You no longer have to wonder how low the right-wing fanatics will go. Members of the so-called “pro-life” party should be ashamed of themselves. But they aren’t. They bask in the glow of their egos, confident in their supremacy, while the innocent and vulnerable suffer. And I can’t imagine anyone suffering more than the 10-year-old girl from Ohio who was raped and then, because of an archaic decision by the U.S. Supreme Court, forced to leave her home state and travel to Indiana for an abortion. But adding to her trauma are the right-wing pundits who’ve smeared her and denied her truth.
The story of the little girl was published in the Indianapolis Star on July 1. The lead author of the piece, Shari Rudavsky, a health and medical reporter for the Star for 18 years, wrote that just three days after the overturn of Roe v. Wade, Indianapolis obstetrician-gynecologist Dr. Caitlin Bernard got a call from a doctor in Ohio telling her that they had a 10-year-old patient who’d been the victim of a sexual assault. She was six weeks and three days pregnant, and she needed an abortion.
There was no reason to deny the veracity of this story. As Daily Kos reported Wednesday, a Columbus, Ohio, man was charged with the 10-year-old girl’s rape. Gershon Fuentes, 27, confessed and turned himself in to authorities, and admitted to raping the child on two other occasions. But none of this stopped the filthy trash that came out of the mouth of such Fox News talking heads as Jesse Watters, who called the story a “hoax” and part of a “politically timed disinformation,” The Daily Beast reports. Or an editorial published by The Wall Street Journal, calling the story a “fanciful tale” that was “too good to confirm.” And Fox News’ Tucker Carlson simply stated the story was “not true.”
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But the denials didn’t stop with just a few nonsense off-the-cuff statements. Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost appeared on Jesse Watters’ show to proclaim, "We have regular contact with prosecutors and local police and sheriffs — not a whisper anywhere," and in an interview with USA Today Yost declared there wasn’t a “damn scintilla of evidence" of the story, Popular Information reports.
Republican Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio turned to his 2.9 million Twitter followers Tuesday, retweeting a story from The Washington Examiner with a quote from Yost. Jordan wrote: “Another lie. Anyone surprised?” Jordan has since deleted the tweet but has yet to offer the little girl, the reporter, or his constituents in Ohio an apology for blaming the victim.
Detective Jeffrey Huhn testified at Fuentes’ arraignment Wednesday, confirming that the department was made aware of the little girl’s pregnancy via Franklin County Children Services and by her mother on June 22.
So why would so many, including The Washington Post staff writer Glenn Kessler, have questioned this story? Because right-wing conservatives can’t handle the truth.
They can’t stomach the reality that choosing to support anti-abortion policies will cause lasting trauma and damage to millions of pregnant Americans—including in cases of rape and incest.
This nation is facing a real crisis of conscience, with trigger laws in 11 states going into effect after the overturn of Roe banning abortions even in the case of rape and incest. These right-wing tyrants don’t care who these laws will affect, because it won’t be them or the people in their lives. When you have money, safe abortions are always available. But denial ain’t just a river in Egpyt and the history of rape denial goes back to the beginning of time. When will these folks start believing survivors?