Joseph Farah makes a valiant but highly dishonest attempt to resurrect the reputation of Todd Akin, who famously flamed out in a Senate race he would likely have won if he hadn’t made a staggeringly stupid and offensive statement about rape.
They say Claire McCaskill won her U.S. Senate seat in Missouri because her Republican opponent, Todd Akin, self-destructed in a local TV interview, exposing himself as some kind of anti-woman defender of rape.
That’s the perception many Americans have of what happened in that race, thanks to the media sensationalism and distortion, the piling on by Democrats nationwide and the willing capitulation of GOP party bosses like Karl Rove.
But how many Americans have actually bothered to view the actual interview and, particularly, the relevant minute or two in context?
I must admit, even I didn’t do that until very recently. It turns out, the anti-Akin hysteria was a completely manufactured smear. The veteran interviewer surely didn’t see a controversy in Akin’s “legitimate rape” comment – moving on to another line of questioning as soon as the congressman completed his answer.
It was the phrase “legitimate rape” that captured the attention of his opponents and the media. Why? I suppose some would like to pretend that all rape allegations are legitimate. Of course, that kind of thinking can lead to some great injustices, as we saw in the Duke lacrosse team witch hunt. Of even more significance, given the Akin controversy had to do with his explanation of why aborting an innocent unborn baby is not an appropriate response to rape, Norma McCorvey, the “Roe” in the famous Roe v. Wade case that resulted in the Supreme Court’s decision to strike down laws restricting abortion across the U.S., had claimed she was raped. Only later did she admit that was a completely contrived claim.
So there are rape claims that are not legitimate. That was Akin’s only point.
From what I understand from doctors, that’s really rare. If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.
He was talking about women getting pregnant as a result of rape. The problem is not just the phrase “legitimate rape,” nor does it have anything to do with there being false rape accusations. No one believes that false rape accusations never occur. The problem is with this idiotic claim that the female body can “shut down” and prevent pregnancy when being raped — and therefore if a woman does get pregnant from being raped, it must not be a “legitimate” rape. And he uses that bit of virulent ignorance to justify his position that if a woman is raped and gets pregnant, she should be forced to deliver her rapist’s baby (and in many states, the rapist would then have parental rights). That’s the problem. That’s why he was so widely ridiculed.