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Please help shut down this right wing lie

By Amanda Marcotte
Thursday, September 18, 2008 22:23 EDT
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So I’m reading John Aravosis writing about the Sarah Palin rape kit controversy, which he suspects was rooted in her opposition to the right of a rape victim not to be impregnated by the rapist. That strikes me as reasonable—rape kits are mainly about collecting evidence, but also contain packets of emergency contraception so you significantly lower your chances of becoming pregnant. In the course of an otherwise excellent post, though, he repeats some scientific misinformation:

During that exam, women are sometimes given drugs to stop the implantation of a possibly fertilized egg in the uterus. (As an aside, the reader asked if sometimes during these exams a fertilized egg is collected as evidence – does anybody have the facts on this?)

Okay that second sentence is irrelevant to this discussion, but it made me laugh, and then I read it again and laughed again. How exactly would you be able to collect that? It’s not like they’ve got an egg flusher in the hospital. Eggs, like sperm, are very, very small, you know.

Anyway, the point is this: That’s not how Plan B works. It works by preventing ovulation. This is why I made this video, to combat this horrible myth. And make no mistake—assault on emergency contraception are intended to be expanded into attacking the pill.


RH Reality Check: Emergency Contraception Vs. Abortion from RH Reality Check on Vimeo.

As I said before, what appalls me is that right wingers lie to women about how contraception works in an attempt to trick them into getting pregnant. Trying to gain control over someone’s body through deception is part of what we feminists like to call the rape culture, and it’s nauseating. And to impose that rape culture thinking on actual rape victims after they’ve been raped makes my blood pressure shoot up.

Update: Readers have convinced me that it’s unlikely that emergency contraception had anything to do with this, since standard rape kits don’t have it, as it’s not part of the evidence-collecting. Interestingly, I also found out that merely getting a rape kit done helps the state build a case against the perpetrator, because it shows that the victim acted in good faith. It’s sad that “she’s just lying” is still the standard issue defense. Sad mostly that people still fall for that.

Amanda Marcotte
Amanda Marcotte
Amanda Marcotte is a freelance journalist born and bred in Texas, but now living in the writer reserve of Brooklyn. She focuses on feminism, national politics, and pop culture, with the order shifting depending on her mood and the state of the nation.
 
 
 
 
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