Watching “Melissa Harris-Perry“ on MSNBC on weekend mornings has become a ritual for me, as the journalist offers some of the most insightful and interesting commentary on current events in mainstream media. Saturday’s show was no exception, but it was an especially memorable one, as Harris-Perry, herself a sexual assault survivor, delivered this open letter to Richard Mourdock. Mourdock is the U.S. Senate candidate from Indiana who said during a debate last week, that he is against abortion even in cases of rape and incest, because those pregnancies are a “gift from God” that happened as God “intended.” Harris-Perry’s letter is powerful and I urge you all to watch the video above. The full transcript of her letter is also after the jump. [MSNBC] Keep reading »
This weekend, a Missouri Congressman and Senate candidate, Todd Akin, infuriated people everywhere when he claimed that victims of “legitimate rape” do not become pregnant. He was explaining his belief that abortion should be outlawed even in cases of rape. Apparently, Akin believes that the female body has ways to “shut that whole thing down,” if the woman involved didn’t really want to have sex. Nevermind that according to a 1996 study by the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, approximately 32,101 pregnancies occur due to rape every year in this country.
The response to Akin’s disgusting remarks has been fast. After the initial wave of outrage, the Congressman released a statement saying that he “misspoke” but continuing to defend his extreme views on abortion. Akin clarified, “I recognize that abortion, and particularly in the case of rape, is a very emotionally charged issue. But I believe deeply in the protection of all life and I do not believe that harming another innocent victim is the right course of action.” Keep reading »