Anti-Abortion Bill Does Not Legalize Rape

Jenny Erikson

capitol buildingIt’s no wonder that Republicans have such a bad rap with progressives. Apparently, we want to legalize rape. I wouldn’t like Republicans either if that were even one teensy weensy bit true.

The controversy stems from the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortions Act, which seeks to expand existing Hyde amendment restrictions on the use of taxpayer money for abortions by prohibiting indirect funding and tax-exemptions to businesses that provide abortions.

As it stands now, the government claims it doesn't fund abortions with taxpayer money, yet billions of dollars go to Planned Parenthood for non-abortion services. Which then frees up ‘private’ money for abortions and advice on how to run an underage sex slave ring.

The legislation includes an exemption for the 3% or less of abortions performed after rape or to preserve the life of the mother. The bill explicitly states that federal funding will not be withheld from women that ‘need’ an abortion, just those that ‘want’ an abortion.


 ‘The limitations established in sections 301, 302, 303, and 304 shall not apply to an abortion--

 ‘(1) if the pregnancy occurred because the pregnant female was the subject of an act of forcible rape or, if a minor, an act of incest; or

 ‘(2) in the case where the pregnant female suffers from a physical disorder, physical injury, or physical illness that would, as certified by a physician, place the pregnant female in danger of death unless an abortion is performed, including a life-endangering physical condition caused by or arising from the pregnancy itself.

Republicans want to end taxpayer-funded abortions except in cases of rape, incest involving a minor, or health of the mother, and liberals accuse them of wanting to legalize rape. Yet somehow we’re the ones that refuse to compromise. I’m still scratching my head on that one.

Some pro-choice advocates have claimed that this bill redefines rape to not include:

  • Instances where women are drugged and raped
  • Instances where women say “no” but do not physically fight off their aggressor
  • Various cases of date rape
  • Instances of statutory rape where minors are impregnated by an adult

I’ve read the bill, and I don’t see any of that in there. There is no such thing as non-forcible rape. All rape is forcible rape. Rape is when someone doesn’t consent to sex (either by choice or circumstance), and it is forced upon him or her anyway. If you’re held down, that’s rape. If you’re drugged, that’s rape. If you’re under the age of consent, that’s rape. If you’re mentally incapacitated, that’s rape. It’s all rape, and it’s all forcible rape, because it’s a sexual act forced upon someone that doesn’t want it or can’t legally consent to it.

Republicans explicitly put that section in the bill in order to give pregnant rape victims a choice, since the choice to engage in procreational activity was never given to them.

This bill has nothing to do with your legal right to an abortion, and it has nothing to with legalizing rape. It has everything to do with cutting off funding for a voluntary act that over half of Americas believe is wrong.

One final thought: It’s interesting that the pro-federal funding of abortion crowd overlaps quite a bit with the pro-government school crowd. I just have one question: Why should we taxpayers fund abortions but not private school? They’re both moral decisions that not everyone is going to agree with. Why should your morality be funded by taxpayer dollars but not mine?


Image via brownpau/Flickr

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