Stop us if you’ve heard this one before: A Republican congressman by the name of Todd Akin who’s running for Senate gets on television and is asked whether he’d be OK with women aborting fetuses that were the product of rape. Instead of saying “Yes,” or even, “No, because abortion is murder and adding murder to rape is no good,” (which is at least an accepted position in the GOP), he said, “If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing [meaning pregnancy] down.” That happened yesterday, and everyone on the internet rose as one and went, “Nooooooope!” Even the anti-abortion crowd was like, “Yeah, no, you should not have said that shit. That was fucked up. Dude.” (Only they didn’t swear because they are mostly Christians, etc.) Republican party bosses are calling on Akin to drop his Senate bid and right now, as this is getting typed, there are conflicting reports on Twitter about whether he’s doing so or not. Basically, this guy’s political career is dying, publicly and loudly, over the course of 24 hours. While the internet is exploding over this shit, we decided to take a walk around the neighborhood and see what the opinion of the non-internet people was. Simply, they weren’t very sympathetic to Akin.
VICE: How do you feel about Congressman Akin’s comments about “legitimate rape”?
Ari: I saw something on the news about that in one of the buildings where I pick up dogs to walk. I had a hard time believing that. I thought the news messed his words around, because it sounded so retarded.
Nope. He actually said that.
It seems really insensitive to women. I think he should spend a little more time with women who’ve been raped, so he can see what that experience is like, so he can be aware that there might be a little more for him to learn about it.
Should he quit the race?
I don’t think he should be forced to leave the race, but I would hope people would see it as a sign that he’s not a good choice. I’m sure there’s a lot of good things that he’s doing, but he might not have enough sensitivity to serve the people.
Elizabeth, who is Australian: What can you say? That’s crazy.
Should he be forced to drop out of the Senate race?
I guess everybody says stupid things, but surely you can’t let someone who’s that stupid run the country.
As an Australian, do you think American politics are sillier than Australian politics?
Most politics across the board are pretty stupid.
Steve: I’ve never heard of a "legitimate rape" in my life. I think it’s ridiculous, actually.
Do you think he should drop out of the race?
With a comment like that, he should be forced to get out of his political position.
Zediegler: I don’t know. (Makes fart sound with his mouth.)
Do you follow American politics?
No. I don’t follow any politics.
I don’t like them. I get frustrated.
Laia: I don’t know.
It doesn’t upset you?
I don’t know.
And they say young people are apathetic!
Remy: How if you get rape your body’s going to know, and you won’t get pregnant? It’s ridiculous.
Should he be forced to drop out of the election?
Everyone’s allowed to say stupid things, I guess. Everyone’s entitled to his or her opinion. I think he should go take a class on biology.
How do you feel about people not knowing about the controversy?
Well, that’s not surprising. Most people don’t read things.
Update: John Ashcroft might replace Akin in the race. Wheeeee!
Previously - Where Is Main Street?