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Monday, May 11, 2015

Rape is rape, unless you're a conservative

There are many kinds of rape. Date rape, acquaintance rape, marital rape, familial rape, marital rape, stranger rape. Out of these, only one qualifies as actual rape to many conservatives: stranger rape. And even then, many on the right have parameters that must be met. The victim (for the sake of this article, a female victim) cannot be dressed in any way provocatively, have any alcohol in her system, or be anywhere considered "dodgy." The victim should, if possible, have visible injuries, and the rapist usually needs to have used a weapon of some sort.

If a rape falls outside the narrow understanding of many conservatives, it's not rape. For example, if a woman goes dancing with her friends, and leaves her beverage unattended, at which time a predator puts GHB or some other drug in said beverage, then stalks the woman back to her car or home and rapes her, that's not really rape, because the woman was A) at a bar, and B), drinking. And if the rape victim discovers she is pregnant, Texas Republican State Senator Donna Campbell wants to make it incredibly difficult for that woman to receive an abortion.

The Texas state senate introduced an amendment this past week, allowing exceptions for victims of rape and incest in a bill that outlaws insurance coverage for abortions. Campbell was having none of that, and argued against the exception. Donna Campbell instead presented her own proposal: force rape victims to report their rape to the police in order to prove it was an actual rape.

Donna Campbell's defense of her stance is confusing. She admits that women who are raped are victims, then goes on to say:
I feel we are helping to stop a perpetrator by reporting the assault or the incest. I believe if we broaden this amendment, we lose the opportunity to help protect and defend the woman who is the victim here. (source)
Democratic State Senator Kirk Watson tried desperately to make Campbell understand the truth about her proposal, saying:
Would you agree with me that there are instances where a woman could be raped, and because she fears for her life otherwise, would not want to report that to law enforcement officials? Can you conceive of that situation?
Campbell claimed she could, then began speaking about a "slippery slope," and that this was an "insurance bill." Watson countered with a hypothetical situation involving a woman who is the victim of incest and becomes pregnant. He asked Campbell if she could conceive that this woman might not want to report her rape to law enforcement, because of the "fear of retaliation." Campbell responded:
Are you really asking that, uh, instead of encouraging that sit...that hypothetical situation from moving into a protection for her law enforcement, we're saying let's cover that violation with an insurance payment...when she gets the abortion, I would, I would question are we empowering the perpetrator because now, out of a coercion, her fear that she gets an abortion, it's paid for by an insurance company, and then it may happen to her again.
State Senator Campbell then spoke about how, if a rape is reported to law enforcement, "we have something measurable."

In other words, the only rapes that count are one that are reported to the police. If your husband rapes you, and you become pregnant, but you cannot go to the authorities because your husband will kill you, Donna Campbell doesn't think the insurance you already pay for should cover an abortion. If you were impregnated during a rape by your father, brother, or another male relative, and telling the police would almost guarantee horrific repercussions, Donna Campbell does not think insurance should cover an abortion.

However, if you are dressed modestly, and walking to your car after Bible class, and a large man in a ski mask jumps you, drags you into an alley, beats and rapes you, and you were a virgin prior to the attack, and you manage to stagger into the emergency room, where they perform a rape kit that may or may not be tested this year, and the police are called, and they treat you like an actual victim instead of asking what you were doing in that neighborhood, or where your husband was thus encouraging you to report your rape, THEN Donna Campbell thinks your abortion should be covered by insurance.

Rape is rape, unless you're a conservative. Watch the video of Donna Campbell and Kirk Watson's debate below, from Raw Story.

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Conservative conspiracy theories 101

HAARP. FEMA death camps. ISIS training centers. Weather machines. Chemtrails. Jade Helm. Agenda 21. All these, and so many more, are conspiracy theories embraced by what used to be a minority of conservatives. Sadly, there are folks on the left who believe some of this as well, but it was the following post to Ted Cruz's page by a conservative that inspired this article.

I am thinking Obama will plan an attack on Ameican soil. There are 22 training terrorist camps in America. Obamas army. He is desperate for another term. If there were an attack. He would declare Marshall law and suspend the constitution for five years. He would remain president for five more years. That would give him time to declare jihad on America. I am thinking this IS going to happen. Why won't they impeach this babastsrd. Are we so native that we think he gives a damn about America or ericans. He HATES America and Americans , and will do what it takes to destroy America. Texas is leading the way. Ted you are the MAN America needs to save us. Choose Allen West as your vice president so you CAN defeat Hillary
Stop Obama NOW!!!!! He will win of we don't act NOW!!!!
Twenty-two training terrorist camps? Holy shit snacks! Where are these camps? Who has seen them, who can prove their existence? According to incredibly disreputable websites like World Net Daily, Western Journalism, and Now The End Begins, these training camps are in "remote areas" of California, Michigan, New York, West Virginia, and other states. Funny thing: The WND article mentions the FBI, but never links to the FBI. Instead, those FBI "quotes" link to another weird website, The Clarion Project. And their article only contains links to other Clarion articles. 

Remember wombats-if the only links you use to back up your statements are links to your own articles, you are not a journalist, or even a writer. You're a self-promoting twit. 

Texas is leading the way. Really. Diana must be referring to Greg Abbott's recent activity regarding Jade Helm. Oooo, Jade Helm sounds super scary. Except it's not. From the Washington Post:
U.S. Army Special Operations Command said simulated exercises like this are routine, though they are rarely so broad in size and scope, and that the public won’t experience any disruption in their day-to-day lives, since the entire operation takes place in pre-coordinated remote areas.
When command spokesman, Lt. Colonel Mark Lastoria appeared in Bastrop, Texas to explain Jade Helm last week, Texan Bob Wells wasn't having any of it. Wells told the Austin American Statesman:
 It’s the same thing that happened in Nazi Germany: You get the people used to the troops on the street, the appearance of uniformed troops and the militarization of the police. They’re gathering intelligence. That’s what they’re doing. And they’re moving logistics in place for martial law. That’s my feeling. Now, I could be wrong. I hope I am wrong. I hope I’m a ‘conspiracy theorist.'
Where on earth could Bob Wells have heard that Jade Helm is some Naziesque, sinister plan by OBAMAMUSLIMJIHADBENGHAZI to take over America? The internet, of course! Dave Hodges, who calls his website The Common Sense Show, which I am fairly certain is the textbook definition of irony, has a lovely theory about Walmart tunnels and Jade Helm, and yes, I read it, and yes, I would like that time back. The article is titled "Closed Walmarts To Be Guerilla Warfare Staging Areas In Response To Invasion." Hodges writes:
Converted Walmart stores will be processing centers for FEMA camp political prisoners.
Mkay. You can read it yourself, but don't drink anything before or during. You will need a drink when you finish.

The fringe is no longer the fringe. Why do you think Diana posted her nonsense on Ted Cruz's Facebook page? Greg Abbot, the governor of Texas, is buying into this Jade Helm conspiracy dreck. Cruz wants to be president. Louie Gohmert, a member of Congress, believes in "terror babies," but can't prove it. Michele Bachmann was on the Intelligence Committee.

How do we ignore the fact that people in power, and people who want more power, are supporting ideas that are-and I do not use this word lightly-insane? What other word can one use to describe paranoid fantasies about death camps for "patriots," terror training camps, death panels, and gun grabs? 

We used to make fun of these people, and admittedly, I still do. But it might be time to look at the fact that a presidential candidate attracts people like Diana, and the governor of Texas thinks a routine military operation is a direct link to Walmart death camp processing stations.