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Lauren Kelly Headshot

Legitimate Rights

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The National Women's Law Center recently released a report containing some staggering numbers regarding proposed state and federal laws in the past year -- since Todd Atkin made his ignoramus comments.

There are three alarming stats which are blowing up the Internet are:

  • 86 percent (235 provisions) of the 273 provisions that were introduced in state legislatures to restrict a woman's access to abortion apply to a woman whose pregnancy resulted from rape.
  • 71 percent (27 provisions) of the 38 state provisions restricting women's access to abortion enacted by the states apply to a woman whose pregnancy resulted from rape.
  • 72 percent (18 bills) of the 25 bills introduced in the United States Congress to restrict a woman's access to abortion apply to a woman whose pregnancy resulted from rape.

I admit I find it hard to relate to pro-lifers under any circumstance. I am a feminist through and through -- I believe all women deserve the right to their own bodies. I also certainly don't support a government or individual that believes women who engage in consensual sex are in some way relinquishing their autonomy and are playing fertility Russian Roulette and thus must be forced to "suffer the consequence" and carry on an unwanted pregnancy, but I feel like this is the most common argument against abortion rights. You made your bed, deal with the consequences.

I'm not going to go in to why abortion needs to be legal and women need affordable access to healthcare and how men would go ballistic if we started mandated vasectomies, but you get the picture. What I want to examine is how, when the very basis for the argument is that you can't run from your mistakes, anyone can justify forcing a rape victim to stay pregnant.

To pass a law that prohibits abortions for rape victims is in effect endorsing the end result of what is probably the worst, more violating experience of someone's life. How can anyone, especially these people who were elected to protect the rights of their constituents, support such a measure?

This comes after Law and Order Mariska Hargitay has led a crusade to End the Backlog of untested rape kits.

Untested. Rape Kits.

We have a responsibility as Americans and moreover, as women, to demand rape be treated not like a misdemeanor offense, but that it be recognized on every platform, as the disgusting violation it is. Stop taking away the rights of rape victims. End the backlog.