Todd Akin's Ignorance Hardly Unique
Leonard Pitts Jr
Nor is hers the only voice of international opprobrium. Criticism of the
Akin, make no mistake, richly earned every ounce of contempt that now rains upon his head. What he told
Yes, you read right. You can't make this stuff up.
Still, this is not about one congressman's need for sensitivity training and remedial science. Akin is hardly unique, after all. To the contrary, he is just the latest vivid example of conservatism's unrelenting hostility toward women's reproductive rights -- as in a
But he is emblematic of more than hardcore opposition to abortion. In him, one also senses the juvenile discomfort with which some male conservatives are afflicted at the merest suggestion of female sexuality. Think then-Attorney General
It's the kind of behavior one associates with a locker room full of adolescent boys, waiting for their faces to clear up and their voices to change. But these are men. Worse, they are men who are judged competent to make, interpret or influence laws impacting the most intimate decisions a woman can make.
Including, for example, whether she must have a probe stuck up her "lady parts" before being allowed to terminate a pregnancy.
The temptation is to view Akin's gaffe in isolation. But there is a pattern here. In his antipathy to abortion and his childish grasp of reproductive science, Akin personifies much of the
He has said he just "misspoke," but that is disingenuous, as is, frankly, much of the criticism from within his party. Their problem and his is not that he misspoke.
It's that he spoke all too clearly.
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Todd Akin's Ignorance Hardly Unique | Politics
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