By Diane Wahto on October 31, 2012
Wichita, Kansas—The following is from my friend Tom Rambo:
There are things that have been weighing heavily on my mind, and I feel the need to share them, because politics appears to be obscuring certain realities that shouldn’t require clarification, but apparently do. These are issues concerning women and they are important to me because I’m a husband of 40 years, a father of two daughters and a wonderful daughter-in-law, and because of the many women in my life who are cousins, friends and co-workers. These issues, however, should be important to everyone. Second, we men don’t get to determine what defines rape as “legitimate.” Rape is rape, and all men need to get that through their heads. I would say that men have no concept of the demeaning nature of rape, but I suppose we could ask men who were raped in prison if there is a question regarding the legitimacy of the act or not, because I’m sure they would have an opinion. For the most part, rape is an act of violence and has nothing to do with sexual satisfaction.
Sometimes men will try to excuse their actions by saying, “She said no, but she didn’t really mean it.” Raging testosterone seems to cause some men to make bad decisions. However, that’s not an excuse. Here’s a fact, people - If a woman says no, and you keep going, it’s not consensual. “Date” rape doesn’t make it any less of a rape; it merely defines the circumstances.
Women are not here to amuse men or simply satisfy our sexual needs, so men need to quit acting like it. There is no such thing as raping somebody just a little bit; rape is rape. In addition, if a woman is raped, nobody but that particular woman gets to decide what she’s going to do about it. Telling her she has no choice in the matter is emotional rape. She is violated twice and neither time, has any say in the matter? Excuse me, but that is bullshit!
Third, women are entitled to every right as citizens of the United States that men are, and that includes equal pay. My daughters and my wife are amazing, intelligent women. They are more than capable of making their way in the world and taking care of themselves financially. They should be paid just as much as any male counterpart. Moreover, as a father and husband, I will tell you this. You will respect wife and my daughters, and their role in the workforce. If you don’t, they have every right to call you out on it. There are not rights for men and different rights for women. Equal rights are for everyone, period.
In this current political season, women’s issues have been front and center and I am still stunned at the attempts many Republican candidates are making to diminish women and deny them control of their own destinies. It’s not right, it’s not legal and it’s not moral. Any man who would vote for Todd Akin and those like him should never look another woman in the eye again, particularly his wife or daughter, because his vote says “I have no respect for you as a human being”. In addition, any woman who would vote for Todd Akin and those like him, well, I don’t know how she could ever look at herself in the mirror again, because her vote says, “I have no respect for myself.”
Electing misogynistic assholes and placing them in positions of power is disrespectful to women and it sends a message to men that women are somehow less important than they are, and that some rapes are OK because they're not "legitimate" rapes. If that’s OK with you, then you should be ashamed of yourself.