Below is a guest commentary submitted by one of my female readers on the recent “legitimate” rape statements made by Rep. Todd Akin, a Republican Congressman from Missouri. I’d love to hear your thoughts on the issue in the comments section below.
It seems that women’s issues have become the focus of many political conversations. Lately I feel as though we are regressing back to the days when women had to fight for their rights. Despite the fact that I am only a mere 31 years old and have never had to fight for my own rights, I find it a bit daunting to see that these issues have once again rolled around. While I admit, I do not follow political attack campaigns, I can’t help but wonder what in the world GOP Rep. Todd Akin was thinking when he made a recent statement in the press:
“It seems to me first of all from what I understand from doctors [pregnancy resulting from rape] that’s really rare. If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.”
When exactly did Akin speak to a doctor about this is what I want to know. Furthermore, has he ever known anyone that has been raped and subsequently got pregnant? Likely not, but this is hardly a basis to make such a statement on. Furthermore, what constitutes an legitimate rape? If a woman says no, it means no, there are no circumstances that make a rape illegitimate.
Let me clue you into some fertility facts that are common knowledge:
Fact - when a women ovulates, they are more likely to get pregnant.
Fact – If a woman is raped during the period in which she ovulates, and the rapist does not use any form of protection, she can get pregnant.
Fact – If our bodies were able to shut down during rape, believe me there would be hundreds of thousands of women rejoicing in the streets because it would make rape impossible.
Not only is the statement made by Akin an insult to women everywhere, it is also a double-insult hurled at those who have been raped and ended up pregnant. What choices they make in that situation are none of anyone’s business, but it has happened enough times and babies have been born out of this situation.
It’s not enough that Akin has apologized and his apology is hardly one that would be accepted by any woman who suffered through a rape only to find out that the act of violence resulted in pregnancy.
Here is his so-called “apology.”
“I used the wrong words in the wrong way.” followed by “I misspoke.”
Really, is that the best you can come up with? My advice to you Mr. Akin would be to stop talking, especially about something over which you nor any other government body should have any control over. I’m sure I speak for most women when I say:
My Body, My Business. Stay out of it.