Rep. Todd Akin made some frankly repulsive comments this week about rape and the female body. The U.S. Senate contender responded with the following after he was asked about his ideas on abortion on a Missouri TV station:
“First of all, from what I understand from doctors, that’s really rare. If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down,” Akin said. ”But let’s assume that maybe that didn’t work or something. I think there should be some punishment, but the punishment ought to be on the rapist and not attacking the child.”
What doctors have you been talking to, Mr. Akin?
If the female body had the ability “shut down the whole thing,” you might be surprised to find that there would be no need for abortion in instances of rape. Duh! Heck, let’s be real: if women had the ability to shut down like that there would be a whole bunch of men on this planet who would not have kids.
I get livid every time I think about this whole situation. If people still want to vote for him because they are pro-life, please consider that he is someone who is running for U.S. Senate that doesn’t have a basic understanding of reproduction. Personally, I feel his comments were offensive and ignorant.
At this point in my life I wouldn’t have an abortion and I wouldn’t recommend it, but bad things happen. I don’t celebrate abortion in any way, shape or form, and I’m almost positive that women who have undergone the procedure don’t celebrate it, either. I don’t believe abortion should be used as a method of birth control, but I am in no position to judge my sisters who may have had to take a desperate measure during desperate times. In my most humble opinion, there are times in which a woman might want to have an abortion. Rape is one of those cases. One could argue for adoption, but who knows what that number is these days. Despite the stigma that all women want to do is get married and have babies, having a child is a life-changer for not only men, but for women as well. Pro-choice doesn’t mean that you don’t celebrate life.
What is legitimate rape, Mr. Akin?
If he meant to say forcible rape, which is what some news outlets are reporting, you then have to define “forced.” Is it forcible rape when you are given a date rape drug, or any other substance that might impair judgment, against your free will? Is it forced when your life is being threatened with a weapon or the sheer difference in strength between men and women? Rape is not a pretty topic that you can dress-up, still we try to downplay it: minor sex trafficking/prostitution? That’s rape. Molestation? That’s rape. Sexual assault? That’s unwarranted sexual touch or attempted rape.
What’s really going on here? Is there something I’m missing? Is this some covert operation to take away women’s rights? Women should be protesting; if not, they should at least be pressing their local representatives for answers. On the scale of what’s important to who and how many, I highly doubt abortion rights are on the top of the list for a majority of people, but the women’s rights movement is not dead.
On top of talks to remove a woman’s choice to abort, there has been a push to ban contraceptives and sex-education in favor of abstinence-only programs. Contraceptives and abortion are inherently tied to welfare participation and quality of life for women and families -- they help keep couples or individuals who aren’t financially able to provide for a child, or an additional child, out of the system.
If something like this passed, next thing you know we’ll be hearing about the increase in backwoods abortions. We’ve already been there, why go back? This whole situation regarding Akin’s supposedly “off the cuff” comments is a complete mess.
On another note, I like the way politicians try to distance themselves from their bros and/or throw them under the frat bus when they say something that isn’t politically correct; but everyone knows that many of today’s GOP leaders have similar beliefs and political agendas aimed at controlling women’s rights through legislation.