In Feb., 2011, a friend posted on her Facebook page a link to an article at moveon.org. The title of the article was “Top 10 Shocking Attacks from the GOP’s War on Women.” My friend is pretty conservative on most things, and posted this strictly to start conversation and get people’s reactions to it. The first several responses were critical of the article and of moveon.org. I wanted to read it for myself, and see what sorts of things they were talking about. I read the article, and decided to look carefully into the first item on it: “Republicans not only want to reduce women's access to abortion care, they're actually trying to redefine rape. After a major backlash, they promised to stop. But they haven't yet. Shocker.”
After doing my research, I posted a reply in the thread on my friend’s Facebook page. This reply, and some of the conversation that followed, is the subject of this blog post.
Here is the link to moveon.org: http://pol.moveon.org/waronwomen/?rc=fb
And here is my response to the article:
Let's look at the first of moveon.org's charges, that Republicans want to "redefine rape." First, the authority for this claim is an op-ed on "The Huffington Post," long known for its objective reporting of the news. That article, in turn..., references an op-ed in the "New York Times," ditto and ditto. Neither article contained a link that I could find to the text of the bill, H.R. 3. So I, left-brained, white male that I am, looked it up. Here's the page with the text: -- http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/z?c112%3AH.R.3:
And here's the text that deals with rape:
"SEC. 309. TREATMENT OF ABORTIONS RELATED TO RAPE, INCEST, OR PRESERVING THE LIFE OF THE MOTHER.
"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..." [the next paragraph deals with the health of the mother.]
Clearly, this does NOT redefine rape. It attempts to define the circumstances under which the Federal Government will pay for an abortion. (Personally, I think "forcible rape" is a redundancy. If it isn't forcible, as in the seduction of an underage girl, we need another term for it because it's a different thing - NOT less heinous or despicable! - but different.)
However, see that statement, "The limitations established in sections 301, 302, 303, and 304 shall not apply to an abortion-?" Well, those sections say only that no federal funds shall be used to provide abortion, nor to fund any insurance plan that pays for abortion coverage.
Now here's the kicker: sections 305-308 very specifically state that this bill will not be construed as restricting the ability of states or non-federally funded insurance programs from providing abortion coverage. I gave you the link. Go read it, yourself.
So - huge surprise! - moveon.org has twisted and propagandized the real story to promote their pet agenda - that Republicans are moral cannibals. They deliberately misused the concept of "define," and they deliberately failed to include the entire context. They also very carefully avoided any reference to the bill, itself, using instead other cookie-cutter liberal bilge.
I will not waste my time dissecting their other charges. If this does not thoroughly discredit them in the eyes of all who read this, oh, well.