On May 4th the 16 anti-choice Democrats joined every House Republican present in passing H.R. 3, the No Taxpayer Funding For Abortion Act. A chief weapon in the House GOP’s “comprehensive assault” on women this bill proposes some of the most radical and draconian restrictions on women’s rights. Read the complete article here.

The Hyde Amendment prevents some federally funded health-care programs from covering abortions, allowing exemptions in cases of rape and incest, and when the life of the woman is threatened. The new bill changes the wording from rape to “forcible rape”. Opponents of the bill say the wording is to exclude woman who say no but do not physically fight off the perpetrator, women who are drugged or verbally threatened and raped, and minors impregnated by adults. Supporters say that is not true.

According to New York State Law under Sex offenses; lack of consent, the law reads:

1. Whether or not specifically stated, it is an element of every offense defined in this article, except the offense of consensual sodomy, that the sexual act was committed without consent of the victim.
2. Lack of consent results from:
(a) Forcible compulsion; or
(b) Incapacity to consent; or

The law also defines forcible compulsion:

“Forcible compulsion” means to compel by either:
a. use of physical force; or
b. a threat, express or implied, which places a person in fear of immediate death or physical injury to himself, herself or another person, or in fear that he, she or another person will immediately be kidnapped.

Let me explain, if a man comes up to me and points a gun at my head, or to my friend/parent/child and says they are going to shoot me or them unless I have sex with them, and I comply, I am a victim of forcible rape. If it turns out the gun was not loaded, I am still a victim of forcible rape, because I was in fear of immediate death or physical injury to myself or another person. I think most reasonable persons would agree with that statement. Oh wait, this is the GOP not reasonable people, a bunch of fucking morons.

The law of the State of New York seems to support the supporters of this bill, note the following:

Rape in the third degree.
A person is guilty of rape in the third degree when:
1. He or she engages in sexual intercourse with another person who is incapable of consent by reason of some factor other than being less than seventeen years old;
2. Being twenty-one years old or more, he or she engages in sexual intercourse with another person less than seventeen years old; or
3. He or she engages in sexual intercourse with another person without such person`s consent where such lack of consent is by reason of some factor other than incapacity to consent.
Rape in the third degree is a class E felony.

“Forcible compulsion” is included in lack of consent and rape in the third degree is a felony, a crime that will get you time at least a year in state prison and as long as four years (which is a pitiful amount of time but that’s not today’s discussion).

The real problem, as I see it, with this bill and the ‘forcible’ rape wording is the matter of ‘incapacity to consent’

3. A person is deemed incapable of consent when he or she is:
(a) less than seventeen years old; or
(b) mentally disabled; “Mentally disabled” means that a person suffers from a mental disease or defect which renders him or her incapable of appraising the nature of his or her conduct. or
(c) mentally incapacitated; “Mentally incapacitated” means that a person is rendered temporarily incapable of appraising or controlling his conduct owing to the influence of a narcotic or intoxicating substance administered to him without his consent, or to any other act committed upon him without his consent. or
(d) physically helpless; “Physically helpless” means that a person is unconscious or for any other reason is physically unable to communicate unwillingness to an act. or

There is no reason to think that a woman falling into any of the above situations wasn’t really raped, yet it appears the GOP feels this way. The result is a woman who has already been traumatized, perhaps feeling guilty because she DIDN’T fight back or was drugged or drank too much, now has to deal with the GOP violating her and taking away her rights.

This is my main problem with this, because this isn’t just about paying for abortions for rape and incest victims, it the GOP thinking they are the shit and can just take away our rights, preventing women from buying health coverage that covers reproductive health care, including family planning. They want to cut funding to Planned Parenthood. Which is something I have never understood, they don’t want to pay for abortions, they also don’t want to pay for birth control! And while I don’t support Planned Parenthood, I am in full support of women’s rights. I am a single woman, I have to rely on my income to support myself and this is definitely a concern.

While although I’m not advocating we descend on Washington with armored tanks, (although it is a tempting idea just to see them running away after shitting their pants) this is definitely something to keep our eye on.

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