders, including Mitt Romney, campaign with conservative activists who lament the fact that women today no longer fully submit to the authority of their husbands and fathers, mourn a better time when you could legally beat your wife, and celebrate the laws of places like Saudi Arabia where men are properly in charge. Senate Republicans, including Republican vice-presidential candidate Paul Ryan and “legitimate rape” Todd Akin, blocked the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act. And Ryan and Akin joined forces again to propose “personhood” legislation in Washington, DC that would define a fertilized egg as a person from the moment sperm meets egg, outlawing abortion in all cases and many forms of contraception, and raising some serious questions about how, exactly, such a law would be enforced.

Underlying the Republican rape comments and actual Republican political goals are a few fundamental convictions: first, women are vessels for childbearing and care-taking; second, women cannot be trusted; and third, women are the property of men.

Full piece here.


Similar Posts (automatically generated):

About Jill

Jill began blogging for Feministe in 2005. She has since written as a weekly columnist for the Guardian newspaper and in April 2014 she was appointed as senior political writer for Cosmopolitan magazine.
This entry was posted in Politics, Reproductive Rights, Sexual Assault and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

88 Responses to The real Republican rape platform

  1. SunlessNick says:

    I don’t get how so many people take the Mourdocks of this world seriously when they claim that “the resulting pregnancy is part of God’s plan” does not entail the rape itself being part of it.

    • eteokretan says:

      Taken literally (pregnancy intended, rape not intended), this argument would mean that god saw a woman raped and then made a conscious decision to get her pregnant. After she was raped.

      Taken literally, that’s a pretty good argument for (a) god not being the cause of the pregnancy (if you assume that god is good), or (b) god having an evil streak.

      • SunlessNick says:

        Yeah, and a wide streak at that. “It’s God’s plan” is perfectly fine as a way to come to terms with your own trauma, but not when imposing it on someone else as the only way they get to cope with their trauma.

      • SunlessNick says:

        Yeah, and a wide streak at that.

        “It’s God’s plan” is perfectly fine as a way to come to terms with your own trauma, but not when imposing it on someone else as the only way they get to cope with their trauma.

  2. doberman says:

    And Ryan and Akin joined forces again to propose “personhood” legislation in Washington, DC that would define a fertilized egg as a person from the moment sperm meets egg

    I’m curious as to what the feminist position is of when a person becomes a person then?

    The joining of sperm and egg seems to me to be the defining moment of personhood. Anything before, and you’ve got a large number of sperm and so no distinct person as every sperm is different. Anything after the sperm meeting the egg is just further development from that base point, so it’s also impossible to define personhood after.

    • Meghan says:

      A cell is not a person, nor is a blastocyst, zygote, embryo, or fetus; they all have the potential to become a person.

      If you’re interested in defining when personhood begins, define a person first. Then see where to draw the line.

    • Alara Rogers says:

      When does a blueprint become a building? When does a wireframe model become a software product? When does the outline of a manuscript become a book?

      We are generally in agreement that a detailed plan for the construction of a thing is not the thing itself. We are also generally in agreement that when enough of the thing has been constructed that it generally functions like the thing it is going to be, then it is that thing. So a blueprint is a building when it has a roof and walls, a wireframe model is a software product when it’s released in beta, and an outline becomes a book when a draft is sent to a publisher. But none of those things are what they will be when they are merely in the design and planning stage.

      A single cell is a blueprint for the creation of a human. To confuse that blueprint with an actual human is to completely erase the work of the person whose job it is to turn that blueprint into a human… always a person who is in possession of a uterus. We erase the work women perform all the time, so it’s unsurprising that we try to pretend that nine months of work is nothing since it’s performed by a woman, but the truth is, every one of us was made by a woman. The genes provided by our mother and father were merely blueprints. It was our mother who built us and made us into tiny people.

      When is a mother’s work done enough to call what she’s made a person? When it can live outside her body. If it can’t do that yet, then her work cannot possibly be considered complete. And if she isn’t finished yet, then she’s under no obligation to keep doing the work. Only after her work is materially complete is the person an independent human being with rights. As long as it requires her body to keep it alive and grow it, it’s not a person yet — it’s a person being built, a person being assembled, but it is not, yet, a person.

      • EG says:

        I co-sign every single part of this.

      • doberman says:

        Why is it only a person when it’s able to live on its own outside the mother’s body? Are you saying we only grant rights to people because they are able to live by themselves without support? This argument seems to render people on life support or kidney dialysis or whatever as non-persons.

        • Jill says:

          No. It’s saying that a fertilized egg has none of the characteristics we associate with “persons,” and that the singular and only way a fertilized egg can stay alive is if it’s physically attached to a woman’s body. No other “person” has the right to physically attach themselves to another’s body without that person’s consent. If your kidneys are failing, you do not get to hook yourself up to me to use my organs.

          Also, Doberman, this stuff is easily google-able, and all of us on this website have had this same argument a million and a half times. This is an idiotic conversation, and it’s derailing, and I’m tired of it. End it now please.

        • doberman says:

          Also, Doberman, this stuff is easily google-able, and all of us on this website have had this same argument a million and a half times. This is an idiotic conversation, and it’s derailing, and I’m tired of it. End it now please.

          Very well. I am not intending to antagonise, I am pro-choice myself. I just feel that it would be useful to understand why others may be pro-life and the moral outlook behind such a position.

        • EG says:

          This argument seems to render people on life support or kidney dialysis or whatever as non-persons.

          Interestingly, dialysis machines and respirators are not actually human beings. I know this is hard to understand, but women are not machines for keeping others alive. That is the salient difference.

      • Caperton says:

        Oh, this. A dozen times this.

    • EG says:

      Anything before, and you’ve got a large number of sperm and so no distinct person as every sperm is different.

      Very telling that prior to the meeting of sperm and egg, you can imagine only the existence of sperm.

      Anything after the sperm meeting the egg is just further development from that base point, so it’s also impossible to define personhood after.

      The second part of that sentence does not follow logically from the first. When does brain activity begin? Birth is a pretty clear before and after process, as well. Going earlier, there’s the moment of implantation, which is actually when a woman is, medically speaking, considered to be pregnant. If we want to be traditional, quickening has been usually considered to be the beginning of the fetus-as-person in Western Europe.

      I find the personhood debate to be pretty meaningless, because no person at any stage of development has the right to use a woman’s body against her will and without her consent, but claiming that the meeting of sperm and egg is the only possible time that personhood could begin is absurd.

      • DonnaL says:

        How much longer are we going to have to deal with doberman’s massive idiocy?

      • doberman says:

        I find the personhood debate to be pretty meaningless, because no person at any stage of development has the right to use a woman’s body against her will and without her consent

        I agree, and this is why I am pro-choice. But not everyone is going to agree that a mother’s right to bodily autonomy overrides the right of a person to life (if they believe that the fertilised egg is in fact a person), so the personhood debate is still very important.

        but claiming that the meeting of sperm and egg is the only possible time that personhood could begin is absurd.

        If you think hard about it, it is the only possible time. All the other possible definitions have all sorts of complications. If you define personhood as when brain activity starts… what about people with medical conditions that remove their brain activity? Does this make them non-persons? Birth is completely arbitrary — the baby after birth is physically exactly the same as it was a few hours earlier in the womb.

        But indeed it seems equally arbitrary to grant rights on the simple basis of being “alive” in biological terms. People in general have a number of characteristics that make their rights meaningful to them. Emotions, desires and so forth. This is how I have liked to conceptualise rights and morality in the past, but these days I find it rather lacking. For example, people can have medical conditions that remove their emotions and desires, and yet we still assign them human rights. If someone has a genuine desire to die, we still deem it immoral for them to be killed (by themself or someone else).

        In the end, it is all very confusing.

        • Past my expiration date says:

          Birth is completely arbitrary — the baby after birth is physically exactly the same as it was a few hours earlier in the womb.

          You know, oddly enough, “completely arbitrary” is not at all my opinion of birth, after having given it. A few hours earlier, I was pregnant. After birth, I had a baby.

          I wouldn’t mind if somebody used the banhammer on doberman.

        • PrettyAmiable says:

          But not everyone is going to agree that a mother’s right to bodily autonomy overrides the right of a person to life (if they believe that the fertilised egg is in fact a person), so the personhood debate is still very important.

          In your bullshit dialysis comparison, why don’t you think the person’s mother is required to give her kidney to the child?

          No, it’s not important. It’s a dumb red herring people use to try to control women and falls apart instantly.

        • Rhoanna says:

          If you think hard about it, it is the only possible time. All the other possible definitions have all sorts of complications.

          Conception as the line isn’t free of complications either. Are identical twins then half a person? Are people with mosaicism actually two people?

          And then, if we get good enough at cloning, when do those people start, since there wouldn’t be a egg+sperm stage?

        • EG says:

          what about people with medical conditions that remove their brain activity? Does this make them non-persons? Birth is completely arbitrary — the baby after birth is physically exactly the same as it was a few hours earlier in the womb.

          People with no brain activity are considered brain-dead, and indeed, that removes their personhood, which is why their families can donate their organs.

          Birth is not actually arbitrary. Before birth, a woman’s body is being used as a life-support system. After birth, it is not. Again, you seem to have trouble with the idea that it is the woman who determines personhood, not anything innate in a clump of cells.

          Rest assured that I have thought about this hard and at length. You have brought nothing new to the conversation.

        • Li says:

          Birth is completely arbitrary — the baby after birth is physically exactly the same as it was a few hours earlier in the womb.

          I think you need to go back and do some more reading on pregnancy and birth. Because the baby after birth is physically different than before birth in a number of key ways. For one thing, the baby is breathing, and it’s no longer drawing its nutrient and oxygen supply through the placenta (which has both fetal and maternal components). In other words, it’s no longer physically attached to its mother.

          Fetuses aren’t just floating in the womb drawing the energy they need to grow from the aether, they’re physiologically integrated with the body of the mother, and birth involves not just expelling the fetus but also disintegrating the systems that have been used to support it during pregnancy.

        • Caperton says:

          Doberman, you’ve been told by a moderator to drop this, and you haven’t. You’re gone.

        • matlun says:

          All the other possible definitions have all sorts of complications.

          Yes. So what?

          We are talking about human life. It is a fairly complicated system, actually.

          “Conception” is actually quite a complex process also. Are we talking about zygotes here, or should we wait to grant personhood until implantation at least? And for the record, personally I find the idea of calling a microscopic clump of undifferentiated cells a person pretty absurd.

    • Andie says:

      I’m going to paraphrase a twitter conversation I had that is vaguely related

      “Where is this magical line that is crossed where one suddenly is granted human rights?”

      “I think it’s called the cervix.”

    • William says:

      I’m curious as to what the feminist position is of when a person becomes a person then?

      Why is personhood the point at which this debate must begin? To my mind its more or less irrelevant to the entire discussion. In the US we have a maternal death rate of 21 per 1000 live births, thats about a 2% chance of death (with substantially higher risks of other injuries). Pregnancy is difficult, inherently dangerous, and universally painful. If someone decides they don’t want to be pregnant there is no reasonable argument for requiring them to continue the process. “An embryo might be a person” isn’t a valid argument because there is simply no paralel demand we have in the law for someone to put themselves at that level of risk for another person. You cannot force someone to donate an organ, open their home, or give food in order to save another’s life. Those might all be noble endeavors, but they are not legally mandated because doing so would run contrary to our basic understanding of individual rights. Hell, we allow people to use deadly force to defend themselves (and sometimes their property) to avoid far less serious risks than pregnancy presents.

      Lets cut the bullshit. Any opposition to abortion begins with the assumption that the purpose of someone with a uterus is to make a baby and ends with the belief that the life of a baby is more important than the life, safety, comfort, and bodily sovereignty of the person carrying it. Everything else is just obfuscation designed to distract from a basic belief that a uterus negates the basic human rights of the holder.

      • DonnaL says:

        You cannot force someone to . . . open their home, or give food in order to save another’s life. Those might all be noble endeavors, but they are not legally mandated

        I obviously share your viewpoint, but you need to be careful pursuing that particular line of argument, because obviously the law does legally mandate that people open their homes and give food to their own children, both to save their lives and in general.

        • Alexandra says:

          I agree; I think the real point of law is that no law exists that would compel a parent to donate a kidney, or even their blood; let alone lay down their life for their child… we admire the parent who does these things, and indeed in some cases we consider it a duty (though not a legally prescribed one) for the parent to sacrifice for the child, but the law maintains that no person has the right to the use of another person’s body without their consent, even if without the use of another person’s body you would be injured or die.

        • William says:

          I obviously share your viewpoint, but you need to be careful pursuing that particular line of argument, because obviously the law does legally mandate that people open their homes and give food to their own children, both to save their lives and in general.

          Not necessarily. It isn’t terribly difficult to give a child up for adoption or abandon a child to the care of the state or a family member. It happens all the time, unfortunately, and even when the process isn’t formally done I’m not personally aware of a single prosecution or DCFS finding in the two or three dozen cases I’ve seen. More to the point here, children who have become aggressive or violent are especially easy sign away.

        • William says:

          I obviously share your viewpoint, but you need to be careful pursuing that particular line of argument, because obviously the law does legally mandate that people open their homes and give food to their own children, both to save their lives and in general.

          Not necessarily. It isn’t terribly difficult to give a child up for adoption or abandon a child to the care of the state or a family member. It happens all the time, unfortunately, and even when the process isn’t formally done I’m not personally aware of a single prosecution or DCFS finding in the two or three dozen cases I’ve seen. More to the point here, children who have become aggressive or violent are especially easy sign away.

      • Rhoanna says:

        The maternal death rate is in fact much lower, at 21 per 100,000 live births in the US (according to the CIA World Factbook). Which is 0.021%.

        The highest countries in the world, Chad and Somalia, have maternal mortality rates around 1%.

        • William says:

          The maternal death rate is in fact much lower, at 21 per 100,000 live births in the US (according to the CIA World Factbook). Which is 0.021%.

          The highest countries in the world, Chad and Somalia, have maternal mortality rates around 1%.

          And this, folks, is why I work in the humanities and not in math. Mea culpa, thanks for correcting my embarrassing oversight. I think my central point still stands (theres no reason why the Castle Doctrine shouldn’t apply to one’s own body), but yeah…I certainly fucked that up.

    • igglanova says:

      Settling on any discrete moment in development at which personhood is achieved is futile. There will never be a coherent argument, feminist or not, for any singular personhood milestone. Development simply does not work that way.

      • matlun says:

        Exactly. It is a gradual process all the way and trying to look for some bright line between the developing embryo and the grown adult is just the foolishness of a simple mind that can not handle nuance.

    • SunlessNick says:

      Anything after the sperm meeting the egg is just further development from that base point, so it’s also impossible to define personhood after.

      Further development that is entirely fueled by a woman’s body, to a generally deleterious effect on her health, even in the absence of dangerous complications.

      The personhood or non-personhood of a foetus isn’t the only measure of whether to be pro-choice – don’t forget the personhood of the woman. There is no other context in which it’s seriously argued that a right to life automatically entails a right to have another person coerced into yielding up their body for that life’s maintenance – it’s not even something we (“we” means British in my case, but it goes for America too last I looked) require of the dead – and pregnancy is not exempt from that principle, or shouldn’t be.

      • Bunny says:

        Yup! You can’t even mandate that a person donate blood – one of the least risky, least time-consuming and easiest ways of donating bodily tissue.

        People die every day due to donor organ shortages, but we still treat “opt-in” as the default for donors. We even grant this right to bodily integrity to the dead.

        And yet, somehow, when it’s a woman giving up her still-living body, suddenly her rights don’t count.

        And that’s the thing – you can actually define personhood wherever you want. Define it at conception. The right to life of one person does not override the right to bodily integrity of another.

        Also…

        When one person is incapable of making medical choices for themselves, for whatever reason, we defer the decision making to their next of kin. Which, in the case of the zygote, would be the woman carrying it, no?

  3. You guys, I really think we should lay off judging doberman so harshly just because he sincerely believes in chestburster rights.

  4. Kari says:

    Brilliant. Thank you.

  5. Alexandra says:

    Just got to plug Ta-Nehisi Coates and his excellent takedown of Mourdock the other day —

    http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2012/10/mourdock-conception-and-theodicy/264148/

    Quoted for great justice:

    “It is not enough to throw up one’s hands and say “Augustine didn’t know, so I don’t have to either.” Theology is like any other ideology. If the scholars of your ideology profess its great wisdom, despite crucial moral problems; and if you then take up that ideology, in full knowledge of those problems; if you argue that it should be elevated to law of the land; if you assert that it should then be imposed on half the country (not your half), you are not a bystander to immorality. You are an accomplice. ”

    I think there are two major ways that religious people – and in the US, that means Christians – square the notion of a just and omnipotent deity with the fact that evil exists and is done continually and constantly, everywhere, alongside all the good that is done (and sometimes inextricably linked to that good). Either you can start talking about mystery and the unknowability of the divine, or you can pull out the Just World hypothesis of life. The former justification of a deity permitting evil is no justification at all; it’s simply saying, “I have faith that God is both omnipotent and good, despite all evidence to the contrary.”

    The latter justification, of course, is that those who suffer evil deserve it (just as those who receive good things on earth must deserve it – classic Calvinism, presented in the modern-day US as prosperity gospel).

    Mind you, many far greater minds than mine have grappled with the incomprehensible notion that a loving, just, and all-powerful deity could permit rape, murder, torture, genocide, not to mention tsunamis and hurricanes. I’ve heard arguments about free will – and thus sin, suffering, and evil – being necessary for true knowledge of the mercy and wisdom of the deity; I’ve heard arguments that without suffering there can be no experience of glory and bliss, etc etc.

    I still think it’s simpler to be an atheist… but of course I was raised to it; and “God knows” where I would be and what opinions I would hold had I been raised a bible-thumping baptist somewhere in the Heartland.

    • Chataya says:

      Anyone who can look me in the face and tell me that they knew I was being raped and abused but did nothing to stop it is getting a face-full of spit, deity or no.

  6. Stella says:

    No they are comitted to keeping the woman pregnant, regardless of her input or how the pregnancy came to be. The recurring theme seems to be pregnancy and abortion.

  7. TomSims says:

    I used to be a Republican until the bible thumpers took over in the Reagan years. The Christian Right is the American Taliban. They don’t have these issues on abortion in Europe. Too bad we couldn’t arrange a huge firefight between Christians and the Taliban and then this divisive issue would be behind us. :D

  8. Not a feminist says:

    As a stranger rape survivor I am sick to death of people telling me how republicans are the “pro-rape party”.

    I am not a liberal – many people who are raped are not liberals. Rape is a violent crime, not a feminist cause or a political platform. If you really believe in women’s rights, you should respect a woman’s right to choose who to vote for instead of saying if you don’t vote democrat you are essentially “pro-rape”.

    Also, blogging about rape does nothing for rape survivors and it is triggering. I personally feel exploited by internet feminist websites like this. Please remember that there are many people who are rape survivors who want nothing to do with feminism, and I honestly don’t appreciate you exploiting their (non-feminist rape survivors) tragedy to win feminist brownie points.

    • Jim says:

      Hear hear. In fact it’s incredibly offensive to both rape victims and anyone veering slightly right of center – as you say, one is often both!

    • Bunny says:

      As a rape survivor and a feminist, I must respectfully disagree. Calling the Republican party pro-rape has nothing to do with earning “feminist brownie points”.

      They are being referred to as a pro rape party because, even if you ignore their stance on abortion, time and time again the Republican party members have publicly stated incredibly awful things about rape, musing on what a “legitimate rape victim” is (apparently you’re only legitimate if you’re a chaste Christian virgin who is brutalised), musing on “legitimate rape” and “forcible rape”, claiming that women’s bodies are somehow able to magically prevent pregnancies in the case of rape, and other equally awful things.

      Even if you personally are not a feminist, that doesn’t preclude you from wanting the right to have control over your own body, and the Republican platform has, over the last year, been explicitly anti- that right.

      You say feminists should respect your right to choose who to vote for. We aren’t forcing you to change your vote. We’re providing information and opinions. Things everyone is entitled to.

      Also, not to be unkind, but if you find feminist opinions of rape and politics triggering by default, I’m curious what led you to visit a feminist website, read the title of this post and continue reading it long enough to experience a trigger. I’d have thought the subject and stance would be fairly explicit.

      • Jadey says:

        I don’t agree with not a feminist’s comments on this thread, but for the sake of accuracy and promoting knowledge I think it should be mentioned that:

        I’m curious what led you to visit a feminist website, read the title of this post and continue reading it long enough to experience a trigger. I’d have thought the subject and stance would be fairly explicit.

        does not take into account that the effect of a trigger can be sudden and based on a single stimulus, so reading the title alone *could* theoretically begin a triggering process, although there is a limit to what Feministe could realistically trigger-warn for. But “long enough to experience a trigger” is an inaccurate statement – triggers are often unpredictable and unexpected, especially to the person being triggered, which is why warnings, when they are possible, are usually appreciated.

        And people with triggers do sometimes put themselves at risk of being triggered when they are trying to engage with an issue that is of great importance to them. Obviously at that point they are taking on a risk by their own choice and again there is a limit to the protections that a website like Feministe can or is obligated to provide, but the person should not be belittled or misbelieved just because they have decided to take that risk. (Like a wheelchair user who has limited mobility outside of the chair and decides to spend a few spoons walking up some stairs to attend a meeting rather than be excluded entirely – that doesn’t make them suddenly not disabled or a faker.)

        Other than that, I cosign everything that is being said to not a feminist and her attempt to appropriate *other* survivors’ experiences.

        • ….which is sensible until you see her comments that say that she regularly reads Feministe. At that point it’s just fucking ridiculous.

          Religious organisations and priests’ outfits trigger me. Military movies and people carrying guns make me ragey/scared. So, rather than be a snotty, prejudiced, triggered asshole at some perfectly innocent priest or cop who’s minding their own fucking business, I avoid talking to them/interacting with people while they’re armed/watching military movies. Simple enough, no?

          And don’t tell me “we can’t avoid all our triggers”. I know damn well we can’t. But seriously, nobody taped her eyelids open and forced her to stare at feminist blogs.

    • EG says:

      Rape is a violent crime, not a feminist cause or a political platform.

      I’m not sure why you find these things to be mutually exclusive, but perhaps you should invest some time in learning about who it was that brought rape to public consciousness as a serious problem. Hint: try feminists.

      If you really believe in women’s rights, you should respect a woman’s right to choose who to vote for instead of saying if you don’t vote democrat you are essentially “pro-rape”.

      Is anybody attacking your right to vote for Republicans? No. You have that right and nobody here is trying to take it away from you. What you do not have is the right to vote for Republicans and not be criticized for it, or have Republican policies and rhetoric be free from feminist analysis.

      Also, blogging about rape does nothing for rape survivors and it is triggering. I personally feel exploited by internet feminist websites like this.

      Plenty of rape survivors feel differently, and given that consciousness-raising about rape has been and continues to be an essential part of breaking the silence of shame around sexual violence as well as forcing it to the attention of those in power who would rather ignore it, you are simply incorrect that it does nothing for rape survivors.

      • SunlessNick says:

        Plenty of rape survivors feel differently

        And are indeed counted among many of those bloggers.

    • So, you don’t like feminists, you don’t like reading about rape, reading about feminist thought on rape triggers you…and so you came to a feminist site and read about rape.

      Tomorrow I’m going to go to a KKK rally, then hop on a flight to attend a quick luncheon at the Westboro Baptist Church, finish off with a nice beach walk with some neo-Nazis, and then come home and complain bitterly about how I’m being persecuted everywhere I look. Sounds about as sensible.

  9. Not a feminist says:

    I just want to clarify a couple of things about my other post, so I put the clarification in brackets.

    Also, blogging about rape (in a way that makes it about political lines and not individuals) does nothing for rape survivors and it is triggering.

    I personally feel exploited by internet feminist websites like this (because they make the assumption that all rape survivors are feminists or must be grateful to feminists for taking up their cause).

    Please remember that there are many people who are rape survivors who want nothing to do with feminism, and I honestly don’t appreciate you exploiting their tragedy to win feminist brownie points (by writing flippant politically charged articles about rape).

    • EG says:

      Where do you see flippancy in this article? There’s nothing flippant about it. It’s quite well thought-through.

      Gendered issues are political issues; that is a basic tenet of feminism. Reducing rape to merely a problem of individuals would prevent us from recognizing larger socio-political dynamics at work.

      Where in this article do you see any assumption that all rape survivors are feminists or should be grateful to feminism?

    • *croons* If it’s not about you…it’s not about you… so stfu… please stfu… and… go… away….

  10. Not a feminist says:

    Let me make this clear. You stick your fucking noses in the air and act like middle schoolers to anyone that dares disagree with you (I’m not blind and I have seen the sort of things you post for shock value).

    The truth is immature women like you don’t belong in rape advocacy because you can’t see past your own upturned nose. You are a disgrace to women and a disgrace to victims of sexual violence. Just stop with your petty nonsense, it’s really pathetic. .

    • If you’re talking about the hat posts, I totally agree!

      DOWN WITH SHOCK VALUE HATS, YOU FUCKING LIBERALS.

    • William says:

      Not all victims of sexual violence are women, just sayin’.

      But hey, nice job erasing the experience of transmen, children, people in prison….

      • PrettyAmiable says:

        I gut-reacted below with my experience as a woman who was also an assault victim. Thank you for reminding me of something that should be top-of-mind, and apologies to anyone (including you, William) who might have been hurt by my unhelpful erasing of victims who are not women. This shit irritates the hell out of me, but it must be worse if you don’t even fit into this troll’s version of rape culture. (Though.. not a culture? As she thinks it’s individual? Hard to say.)

    • EG says:

      You stick your fucking noses in the air and act like middle schoolers to anyone that dares disagree with you (I’m not blind and I have seen the sort of things you post for shock value).

      It would be nice if once, just once, you would provide any specific examples or evidence to support the vapid things you say.

  11. Not a feminist says:

    Internet feminist sites exploit rape victims and their stories to push their own agenda this is not rape advocacy but radical leftism and if you can’t see why that is a problem I feel very sorry for you.

    STOP EXPLOITING RAPE VICTIMS FOR CLICKS!

    • this is not rape advocacy but radical leftism

      o_O Okay, so what IS rape advocacy per your definition?

    • EG says:

      Internet feminist sites exploit rape victims and their stories to push their own agenda this is not rape advocacy but radical leftism and if you can’t see why that is a problem I feel very sorry for you.

      Evidence? Examples?

  12. Not a feminist says:

    Uh…helping raped people get services without pushing a political agenda. Duh.

    • EG says:

      Please, I beg of you, before you say more foolish things, learn even a little about the history of getting services for raped people, how such efforts have been opposed, and how that opposition has been overcome, and who overcame it.

      There’s a reason rape is a political issue; misogynists have made it one.

    • Bunny says:

      Pretty sure it’s the repubs pushing the political agenda, since they’re the ones that have spent the last couple of years aggressively trying to take away all those wonderful services. Seriously, many issues are non-partisan, but in this case there is a clear, sharp cut across political lines.

      THEY are the ones defunding planned parenthood
      THEY are the ones pushing personhood amendments
      THEY are the ones treating the definition of rape as a campaign platform
      THEY are the ones trying to redefine who is and isn’t a legitimate rape victim
      THEY are the ones removing access to birth control
      THEY are the ones mandating vaginal ultrasounds
      THEY are the ones attacking and destroying every avenue of support that rape victims and rape survivors have.

      So maybe get mad at the people who MADE IT political, instead of the ones fighting to save what we have.

    • yes says:

      1) Helping people get services is a political issue itself. What services should be given, who should pay for it, who should be entitled to receive or trusted to give those services… all these are inherently political political questions.

      2) Rape, is you noted, is a violent crime. How we define, deal with, punish, and prevent violent crime is a political issue. How we help the survivors of a violent crime is a political issue by its very nature. This is the case without even getting into the additional issues that come up with sex crimes.

      Some of the people who post here obnoxious asshats? Welcome to every online community ever.

  13. Not a feminist says:

    Please don’t patronize me. I am well aware of the history of rape advocacy considering that I was raped by a stranger 10 years ago and have been involved in many wonderful programs to deal with the resulting fallout and PTSD symptoms – and never once was I subjected to snark or expected to take a political stance.

    Rape is about individual suffering and you want to take that and make it political. Fine for you, but don’t act like you are “helping” rape survivors by doing so.

    • PrettyAmiable says:

      Seriously, fuck you. If it’s not about you, it’s not about you. I was assaulted too. I’ve been dealing with my PTSD with a shrink, but have found incalculable support in feminist communities that has helped me deal with rejection and isolation I have felt in every other strata. I would never go into your home and tell you that your ignorant insistence that this isn’t a political issue is actively damaging me (even though it is – everything you do to prevent someone taking down people who perpetuate rape culture HURTS ME), so fuck right off.

      Also, not that I’m certain of your reading comprehension skills, but click the “reply” button. It’s not fucking rocket science.

    • Jadey says:

      There is a reply function for every comment in order to keep comments threaded and organized. It is the link just to the right of the commenter’s name.

    • Please don’t patronize me.

      But you make it so easy! *wibble*

      have been involved in many wonderful programs to deal with the resulting fallout and PTSD symptoms

      Ever wonder who set those up, dearie? Because, you know, those programs didn’t exist all that long ago. And if The Patriarchy (since you seem to think it’s black and white) were interested in providing services to rape victims they would have been there all along, hm? And be in no danger of disappearing today, hm? Right.

    • LotusBecca says:

      You are also making rape political. You are saying that it’s a violent crime that affects individuals, but is not a social problem that requires a social response. That’s a political stance. You know, “politics’ doesn’t just refer to the Republican Party vs. the Democratic Party. Your opposition to feminist anti-rape activism is 100% political in my view.

    • Jadey says:

      You know, I totally agree with you that survivors should be able to access services regardless of their political affiliation and without expectation of politicizing their personal experiences. I doubt anyone here would argue differently, in fact.

      But we’re not talking about the content of these services. We are talking about specific ways in which the US Republican party promotes a comprehensive set of ideals which de-legitimize other rape survivors’ experiences. You say that rape is personal, not political, and in so doing erase women who have been deeply hurt by the politicization of rape by Republicans and other conservative groups in other countries. You would probably be devastated if you turned on a television one day and heard a politician in your state say that he believed your assault was not really a rape – it was something you deserved and maybe even should be grateful for. Well, that’s exactly what is happening to people. And the Republican agenda is also about *removing* necessary services from rape survivors, like access to abortions. So how is that helping?

      This doesn’t negate that Democrats and, yes, feminists can very much be assholes to survivors. And this site has taken to task such people for promoting offensive views, despite our apparent shared political allegiances. But the reason we’re talking about Republicans now is because the Republicans are doing a lot of talking themselves. (Well, and it’s a USian site, so there’s that. :P)

      You are the person here who cannot see beyond the end of your own nose, beyond your own experience. You are doing exactly what you accuse us of doing.

    • mxe354 says:

      Anti-rape advocacy always has been a political issue. That is because rape is not a typical crime; there is an entire culture supporting rapists, espousing the notion that women are public property, and treating rape survivors unjustly. It is also a feminist cause because sexual violence is supported by patriarchal, misogynistic cultural norms. It can’t possibly be an apolitical issue.

    • pitbullgirl65 says:

      Omfg. If it weren’t for us evil feminists, you wouldn’t have had any of those “wonderful programs”. How dare you come here scold us for politicizing rape, when your woman hating right wing side is doing everything possible to take women back to the bad old days. I resent it, and I resent you Serena Joys, and I will do anything in my power to prevent them from taking over again.

    • Anon for this says:

      Please, please, PLEASE stop emphasizing that you were raped “by a stranger” over and over again. Its making me hyperventilate and get all ragey and sweaty (is this what a trigger feels like??) b/c I feel like you are saying that this sets your rape apart. I was sexually assaulted by a boyfriend and (b/c of our rape culture which you think doesn’t exist?) I was so ashamed that I never told anyone and didn’t avail myself of any services. In fact, I can’t even bring myself to use my usual name on THIS BOARD. Its only because of feminism that I am able to call what I went through a rape and its because of feminism that I can even go through the process of trusting my own analysis of what happened. It because of feminist sites like this and articles like this that I know that I am not at fault. So go straight to hell with your “this doesn’t help anyone” bullshit. It doesn’t help YOU. That doesn’t mean it doesn’t help victims of rape. In fact, this makes me so angry that I AM going to say my regular name on here. I usually post as (BFing) Sarah. So yeah. Feminism helped me do that. And if it doesn’t help you, that’s fine, but it DOES help me. F. Off.

      • Hey, (BFing) Sarah,

        I dunno if anyone else’s keeping up wtih this thread, at this point, and I realise that this may be overstepping, but I just wanted to say that was an incredibly brave and awesome thing you just did, putting yourself out there, and I’m amazed and hurting for you and so, so very sorry you went through that. Which is all platitudes, I know, but I’ve never found things to say that aren’t platitudes.

        Hugs if you want ’em.

        • (BFing) Sarah says:

          Thanks, macavitykitsune. I wasn’t sure if anyone was keeping up with the thread either…but I came back to it and felt like I needed to say something and then at the end I just kind of…had to put it out there.

  14. Not a feminist says:

    By the way, my disagreeing with feminism is not a political stance. I dislike feminism because of the attitudes displayed here. I don’t vote and have no political affiliation. Adios!

    • mxe354 says:

      If you think that social problems can be solved without politics, you’re very naive.

      • Past my expiration date says:

        Rape isn’t a social problem, it’s an individual problem: what one person did to another person, one time. And another person did to another another person, another time. And another another person did to another another another person, another another time…

        Also, feminism is bad because feminists are patronizing and snarky (e.g., this post) and also exploitative.

    • LotusBecca says:

      Actually, disagreeing with feminism is a political stance. Feminism is a political movement. If you don’t like broccoli, that’s not necessarily political. But if you don’t like feminsm, well, that is political. Politics is about more than voting or belonging to organizations. Disagreeing with feminism anti-rape activism and speaking out against it, like you are doing on this page, is taking a political stance. Sorry to burst your bubble.

  15. angela smith says:

    I suggest that we should respect once opinion. It is the victims right to decide on how she will face her new challenges after the horror she went through.
    but we know for a fact that rape is a crime and the effect to its victim would be terrible. Everything will change because a huge part of her life was destroyed but as a mom it is our responsility to care, love and protect our offspring. Being into this kind of situation is very hard to deal. As a woman you have to consider alot of things that is why all this phenomenon could merely be avoided if we prioritize our safety. My friend told me about a smart phone app wherein you can ask help anytime at anywhere if you feel you’re in trouble with just a press of a panic button. Here check this link https://SafeTREC.com

Comments are closed.