To defend the bill against accusations that it would leave college women vulnerable to rape, Salazar pointed to currently existing safety measures that don't involve firearms such as whistles, safe zones and call boxes.
Republicans, desperate to find a Democrat who might turn out to be as ignorant of women's issues as their own Todd Akin (or Richard Mourdock), would love to make Salazar the poster boy for their imagined Democratic "war on women."
Who do Republicans expect to persuade with this argument? After reading Salazar's statements myself, I find his phrasing to be awkward more than insidious and the GOP witch hunt against him to be laughable more than grounded.
You can read more about his remarks here, and here.
Since the GOP claims that this ban would make Colorado women more vulnerable to rape, I have to ask: how many women currently have a Glock model 26 tucked away in their backpacks on Colorado's college campuses? Would Salazar really be taking guns out of the hands of college-aged women?
Personally, I don't even think it matters. If we're going to talk about reducing incidents of rape, then we need to focus on men, not women; we need to talk about education, not guns. Suggesting that women should arm themselves to protect against rape just opens another door to insinuations of blame such as: He never would have raped her if she'd had a gun!
Still, if women in Colorado really oppose this ban, let's hear it from them, not from GOP leaders who are eager to exploit concerns about women's safety to further their own, unrelated, agenda.
Meanwhile, conservatives defend this week's offensive hashtag by claiming that it was intended to mock Salazar and not victims of rape. I say that's irrelevant. The latter is a residual effect, whether intended or not.
When you see a tweet like this:
#LiberalTips2AvoidRape Be ugly.you can see what I mean. The idea that rape jokes might provide a legitimate means of forwarding an argument about guns amounts to an ignorance I could not previously have imagined.
— Jack Stamman (@jrstamman) February 19, 2013
If conservatives care so much about the safety of women, then let's see the House put their money where their mouth is and reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act.