U.S. GOP Representative Todd Akin, who is trying to win Senator Claire McCaskill’s seat, said,
“First of all, from what I understand from doctors (pregnancy after rape) is really rare. If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.”
And from what I understand, rape is rape. So exactly what is a legitimate rape? Is it a stranger rape (as opposed to date or marital rape)? Does the former have more weight, which means it’s the “legitimate” kind? I don’t get it.
If a woman says, “no,” it’s no. If you force her, it’s rape. I don’t care if she’s someone you’ve been dating, your girlfriend, or even your wife. It’s her body, and she has every right to determine whether or not to have sex. Hopefully, men (and yes, women too) don’t hear a woman’s “no” and think, “she really means yes” – like it’s part of “the game.” If they believe it, still. Err on the side of caution and back off.
What she wears also has no bearing. Although extremely foolish (not to mention tacky), if she’s dressed like a $2 hooker, she’s not “asking for it.” The only think she’s asking for is a style intervention. Also, she could be walking down the street naked. None of these things give someone the right to violate her.
Representative Akin released a statement and a Tweet later,
“In reviewing my off-the-cuff remarks, it’s clear that I misspoke in this interview and it does not reflect the deep empathy I hold for the thousands of women who are raped and abused every year…all of us understand that rape can result in pregnancy & I have great empathy for all victims. I regret misspeaking”
Message to Todd: Well, I’m glad you owned it at least. I regret reading the article, though. Why? You provided a reason why many rapes go unreported. Some women don’t want to risk not being believed if their date, boyfriend, or even husband did it. They don’t want things like what they were wearing or how many men they’ve been with to influence their credibility. No means no. Rape, whether stranger, acquaintance, date, or marital, is rape. “Legitimacy” does not apply.