Monday, August 20, 2012

“Legitimate Rape”

Ladies and gentlemen, I give you the honorable Republican Senate candidate from Missouri.

In an effort to explain his stance on abortion, Representative Todd Akin, the Republican Senate nominee from Missouri, provoked ire across the political spectrum on Sunday by saying that in instances of what he called “legitimate rape,” women’s bodies somehow blocked an unwanted pregnancy.

Asked in an interview on a St. Louis television station about his views on abortion, Mr. Akin, a six-term member of Congress who is backed by Tea Party conservatives, made it clear that his opposition to the practice was nearly absolute, even in instances of rape.

“It seems to me, from what I understand from doctors, that’s really rare,” Mr. Akin said of pregnancies from rape. “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.”

Quoting a Tea Partier on medical science is like quoting a lizard on Darwin, so we’ll just skip right over that and let the folks who know how to respond get in their licks. This is just for those of you who still think that these kinds of people are just harmless cranks who are very strong in their beliefs and don’t truly represent the views of the people who voted for them.

Guess again, sweetheart. This genius has a very good shot at winning, joining such leading lights of the 11th century in the House and Senate as Jim DeMint, Rand Paul, Louis Gohmert, Steve King, and Virginia Foxx, all of whom think Torquemada was a wuss.

Not for nothing, the Romney/Ryan campaign let it be known that they “disagree” with Mr. Akin. Disagree? No, you disagree with someone over your favorite baseball teams or your favorite Twilight character. Something like this — spouting psedo-science and fetal supremacy — requires a full distancing from the candidate, as in put him in a capsule and launch him to the Kuyper belt. Otherwise, it sounds like they might have some room to accommodate him and his nutsery in your party. Well, do they?

Mr. Akins has since released a statement saying that he “misspoke” but that he stands for the life of the blastocyst above all else and oh, look at the kitty: “We’ve had 42 straight months of unacceptably high unemployment, trillion-dollar deficits, and Democratic leaders in Washington who are focused on growing government, instead of jobs.” Well, then, I can see why that would drive him to quote mad scientists about “legitimate rape.”

It’s up to you, the good and proud people of Missouri. This one is all yours.

PS: Mr. Akin also thinks that the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965 have outlived their usefulness. Nobody’s concerned about those things any more, anyway.