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What else did Akin say? Parsing a perfect storm

AN SYTYCB entry

By now, we’re all pretty sick of the name Todd Akin.  We’ve been saturated for days with blog posts and TV spots, repeating Akin’s claim that pregnancy cannot result from “legitimate rape.”  We’ve groaned at the mash-up of pseudoscience and rape apologism and cheered to hear President Obama refute the “offensive” remarks, with straightforward insistence that “rape is rape.”  We’ve redoubled our efforts, not only against Akin, but against his political bedfellows and against the anti-choice platform as a whole.

And maybe we’d like to move on now, to declare a new topic du jour.  But as we harness our political energies, we’re aware that the Right is also gathering theirs.  We’re aware that grassroots supporters of Akin raised nearly $100,000 in less than twenty-four hours. And we’re aware that our disgust at Akin is, alone, an inadequate tool for dismantling rape culture.

So, we reread the pieces of the past few days, or we read new ones reiterating them: We note that Akin’s comments are abhorrent, but his position is not an aberration.  That the 2012 GOP platform includes a federal ban on abortion, without exception for rape or incest survivors . That vice-presidential candidate Paul Ryan co-sponsored Akin’s bill, seeking ...

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