I've talked elsewhere about the substance of Todd Akin's more questionable claims, but it's important to question his actual claims, not fictional claims. He said that it wasn't impossible what rare. He claims there are mechanisms that act against a pregnancy under those circumstances and these mechanisms can break down. In the wake of the Todd Akin media pile-on, studies were trotted out supporting the idea that rape helps impregnation (essentially arguing for rape as a natural, evolved method of procreation).
It is all in support of the progressive abortion line: It is wrong to not let a mother kill her child when that child results from a truly traumatic rape that causes PTSD symptoms and is often re-lived (as opposed to a night of drunken debauchery that is later regretted). If that's wrong then it's wrong for cases in all cases where consent wasn't complete, including cases where the woman gets plastered at a party and ends up in some guy's bed. Since it is too difficult to draw the line between the traumatic cases for which society has a hard time not granting an exception for killing and those cases where the exception is abused for convenience, there must be no exceptions at all. Nobody must be left out, and the question of exactly what we are killing becomes secondary.
So for the liberal mind, distinctions are apparently bad, unless you are Whoopi Goldberg and distinguishing Roman Polanski rape from "rape rape." All the high and mighty posts about rape having the same definition the world over (before or after the U.S. recently changed its definition?) have no effect on Goldberg's reputation or her popularity.
Here is the crux of the emotional argument, eloquently stated by a rape survivor:
You used the expression "legitimate" rape as if to imply there were such a thing as "illegitimate" rape. Let me try to explain to you what that does to the minds, hearts and souls of the millions of women on this planet who experience rape. It is a form of re-rape. The underlying assumption of your statement is that women and their experiences are not to be trusted. That their understanding of rape must be qualified by some higher, wiser authority. It delegitimizes and undermines and belittles the horror, invasion, desecration they experienced. It makes them feel as alone and powerless as they did at the moment of rape.So, by stating his opinion that rape pregnancies are relatively rare compared to consensual act pregnancies along with his opinion that not all events classified as rape or claimed to be rape are the same sort of thing that the rape exception was meant to address he has committed, in Eve Ensler's mind, a kind of rape. Using the word "legitimate" to convey these ideas is a "form of re-rape."
Ensler's understandable trauma (not to be made light of) is compunded with that particular liberal state of fear that presents her with a "terrifying . . . window into the psyche of the GOP." As a progressive, Ensler knows that Akin and the GOP are not trying to make some reasonable limitations on the killing of unborn infants, but are "legislating the experience of women who have been raped."
Remember now that we are talking about legalities. If it all it takes to demonstrate that rape has occurred is that a woman is upset, or doesn't like the sex act in retrospect, where does this leave men who are accused of a crime? And why should a an unborn child be deprived of life without any due process? Because no matter what stage of development it is, it is only the breathing of oxygen that turns that parasitic mass of tissue into a person?
Ensler admonishes Akin and all pro-lifers to “spend your energy going after those perpetrators who so easily destroy women.” This reprimand is remarkably similar to Akin's reviled soundbite: “. . . I think there should be some punishment, but the punishment ought to be of the rapist, and not attacking the child.” Now why is everything else that Todd Akin said more important than the issue of whether or not the creature being punished for the rapist's crime is in fact a child? Because if there is a real public "discussion" about that, it won't be as difficult to demonize pro-life voices.
This is apparent in the political attack gone viral at Urban Dictionary defining "legitimate rape" as:
Rape between one man and one woman who are not married or even acquainted; the only rape sanctioned by the Republican Party.Here's the sort of the ideas peddled in the wake of the hyped Akin outrage, that provable or forcible rape can't be between acquaintances or spouses. The liberal climate of fear is here summarized:
If people like Todd Akin have his way, the definition of “legitimate rape” might become a serious legal concern. How raped will you have to be to get a “legitimate” shot at an abortion under a Republican administration? *Implicitly, while it may or may not be important for there to be proof of rape to deprive an accused man of life, it must be that there be no evidence of trauma required to deprive an unborn baby of his or her life.