Saturday, February 05, 2011

The GOP Women Problem Rears Its Head Again: Rape


In DC, congressional conservatives-- i.e., all the Republicans and a bunch of reactionary Blue Dogs-- want to redefine rape using the term "forcible" for some victims, as opposed to the kinds of rape congressional conservatives are most likely to commit themselves, whether statuary rape, date rape, rape by coercion or deception, rape of the disabled or mentally impaired (the way that Boehner crony Tom Ganley did who ran last year)...

But the Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee found some woman-hating Republican state Rep. in Georgia, Marietta sociopath Bobby Franklin, who has formerly made a spectacle out of himself screeching that there should be no abortions in Georgia no matter what-- even if the reason is rape, incest or to save the life of the woman-- is now insisting no women who get raped are "victims." And he's already introduced a bill to codify his crackpot misogyny into law! He proposes changing Georgia’s criminal codes so that in “criminal law and criminal procedure” (read: in court), victims of rape, stalking, and family violence could only be referred to as “accusers” until the defendant has been convicted.
Burglary victims are still victims. Assault victims are still victims. Fraud victims are still victims. But if you have the misfortune to suffer a rape, or if you are beaten by a domestic partner, or if you are stalked, Rep. Franklin doesn’t think you’ve been victimized. He says you’re an accuser until the courts have determined otherwise.

To diminish a victim’s ordeal by branding him/her an accuser essentially questions whether the crime committed against the victim is a crime at all. Robbery, assault, and fraud are all real crimes with real victims, the Republican asserts with this bill.

Rep. Franklin surely is aware that the crimes for which he believes there are no victims are disproportionately committed against women-- and are disproportionately committed by men.

When there’s violence against women involved, the rights of the accused clearly are more important to Rep. Franklin than the rights of the victim.

But if there’s no such thing as a victim in cases of rape, stalking, and domestic violence, he may think there’s no need to for him to be concerned with their rights, anyway.

[Perhaps if you're not a woman, you think I'm being unfair to have painted Rep. Franklin as a dangerous sociopath. But a few weeks ago he sponsored a bill that would do away with all Georgia driver's licenses, claiming they represent "oppressive times" and "licensing of drivers cannot be required of free people, because taking on the restrictions of a license requires the surrender of an inalienable right."]

But while Boehner silently and bitterly weeps about Mike Pence leaking info to The Enquirer that he had simultaneous extramarital affairs with printing industry lobbyist Lisbeth Lyons (while he helped dismantle and then ship much of the U.S. paper industry to China) and House staffer/Republican Party donor Leigh LaMora, he's ignoring Americans who want Congress to help with the national unemployment crisis so he can push forward with right-wing attacks on hot button, divisive social issues like Choice.

And, as Michael Whitney pointed out, the war against women isn't just being waged by Republicans alone but by conservatives on both sides of the aisle.
In a Republican-controlled House, it’s not shocking to see this kind of medieval treatment of women become a priority over, you know, job creation. But let’s focus on the Democrats involved in this travesty. Of HR3′s 173 co-sponsors in the House, 10 identify themselves as Democrats. They were elected with a “D” next to their names, and even though most did not vote for Pelosi, they’re still in the party.

That’s why it’s completely unacceptable for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC)-– the party apparatus whose sole purpose is to help elect Democrats to the House-- to grandstand against HR3's redefinition of rape with petitions blaming “the GOP for their bill.” The DCCC is currently running at least two petitions against the “Republicans’” bill, asking people to “denounce Republican Speaker John Boehner and House Republicans for supporting this extremist anti-woman bill.”

What about the House Democrats-- supported by the DCCC-- who are supporting this extremist anti-woman bill?

A look at the DCCC’s contributions to and on behalf of the 10 Democratic co-sponsors of HR3 show the committee spent a whopping $3,379,322.85 to keep these members in office-- in 2010 alone. The list includes: Dan Boren [OK-2], Jerry Costello [IL-12], Mark Critz [PA-12], Joe Donnelly [IN-2], Daniel Lipinski [IL-3], Collin Peterson [MN-7], Nick Rahall [WV-3], Mike Ross [AR-4], and Heath Shuler [NC-11]. And God knows how many Blue Dogs that lost in 2010 and who were supported by the DCCC would have co-sponsored this bill.

Here’s a look at who the DCCC’s favorite rape-redefining Democrats are, and what the price tag is to keep people around the party who want to redefine rape. The numbers below are 2010 election cycle expenditures and donations in the members’ districts by the DCCC, as compiled by the Sunlight Foundation Reporting Group. Major, major props to Sady Doyle for pointing out this hypocrisy.

UPDATE: And Then There's The Inimitable Joe Pitts... Pennsylvania Crackpot And Religionist Woman Hater

Currently, all hospitals in America that receive Medicare or Medicaid funding are bound by a 1986 law known as EMTALA to provide emergency care to all comers, regardless of their ability to pay or other factors... In the case of an anti-abortion hospital with a patient requiring an emergency abortion, ETMALA would require that hospital to perform it or transfer the patient to someone who can. Joe Pitts, best known as a C Street House kook who teamed up with anti-Choice fanatic Bart Stupak to push through an anti-Choice amendment to the healthcare bill in 2009, has offered a new bill that would free hospitals from any abortion requirement under EMTALA, meaning that medical providers who aren't willing to terminate pregnancies wouldn't have to-- nor would they have to facilitate a transfer. They could, instead, let an ailing pregnant woman die rather than admit her and perform a lifesaving abortion.

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At 11:24 AM, Blogger mahakal said...

The R stands for Rape-publicans.

At 5:51 PM, Anonymous Bil said...

WELL DONE mahakal!

I am going to try and give you credit as I steal that:)

At 6:14 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am sure the (dis)honorable Rep. Joe Pitt was once accuse of rape... probably by some innocent underage girl....


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