Lake County Right to Life asks, "What's really at issue here?"
Congressman Todd Akin was publicly excoriated last week, for his choice of words, "legitimate rape", concerning abortion in the case of rape. A public outcry of indignation arose from the liberal left and even from some moderate Republicans that a candidate for U.S. Senate would dare imply a woman's rape claim might possibly not be legitimate, vilifying him as a misogynist.
Abortion proponents naturally seized on the opportunity to use Congressman Akin's statement as a defense of their own "abortion must be legal for any reason" agenda. And are we surprised that President Clinton himself chimed in for the opportunity to defend his health care package, by stating, "So what I think these comments do underscore is why we shouldn't have a bunch of politicians, a majority of whom are men, making health care decisions on behalf of women."
So let's get all the bloviating uproar out of the way, and take a real look here at what the man was talking about, and whether there is any credence to his use of words regarding the legitimacy of a woman's rape claim. Do some women cry wolf regarding claims of rape?
A recent article in LifeSiteNews regarding this issue, by Rebecca Kiessling, relays her own personal and tragic story of not only being a rape victim herself, but also being conceived in rape. After becoming the victim of a very brutal and violent rape, Ms. Kiessling became a family law attorney, specifically because of what had been done to her.
In her first years as a young idealistic and naïve attorney, she was shocked and indignant when judges or the Friend of the Court referee would question the veracity of women's claims of domestic violence. But after gaining some experience, she began encountering clients who actually were "crying wolf". Some of who would actually propose, "Well, what if I say I was abused?" - as a ploy that might turn a case in their favor against a spouse. From this experience, she began to see why judges and the court system might take an initial skeptical stance on a woman's claim of violence.
Now, let's turn to the largest "illegitimate rape claim" ever perpetrated in the history of our nation, which became the foundation for the filing of Roe v Wade, and led to abortion on demand in our country! Yep! That's right folks, Roe v Wade, and the slaughter of millions of innocent pre-born children, was predicated on an "illegitimate rape" claim - the false rape claim by Norma McCorvey - Jane Roe in Roe v Wade. Here is her own testimony on January 21, 1998, before the Subcommittee on the Constitution, Federalism, and Property Rights of the Senate Judiciary Committee:
"My name is Norma McCorvey. I'm sorry to admit that I'm the Jane Roe of Roe v Wade. The affidavit submitted to the Supreme Court didn't happen the way I said it did, pure and simple. I lied! Sarah Weddington and Linda Coffey needed an extreme case to make their client look pitiable. Rape seemed to be the ticket. What made rape even worse? A gang rape! It all started out as a little lie, but my little lie grew and became more horrible with each telling."
Rebecca Kiesling, who found out at the age of 18, that she herself was conceived in rape, has the following terse words to say to all those who hold a "rape exception" regarding abortion:
"And for those who make the rape exception, some blame rests on you as well. After all, once you make a rape exception, you now have to set a standard in order to determine whether a claim of rape is legitimate so that the government will not be defrauded when a woman wants to receive Medicaid funding to abort her child - as in the Hyde Amendment exceptions. Rape exceptions put the government in this position - whether they require a police report, social service agency report, or a doctor's certification that he's satisfied that the woman's claim of rape is legitimate."
Rebecca is now co-founder and board member of a newly-formed 501 (c) (3), Hope After Rape Conception, whose mission is to assist rape survivor mothers and their children, by seeking to ensure that they are protected by law from the rapist having any parental rights. They plan to post model guidelines for States so that rape survivor mothers will not be cut off from receiving state aid, since federal and state laws require that a mother cooperate with local child support enforcement by naming the father. This can quite naturally cause difficulty to rape victims who might be unable to do so, or are simply apprehensive about naming him because it could open the door for him to know about their child, and be able to exercise parental rights. Part of the board member's plans will be to craft model guidelines ... part of which will require the difficult task of recommending standards for states to set determinations on whether a claim of rape is actually "legitimate". Ooooops! Did we really use that term?
And let's take another look at the "rape incest" exception, by reviewing a few statistics. Here are excerpts from a letter composed by Illinois Citizens for Life - "Dear Legislator", "A recent study found that of "192 women who had become pregnant through sexual assault, 164 had been victims of rape, while 28 were victims of incest. Of those 69% victims, 29 % had abortions, and 1.5% had miscarriages. Out of the 56 women who had abortions, 88% of those women "explicitly regretted their abortions and stated that it had been the wrong solution to their pregnancies." Of the letters and testimonies from the 133 women who carried to term, over 80% explicitly expressed happiness that they had chosen to give birth to their child. One major study found that 75 to 85 % of women pregnant from rape chose against abortion. That study's author, Dr. Sandra Mahkorn, "Pregnancy and Sexual Assault" The Psychological Aspects of abortion - 1979) stated: "This evidence alone should cause people to pause and reflect on the presumption that abortion is wanted or even best for sexual assault victims."
As to the Congressman's other ill-fated remark, that "women's bodies have a way of shutting down from the trauma of rape and rarely become pregnant, " Mr. Akin was in his own clumsy way simply saying what medicine has known for decades, that pregnancy from rape is rare, with statistics on rape induced pregnancy ranging from less than 1% to 5%. And there actually have been studies which suggest that psychic trauma can actually stop ovulation. In Dr. & Mrs. Willke's book, Abortion Questions & Answers - Love them both, (page 261) they write: "Finally, we must factor in one of the most important reasons why a rape victim rarely gets pregnant, and this is psychic trauma. Every woman is aware that stress and emotional factors can alter her menstrual cycle ... There's no greater emotional trauma that can be experienced by a woman than an assault rape. This can radically upset her possibility of ovulation."
So what is really at issue here? Is it the Congressman's use of words? Or is it the pro-abortion crowd jumping on anything they can find to try and justify what cannot be justified.