I’ve seen a lot of hot words about Republican Representative Akin of Missouri, and his comments about rape. Certainly, he wins the Douchebaggery and Dumbfuckery Award of the Month — I can’t wait to see how the next morally-deficient Republican will try to top him, though Akin may hold the record for the year with this stinker.
What I’ve not seen is much discussion of why anyone would say such a thing in the first place.
Here’s something similar, just to illustrate the point: “Oh, a dog left in a car with the windows rolled up on a hot summer day is very unlikely to die, because veterinarians tell me dogs have special ways of dealing with heat.”
Now that’s a patently false, crackpot-insane, and downright creepy thing to say, pretty much like Akin’s remark.
But why would anyone say something that boneheaded and nasty?
I said it here to be satirical. That’s a good reason. “He’s so dumb, he’d need a whole bottle of smart pills to become a fool. He’s dumb as a Congressman from Missouri. Why, he even thinks that a dog left in a car….” That’s satire.
But Akin wasn’t being satirical.
So let’s say I’m serious about this dog thing. Let’s even argue — for a moment — that it might even be kinda/sorta/maybe partly true. Or at least, what I really meant was kinda/sorta/maybe true, but it just came out wrong. That’s what Akin is saying now.
Fine. Why even bring up the subject?
I can think of two reasons.
One reason is that I’ve already locked a dog in a car on a hot summer day, or I think I might someday in the future. I mean, it’s something that anyone could do, right? I don’t think it’s right that I should pay a fine or go to jail over some stupid dog. Y’know? Especially if the dog, like, survives. No big deal, man. Jeez.
The other reason is that I’m so concerned about locking my car tight and securing it (and the dog) against theft that the dog’s life is simply not that important. Much less the dog’s mere comfort. It’s my dog, and it’s still a free country. I’m taking a “principled stand” for my property rights over dogs’ rights.
Both of these reasons reveal why Congressman Akin’s comments are so corrosively offensive. It isn’t that a boneheaded Congressman has said something unbelievably ignorant. Hell, half of them still think the Earth is flat, and less than 10,000 years old. They expose appalling depths of ignorance all the time.
These comments are offensive because of the reasons Congressman Akin brought this up at all.
Let me clarify by putting the reasons behind Akin’s statements in plain words.
Rape is something any guy could fall into, right? It’s just not right that a man should pay a fine or go to jail just because he knocked up some stupid woman. Y’know? Especially if the woman, like, survived. No big deal, man. Jeez.
Anyone not find that offensive?
Well, put on your waders, because here’s a newsflash: a lot of men don’t find that offensive, they think it’s just common sense. And a lot of women support them in this, for reasons that I cannot fathom.
Whatever Akin wants to claim he meant, he was trolling for votes among men who think this way. He was cozying up to them, gaining their confidence and trust, showing them that he’s a guy’s guy, just like them. He’s telling them he knows how hard it is to control that primal, angry violence, and how those damned women play the tease and the come-on and then say, “No,” just like that, just when you’re out of your mind and you need them, you need them, baby. And you know they want sex, too. They just want a little convincing, it turns them on. Then when it’s over, they turn around and slap you with an accusation of “rape.” It’s just not right.
Folks, drink it in. It’s ugly, its pitiful, it’s Fucked Up Beyond All Recognition. But it’s out there, and men like Akin are tapping it for political support. It’s his base. That’s half the reason he said this obnoxious thing.
The other half, in plain words, is this. Call it rape, call it consensual, call it sacred, it doesn’t matter how it happened — the child is property of the father. At least fifty-percent shares. And a man’s property rights trump a woman’s irrational emotional state. You cannot destroy property that belongs to someone else.
If you’re a Republican, you’re probably thinking about this. Hey, he has a point…. Nope. Still satire.
Again, who knows what Akin really thinks about this? I don’t. What I do know is that he was trolling for votes among people who think this way.
This wasn’t a random comment that popped out of an unbelievably ignorant man’s mouth. This was part of a political campaign. This was intended to draw votes. It was intended to draw votes from people who find nothing shocking or wrong in what Akin said.
As it turns out, Akin is such a moral imbecile he did not understand he crossed a line. So his comment backfired on him. He’s counting on the short attention span of Americans, and that this whole thing will blow over.
They say to know the character of a man, look at his friends. To know the character of a political party or a politician, look at the support base. Whom do the Republicans court? That’s says more than any of their spin and misdirection.