Missouri Representative Todd Akin took a bold stand this weekend. He spoke out in defense of his right to make an ass of himself, even in cases of rape and incest. Sunday morning Akin told a Fox affiliate, "From what I understand from doctors," pregnancy from rape is "really rare. If it's a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down."
There was screaming of "AYFKMWTS?!" from all across the political spectrum. Even Romney-Ryan made a statement distancing themselves from that big, steaming pile of crazy. (Whatever, Ryan has opposed abortion in the case of rape in the past.)
Realizing that he'd maybe-kinda-sorta gone too far, Akin issued a fauxpology. See, when he suggested there was such a thing as "illegitimate rape" and that women's bodies have magical powers that allow them to kill rape sperm he really meant in a kindly, empathetic way. Totes.
Naw, Akin. Tell us how you really feel. Here he is on Twitter:
In reviewing my off-the-cuff remarks, it's clear that I misspoke in this in this interview and it does not reflect the deep empathy I hold for the thousands of women who are raped and abused every year.
But make no mistake. He still doesn't believe women should have the right to an abortion in the case of rape. He believes "deeply in the protection of all life and I do not believe that harming another innocent victim is the right course of action" following a rape. And even if he realized he sounded like a delusional dickhead with that original statement of his, I think what it revealed was his true feelings about women, the experience of being raped, and what rights we should have.
Empathy? Bullshit. If he had any empathy at all he wouldn't be taking this position. I mean, let's take a look at some of these ideas.
"Legitimate rape:" What the fuck is that?!? Like there's some "fake" rape going around? Like we make that shit up just for fun?
Pregnancy from rape really rare: Yeah, let's see exactly how rare. Oh look at this -- 32,000 pregnancies a year as a result of rape. That's so NOT rare.
"I think there should be some punishment, but the punishment should be for the rapist and not in attacking the child." Holy red herring. Who said the purpose of abortion was punishment in the first place? No one, that's who. If a raped woman decides not to carry that pregnancy that decision has everything to do with her mental, emotional, and physical health and nothing whatsoever to do with punishment. I mean, let's punish the rapist regardless. Totally separate issue.
Put these cockamamie ideas together and you have a guy who will believe any outlandish, illogical nonsense his wizards tell him just to keep on supporting his unsupportable, unempathetic, cruel position on abortion. The end.
Please let me be the 100,000th women to state the obvious: If you "respect" life, let's start by respecting a woman's life -- her quality of life, her agency, her ability to make decisions about her own body. Let's respect that life first.
What did you think about Akin's statements?
Image via Fox News KTVI/USA Today