What Akin says about the election
Published: Monday, August 27, 2012
Updated: Monday, August 27, 2012 22:08
Since Mitt Romney chose Paul Ryan as his running mate, the media has declared this year’s election a mandate on the economic future of this country.
True as that may be, if you think that’s all that is at stake in this election, you’re not paying attention.
One thing you probably did hear about is the shockingly insane comments of Rep. Todd Akin, a Republican running for the Senate in Missouri. During an interview, he suggested that the female body has defense mechanisms that prevent women from getting pregnant from rape.
It goes without saying that this is factually wrong. If Akin actually believes this, he’s frankly too stupid to hold office. If he does not believe it, but was using this to argue his point on abortion, then he has shown himself as a misogynist with no compassion for rape victims. If he was just pandering, he has still crossed a line that political discourse should never come close to. Whatever the case, this should make him ineligible for any office.
Even worse than Akin’s comments is the fact that the Republican Party has even gotten to that line. Not just in its rhetoric, but in pushing for and passing laws mandating procedures upon women without their consent (look up trans-vaginal ultrasounds), forcing doctors to give them false information, and other things that take away women’s health care rights.
This is the same party that argued government should not come into play in health care decisions during the health care debates. Republicans consider themselves the party of individual rights, but the only individual right they seem support is the right not to be taxed (which, as the 16th Amendment states, is not a right).
As much as I may find the Republican economic plan abhorrent and cruel, it does address political issues, meaning issues that should be up for debate. Taxes, what the government should spend and energy policy are political issues.
Whether or not a woman should be prodded against her will or denied information about her health care is not a political issue. It is a basic human rights issue.
Whether or not gays should be able to have equal rights is not a political issue. It is a civil rights issue.
So, no, this election is not simply a decision on the economy. It is a decision on the state of human rights in this country. The difference between the Democrat agenda and the Republican agenda is the difference between human rights and the denial of those rights.
Regardless of your pocketbook, if you are a person with freethinking skills who values peoples’ rights, the choice is obvious.