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Weary Beyond Words

Aug 21, 2012 — Categories: , ,

“Legitimate rape” has now been added to the lexicon of sexual assault thanks to Representative Todd Akin, candidate for the U.S. Senate in Missouri. One wonders about the definition of this new term; perhaps its synonym “real rape” and its opposite is “illegitimate rape.” It’s a mystery to me.

“Legitimate rape” has now been added to the lexicon of sexual assault thanks to Representative Todd Akin, candidate for the U.S. Senate in Missouri.  One wonders about the definition of this new term; perhaps its synonym “real rape” and its opposite is “illegitimate rape.”  It’s a mystery to me. Rape is rape is rape: the forced penetration of the mouth, anus, or vagina by a penis or an object regardless of the gender of the perpetrator.

And then there is the question of where Representative Akin received his sex education.  Perhaps he needs a refresher course on how sperm fertilize eggs in a human female.  But then the human female portion of this equation seems to not even be in the picture Akin has of how rape happens.

“If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down. But let’s assume that maybe that didn’t work or something: I think there should be some punishment, but the punishment ought to be of the rapist, and not attacking the child.”

I’d like to see Representative Akin explain this to Victoria Sherden who was raped by her estranged husband and became pregnant. But I doubt that Representative Akin would consider her husband’s rape of her to be “legitimate rape.”

Mostly I am weary of ignorant male politicians expounding on women’s experiences, women’s bodies, and women’s lives. Representative Akin is currently a member of the U.S House of Representatives which helps explain why the House seems unable to pass the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA).  The need for the Office on Violence Against Women which would be funded by VAWA could not be more apparent: a source of accurate, informed information about rape and sexual assault. The good news is that Representative Akin’s opinions about rape and pregnancy have created a firestorm from across the political spectrum.  Maybe there is a limit to outrageous, ill-informed comments from policy makers.  Maybe this will motivate the House to pass the Reauthorization of VAWA.  We live in hope.

Rev. Dr. Marie M. Fortune
FaithTrust Institute

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P.S. Perhaps I'll send Representative Akin a copy of Sexual Violence: The Sin Revisited.    

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Posted by judy braun at Aug 24, 2012 03:48 PM
yes, send rep akin a copy. educate!

rape by any other word is rape

Posted by MaryElizabeh McIlvane at Aug 24, 2012 03:48 PM
For me there is no "maybe". The only word is MUST to policymakers. "Maybe" plays around with peoples' lives endangered by these traumatic events. I invite you to check out:

Dr. Vincent Felitti, one of the prinicipal investigators of the ACE study. Please see the webinar description and registration link below.
Trauma from Adverse Childhood Experiences: The Hidden Epidemic
Date: Monday, August 27, 2-3:30 pm EDT Speakers: Vincent Felitti, Department of Preventive Medicine, Kaiser Permanente, San Diego, CA. I believe it could be possible adult rape not properly dealt with by the victim can have serious health problems down the road. Rape touches every cell in our bodies.
My voice is that of a mature woman who has diligently worked for the past twenty six years to intuitively overcome the consequences from a triad of traumas, including rape, in my first five years. The deeply buried horrors began to surface in my 59th year. Now I am committed to move child sex abuse by people known to the child out of the control of legal issues into the healing domain of public health arenas.

In closing, Akins is clueless about a woman's creative sexuality and some men's control driven sexual sense to destroy. These men have the power of their mind to say "no" to such destructive powers which will eventually destroy them.

Women in Complicity

Posted by Shirley Fessel at Aug 24, 2012 03:48 PM
What's really sad is that there are women who will still vote for him thinking that men have the right to tell them what to do with their own bodies.

no science on US sci commte

Posted by k at Aug 24, 2012 03:48 PM
NPR pointed out that Akin's ignorant comments were even more appalling since he is a member of the US House science committee. No wonder there's no progress on issues....[…]ience,_Space_and_Technology

rape is rape is rape

Posted by Mike at Aug 24, 2012 03:48 PM
Rape is reprehensible beyond imagination. Rape is a violation of human dignity. Rape is plain old wrong. Yet what I find almost completely missing in our nation's discussions of Atkin's comment is a willingness to discuss, much less admit, that "rape is rape is rape," from certain angles, is a gross oversimplification. To say that statutory rape is the same in all respects as non-statutory rape is nonsensical. It also seems like discussing the issue of the emotions that co-exist with rape and their potential impact on the process of conception is a legitimate point of inquiry. I do not know much about Todd Atkins, but I seriously doubt that he was suggesting that we turn the other way and ignore, thus approve, some rapes. If he did mean this, then he is due all the hatred being sent his way. But if he did not, all those instantly accusing him of being inhumane are speaking weary words to be sure.