I didn’t intend to start Monday off being mad. I had every intention of starting off this week on a nice, even keel ready to tackle life’s with a smile. But FUCK THAT SHIT. Because now, now I’m mad. I’m so mad. Truth be told, I’ve been so mad for a while, but every once while something comes so outrageous comes around that it ignites my rage aknew and I simply want to scream into the primal abyss that passes as political discourse today.
Today’s source of my madness comes from U.S. Representative Todd Akin, the Republican candidate running for the Senate in Missouri. On Friday, he said out loud in a televised interview that:
“First of all, 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.”
I know. I know! I FUCKING KNOW! So many, many, everything is wrong about this statement. The bunk science. The victim blaming. The whole idea of “legitimate rape.” And it only gets more wrong when you learn a couple of key facts about Rep. Akin.
1) Rep. Akin is currently a member of the House of Representatives Science, Space and Technology Committee.
2) Rep. Akin is currently beating his Democratic opponent, sitting U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill in the polls 49.7 percent to 41.3 percent.
Rep. Akin of course issues a statement saying he “misspoke,” which means he allowed what he really thinks to be recorded and televised. But there is no mis-anything when it comes to his record on women. Here are his own words again in the very same interview when he followed up his belief that legitimately raped women magically “shut that whole thing down”:
“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.”
Yes, let’s punish the rapist by punishing the rape victim by making her carry his unwanted child to term. That sounds legitimate. Akin’s vehemently anti-choice voting record speaks volumes. He is clearly against all abortion, even in cases or rape. He is against the morning after pill. He even co-sponsored that horrible bill last year that would have defined rape only as “forcible rape.”
Yeah, and, let me repeat this again – THIS GUY IS WINNING IN THE POLLS.
The thing that makes me even madder is that Rep. Akin and his beliefs are no isolated event. This is not one lone yahoo in a see of otherwise sane public servants. This is a prevailing view in one wing of our political system. This is the Republican’s War on Women. No, GOP, we didn’t make it up – you guys keep assaulting our right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness by trying to control our bodies. That’s how you get a Rep. Paul Ryan lands on the ticket for Vice President. That’s how we get a sitting member of the House of Representatives who serves on its Science Committee saying women who are “legitimately raped” – not to be confused with all those wanton sluts who were asking for it – have some sort of magic venom in their vaginas that shuts that whole things down.
Because, you see, what I understand from doctors [namely a 1996 study by the American Journal of Obstetricians and Gynecologists] is that “rape-related pregnancy occurs with significant frequency” and is “a cause of many unwanted pregnancies” to the tune of 32,101 each year.
I am so tired, so sick and tired, of rich white men telling what I can and can’t do with my body. Who I can love and who I can’t love. What rape is legitimate and what rape isn’t legitimate.
If only my female body had a way to try to shut that whole Rep. Todd Akin thing down. Oh, wait, it does – it’s called voting.
p.s. Please consider donating to Sen. Claire McCaskill, who in addition to not being a misogynistic idiot like her opponent, is a really cool lady and a kickass senator.