Skip to comments.Woman Conceived in Rape Responds to Akin Abortion Controversy
Posted on 08/21/2012 2:53:18 PM PDT by NYer
Rebecca Kiessling, a pro-life attorney from Michigan, fully understands the national debate going on concerning the controversial comments Missouri Senate candidate Todd Akin made about abortion and rape. Kiessling was conceived when her mother was victimized by a rapist.
It seems to me, first of all, from what I understand from doctors, if its a legitimate rape, thats really rare. The female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down,” Akin said. “The punishment ought to be on the rapist, and not in attacking the child.”
Kiessling responded to the comments saying that the use of the term “legitimate rape” was unnecessary and improper and she gave her advice for how pro-life candidates can thoughtfully and articulately address the sensitive subject of rape and abortion.
First of all — never say ‘legitimate rape,’” Kiessling said. “Ron Paul used the same terminology last January and he got lambasted for it too. This kind of remark only serves to perpetuate the suspicion of rape victims’ accounts. It’s estimated that only 1% of rape victims ever see their rapist convicted as charged. Rape is rape. “Legitimate rape” almost sounds as if it was somehow justifiable.”
“If you are 100% pro-life with no rape exceptions, there is no need to question the veracity of a rape victims’ account, because you are against all abortions. It would not matter if a woman was not or not raped,” she continued.
While abortion advocates often talk about supporting a woman’s right to privacy, Kiessling says rape exceptions in abortion laws turn that notion on its head.
“Rape exceptions in the law actually put the government in the position of having to ascertain when the child was conceived, who the father is, whether the child was conceived during the alleged rape or during intercourse with her husband or boyfriend, and if the child was conceived during the time frame of the alleged rape, then the government would need to determine whether the sexual intercourse was consensual or not,” she explained. “So rape exceptions serve to perpetuate the injustice against rape victims that their accounts are to be viewed with skepticism, and it further leaves the majority of impregnated rape victims wholly unprotected under the law. Rape exceptions suggest that a “real rape victim” couldn’t possibly love “the rapist’s baby” and that rape victim mothers don’t exist.”
The pro-life attorney says pro-life candidates need to be coached on how to answer the media’s inevitable question.
“Senator Rick Santorum, during his presidential campaign, said that he thinks that a child conceived in rape is “a gift from God,” and he was made fun of for that. Just Google images for “Santorum rape” and you’ll see all of the posters where he is mocked for this statement. While I believe it’s true that every child is a gift from God, including children conceived in rape, I don’t believe this was the best response for the interview,” she explained. “If it had been my birthmother sharing that she believes that I’m a blessing and a gift from God, she would not be mocked and ridiculed in the same way he was. And then Sharron Angle, during her Senate race in Nevada, said it’s a “lemonade situation,” which did not come across well at all. The problem is not with these candidates’ values. The problem is how they express them.”
Kiessling gives a three-step process in terms of how candidates should answer the question:
1. The Supreme Court has said that the death penalty is cruel and unusual punishment for rapists and that rapists don’t deserve the death penalty. I don’t think the innocent child conceived in rape deserves the death penalty for the crimes of her father. It seems to me that is cruel and unusual punishment.
2. Rape victims are four times more likely to die within the next year after the abortion, with a higher rate of suicide, murder, drug overdose, etc.. As someone who really cares about rape victims, I want to protect them from the rapist, and from the abortion, and not the baby. A baby is not the worst thing that could ever happen to a rape victim — an abortion is. We need to educate the American public on the truth in this matter and not make public policy based on myth and misinformation.
3. Rape victims choose abortion at half the rate of the average unplanned pregnancy, which is over 50%. Only 15-25% of rape victims choose abortion, depending on the study. The majority of rape victims choose to raise her child — not “the rapist’s baby” — HER child.
Of course, I also think it helps to share a personal story and there are lots available, of women who became pregnant by rape and either regret aborting, are raising their children or are birth-moms, as well as stories of those of us conceived in rape and/or incest. You can find those stories on my website: www.rebeccakiessling.com/Othersconceivedinrape.html and www.rebeccakiessling.com/PregnantByRape.html
Subjects, as in dictating to a rape victim how they should behave after their trauma.
And he’ll be a distraction for the rest of the campaign for it. His comments weren’t just a gaffe they were incredibly ignorant.
Anyone rember “wide stance”?
We’ll see how this plays out, but Akin, is now a millstone around every republican, doesn’t matter who they are. His comments have already been nationalized, and internationalized, every republican candidate now is going to be forever tied to this joker the longer he’s around.
This won’t be a big deal in some races, but in a close race, this guy sticking around is going to cost seats.
Agreed, “legitimate rape” is just instantly morally repugnant on its face, and deserves the harsh criticism its received.
The claim that the female reproductive system will stop a pregnancy if the sperm is introduced involuntarily is just flat out IGNORANT.
The first is more politically damaging as far as the campaign goes.. the latter is far more scary long term that this guy could be in a position to make and vote on laws.
The guy didn’t just gaffe, he showed complete ignorance. He’s now decided to stay in, which will now create a millstone around the neck of every republican out there because his comments have been nationalized. It won’t matter in many races, but in close races this guys comments and the fact he’s sticking around will indeed cost seats.
See above article for proper way to handle the rape/abortion question. Also, note that Ron Paul and Santorum gave similarly rejected answers to the question.
No, we ALL need to read it right now, and be ready to respond at the grass roots level, this Labor Day weekend at family gatherings, or any other time the liberals in our respective families are first to bring up the issue, from now until November 6th:
If the U.S. Supreme Court ruled (Kennedy v. Louisiana - 2008 - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kennedy_v._Louisiana ) that the death penalty is cruel and unusual punishment for rapists, why then is the death penalty acceptable for the innocent unborn child? It’s not the baby’s fault.
His principle is that "legitimate" rape is rare and that the female body can stop a pregnancy from a "legitimate" rape. I disagree with that "principle."
THe media is giving this a HELL of lot more play than they did the videotapes of Planned Parenthood staffers repeatedly telling minors to lie in their paperwork so as to let rapists go free.
The daddy gets no say in whether the baby is aborted.
If the baby is born, he will be financially obligated to that child for 18 more years.
The mother can shirk her own responsibility to that child for any reason, didn't really LOVE the daddy, wanted a girl child - not a boy, it'd inconvenience her for 9 months and EVERYONE would know...
She should address the 2012 RNC Convention.
It's odd when people lump incest in with "in cases of rape and incest". Incest can be consensual or rape. If it's consenting adults, they knew what they were doing. If it's consenting minors, it's more teen sex with an ick factor added. If it is not consensual (or adult-minor statutory) it IS rape.
Planned Parenthood and others oppose parental notification because they cite the scenario where a girl has been raped by her father "who will not give permission". So the father should go on raping his daughter without prosecution? It is an odd challenge from the pro-death crowd. Their hypothetical prevents the authorities, the courts, and the family from be involved/exposed.
I’m glad she has weighed in (just as in 2008 when we heard from a woman who survived a botched abortion).
Are you willing to stand with Chris Matthews in lumping those trying to defend "personhood" with those who spout "birthism"?
We would not be required to play in the devil's sandbox if Akin had cited this 'supreme' court ruling.
I am reminded of Jesus warning of those that sit in Moses' seat. That most assuredly has come to pass.
AND IF anybody has his ear, tell him IF he intends to recover his credibility to start now citing this case. The JonStewart media will NOT touch this case with one second of air time. Akin needs to be told 'communication' is not his strong suit.
AND Akin needs to find himself a 'Christian' lawyer to write his words so he can stop putting his foot in his mouth.
Thank you, NYer. I hope Todd Akin will take advantage of the harsh spotlight that is on him now, and ask people like Rebecca Kiessling to share the stage with him. If he does, that will be not only a smart move, but it could help some people see the light.
I'm a woman; I've had five pregnancies. Lost one due to stress. Am I allowed to express my opinion that there is some truth in what Akin said (or was trying to say), without being called an idiot? I hope so.
I've been trying to shout from the rooftops that what Akin said was NOT "repugnant" or "imbecilic" or any other the other insulting characterizations that have been hurled at him -- most shamefully by some on the Right.
What Akin is guilty of, at worst, is clumsy phrasing. He has apologized, over and over now, for the clumsy phrasing. If we conservatives must parrot the Left in any of our own phrases, then we should parrot this one: MOVE ON.
Let the voters of Missouri decide. IF conservatives stop it with the circular firing squad, I think is a possibility Akin will WIN Missouri. Missourians don't like RINOs and scared pantywaists ridiculing them or telling them what to do.
You are absolutely right .. AND .. everyone understands that is precisely what happened. Rush Limbaugh said pretty much what you did, both yesterday and today.
RUSH: Let me short-circuit this, 'cause I know exactly what Congressman Akin was trying to say. There are people who don't believe in a rape exception because they don't believe it's ever the baby's fault. To them, the baby is the essence of innocence. It is guilty of nothing, no matter what else. It doesn't matter. And they believe, to be consistent, if they're pro-life and it's based on life as first and foremost above all other issues -- and that the baby is the essence of innocence -- then there is no way, at any time, you take the life of the baby. There's no way. Now, you have to be very articulate to explain this to people, and he isn't. And that's where this legitimate rape/illegitimate rape came from. All he was trying to say was... I know it.
The concern, FWIU, is that the Dems will use Akin's remark to rob one senate seat from MO. Interestingly enough, one of the callers to Rush's radio program today, claims that Akin's statement about a rape victim's body, comes from a study published by the Guttmacher Institute. You can read the program's transcript below.
No, those loose hairs are all you. Those hairs left at a murder scene could be used to identify you in a court of law.
I guess maybe you did flunk biology.