In recent weeks a series of draconian anti-abortion laws have been introduced or passed by states like Alabama, Kentucky, Missouri, Georgia, Mississippi, Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana, and Ohio. The laws vary from explicit bans to so-called fetal heartbeat laws, which prohibit the procedure after six weeks of pregnancy — before most women even know they’re pregnant.
Far-right pundits have celebrated the laws, which were designed to challenge the constitutionality of Roe v. Wade and rarely contain exceptions for rape or incest. “God bless Alabama!” crowed Matt Walsh, an insufferable anti-choice blogger who believes underage rape survivors should be forced to give birth.
White supremacists have been similarly vocal about their support, since they believe the bans will increase the birthrate of white Americans and prevent “white genocide.” Meanwhile, the denizens of Incels.co, a major online forum for “involuntary celibates,” cheered the bans on as a way to retaliate against attractive, promiscuous women who spurn their advances.
In one thread about the Alabama ban, incels gleefully reacted to the prospect of women dying from self-induced miscarriages. One asked “Dead roasties or dead babies, which will it be?” Another complained that women will “risk killing babies and even killing themselves but they won’t even think of refraining from sex.”
A user named Nothingness wrote “Is it so hard for women to just not be a slut… They would rather kill babies alive than to abstain from facking [sic] random dudes. What a wretched nature..” ReasonableResolver replied that “Not fucking Chad is not an option. They’d rather go to prison for life than miss out on Chad.”
Total Imbecile, a forum member who uses a GIF of Aurora mass murderer James Holmes as his avatar and made nearly 6,000 posts on the forum, proclaimed:
LOL if women think I care that theyre gonna be sticking coathangers up their pussies
How about just not having sex? I thought sex isnt a human right so it shouldnt be a big deal to just keep your legs closed, right? Nobody is entitled to anything after all, women are not entitled to safe abortions
In response to model Emily Ratajkowski posing nude to protest Alabama’s ban, forumgoers slut-shamed her and demanded she be raped.
An incel with an Augusto Pinochet avatar wrote “Roasties love murdering unborn children, and preventing them from doing so will make the world a better place,” and called Ratajkowski a “braindead feminist Stacy.” Other slurs included “spiteful man-jawed whore,” “Jewess whore,” “[f]ucking slut,” and “(((Ratajkowski))).”
In a thread about a Texas bill that would make having an abortion punishable by death, incel posters rejoiced. Wereqryan posted a picture of Pepe the Frog looking triumphant and wrote “High octane lifefuel! Death to fetus murderers!” “Take that, stupid sluts,” declared one self-described 23-year-old virgin.
Bakura806, a user with over one thousand posts, wrote that “the foids are going to lose it when they cant have sex with chad without consequences, lets see how long they last ROFL.”
This sentiment is likely more common than one would like to believe. Many self-described pro-lifers, particularly men, make disparaging remarks about “promiscuous” women. They would rather put women and their doctors in cages for absurdly long periods of time — or execute them — than see women having enjoyable sex lives without consequence.
A common refrain is that women need to simply close their legs — the responsibility of men never comes into the equation. If they’re survivors of rape, they should’ve “relax[ed] and enjoy[ed] it,” and just accept that the resulting fetus is a “gift from God” even if it might kill her.
Instead of advocating for comprehensive sex education, greater access to contraception, and affordable healthcare, they shun all three with disastrous results. There is no interest in preventing unwanted pregnancies in the first place. No desire to assist women and their newborns, or to fix an overburdened adoption system.
The purpose of these bans isn’t respect for life, or the quality of life. The goal is to be as punitive as possible. As then-candidate Donald Trump remarked in 2016, “there has to be some form of punishment.” Christian extremists fervently believe that consequence-free pleasure for women is wrong, and regard women as little more than chattel.
The incel community is just a little more honest.