I hate it when I feel like I must write about something stupid a Republican has done. I’m a Republican – proudly so – and feel like conservative principles are the best thing for getting this country on the right track. So when a Republican does something that even for a moment takes away from getting the conservative message out there to the American population, it ticks me off. And today it ticked me off in a big way.
Meet Congressman Todd Akin from Missouri. He’s running against Claire McCaskill in the upcoming election. Before today, I hadn’t even heard his name. Congressman Akin is a staunch defender of the pro-life movement and this I have no problem with at all. But I do have a problem when a man such as Congressman Akin makes a comment that is so stupid and so insulting as he did today.
Congressman Akin said in an interview that if a woman is “legitimately raped” that her body has the ability to shut down any potential pregnancy. Um, what?
First of all, let’s tackle the sheer insanity of this comment. This man apparently believes that a woman has some sort of super-power that allows her to prevent a pregnancy from occurring when they are raped? And that this super-power only kicks in when they are “legitimately raped”? This guy is 65 years old and he really doesn’t understand how pregnancy occurs? Really?
But let’s not forget the “legitimately raped” aspect of this comment too. This insinuates that many women aren’t really raped. That most of them just make it up or are misinterpret the guy’s intentions. Because God forbid that we ever stop and consider the sheer amount of sexual predatory crimes in this country and how women are being not only violated but then shunned or ignored when they dare to bring up the attacks and ask for justice.
I have known several women in my life that have been violated by a man. Some have actually believed that the attack wasn’t really an attack, that somehow they were to blame for it. In the last 5 years, I have watched a church turn a blind eye to a young child molester and then completely shut out families of the children molested when his crimes came to light. I have watched another man go to jail for trying to abuse his step-daughter and that same church’s leaders were uncomfortable with reporting the attempts of this man. When this guy was finally reported, the preacher actually told me he hoped the mom would not do the “wrong thing” and divorce him, because you know, divorce is a sin (and apparently molesting your kid is ok, I guess). And I know of another man who did horrific things to his daughter and before he went to jail – I know that the church that guy went to actually raised money for his defense.
We live in a society where like or not, men attempt to control women through sexual violence. Churches can be a haven for this unfortunately because many churches teach women that men are in charge – no matter what. But they aren’t the only place where this is a problem. And for a man like Congressman Akin to insinuate that some rapes aren’t “legitimate” is a slap in the face to every women who has ever been violated or controlled by a man through sexual means.
Of course, this man did come out and “apologize” today. He claimed he misspoke. That’s not an apology. For years after I got married, when my wife would apologize about something she didn’t really think she was wrong about, she’d say, “I’m sorry I made you mad.” We joke about it now that it took me so long to realize that what she was saying wasn’t really an apology. That’s what Congressman Akin just did. He looked at his constituents and said, “I’m sorry I made you mad.” He didn’t apologize or admit to anything he did wrong.
Until he truly apologizes, anything he said will not be good enough. Congressman Akin was ignorant and insulting and quite frankly a disgrace to the Republican Party. We deserve a better representative for our party in Missouri. And if that bothers you, well, then “I’m sorry I made you mad”.
Note: And in case anyone thinks I may have misinterpreted Congressman Akin’s comments, here they are in all their glory. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fdisTOKom5I&feature=player_embedded