I am sure you are all familiar with Todd Akins and his massively douchey claim that it’s super rare for woman to be impregnated by a rapist, because in cases of “legitimate rape” the female body can “shut that whole things down”. Now, many people are calling him a stupid shitweasel. I think that is unfair. I think he is a ignorant and misogynist shitweasel, which really doesn’t show up on an IQ test … more is the pity. I think he just doesn’t have all his facts. So todays post will NOT be about how he’s tried to backtrack, or doubling down by insisting he was just talking about real rapes and not those bitches that lie about rape (as they do all the time, I’m sure), or how the GOP is scooting away from him like he’s come of out of the closet, or who is supporting him, or even the full out debunking of his bullshit.
Nope, todays post is the origin of the rape = no baby myth.
See, for hundreds of years European medical professionals thought that the ancient Greek physician Galen was the be-all end all authority on the body and health. Galen had written that the female organs of reproduction were exactly like the male generative organs, except inside out and up in the body, because women were monstrous men who hadn’t enough “heat” to extrude the organs properly. Galen further explained that women made “seeds” just like dudes, and that you couldn’t get a woman pregnant unless she came too. Now, this was great for the average Dark Ages housewife (say hello to my little friend, Mrs. Clitoris!), but not so good for rape victims. If a women was raped, but was pregnant, it was assumed she lied because she enjoyed it enough to release seeds.
Obviously Akin has been talking to a doctor who is still subscribing to the Galenic theory of medicine. However, the Galenic theory of reproduction is wrong, and all the wishful anti-choice thinking hoping to make abortion or Plan B (which is NOT an abortion!) illegal in the world cannot make it true.
It occurred to me that there are other things that Akin, trapped as he is in a medieval belief system, might need cleared up about the mysteries of the female body.
1) That menstrual blood turns into breast milk when a chick is preggo. No, indeed! Breast milk is NOTHING like anything else produced by the woman’s body, and should not be conflated with menstrual blood or any other excreta. So hassling a woman for nursing her baby in public because it is “gross” just makes somebody a jackass, okay?
2) That menstrual blood can make dogs go mad, or keep locusts away. This is untrue as well. It turns out that menstrual blood is neither poison OR magic!
3) That women are by nature hysterical and cannot be as logical as men so there is no point in educating them. Again, this is a myth! Aristotle, bless his homoerotic heart, is the one who came up with this malarkey. It turns out that woman can be, and even have been, educated! Isn’t that neat! They can also vote now, too!
4) That woman’s bodies compromise their souls and they need men to show them the path of righteousness. Actually, we are good to go there, too! We are totally capable of having or rejecting faith in any form of religion or deity all by our selves, so there is no need for you to legislate our morals for us. But thanks for thinking of us!
There are lots more of these kinds of beliefs that you should probably get checked out, okay? But there is at least one ancient belief you should think about espousing … the belief that the soul did not enter the body of the fetus until it has “quickened” — that is when it’s mother could feel movement in her womb, BTW – which occurred at around 20 weeks gestation, give or take a few weeks either way. The Catholic Church didn’t change it’s mind about that until the 17th century. Oddly enough, it is one of the few things St. Augustine opined that they have rejected. They are certainly still on board with his suggestion that women are lesser than men and cannot be priests or church leaders for that reason.
Isn’t it just fascinating the things you can learn if you just bother to try? With any luck Akin will lose the Senate race and have plenty of time to go look shit up!