Rape Education 101

           Normally, this web site is devoted to discussion of God and what God dreams for us in our lives. But the national conversation of late around rape and what some people think it is, and how those same people are trying to redefine it and change laws so that women – the victims – have no say in their own care, and are blamed for what happened, well, when that happens, it is time to speak up.

           And here’s why: Theologically, any time one of God’s beloved children hurts another of God’s beloved children, God is hurt as well. 

           Because God created us to be better than that. God created us in God’s very image to live in love and community. 

           Rape does not fit in the equation.

           So this is what I wrote early Wednesday morning, 22 August:

Apparently, the time has come when it is necessary to explain to certain members of the human race that rape is rape.

Apparently, there really are certain members of the human race who do not understand what rape is, and thus are prone to making comments that do nothing except expose their ignorance.

So let’s start with lesson number one:

Rape is “the penetration, no matter how slight, of the vagina or anus with any body part or object, or oral penetration by a sex organ of another person, without the consent of the victim.”

So says the FBI. Any penetration, without the consent of the victim, is rape.

To those who are confused, and especially to those who make inane comments publicly, please, please pay attention here.

There is no such thing as “forcible” rape. Unless, of course, you wish to demonstrate your ignorance vis-à-vis the proper use of the English language.

Rape is rape.

The FBI says so.

Got it?

Please note, as well, that there is no such thing as “legitimate” rape. Because really, if you think about it, that would mean that there is such a thing as “illegitimate” rape, and I do not believe any of us want to go there.

Rape, in other words, is rape.

Got it?

Next lesson:

A woman’s body does not have some secret ability to distinguish between sperm that has entered her body via rape and sperm that has entered her body via a loving, mutual act of sex.

Really, gentlemen.

I know that many men find women to be confusing, and our bodies and their functions to be even more of a mystery.

But … really? Does anyone seriously believe that women have super-secret super abilities that will determine when and whether they will get pregnant?

Because if we did, don’t you gentlemen think that perhaps, just perhaps, women would use this super-secret super ability and thus never need an abortion?!?!?

If this explanation is too difficult to understand, let me explain it another way:

Let’s say I were to take a knife and plunge it into your abdomen. Not once, but repeatedly.

Would you feel assaulted if I were to do such a thing to you, without your permission?

That’s what rape is: a penetrating assault on another person, without her permission.

Got it?

Please, for the sake of your mothers and daughters, your sisters, your cousins, your aunts and your nieces, your neighbors … for the sake of every single female in the world … please, understand this:

Rape is rape.

Period.

Stop trying to qualify it.

Stop trying to blame the victims.

Stop trying to use what at best can be described as pseudo-science and at worst can be described as lunacy to change the definition of one of the worst assaults that men perpetrate on women.

One more time, just in case you missed this lesson:

Rape is rape!

I hope you have been paying attention, because there will be a test on this subject. It will take place on Tuesday, Nov. 6. Nationwide.

Here endeth the lesson.

 

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About Lauren Stanley

All my life, it seems, I’ve been on mission. And it’s all my mother’s fault. You see, when I was a child, my mother was adamant: We were to help those in need, those who had less than we did. We were to speak for those who could not speak, feed those who had no food, give water to those who were thirsty.

Comments

  1. Anne Ferranti says:

    Thanks, Lauren, for an insightful and thorough lesson on rape. Too many men think that if women don’t fight tooth and nail or scream at the top of their lungs that penetration of their penises into the women’s vaginas or anuses isn’t truly rape. But as you pointed out, if a woman says no and continues to rebuff a man’s attention, when he continues on with the act, it is rape. There is no such thing as a legitimate rape or forcible rape.

  2. Elaine Brennan says:

    address how one may get them to understand that the rights (sanity, future) of a 12 year old who becomes pregnant (I’m trying to use the MOST innocent possible description of a “woman” who could be impregnated by rape) from this violence should not be sacrificed to the rights of the “person-hood” of the combination of her egg and the rapist’s sperm? How does the rights of this group of cells over-ride and destroy the rights of an already viable being?

    We had a discussion at lunch today and said – what sane person is NOT Pro-Life? Who on earth IS PRO-abortion? Except….. except…. except….

    I never understood the rights of embryos over women in some religions. The husband and ( two, three, or six) children need a child/sibling more than they need a wife/mother? It’s OK for this bundle of cells to kill this wife/mother and leave a grieving widower and orphaned children?

  3. Elaine Brennan says:

    Sorry, part of my post was cut off:

    Beautifully said – intelligent, sensible, wonderful.

    You are so good at this — I wish that you could address how one may get them to understand that the rights (sanity, future) of a 12 year old who becomes pregnant (I’m trying to use the MOST innocent possible description of a “woman” who could be impregnated by rape) from this violence should not be sacrificed to the rights of the “person-hood” of the combination of her egg and the rapist’s sperm? How does the rights of this group of cells over-ride and destroy the rights of an already viable being?

    We had a discussion at lunch today and said – what sane person is NOT Pro-Life? Who on earth IS PRO-abortion? Except….. except…. except….

    I never understood the rights of embryos over women in some religions. The husband and ( two, three, or six) children need a child/sibling more than they need a wife/mother? It’s OK for this bundle of cells to kill this wife/mother and leave a grieving widower and orphaned children?

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