I am hurting today.
My mind is flipping through pictures I had long since boxed away. It’s showing me grainy filmstrips of memories I had no desire to ever see again. It’s reminding me that I’m vulnerable in a way Todd Akin will never understand.
I am a rape survivor.
But I will not tell you my story here. I won’t.
I won’t put it out here for men like him to read, and in the reading, diminish its power.
I don’t want to have to wonder; was my rape real enough? Was it “legitimate” in their eyes? Am I worthy of protection under the law?
I know what I experienced.
I was violated in mind, body, and spirit. I was left broken and bleeding, and it took me many, many years to repair the damage that was done.
Todd Akin will never understand what that’s like. In fact, I can’t help but wonder if he’s been on the other side of a “not-so-real” rape. It would explain his attitude.
That’s not fair, of course. But neither was the statement he made:
“It seems to me, from what I understand from doctors, that’s really rare,” he said. “If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.”
So. If you are raped, and you get pregnant, you weren’t really raped at all. On some level, you wanted it.
How far does he take that twisted rationale?
If a woman is dressed in a provocative manner, does that mean she’s asking for it?
What about if she drinks? Or smokes pot? Or walks home alone at night? Or goes for a run without a dog to back her up?
Is she inviting an attack?
I don’t think so. Most rational people don’t. But rational people aren’t getting elected much these days.
Todd Akin is head of the Science Committee. Head of the Science Committee, and he’s spewing that kind of garbage.
What the hell is wrong with this world?
Listen. I understand. Abortion is a hot button topic. Supporting its ban – at any cost – is sure to win you some votes with a certain segment of the population (some within my own family).
But at what cost?
Whether we like it or not, Todd Akin is a role model.
And there are a lot of young republican men in this country.
Hell, there are a lot of men, period. And while most of them are good, decent human beings, some of them aren’t. Some are just looking for an excuse. A justification.
Men like Todd Akin should know better than give one to them.
Rape is rape. Whether our bodies (governed by thousands of years of biology) realize it or not.
To suggest otherwise? Well, that’s just plain evil.
And, by God, evil is powerful enough on its own. We don’t need to elect it into office.