Why Todd Akin is Important

Once again, cable news manages to miss the point entirely. Lost in the media debacle surrounding Rep. Todd Akin’s overt ignorance of biology, his insipid apology, and who is denouncing or supporting whom, is something much more disturbing to the few remaining rational Republican voters. The Grand Old Party which so many have relied on through the years to be a counterbalance to runaway liberalism is presently struggling with severe case of delusional psychosis. And it is losing.

It’s not that some in the GOP disapprove of Akin’s barbaric perspectives regarding acts of violence against women. It’s that if not for the bad press they would have all agreed with him. His overall views on women’s rights are totally in step with the GOP platform. Where it was not always the case, it seems that virtually every Republican now, not only is vehemently anti-choice, but has little regard for women in general. Which begs the question, what could drive an entire political party to embrace such a regressive social policy?

The reality is that the Christian right now determines the medieval domestic civil policy of the entire GOP. As such, there is a concerted effort on behalf of the party –at the behest of their evangelical base– to control the reproduction process, and sexuality as a whole. Historically –and without exception– this has been the primary methodology that religious fundamentalism has employed to further their political influence. Without having to read any history books, we can see the same affects in the Middle East today.  Beyond that, religiosity demands that the GOP unilaterally deny science and womens’ rights, –not to mention health care and college affordability– and move the country  towards a Christian theocracy.

Yet despite the fact that religious fundamentalism has never, in the history of mankind, lent itself towards a more prosperous society, be it educationally or economically, this doesn’t seem to warrant much concern by Republican voters.

Part of the problem as to why the voting public doesn’t seem to appreciate the gravity of the regressive social and science policies of the GOP… is that to truly understand them, one would have to read the bible. Then one might be able to understand how a political party, having had their civic policy dictated to them by religious extremists, could be so regressively ignorant in regards to scientific evidence and human rights. Rather than rely on snippets and platitudes spoken by evangelists and their anointed politicians, Republican voters would have to open the bible for themselves, and read the words in their proper context. But evangelical politicians –those who hope to tear down the wall of separation between church and state– know that won’t happen.  American Christians are too frightened to remove their psychological burkas.

Although they won’t admit it now, Akin was perfect for the GOP before his verbal gaffe… so much so that despite his obvious lack of basic scientific knowledge, he represented the Republican party on the house Science Committee. Not only does he not seem to understand how babies are made, he believes that the Earth is somewhere around six thousand years old. He’s not just stupid, he’s F%#*ing nuts. And he’s not alone, the party is replete with religious crazies who deny science and women’s rights in favor of biblical scripture.  

To the cowards in the GOP who are now denouncing him, it wasn’t what Akin said, it was how he said it. The entire Republican party –fearing a reprisal from Christian right–  has vowed to overturn Roe Vs. Wade, and deny women sovereignty over their own bodies. But the Republican party –*MY* Republican party– is now chock full of lunatics, and people too fearful to stand up to the Christian fundamentalists who have taken over their party. Gone are the days of “pro-choice” Republicans, or even one who believes the scientific evidence of evolution. From Michelle Bachman’s Islamic witch hunts, to Rick Santorum nausea over separating church and state, to trans vaginal probes, to Mitt Romney’s pandering of those less than sane assertions… the party –to coin a phrase– is over.   

Todd Akin is important because his idiocy has exposed how socially regressive the entire Republican party has become. No matter how hard they try to back away from him, they can’t, because his views are their views. While the Republican premise of categorizing rape is absurd to any rational person, I think we are having the wrong discussion. Rape victims aside, who are the Republicans to tell any woman anywhere what to do with her body regardless of the circumstances? Even if a woman were to terminate a pregnancy after a consensual one night stand… it’s her body, and her choice. The further we move away from that, the more focus remains on pretending a zygote is a human being, and rationalizing legislating away women’s rights in the name of Christianity.

But Todd Akin’s, and moreover, the Republican party’s ignorance goes way beyond women’s rights. It extends into every facet of sociology.

 Unfortunately, to be a Republican in 2012, you have to capitulate to crazy. What makes anyone believe that a political party with such a backward social/civic policy and a disregard for scientific evidence would somehow adopt an economic policy that would magically translate into prosperity for the middle class? Have the Republican voters become so fearful, and rationally compromised that they have no understanding that the same mindset that demands unequal rights for different citizens also warrants unequal economic rights? Do they not understand that theocracies have always taken both money and liberties away from the populace?

But here’s the thing… the Republican party is no longer Republican. Eisenhower and Reagan were nothing like this crop of far right ideologues, and both would be referred to as “RINOs” by members of their own party today. The corporatist leadership that runs the GOP has simply usurped the Republican name in order to put forth a distinctly un-American agenda. Corporatism and theocracy are a perfect symbiotic union, both serving to enhance the others objectives… and the corporatists who control the economic policies of the GOP want a frightened, ignorant, religious proletariat.

But that’s another blog, for another time. 🙂


About Rich Woods

Rich Woods is the author of the critically acclaimed books, UnLearn Vanilla Marriage, and Yahweh to Hell. He is also a columnist, sociologist, and satirist who has performed seminars around the country. He's also made several TV and radio appearances. Transitioning from a blue-collar background has given Mr. Woods a unique perspective --and an even more unique elocution--among his peers. Raised Catholic, Mr. Woods is now a very public atheist who champions the separation of church and state. He's an advocate for non-traditional relationships, including --but not limited to-- negotiating non-monogamy, as well as being a vocal opponent of political correctness. Throughout his career, Woods has had colorful metaphors hurled in his direction from both liberals, and conservatives. To be honest, most of the vitriol comes from the Tea Party. However, he considers one of his greatest accomplishments having been called "Harry Reid's Lapdog" , and referred to as being "just like Rush Limbaugh" from two different sources within minutes of one another. Originally from Queens, New York, and presently residing in central New Jersey, Rich Woods is madly, and hopelessly in love with his wife Jane since before they were wed in 2002, and is the proud father of two successful, brilliantly creative, young adult children. Try as he might, he can't juggle.

Posted on August 25, 2012, in Recent Posts. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. Well stated Mr. Woods, that coming from a guy who makes no claim to be an expert of the actions of the political arena, yet you manage to drive your message home. Thanks.


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