climbing up the soapbox.

Morning, chickadees.

I’m going to start us off with a potentially embarrassing picture this morning.

 

I admit, silly or not, I am proud of the fact that post-yoga class I hoisted myself into crow to show JW that I had finally (sort of!) done it.

I’m married to a 12-year-old boy, he sighed.

Teenage boys probably hate yoga though.

In any case, the subject of my post today is, unfortunately, not about yoga.

I just needed to calm.it.down before I let out some of my energy into the world.

*****

This post is about this subject, which I’ll summarize below, in case clicking the link doesn’t interest you.

It’s a Tuesday morning, so it might not interest you.

Essentially, in case you haven’t heard, an elected representative of our nation, Todd Akin, a Republican from Missouri, said the following on Sunday morning:

“It seems to be, first of all, from what I understand from doctors, it’s really rare. If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut the whole thing down.

He was talking about pregnancy when a woman is raped.

And it’s taken me a couple of days to decide if I wanted to use my tiny, generally happy-go-lucky soapbox to tell everyone how this statement made me feel.

This blog is usually a place to chat about what makes me happy, to tell you guys what makes me laugh, and to share with you what I find interesting.

I try to keep it light, because I think we could all use a little lightness in this fast-moving, occasionally-scary, sometimes-dark world.

However, I’ve been literally chock full of are you fucking kidding me rage since I heard about this, and I just don’t think it’s good to keep that kind of anger inside.

So this is me, climbing onto that tiny soapbox.

Can everyone hear me?

See me?

Good.

It makes me feel angry. It makes me feel how I did when I read the book Lucky by Alice Seabold (of The Lovely Bones fame) in which she tells her story of being raped, in which she somehow, somehow, managed to be turned into the criminal.

Which was this instinctive kind of horror that someone could be violated like that and made to feel like it was her fault.

It’s ridiculous.

It’s unacceptable.

What makes me, I think, the most angry about all of this, is that he used the word legitimate to describe rape.

The word rape is defined in the following way:

The crime of forcing another person to have sexual intercourse with him, esp. by the threat or use of violence.

The word doesn’t call for the word legitimate or illegitimate. It doesn’t need the word violent or threatening placed in front of it, it can stand alone.

The word rape doesn’t need any other adjectives to make it more terrible than it already is by its textbook definition.

There is no such thing then, as an illegitimate rape.

If a woman isn’t raped, and she says she is (which I choose to believe is a rare occurrence, rarer at least than rape), that’s not “illegitimate rape.”

That’s lying.

And that’s different.

Still bad.

But different.

And the very idea that somehow, this kind of “legitimate rape” will keep women from getting pregnant, and thus, why on earth would you worry about abortion in these impossible cases, makes me want to put my head in my hands and really think hard about humanity.

Eventually, I suspect that I’d  lift it up and realize that the public response to him, in general, has been one of fiery outrage, of calls for remorse, retraction, and resignation, and in that, I feel much better.

But I still think it’s better that I let it all out.

And I think it’s important that we all do the same. Because really, it will make us all feel better to talk about what is outrageous, what is wrong, and to promise each other that we.will.not.let.it.be.a.thing.we.accept.

You know, because we have sisters and mothers and cousins and nieces and grandmothers and grandchildren and best friends who are all women.

And if God forbid one of them came to us and told us that they’d been raped, I doubt we’d raise our eyebrows and wonder but was it legitimate?

Because we’re smarter than that, chickens.

And that’s why I love you.

Thanks for making the landing to my jump down soft, everyone.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Advertisements

3 Comments

Filed under Did I really do that?, Reflections, Yoga

3 responses to “climbing up the soapbox.

  1. Grace Hendricks

    You are so right Nikie… This man is a complete IDIOT …..There are many other words to describe him but I can not put them in print on facebook. Love you…….

  2. I cannot agree with you more, my friend. I have been so unbelievably angry about this. Look, I don’t want to sound like a crazy feminist – but I really don’t care anymore – we as women have got to take a stand against people like this man. Our bodies and our livelihood are at stake!

    I love the letter Eva Ensler wrote to the Huffington Post, it sums up how I feel perfectly http://www.huffingtonpost.com/eve-ensler/todd-akin-rape_b_1812930.html

    P.S. – I think your crow is nothing short of awesome. I’m so, so jealous.

  3. RH

    Hokay –

    I can finally post. Let me share your soapbox for a minute, dear Nikkita. As someone who barely knows what day it is right now, let alone has time to watch tv and catch up on domestic politics, I can honestly say that when I heard this on the news one fateful night shift, it literally took me 5 minutes to pick my jaw up off the floor. Let’s break this down, shall we? First, the use of the word “legitimate” along with rape, is wrong ANY WAY YOU SLICE IT. Jesus would not approve. Anyone who has had to live through that absolutely horrific ordeal, or who has loved someone who has and has seen what this horrific trauma can do to a person, should never have to defend themselves or answer whether it was ‘legitimate’ or not. It’s NEVER LEGITIMATE. Rape is NEVER OK. And given the staggering statistics (1 in 4 women in college are raped), we should never create an environment in which victims are made to feel guilty for something completely out of their control, or in which the perpetrators can have no guilt for committing one of the most heinous crimes possible (right up there with murder, in my book – only actually, it might be worse, since this leaves scars for the rest of a person’s life).

    Second, what blows my mind is the second half of what he had to say – and for some reason no one is really talking about this, they’re focusing (and understandably so) on the first half – that a woman’s body can somehow ‘shut down’ a pregnancy. Are you flipping kidding me? And there’s apparently a doctor out there that’s pedaling this nonsense to the right-to-life community? SERIOUSLY?! Wow. That anyone can believe THIS is just mind-boggling.

    **climbs down from shared soapbox**

    I turn it back to you, dear Nikkita.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s