Yesterday, I wrote a post that talked around the horrible, outrageous, and really inexcusable things politicians have been saying about rape. And I’m not just talking about the conservative men who said the horrible, outrageous, inexcusable things. I’m also talking about the people who horribly, outrageously, and inexcusably used their opponents faux pas as a way to advance their own agenda.
Politicians on all sides of the aisle have been using conversations about rape as political collateral. And that is not okay.
The most recent back and forth between Republicans and Democrats in the wake of Mr. Mourdock’s statements about rape and God’s will are the the tipping point for me. I don’t need to set anyone straight on their theological perspectives, I don’t need to tell you which party or which candidates I am backing because of their stance on women’s health care. What I need to say is STOP! Stop using rape as a political weapon, as a chess piece in this game of survivor, as a way to call out your opponent. Stop. Every time you open your mouth to pontificate about whether rape creates conditions acceptable for a legal abortion or about what God’s role in rape is or about women’s reproductive cycles and rape you become a perpetrator of the repeated assaults survivors endure.
Please go and read the whole thing here.
What do you think? Have politicians commandeered conversations about sexual violence for their own personal gain? And more imporatantly, how can we make more space, as Dr. Mount Shoop says, to allow survivors to guide our culture’s conversations about sexual assault and its effects?