For those not convinced that the rights of a sexual assault victim were a low priority in the Bible, and that “legitimate rape” had a niche in biblical law, consider this: Deuteronomy 21:11 permits Israelite soldiers to force war captives into marriage; Numbers 31:18 states that, after the Israelites slaughtered the adult Midianite males, Moses ordered the soldiers to take all the young girls “who have not known a man by lying with him and keep alive for yourselves”; and Deuteronomy 22:23-24 makes clear that if a (betrothed) virgin is raped in a city and doesn’t cry for help, she should be stoned to death along with the perpetrator.
Representative Todd Akin, take heart. Although your stunning bigotry endangered your chance at reelection; although your conjunction of “legitimate” and “rape” embarrassed the GOP and outraged the Democratic Party; although you re-traumatized up to one-fifth of the nation’s women; although you implied it doesn’t count if a woman doesn’t struggle, you did not offend your God. Apparently, in his eyes women are mere vessels, mere carriers of progeny, mere satisfiers of male bedtime will. So long as certainty of paternity is preserved, and so long as life is cherished between conception and birth, issues of consent and women’s rights melt away before biblical tradition.
As the saying goes, “What God has brought together, let no man tear asunder.”
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