Beyond belief

US Republican congressman Todd Akin recently gave heart to ignorant people the world over with his enlightened comments on “legitimate rape”, and the role it plays in relation to abortion – you can be a loon and still get elected.
Nanjing Night Net

Speaking on Missouri TV, Akin had this to say (cue the banjo):

“From what I understand from doctors, [pregnancy from rape] is really rare.

“If it is a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.”

Not surprisingly, Akin’s comments ignited a riot of reaction, best summarised under the collective heading “What The F- – -“.

Shocked as I was by the cheesy conviction of his comments, I was pleased Akin distinguished between “legitimate” rape as opposed to other less legitimate forms.

Similarly I was glad he referenced “doctors”. That must mean he didn’t just make it up.

Which doctor, you ask? Perhaps Dr Bombay, from the 1960s TV comedy Bewitched.

On second thoughts, probably not.

If there’s one thing that rankles conservative Christians it’s witchcraft.

Just ask the kiddies out at Medowie Christian School where they’ve banned the Harry Potter books.

You might be able to twiddle your nose and make things disappear on TV, but as Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney is finding, it’s much harder to make guys like Akin go away in real life.

Mitt should just pray long and hard, and maybe back it up with some firepower – that is the Republican Party way after all.

The scary thing is, Akin possibly believes what he is saying.

According to a poll on loonwatch南京夜网, 63 per cent of Americans believe the Bible is literally true.

That number jumps to 89 per cent for evangelical Christians, and 100 per cent for those who respond to late-night commercials.

This explains how they can have a creationist theme park in the US, complete with dinosaurs.

The owners aren’t saying science is wrong, or that evolution is hocus pocus.

They just fervently believe T-Rex and co roamed the earth with Adam and Eve, 7000-odd years ago.

This despite mountains of evidence suggesting there were Teletubbies about too.

Thankfully Akin was man enough to apologise.

“The words I chose were wrong,” he said, “but not the heart I hold,” thus creating the ultimate response for an NRL coach who gets fined for bagging refs.

I guess in the end what we have, if we look past the farcical concept of “legitimate rape” and the ludicrous medical misinformation that a body can distinguish, is freedom of speech.

Freedom not to speak, you’d wish in this case.

Amazingly it hasn’t hurt Akin, who’s been re-elected six times.

But as the dust settles on his outburst I’m reminded of the late great astronaut Neil Armstrong, a true space cadet, who uttered these immortal words after returning to earth from his walk on the moon: “There are places to go beyond belief.”

With respect, I don’t think Todd Akin is one of them.

Posted by at 21/06/2019
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