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“It is beyond comprehension..."
August 19, 2012 2:52 PM   Subscribe

“If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.” ~ Rep. Todd Akin [washingtonpost.com] "Rep. Todd Akin, the newly-christened GOP Senate nominee in Missouri, said in an interview airing Sunday that “legitimate rape” rarely causes pregnancy. Explaining his no-exceptions policy on abortions, Akin was asked why he opposes abortion even when the pregnancy is the result of rape."
posted by Fizz (60 comments total)

This post was deleted for the following reason: "Politician says appalling thing" tends towards outragefilter more than discussion-fodder. -- restless_nomad



 
Do these people not have mothers? Are they just grafted from some sort of hunk of evil somewhere?
posted by milarepa at 2:56 PM on August 19, 2012 [14 favorites]


“If it’s a asshole elected official legitimate rape, the voting public female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.”
posted by Fizz at 2:56 PM on August 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


They are grown from spores.
posted by cazoo at 2:57 PM on August 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


What a piece of word this dude is. Where the fuck did he crawl from?
posted by growabrain at 2:57 PM on August 19, 2012


So this is a pretty commonly held view in pro-life circles. Todd Akin is certainly not the only member of congress who thinks so - he just said so in a prominent way. This is how these communities talk to each other when nobody else is listening. Sometimes they forget to context-switch.

There is a long history of this nonsense.
posted by allen.spaulding at 2:58 PM on August 19, 2012 [8 favorites]


Guess this makes sense in a world that's only 6000 years old.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 2:59 PM on August 19, 2012


I'm still trying to wrap my head around the notion of a "legitimate" rape.
posted by Rykey at 2:59 PM on August 19, 2012 [6 favorites]


If your beliefs and policies boil down to "because magic," you might not make the best senator (or human being).
posted by ifandonlyif at 2:59 PM on August 19, 2012 [4 favorites]


Good gawd.... did I just read what I thought I read? Women don't get pregnant through rape? Women lie about being raped just to get access to an abortion? Women lie about being raped as part of their divorce strategy?!? Unbelieveable.

oh, and cazoo: comparing this.... this.... thing to innocent spores is an insult to all spores everywhere!
posted by easily confused at 2:59 PM on August 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


There are tens of millions of people in American who incorrectly believe that abortion causes breast cancer because pro-life advocates know that if they lie enough it becomes a quasi-fact in the eyes of many. Don't be surprised if you start hearing this a lot and not just from movement leaders. You'll start hearing it from homeschoolers and then pastors and then your relatives. Lying for political profit is pretty popular these days. I heard so from the death panels.
posted by allen.spaulding at 3:00 PM on August 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


In the world of real facts, approximately 32,000 pregnancies result from rape annually in the United States. Study is from 1996.
posted by wikipedia brown boy detective at 3:00 PM on August 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


He is, apparently, on some kind of science comity.
posted by Artw at 3:02 PM on August 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Oh, the next ten or twenty years sure are going to be...interesting...here in the US.
That's "interesting" as in the curse "May you live in interesting times"
posted by Thorzdad at 3:02 PM on August 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


I'm still trying to wrap my head around the notion of a "legitimate" rape.

The proper term is "honest rape."
posted by Knappster at 3:03 PM on August 19, 2012


I'm still trying to wrap my head around the notion of a "legitimate" rape.

It produces a child that the father acknowledges. Didn't you read Game of Thrones?

It boggles my mind that people who espouse those kinds of views can be elected to mainstream public office, but it obviously happens.
posted by Forktine at 3:03 PM on August 19, 2012


Aaaaand he's already walking it back:

"In reviewing my off-the-cuff remarks, it's clear that I misspoke 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," Akin said in a statement.
posted by wikipedia brown boy detective at 3:04 PM on August 19, 2012


You're not supposed to feed the crazy after midnight.
posted by localroger at 3:04 PM on August 19, 2012


Well clearly this is a problem of women being insufficiently holy so as to prevent conception following their rapes, but is holiness unlimited? Surely a resource as precious as this is best left to the markets. Therefore, if you are raped and do not conceive, that means you are holy and with the purchase of a Holiness Sale License, you can transfer holiness to those who are less holy for a suitable fee.
posted by mightygodking at 3:04 PM on August 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


If you believe that pregnancy can be terminated because of rape or incest, that means you think that pregnancy is a punishment, and that women shouldn't be allowed to escape the rightful consequences for sinful behavior. The baby is actually not relevant, except as a painful handle to twist... this is echoed in all the various conservative social policies, which basically enslave women up to the point of delivery, and then do absolutely nothing to support the life they forced into the world. This, apparently, is to force women to become subservient to men... either get married, or that baby we forced you to have will die.

The baby is innocent either way, and if it was REALLY about the baby, not the woman's behavior, then you wouldn't care about rape or incest, you'd just outlaw abortion altogether.

In other words, most pro-lifers in the US really want to punish sluts.

Of course, no abortion at all has horrific consequences, as that young girl in the Dominican Republic just found out - the doctors refused to give her chemotherapy for leukemia because it could cause her 16-week fetus to abort. So, instead of saving one, they killed both.
posted by Malor at 3:04 PM on August 19, 2012 [19 favorites]


Wow. So, let me get this straight. If a woman reports that she has been raped, and then she becomes pregnant, that must mean she was lying about being raped, right? This is just despicable and disgusting and infuriating and insulting.
posted by anoirmarie at 3:04 PM on August 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


Apparently he is leading Claire McCaskill by 8 points too.
posted by Max Power at 3:05 PM on August 19, 2012


First sentence there should should say that if you believe pregnancy can ONLY be terminated because of rape or incest. Oops.
posted by Malor at 3:05 PM on August 19, 2012


Akin also thinks that the Voting Rights Act of 65 and the Civil Rights Act need re-consideration. He also came out against the National School Lunch Program.
posted by gngstrMNKY at 3:05 PM on August 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


So this is a pretty commonly held view in pro-life circles.

Do you know of any other examples beyond the one you linked? I'm not saying it's impossible but I am a little skeptical that something this dumb is actually a widespread belief.
posted by The Lamplighter at 3:05 PM on August 19, 2012


I haven't heard people making it explicit, so I will. From his statements, if a woman is raped and become pregnant, that mean that it wasn't a "legitimate rape". I'm pretty sure the implication is that, to some degree, she wanted it. Right? I mean, my mind boggles at the thought, but can there be any other conclusion?
posted by benito.strauss at 3:05 PM on August 19, 2012 [4 favorites]


There is a long history of this nonsense.

It's not nonsense if they believe every damn word of it.
posted by Old'n'Busted at 3:06 PM on August 19, 2012


@LegitimateRape
posted by Fizz at 3:06 PM on August 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


That's a very unapologetic apology. Also - he "mispoke"? What, as in actually saying the crazy shit that is in his brain in front of people? 'cos it's a hell of a slip of the tongue.
posted by Artw at 3:06 PM on August 19, 2012


I am a little skeptical that something this dumb is actually a widespread belief.

"Hi, I'm the United States of America. I don't think we've met."
posted by williampratt at 3:07 PM on August 19, 2012 [13 favorites]


I'm not saying it's impossible but I am a little skeptical that something this dumb is actually a widespread belief.

Anecdotal, but this [the female body shuts down the procreation stuff when raped thing] is what I was taught in a fundamentalist Christian school, circa 1998-2000.
posted by King Bee at 3:07 PM on August 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


Maybe he was actually set up by the CIA.
posted by Artw at 3:07 PM on August 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Dear Rep. Akin:

Regardless, it's NONEOFYOURFUCKINGBUSINESS.

Sincerely,

The Sentient World
posted by Benny Andajetz at 3:07 PM on August 19, 2012


Is the number of women who get pregnant from illegitimate rape higher? Can we just combine them both into "rape"? Or would that be misrepresenting something?
posted by iamkimiam at 3:07 PM on August 19, 2012


I would be pretty okay about it if this dude was maybe eaten by angry weasels.
posted by elizardbits at 3:08 PM on August 19, 2012 [8 favorites]


Obviously Akin has confused women for female ducks.

(yes, I googled "twisted duck cloaca sex" to back up this comment.)
posted by casarkos at 3:08 PM on August 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


If they don't accept "I misspoke" for, say, bomb threats, they shouldn't accept it for this kind of shit either.
posted by George_Spiggott at 3:08 PM on August 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


Do you know of any other examples beyond the one you linked? I'm not saying it's impossible but I am a little skeptical that something this dumb is actually a widespread belief.

This is totally anecdotal but my mother (A NURSE AT THE TIME!!!) told me as a young woman that she had "always heard" that a woman's body goes into shock and won't allow conception from a rape, that it is very rare.

She has since recanted.
posted by padraigin at 3:09 PM on August 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


He is a U.S. SENATOR? Huh.
posted by angrycat at 3:09 PM on August 19, 2012


What, as in actually saying the crazy shit that is in his brain in front of people?

Yeah, in the world of American politics, "misspoke" means "I did not mean to be open and honest about my deeply held beliefs".
posted by elizardbits at 3:09 PM on August 19, 2012 [8 favorites]


Missouri Election Statute Sec. 115.363 (3) ... "...a party nominating committee of a political party may select a party candidate for nomination to an office on the primary election ballot in the following cases: ... If there are no candidates for nomination as the party candidate due to death or disqualification of all candidates within seven days prior to the filing deadline and if no person has filed for the party nomination within that time;"

Still plenty of time for the GOP to put in a pinch hitter. And Clare McCaskill has been running 10 points behind everyone the Missouri GOP puts up. At this point, they could replace Akin with a scarecrow, and it'd probably still win.
posted by crunchland at 3:09 PM on August 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


The FPP below in wrong:
Science Congressman is Rewriting the Rules of Reproduction
posted by 445supermag at 3:09 PM on August 19, 2012


And, alternately, that if you did become pregnant, then it was all "part of [god's] plan", and you should just go with it, because he obviously knows better than you and has something grand in store for your child.
posted by King Bee at 3:10 PM on August 19, 2012


What an absolute fucking scumbag. Not only does his statement mention rape in the same breath as abortion as if they're in any way similar, but he includes a pro forma slice of 'Obama deficit blah blah' at the end. He should be grovelling in front of any camera that'll have him, begging for forgiveness at having betrayed such immense ignorance and utter stupidity, not running with 'any press is good press'.

In a just world, he'd have just lost the vote of every single female voter in his constituency, but who am I kidding? He'll probably be re-elected and this will be universally described by fellow Republicans as a mere slip of the tongue, in contrast to Obama's socialist redistribution of wealth being exposed by giving his daughter pocket money.
posted by jaffacakerhubarb at 3:10 PM on August 19, 2012


Wow. So, let me get this straight. If a woman reports that she has been raped, and then she becomes pregnant, that must mean she was lying about being raped, right? This is just despicable and disgusting and infuriating and insulting.

What I took it as (trying to understand whatever he means) is that women have some natural "baby reset" (that's totally legit in the eye's of The Lord), but that the new-mother didn't want to...not have the baby..."enough" to trigger that particular magic mommy...power?
posted by stifford at 3:11 PM on August 19, 2012


I'm not saying it's impossible but I am a little skeptical that something this dumb is actually a widespread belief.

In the '90s, the teachers in my all-girls' Catholic school told us all the time that we wouldn't get pregnant from being raped.

And, alternately, that if you did become pregnant, then it was all "part of [god's] plan", and you should just go with it, because he obviously knows better than you and has something grand in store for your child.

Yep. They were big on that idea, too.
posted by corey flood at 3:11 PM on August 19, 2012 [4 favorites]


Thanks for corroborating, corey flood. Yes, this nonsense is extremely widespread.
posted by King Bee at 3:12 PM on August 19, 2012


So, instead of saving one they killed both.

Sure, but at least they were legitimately killed.
posted by scalefree at 3:12 PM on August 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


If your beliefs and policies boil down to "because magic," you might not make the best senator (or human being).

Then almost nobody in the Senate qualifies to be a senator because the magic of fairy-dust PAC cash or lobbyist quid pro quos or God speaking in their ear is the only way most of them actually bestir themselves off their asses to get any "work" done.
posted by blucevalo at 3:13 PM on August 19, 2012


If a woman loses baby not concieved through rape, does that mean she didn't want the baby enough and "reset it"? This mommy reset theory is so incredibly harmful in so many ways.
posted by Ad hominem at 3:14 PM on August 19, 2012


So, let me get this straight. If a woman reports that she has been raped, and then she becomes pregnant, that must mean she was lying about being raped, right?

A women can only get pregnant if she has an orgasm and if she has an orgasm that means she enjoyed and if she enjoyed it then it wasn't rape. IIRC that was actually the accepted logic by English courts for a long time.
posted by MikeMc at 3:14 PM on August 19, 2012


Abstinence-only education has just found it's new spokesperson (and so has anti-abstience-only education).
posted by ifandonlyif at 3:15 PM on August 19, 2012


*oh Jesus I'm from Missouri facepalm*

I swear I don't remember it being this stupid in ten years ago.
posted by gc at 3:15 PM on August 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Read his second statement more closely. He's not taking much back.

He doesn't say whether or not he still believes in the concept of 'legitimate rape' (he may still believe in it). All he's saying is that his first statement didn't reflect the empathy he felt. He's very sorry that you were raped, and he's very sorry that you are going to have to carry the baby to full term. But you can rely on him to track down the rapist and punish him severely.
posted by benito.strauss at 3:16 PM on August 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Another example of GOP thinking it's 1952, and not 2012.
posted by crunchland at 3:16 PM on August 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Yeah, in the world of American politics, "misspoke" means "I did not mean to be open and honest about my deeply held beliefs".

I suspect it's more like "You know I meant exactly what I said, but the liberal media doesn't like people like you and me to have a voice, so now I have to pretend to apologize. Fight the good fight, brothers and sisters, for we are being oppressed!"
posted by jet_manifesto at 3:17 PM on August 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


It's funny how "god's plan" only tells women what to do with the rest of their lives.
posted by jeffburdges at 3:17 PM on August 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


I can't believe this Republican said something stupid.
posted by ivanosky at 3:17 PM on August 19, 2012


Un-fucking-believable.
posted by five fresh fish at 3:18 PM on August 19, 2012


I... hate... HATE.
posted by L'Estrange Fruit at 3:19 PM on August 19, 2012


If a woman loses baby not concieved through rape, does that mean she didn't want the baby enough and "reset it"? This mommy reset theory is so incredibly harmful in so many ways.

I think the magical "mulligan" button inside the lady's tummy can tell if a women has been "really" raped. thus only triggered in those situations. God can toggle it whenever he wants, because it's his button.
posted by stifford at 3:19 PM on August 19, 2012


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