Protesters for women's rights hold a rally on the Alabama Capitol steps on May 19 in Montgomery. (Butch Dill/AP)

The June 10 front-page article “For rape victims in Alabama, a 2nd trauma” quoted a defender of this statute as saying that even when a person is convicted of rape, “there is merit on both sides of this issue.” Where have we heard that before?

How can a rapist be a good parent? Like President Trump’s defense of white supremacists in Charlottesville, the false equivalency here is indefensible, immoral and dangerous. Alabama’s new abortion ban with no exception for rape or incest and its refusal to prevent rapists from being given parental rights are state-approved licenses for men who use sexual assault as an instrument of power over women. We need state laws that protect women, safeguard children and deny safe harbor to rapists who seek continued control over the women they’ve attacked.

Toni Van Pelt, Washington

The writer is president of the National Organization for Women.