Everyday Victim Blaming

challenging institutional disbelief around domestic & sexual violence and abuse

Texas ‘rape insurance’ bill is about economic violence against women, by Dr. Eugene Gu

Just this week, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott signed into law a bill that prohibits health insurance companies from covering elective abortions of any kind. This includes insurance plans on the ObamaCare exchanges and even private employer-based plans.

Proponents of House Bill 214 are hailing its passage as a victory for state taxpayers, who are no longer compelled to subsidize medical procedures that they may find morally objectionable. Lead author Rep. John Smithee (R-Texas) even called it an exercise in "economic freedom."

Lost in that line of reasoning, however, is the fundamental concern for a woman's most basic human rights. Smithee’s law purposefully does not make any exceptions for an elective abortion even in cases of rape, incest, or severe fetal abnormalities. ...

It is about economic violence against women, forcing them to pay additional out of market premiums just to protect themselves in the event of an already horrifying scenario of sexual assault. In essence, the law forces women to find what Rep. Turner has described as "rape insurance." Either that or suffer potentially harrowing consequences. ...

 

This article was first published in The Hill on 17.8.17. You can find the full text here.

Inspired by our participation with the Write to End Violence Against Women awards organised by Zero Tolerance, we are now collecting examples of good journalism about domestic and sexual violence and abuse to make it clear that it is possible to write about DSVA without resorting to myths, misrepresentations, minimisation and victim blaming.

 

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