Women Fighting to Change the Law of Marital Rape


Hi All! First, I’d like to say that I hope everyone enjoyed being an artist and creating your own individual found poems. Second, I would like to thank those of you who read my found poem and those who took the extra step to comment. Finally, I hope you found my poem to be powerful. I am extremely passionate about this topic and dedicated a lot of time to create this masterpiece.

I chose to make my found poem based on an article from the New York Times called “Inside One Woman’s Fight to Rewrite the Law on Marital Rape” written by Jenn Ackerman. The article was published on April 13, 2019, and discusses the fight to criminalize marital rape that stretches back decades. Most states have loopholes within the law that make it more difficult to prosecute rape by an intimate partner. A woman, one of many, named Jenny Teeson, is fighting to change this law in her home state, Minnesota. The issue of marital rape has been an ongoing, ignored problem that has come up “as early as 1848” (Ackerman). The legal director for the National Women’s Law Center states in the article that “it’s long overdue to treat rape in the martial setting with the same seriousness as rape that occurs outside of it”.

As I was looking for articles that made me anger or upset, I came across this article that did indeed, make me mad and upset. I began reading it and my mind spun with confusion. Sometimes, actually most times, I truly do not understand the justice system in the United States. My heart burned with fury as I read the absolutely disgusting acts some husbands have done to their wives. It baffles me that under the law, women still are unfairly treated. What the hell is the difference between a husband raping his wife or a random man on the street raping a random woman? I do not see a difference at all because at the end of the day, rape is still rape. A documentation stating that you are married by law does not make the rape any different or less painful or make it justifiable. Another issue I cannot wrap my brain around is the fact that these husbands raping their wives do not get close to the charges that they deserve due to the law. How insane is that?

On another note, this article was five pages long containing a whole lot of overwhelming and heavy information. I struggled trying to figure out what language and facts are the most important and powerful. As I look at my finished product, I am happy to see the most extreme points laid out. I feel as though this project allowed me to turn an article into a poem and bring a more direct impact to the matter. My absolute favorite part of my found poem is the last line that states “men are not entitled to women’s bodies”. I put a black box underneath it to give more attention because it is the main, crucial point women are trying to make. Men do not have the power over women’s bodies. It is not the late 1800s; It is 2019. However, this problem exists and cannot be ignored by laws.

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