Will the Stepford Congress Kill the Sex Trafficking Bill?

Will the Stepford Congress Kill the Sex Trafficking Bill? March 17, 2015
Photo Source: Flickr Creative Commons by Chuck Coker https://www.flickr.com/photos/caveman_92223/
Photo Source: Flickr Creative Commons by Chuck Coker https://www.flickr.com/photos/caveman_92223/

The boys and girls in DC are doing their doo-dah, once again.

It seems that Congress has labored and almost brought forth a bill. That in itself is newsworthy. Congress doesn’t make laws these days. It makes slander against anyone in the opposing political party that it can find to attack. By opposing party, I mean, of course, both of the political parties. Each political party is the opposing party to somebody.

It seemed for a moment in political time that this great American law-making body was actually going to make a law. They found something they could agree on enough to get enough of themselves to stop denouncing one another long enough to … ummm … actually do something that was part of the job they were elected to do.

Congress was poised on the tip of an actual vote on an actual bill. Americans everywhere held their breath. Would this Congress, long thought barren, bring forth a law?

Not, mind you, that it was much of a law. This particular bill would set up a fund for victims of sex trafficking. The monies to support this fund would come from fines that are paid by those who are convicted of sex trafficking. The money in the fund would be disbursed through grants to local law enforcement and non profits.

In other words, the law would not “protect” sex trafficking victims, as one headline I read stated. In fact, it would not do anything for sex trafficking victims in a direct fashion. But it would provide jobs for folks in the shiny new anti-sex trafficking industry, and some of them night help sex trafficking victims. Of course, the recipients of the grants would be subject to all sorts of politically correct stuff and nonsense, but that’s another post.

This bill is, as they say, a modest proposal. It is an especially modest response considering the horrific crime against humanity that it seeks to address. The real story here is that Congress actually came so close to passing a bill.

But, never fear my fellow Americans. Congress is not going to allow itself to break its losing streak by doing something. It seems that the Dems discovered that (Gasp!!!!) the bill does not allow these monies to be used to pay for abortions for victims of sex trafficking.

Now, we can not have that. Any piece of legislation that concerns “women’s issues,” which is to say any piece of legislation that involves sex, which as we all know, is a man’s delight and a woman’s “issue,” must have a codicil in it somewhere providing “access” for abortion. The reason for this is simple: All any woman needs, ever, is an abortion.

If a woman is kidnapped, raped, beaten, shut in a tiny room and only let out to be repeatedly sold so that she can be raped again and again and again, night after night, day after day. If she is sold across borders and put in “legal” brothels or put on the street and sold hand to hand, if she is told that if she resists, her family in her home country will be killed … if all this is done to her … why then, what she needs is an abortion.

I know something about this problem. I sit on the board of directors of a non-profit that rescues these women, often at great personal risk (people who will do all this, will kill anybody you know.) This organization provides a home environment, therapy, medical aid, education, clothing, and anything else these women need to help them rejoin humanity. Sometimes, the women are pregnant. When they have their babies, it’s a time of great rejoicing in the shelter. The babies are loved and the women are supported.

Odd as it may sound to the abortion-is-all-women-need crowd, when women are given the option of having their babies without paying a horrific price for doing so, when they are honored, respected and loved and their babies are honored, respected and loved, they want the children.

Many of the women we are talking about come from very traditional, conservative societies where children are valued. They value their maternity, when the people around them value it.

But I digress. Let’s return to the ugliness of Congress. It appears that this modest little piece of legislation is in big trouble.

The Democrats (or at least enough of them) are going into a you-can’t-pass-a-bill-about-women-without-promoting-abortion frenzy. They are willing to see the bill die rather than forego using it to fund abortion.

Because, you see, if help for women doesn’t include abortion, why then, it’s no help at all. Women need abortions. More than they need rescue, therapy, medical care (many of these women are horribly injured) freedom from slavery, legal aid, love, support and home, these women — like all women, everywhere — need abortions.

If the Ds can’t make sure that the sex trafficked ladies get their abortions, then they will protect them from having freedom, medical care, therapy, shelter, legal assistance, love, support and home forced on them. After all, without abortion, why would any of these things matter to a woman?

Just when it seemed that the Ds would take home the trophy for dereliction of duty for the week, the Rs jumped in. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced that, unless the Ds stop fighting the sex trafficking bill, he will not schedule a vote on the confirmation of Loretta Lynch, who is President Obama’s nominee for Attorney General.

Because, you see, refusing to do its job is how Congress gets its way, and its way is always about partisan fighting.

There is the possibility that public dismay might jog the Stepford Congress out of its partisan thrall. But that won’t happen unless public dismay convinces the people who own Congress that their investment is in danger. It’s more likely that this bill will go the way of the ban on abortions after 20-weeks.

These people campaigned on all sorts of issues, and that got our votes. But they were lying in all those campaign ads. They were sent there to do what they are doing, which is to position their parties to take over the White House in ’16 and allow their money backers to take control of the Imperial Presidency.

The Ds are fighting over money for abortion because that’s big campaign $$ to them. The Rs are blocking everything that Congress might do because, as any politician knows, it’s easier to sell the public on being against things than it is to explain why you’re for something. They don’t want to do anything because there is risk in doing things and that might hurt the chances of taking the White House in ’16.

That’s why this little bill almost came to a vote. It looked like such a win-win-win-win that everybody thought it would be good political fodder for themselves.

But then, abortion reared its ugly head, and Congress stopped itself from breaking its self-imposed losing streak just in the nick of time.

From the New York Times:

WASHINGTON — An amazing thing about Congress: Things can always get worse.

After several years of troubles with spending bills that were once routinely bipartisan, the Senate has now found a way to disagree on a bill that would protect victims of sex trafficking. And in the process, that dispute has ensnared President Obama’s largely uncontroversial nominee for attorney general, Loretta E. Lynch.

The latest impasse sweeps up five years of the lowlights of congressional dysfunction: abortion and immigration policy disputes, White House exasperation, garden-variety distrust, and mutual loathing between Democrats and Republicans.

“Life is really simple,” Senator Harry Reid, Democrat of Nevada and minority leader, said on the Senate floor on Monday, attributing the sentiment to Confucius, “but we insist on making it complicated.”

The bill in question, sponsored by Senator John Cornyn, Republican of Texas, is a modest measure with broad support in Congress that seeks to create a victims’ fund from fines collected from perpetrators of sex trafficking. A similar measure has passed the House and was expected to pass easily in the Senate.

But a provision in the Senate bill would prevent the fees from being used for abortions for the victims. Democrats say Republicans sneaked it into the bill. Republicans firmly deny the charge. And Democrats now say they will not vote for it unless the language is removed, something that Republicans decline to do.

In turn, Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, the majority leader, has said he will not turn to the matter of confirming Ms. Lynch, Mr. Obama’s nominee to replace Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr., until the sex trafficking bill gets off the floor. A procedural vote to move the bill forward was expected on Tuesday.

 

"I didn't state that very well, sorry. Nothing wrong with the link, I just couldn't ..."

The Fallout: How to Help Women ..."
"You don't remember Lyndon Johnson doing any such thing because he didn't do any such ..."

Dr Christine Ford in Hiding Because ..."
"I haven't had the opportunity to read the FBI investigation. I'm not in the habit ..."

The Fallout: How to Help Women ..."
"Was there something wrong with the link?"

The Fallout: How to Help Women ..."

Browse Our Archives

Follow Us!


TRENDING AT PATHEOS Catholic
What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment

19 responses to “Will the Stepford Congress Kill the Sex Trafficking Bill?”

  1. I checked on this yesterday. Yes, it makes me mad. I also read e Rs are afraid it might bring up the ghost of Todd whoever from Missouri and they don’t want to mention rape. Makes me mad. I’m going to call Renee Elmers again.

    • It would really help if Republican politicians could talk about rape in a way that indicates they had any compassion and intelligence. It isn’t that hard. I don’t see how anyone could address human sex trafficking without mentioning rape, though. It’s an ugly topic, which is why it needs more attention and more help, not the Liberal-all-purpose-band-aid of abortion.

      The whole thing makes me mad. DC makes me mad. Could they possibly try to look like they are more mature than a group of junior high girls?

    • Tony, can you be more specific? I don’t know what is terrible. The topic itself, or Rebecca’s denouncing congress, or the fact that the Rs and the Ds are completely paralyzed?

      • “Many of the women we are talking about come from very traditional,
        conservative societies where children are valued. They value their
        maternity, when the people around them value it.”

        Many of the women we are talking about have been raped. To try to insinuate that the reason they don’t value their maternity is because others around them aren’t valuing it, and not because they are being raped and forced in to maternity, is abhorrent.

        I’d love to see her value of maternity if the tables were turned and she hadn’t been able to choose her own husband to father her children.

        • It’s not a useless bill, just less that it should be considering the problem. It’s a tepid bill because Congress is incapable of doing anything better. In fact, it appears that they can’t even do this.

        • I’m speaking from the real experiences of real women who have been trafficked and sold. The thing that seems to be the determining factor is the quality and kind of support the woman receives.

          If women are considered heroines for having their babies and are given the kind of support that allows them to do this without being an outcast or suffering mistreatment, but instead are given the support and love, the women I’ve known actually find their babies of redeeming the suffering and degradation they’ve been through. After all they’ve been through, they seem to find special joy in having a child and a home and people around them who rejoice in their baby.

          One thing traffickers, pimps, etc do is force women to have abortions against their will. This is for many of these women far worse than the rapes.

          I would imagine that if the people around them could only see them as pathetic rape victims and expressed disgust and hatred for the baby as being the rapist’s child and not the woman’s, this might be quite different. But that would be a cruelty, a cruelty which you may not be able to grasp.

          It is also a cruelty that rape victims often experience. One of the many things that all rape victims face — and it is worse for victims of trafficking — is forever being a rape victim in the world’s eyes. It diminishes them to define them this way. Pushing abortion on them diminishes them further.

          Abortion is a way of denying that the rape happened, that it was so awful that killing a child is justified to hide it. Abortion is actually in the rapist’s best interests.

          Taking their babies from them in the name of getting even with the rapist does not help them nearly so much as giving the their dignity was women, real women who can birth and love a child. It says, among other things, that they are whole people who are bigger, better then the rapist.

          The key to this is the love and support the woman receives, including the love and support for her as a mother.

          I am not in any way trying to justify rape or sex trafficking. Quite the contrary. I’ve given a lot of life working to end these atrocities.

          • “The thing that seems to be the determining factor is the quality and kind of support the woman receives.”

            I think a woman can receive quality support and still have the ‘option’ of an abortion available to her if she chooses to do so.

            “If women are considered heroines for having their babies and are given the kind of support that allows them to do this without being an outcast or suffering mistreatment, but instead are given the support and love, the women I’ve known actually find their babies of redeeming the suffering and degradation they’ve been through.”

            These women should be considered heroines regardless of the choice of an abortion. If a woman chooses an abortion, is she less of a heroine? I’m glad there are women who have found strength in their children, but it does not mean that all women will.

            “After all they’ve been through, they seem to find special joy in having a child and a home and people around them who rejoice in their baby.”

            I’m sure they’d find special joy in having a home and people around them, regardless of a baby. Or do you contend that only those who get pregnant during this ordeal can find this special joy? I obviously am not trying to put words in to your mouth and I don’t mean to imply that you said that, but your statement leaves little wiggle room.

            “One thing traffickers, pimps, etc do is force women to have abortions against their will. This is for many of these women far worse than the rapes.”

            Not once have I stated that these women should be forced in to abortions, nor do I believe the bill would do that. These women should have the option of deciding major life decisions on their own without some religious people worrying about their own feelings.

            “I would imagine that if the people around them could only see them as pathetic rape victims and expressed disgust and hatred for the baby as being the rapist’s child and not the woman’s, this might be quite different. But that would be a cruelty, a cruelty which you may not be able to grasp.”

            I don’t see them as a pathetic rape victim. Your inflammatory rhetoric trying to cast them as either a heroine who goes through with child birth or a pathetic rape victim who takes the easy way out with an abortion is what I find so abhorrent. Can she not be a heroine and have an abortion if she so chooses? Is she pathetic because she chooses to not give birth to a child she didn’t have a say in making?

            “It is also a cruelty that rape victims often experience. One of the many things that all rape victims face — and it is worse for victims of trafficking — is forever being a rape victim in the world’s eyes. It diminishes them to define them this way.”

            I’m not defining them this way. You’re the one who is defining them. You’re the one saying that they are heroic if they give birth and pathetic if they don’t. You’re the one saying that not only are they a rape victim, they are also a reproductive machine who has no control over whether she actually wants to reproduce.

            “Pushing abortion on them diminishes them further.”

            Who is pushing abortion on them? The only one pushing anything is you pushing your archaic beliefs.

            “Abortion is a way of denying that the rape happened, that it was so awful that killing a child is justified to hide it. Abortion is actually in the rapist’s best interests.”

            Abortion is a way of coping with repercussions of being raped. If a woman does not want to give birth to this child she should not be forced to because some religious politician has decided she shouldn’t have that option readily available. Killing a child? Apparently you’re not familiar with the difference between a fetus and a child. Abortion is in the rapist’s best interest, we can agree upon that; that does not mean that it cannot be in the rapee’s best interest.

            “Taking their babies from them in the name of getting even with the rapist does not help them nearly so much as giving the their dignity was women, real women who can birth and love a child.”

            Getting even with the rapist? Taking their babies from them? No one is ‘taking’ anything from them. It is something they should have the right to not be forced to go through. They only have dignity as a woman, a real woman no less, when they birth and love a child? What if they choose not to birth this child? They are no longer a ‘real woman’?

            “It says, among other things, that they are whole people who are bigger, better then the rapist.”

            They are bigger and better people than the rapists on the fact that they are not raping people. Why do they need to give birth to be better than the rapist? If a woman who is raped does not get pregnant is she no better than the rapist because of this?

            “The key to this is the love and support the woman receives, including the love and support for her as a mother.”

            The key to this is the love and support a woman receives. Full stop.

            “I am not in any way trying to justify rape or sex trafficking. Quite the contrary.”

            I’m not saying you’re trying to justify rape or sex trafficking. I do think you’re being a complete bigot by forcing your beliefs on others regardless of their feelings.

            “I’ve given a lot of life working to end these atrocities.”

            That is wonderful and I hope you continue to do so in the future. I also hope that you can understand that a woman who has an abortion is not less of a person or less deserving of love than the other victims.

            • Tony, this is too long for a combox. Try to whittle your comments down.

              It appears your problem is abortion. Do you think the Democratic Senators should have killed this bill rather than let it pass without abortion funding?

            • I’ve been reading Rebecca for quite a while. She does not believe that women who have had an abortion is less of a person or less deserving of love, I can assure you.
              Her question is really interesting. Should the bill not be passed simply because funding for abortions isn’t in it? There appears to be a lot of very good things in the bill, things that are urgently needed. I think the bill should pass; help is needed, urgently needed from what little I know. It does seem as if it would be better to pass this than not pass it.

                • I’ve been away from the internet for a couple of days. However, I did delete your reply because it was rude and out of line. You are welcome to comment here, but you must be civil.

            • Just read an article on this from USA TODAY. It says the law as written allows abortion in the case of rape. So the ban on funding doesn’t affect rape victims. And most of the Dems still voted against it.

        • I once had a housemate who had been raped, got pregnant, and her parents forced her to marry the rapist. She said her son was the only good thing that had ever happened to her.

  2. I don’t get this post either. On one hand you say the bill is a crummy bill that won’t really help any of the victims, but then you bemoan that politics is killing it? If you think it is a bad bill, why on earth would you want it passed?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.