Last weekend, Rep. Todd Akin created a firestorm with his “legitimate rape” comment and theory of how a woman’s body can block unwanted fluids. Colorlines columnist Akiba Solomon thanks Akin for his publicized ignorant statements about human biology, which revealed the confusion behind the anti-abortion movement and the war on women.
Frankly, I’m relieved that you’ve revealed what you truly believe about how women’s bodies perform when they are being sexually violated. Thank you for admitting that you—a member of the House Science and Technology committee, an outspoken critic of Obamacare and a radical anti-choice lawmaker who has co-sponsored legislation that would redefine rape—have been relying on misogynist junk science. It’s good to know that you, a former board member of Missouri Right to Life and an elected official who speaks on the intricacies of conception, have been operating under the illusion that only “legitimate” rape leads to pregnancy.*
In case you don’t know by heart what you said on Sunday about outlawing abortion by any means necessary, let me remind you:
“It seems to me, from what I understand from doctors, [rape resulting in pregnancy is] really rare,” Akin said in an interview with KTVI-TV. “If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down. 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 of the rapist, and not attacking the child.”
You’ve since apologized for “misspeaking,” invoking your two daughters as evidence that you didn’t mean to call the 36,000 rape victims who become pregnant each year liars. But, like a jumbo flying roach running in circles after a blast of Raid, your belief in the preeminence of “forcible” rape just won’t go away. Not since Rush Limbaugh called Sandra Fluke a slut, has a self-described conservative really connected the dots between ignorance of women’s reproductive health and the fetal rights movement. So thanks for that.
Read Akiba Solomon’s entire piece at Colorlines.
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