A recent discussion in the Kansas House of Representatives about yet another abortion bill proved some anti-abortion rights supporters couldn't be more out of touch.
The bill bans insurance companies from covering abortion insurance under general health care plans, except when the woman’s life is at risk; however, women can get around this roadblock by purchasing separate "abortion-only" polices. When lawmakers began discussing whether expecting women to purchase polices in case they were raped and impregnated against their will, Representative Pete DeGraaf compared rape to getting a flat tire -- arguing that women needed to "plan ahead" for being raped and possibly impregnated against their will much like he plans ahead for a blow-out by carrying a spare.
As you can imagine, his ridiculous comment pissed off a lot of people ...
Here's the exchange direct from the AP:
Rep. Pete DeGraaf, a Mulvane Republican who supports the bill, told her: "We do need to plan ahead, don't we, in life?"
Bollier asked him, "And so women need to plan ahead for issues that they have no control over with pregnancy?"
DeGraaf drew groans of protest from some House members when he responded, "I have a spare tire on my car."
"I also have life insurance," he added. "I have a lot of things that I plan ahead for."
The fact that a human being could be so callous as to compare a rape and resulting pregnancy to something as mundane as a flat tire is beyond disturbing. Moreover, the lack of empathy for rape victims is astounding. It's enough to make me sick to my stomach and that's even before I remember -- this man makes laws! People actually voted for him!
Not to mention the fact, that the policy he's arguing for -- the purchase of separate abortion riders in case someone is raped and impregnated -- blatantly discriminates against women. Remember: This isn't something men have to worry about. It's an upfront financial penalty that would be imposed only upon women simply because they have the potential to get pregnant from rape.
The whole point of having health insurance is to protect ourselves against the unexpected. Why should women have to protect ourselves beyond even that?
Image via Lisa Norwood/Flickr