I have to confess that I am following the presidential race in the US rather obsessively at times. It’s not that I actually care perhaps. United States of America is an ocean and a world away from me, but mostly, it feels like watching reality television. Yes, yes, I know, that in the larger picture, it makes a difference to the whole world and what not. But for now, I am merely immersing myself in the waters full of gossip, rumours and bad speeches.
Which reminds me, does Obama ever make a bad speech?
On that note though, here’s my quota of wtf for the week. NY Times tells me that at some point in time Sarah Palin was involved with this.
When Sarah Palin was mayor of Wasilla, Alaska, the small town began billing sexual-assault victims for the cost of rape kits and forensic exams… Ms. Palin owes voters an explanation. What was the thinking behind cutting the measly few thousand dollars needed to cover the yearly cost of swabs, specimen containers and medical tests? Whose dumb idea was it to make assault victims and their insurance companies pay instead? Unfortunately, her campaign is shielding the candidate from the press, so Americans may still be waiting for answers on Election Day.
The rape-kit controversy is a troubling matter. The insult to rape victims is obvious. So is the sexism inherent in singling them out to foot the bill for investigating their own case. And the main result of billing rape victims is to protect their attackers by discouraging women from reporting sexual assaults.
One wonders though. If institutions were actually to offer insurance to cover expenses of being raped, the state might take the cause of preventing rape more seriously. Ugh. Double ugh. And a wtf.