20 August 2012

Accredited rape??? (i.e., Fun with Todd Akin)

If you've been paying attention to the news over the last couple of days, you've probably heard of the latest GOP scandal involving Rep. Todd Akin (R-MO), who claimed that "legitimate rape" rarely causes pregnancy.

Here are his specific words: "First of all, from what I understand from doctors, [pregnancy from rape] is really rare. If it's a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down."

My first question to the Congressman is this: How can my uterus tell whether a rape is "legitimate" or not, so that it can activate the pregnancy prevention mechanism accordingly or not? (I dare him to ask his doctor friends that question!)

My second question is this: When is a rape ever legitimate?

Perhaps he was alluding to the fact that many rape accusations are false. But actual rape, per se, can never be legitimate, and this careless choice of words speaks volumes.

And the implications are astounding.

To demonstrate this, as a writer and word person, I went to my good friend Thesaurus.com to get a clear understanding of what is meant by a "legitimate" rape.

It turned into a rather amusing exercise, despite the grim subject matter. (Hey, sometimes we need to laugh to keep from crying and/or losing our minds.)

So, with tongue in cheek, here is what Thesaurus.com taught me:

legitimate rape =

accepted rape
accredited rape (!)
acknowledged rape
admissible rape
appropriate rape (!)
authorized rape
canonical rape (see also: Catholic Church, altar boys)
certain rape
cogent rape
consistent rape
correct rape (!)
customary rape
fair rape (!)
genuine rape (OK, I'll give him this one.)
innocent rape (!)
just rape (!)
justifiable rape (!!)
lawful rape (!!!)
licit rape
logical rape
natural rape
normal rape
official rape
proper rape (!)
reasonable rape
rightful rape (!)
sanctioned rape
sensible rape
warranted rape (!)

(Antonyms = illegal, invalid, unlawful, unwarranted!)

So would someone please give Mr. Akin a dictionary? (And a new career?)

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