The Alabama Moderate

Painting the Red State Purple.

More Information Emerges on the Wasilla Rape Kits

Posted by ALmod on September 13, 2008

So what exactly are “small-town values”?  Well, as I pointed out in a previous posting, it apparently includes charging rape victims for their own exams.

The mainstream media is FINALLY picking up on the story.  A recent article from USA today sheds a bit more light on the issue, as all we had to go on before was an old article from 2000. The Associated Press has also released an article.

As it turns out, if the victim had insurance, the insurance was charged.  That’s technically not anything new, but USA Today did say that if the insurance was billed that the victim still payed a deductible.

It also turns out that the bill which ended the practice and was signed by Gov. Knowles was directly aimed at Wasilla.  A spokesperson for Palin stated that the governor does not believe that women should be charged for these exams, but would not answer when she learned of the practice and whether or not she tried to change it.

FBI statistics show that 2000, the year in which Wasilla war forced to stop charging rape victims for the collection of evidence, was not a good year for rapes in Alaska.  They had the highest rate in the nation, and they are typically among the top of the list from year to year.

The practice of billing victims for these exams is not common, but it is a large enough problem that the U.S. Congress passed a bill in 2005 to end this practice throughout the United States.  From the USA Today article:

“‘The reason we passed the legislation was that we saw it was prevalent enough to be a pretty considerable problem,’ Knecht says. ‘There are no other victims of crime that end up being billed for evidence collection.'”

But the last paragraph in the USA Today article is one that I found of particular interest.

“The Senate version of the legislation that included the rape-exam provision was sponsored by Sen. Joe Biden of Delaware, the Democratic vice presidential nominee. Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama was one of 58 co-sponsors; Republican presidential nominee John McCain was not.”

Perhaps that’s why Sarah Palin and other Republican speakers wanted us to believe that Barack Obama had never done anything significant during his time in office.  It would have been damning for us to know up front that while she had sat back and let the “values” of her small town include charging women for rape kits, the two men she and McCain were running against had passed legislation to end that practice– BIPARTISAN legislation that John McCain didn’t seem to want his own name on.

As if that wasn’t enough, I’m sure we’ve all heard McCain’s 1986 senate race knee-slapper (which happened to be spun for him by a woman who is now the author of a book called “Lipstick on a Pig”):

“Did you hear the one about the woman who is attacked on the street by a gorilla, beaten senseless, raped repeatedly and left to die? When she finally regains consciousness and tries to speak, her doctor leans over to hear her sigh contently and to feebly ask, ‘Where is that marvelous ape?'”

It appears that McCain would rather joke about women enjoying being raped by apes than actually do anything serious to help rape victims.

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