Venn Diagram: Rape vs. Flat Tire

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Outrage followed after Kansas state Rep. Pete DeGraaf compared being raped to getting a flat tire. During a House discussion of a bill that will ban insurance companies from covering abortion insurance under general healthcare plans, DeGraaf said women needed to “plan ahead” for being raped and possibly impregnated against their will. From the Associated Press

And Rep. Barbara Bollier, a Mission Hills Republican who supports abortion rights, questioned whether women would buy abortion-only policies long before they have crisis or unwanted pregnancies or are rape victims.

During the House’s debate, Rep. Pete DeGraaf, a Mulvane Republican who supports the bill, told her: “We do need to plan ahead, don’t we, in life?”

Bollier asked him, “And so women need to plan ahead for issues that they have no control over with a pregnancy?”

DeGraaf drew groans of protest from some House members when he responded, “I have spare tire on my car.”

“I also have life insurance,” he added. “I have a lot of things that I plan ahead for.”

As many have pointed out, preparing to get a flat tire is not the same as preparing to be raped. You won’t get HIV from a flat tire, for example. Nor will you get pregnant. To help Rep. DeGraaf understand the many differences between rape and a flat tire, I’ve made the Venn diagram below. But I can’t help but think it’s not that he doesn’t know the difference: it’s just that he doesn’t care.

 

 

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DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily bluster—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

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