National Rifle Association CEO Wayne LaPierre made a speech at CPAC today in which he excoriated liberals for suggesting that arming women might not be the be-all and end-all of rape prevention. "The one thing a violent rapist deserves," LaPierre said, smirking,"is to face is a good woman with a gun!" (HUGE APPLAUSE.) Fuck the fuck off, you disingenuous death merchant.
I can't remember anything in recent memory that has pissed me off as acutely as the GOP's favorite new tack, wherein they disguise their slavish, Machiavellian gun-worship as a noble effort to stem the tide of sexual violence against women. THESE guys—the party of "legitimate rape," the party who, on the rare occasion that they can bring themselves to acknowledge that rape exists at all, sees no problem with non-consensually wanding the vaginas of rape victims and forcing women to bear their rapists' babies. Yes, NOW those guys are on board. Suddenly, when it's a convenient PR maneuver for America's paranoid gun culture, conservatives are trying to brand themselves as the true allies of rape victims. It's a magnificent contortion, and an evil one.
Those wimpy liberals think you should defend yourself with a ball-point pen, or by "dismantling rape culture" (lol whut!?!). But don't worry your pretty little woman-heads, because Sean Hannity's got the real solution: We should arm 7-year-old girls, so that when they're systematically groomed and molested by close family members, they can just shoot their own dads! It is a foolproof plan! Hey, you know who would really have been helped by a concealed firearm? The Steubenville rape victim. Oh, man, if only all those female soldiers who are raped on duty could be armed and trained in self-defense...
In the words of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., probably, if he were alive to comment on this: "The very best way to prevent rape is to force women who are in the process of being raped to also kill a guy." That is, provided the women are fully-conscious adults with no conflicting emotional ties to their attackers, the money to purchase and license a gun, the time to reach for the gun, the nerves and physical distance to aim and shoot accurately, and the good fortune to not have their weapon wrestled away and used against them. If all of those conditions are met, hooray! Republicans have totally eradicated rape! Enjoy your murder investigations, rape victims. (If the rapist attacks from behind, or in the dark, or while you're asleep, or while you're a baby, then, well, we're just going to have to let those rapes slide. You can't make an omelette without raping a few eggs! I heard "behind-rape" is mostly a liberal myth anyway.)
Last week's Zerlina Maxwell debacle was a stunning example of how feebly Republicans grasp the anti-rape rhetoric they're attempting to parrot. Telling women to arm themselves against rapists, instead of teaching men not to rape, continues to place the onus on victims to stop sexual violence (this is all articulated brilliantly by Jessica Valenti).
The vice president does have time, though, to offer advice to women threatened by an intruder. I'm going to quote him directly.
"Just walk out … walk out and put that double-barrel shotgun and fire two blasts outside the house."
The vice president of the United States actually told women facing an attack to just empty their shotguns into the air. Honestly, have they lost their minds over at the White House? No doubt violent predators would love to face a woman armed with a shotgun that's empty.
Well, Mr. Vice President, for four decades you've enjoyed the armed protection of Capitol Police and Secret Service officers, all while trying to destroy the Second Amendment rights of the rest of us. When it comes to that right, sir, you keep your advice - we'll keep our guns.
I see a lot of young women here today. Here's some more advice from political elites who know what's best for you:Some members of the Colorado State Legislature think women are too emotional to deal with a violent attack. Senator Jessie Ulibarri said that, instead of using a firearm, you would be better off using "ballpoint pens" to stab an attacker when he stops to reload.
A ballpoint pen?
At the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, officials recommend that women defend themselves against a rapist with quote, "passive resistance."
Passive resistance? The one thing a violent rapist deserves to face is a good woman with a gun!
It's obvious that in Wayne LaPierre's rape fantasies, all rapists are Snidely Whiplash and all rape victims are Sidney Bristow. But that is not how the real world works. Genuine advocates for victims of sexual violence know that, and that's how you can tell that LaPierre and Hannity and their frat brothers are not genuine advocates for victims of sexual violence. (For one thing, what on earth is a "good woman"?) Rape is not a convenient hypothetical to be trotted out for your selfish rhetorical purposes. It is a real thing that is really happening to real women (and men, by the way—hey, we should arm prisoners!) at this exact moment. And you are taking those women's bodies, those victims' bodies, and you are using them to protect MACHINES. Machines that are used, every day, in a second epidemic of violence in which you are also, even more gravely, complicit.
Look at this self-satisfied, gray, snakey motherfucker. This is the worst dick in the world right now. Ugh.