As if someone taking control of a woman’s body via rape isn’t bad enough, he may be able to sue her if said rape ends up in a pregnancy with his child that she chooses to abort, according to a bill recently passed by Arizona Republican Trent Franks.
Formerly the Susan B. Anthony and Frederick Douglass Prenatal Nondiscrimination Act, PreNDA slips in a section that actually protects the sexual assailant instead of the victim; it essentially states that he would hold the power to sue the woman in the case that she aborts a child that is his own. While the bill states that this is only if the father of the child is not guilty of a crime that lead to the rape, it is statistically proven that sexual assault is a very underreported crime, and thus many fathers in this case would be excused from that part of the law.
I find this to not just be unnecessary, but quite sexist, unfair, and potentially dangerous. Someone who sexually assaults another person should not have a say in any of the next steps that the woman chooses to take post-rape. It brings up issues of privacy, the woman’s right to her own body, and the future safety of the child. The law also states that the woman’s parents would have a say in the matter if she is not of legal age, which also does not completely sit right with me, since again it allows other people to control a woman’s body. If they do not have to give permission for her to have sex, they should not be allowed to have involvement in the results; as for the rapist, if he does not have her consent to have sex, he should not have those rights either.
This is especially scary to think about for college-age women who have plans for their futures that did not include a child—especially one that was a result from an incident that was against their will.