Guess What That State Rep Who Gave His Adopted Daughters To A Rapist Is Up To Now?!
OK, let’s play a game. Say that you are an Arkansas State Representative who has been in the news for the last couple weeks on account of the fact that you gave your adopted daughter to a rapist because you thought she was possessed by Satan. What is the absolute last type of legislation that you want to start pushing at this time? Think about it. If your answer is “Anything to do with making life harder for rape and incest victims whatsoever!,” then you and I are on the same page. Rep. Justin Harris, apparently, is not.
For real, Justin Harris is currently spearheading a campaign to require rape and incest victims to get parental permission before obtaining an abortion. You know, so if a girl is raped by her father or stepfather, she would have to get his permission before having an abortion! OH! Or, say, if an adopted child were “rehomed” and raped and old enough to get pregnant, she’d have to get permission from the State Representative who illegally “rehomed” her in order to get an abortion! Which, of course, puts her safety at risk.
State Rep. Justin Harris (R) is spearheading HB 1424, which seeks to strengthen his state’s parental consent requirements for minors seeking an abortion. It’s one of a slew of anti-choice restrictions that the Arkansas legislature is currently considering.
Right now, Arkansas residents under the age of 18 can only get an abortion after getting consent from one of their parents. The court system can excuse them from this requirement if they go through what’s a called a judicial bypass procedure. Or, if they became pregnant as a result of incest, rape, or sexual abuse, they can claim an exemption to the law and waive the consent requirement.
Harris’ bill would tighten those requirements, removing the current exemption for victims of sexual crimes — making those minors’ abortion access dependent on permission from parents they may not feel safe confiding in.
HB 1424 would also make the judicial bypass procedure more onerous for teens, allowing the court to mandate that they attend an “evaluation and counseling session with a mental health professional” from the Department of Health without stipulating how soon this session must take place. The bill doesn’t place any time limits on the court’s proceedings, either, which could end up making teens delay an abortion while their petition proceeds slowly.
What the actual fuck?
I mean, it’s not that I am at all surprised that, as a conservative, he wants to restrict reproductive choices for rape victims, incest victims, and indeed, all women in general. That’s kind of their whole thing. Certainly, the fact that a young woman may be too scared to ask the parent or guardian who raped her for permission to get a safe and legal abortion is an item for the plus column, as far as they’re concerned.
What I can’t get over though, is the utter gall this man has to jump on this train so soon after this kind of controversy! You would just think that the last thing he would want to mention, at this time, would be rape. Never mind cracking down on victims of rape and incest. Anyone, with the slightest modicum of social or common sense would stay as far away from that well as humanly possible. At the very least, they might suggest that another person might be more qualified to spearhead that particular initiative. Or someone else might suggest that!
You would just think that someone in that group would have the sense to say “HEY, um. Maybe we should find someone to be in charge of this who is not currently the subject of national horror resulting from the fact that he illegally ‘re-homed’ his adopted child with a man who raped her. I would love nothing more than to be a fly in the wall at that meeting where they decided that Justin Harris, of all people, was the best possible person for that job.
Personally, I think Justin Harris needs to resign. Between illegally rehoming his adopted children with a rapist, to performing exorcisms on those children and others, to somehow procuring $4 million federal dollars to run his religious daycare center where many of those exorcisms were performed, I cannot for the life of me figure out how he has the chutzpah to remain in office.
I have joined 10,000 other people on a Change.Org petition demanding his resignation, but what good that will do, I’m not sure! Clearly, this man is in his own world, and it will be up to the people of Arkansas to decide whether or not he is someone they want to keep around come next election.