On the surface these are despicable questions to be asking; what part of “no means no” is so difficult to understand? But that’s actually the point of the article, and it shouldn’t surprise anyone that these two questions (and dozens more like them) are in fact still asked in general conversation and of rape survivors.
As the writer points out, we treat victims with doubt and place the blame on them: You were drinking? You deserved it. You were dressed sexy? You were asking for it. For people who understand rape in this manner, it’s not such a far leap to see them drawing the conclusion that an orgasm cancels out the rape. I mean, we still have guys who think pregnancy can’t result from rape and that marital rape isn’t real if the wife is in a nightie.
Rape culture’s foundation is ignorance, hate and an unwillingness to make needed changes. Misconceptions and misinformation are the building blocks that keep that horrid institution from crumbling.
A Letter to Pro-Lifers
Let’s get a few things straight so that we may discuss this sensitive and important topic without any lies or slander flying around. Abortion is a horrible thing to have to contemplate. It doesn’t matter which side of the issue you fall on, no one wants a single woman to find herself in a position where she is carrying an unwanted child, a child she fears she cannot care for, a child conceived because of rape, etc. So if you have ever thrown names like baby-haters or baby-killers at someone else – stop it. Being pro-choice does not mean being are pro killing babies. You are the reason that ambiguity exists, because you didn’t have the decency to keep the facts straight. You allowed this significant little obscurity into the debate, and even supported it. How can we have a real discussion when we cannot stop playing the name game like fourth graders?
We have a common goal. We both want a world where abortions are a thing of the past, we just differ on how to get there. Now, virtually everyone out there has an opinion on abortion, and most people are passionate about their position. Imagine if both sides, all those people, were to realize the actuality of their goal—abortions no longer being a necessity—and work together to see it happen?
The women in these positions are pushed up against a wall. They are desperate and without help. They want to be strong, but there are too many things stacked against them. Do not condemn the woman who contemplates and eventually has an abortion in your god’s name; you do not know where she stands with god. Blame the system that did not support her enough to have the child. Blame the education system for not providing adequate means to prevent a child in the first place. Blame yourself; if you wanted her to have that baby, why did you not go to her, tell her that no matter what she was dealing with you would help her? Why were you not there for her?
At this point, you may feel personally attacked, and allow me to reassure you that is completely my intent. When I say you, I mean YOU. Not your political party, not your community or your church. You. You are to blame for her abortion. Your soul will bear the mark of her decision. Your conscious will be plagued by could-have-been’s. If you disagree with the way I have categorized you here then flame the hell out of me and then go do something about it! Please! You have let others represent you and these are the lies they have told to muddy the water. You are silent, and in the absence of voice you become a statistic, a number used to support ideas you had no part in creating. Feel appreciated?
We want a world where women’s inalienable rights to our own bodies are recognized and respected. You want a world where babies are not killed. The two are not mutually exclusive.