The GOP ticket's Neanderthal view of women's rights

August 23, 2012

Rep. Todd Akin, the GOP nominee for U.S. Senate from Missouri, has shown once again how the Republican Party has been taken over by its most extreme elements ("Akin's rape comments elicit anger," Aug. 21).

Mr. Akin claims there is difference between "legitimate rape" and other rapes and suggests that a woman who has been raped can prevent her body from becoming pregnant. He also sponsored a bill that adds the word "forcible" to the legal definition of rape, as if there was such a thing as "unforced" rape.

While that is terrible in itself, there is an even more troubling aspect to this story. Guess who co-sponsored that bill regarding changing the criminal definition of rape? It was none other than Rep. Paul Ryan, the Republican nominee for vice president.

Congressman Ryan has said he supports outlawing abortions even in the case of rape. His position is well known to GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney, yet Mr. Romney chose him as a running mate even though he recently said he favors a woman's right to abortion in cases of rape.

Romney says his position is the only one that matters, yet the difference between the two men's views on abortion are not trivial. Mr. Romney, despite his recent statements, last year supported the language of the fetal personhood amendments in many states that would outlaw all abortions even in the case of rape.

That anyone with a wife, sister, daughter or granddaughter would choose to ignore the Republican ticket's Neanderthal attitude toward women just to pay a few dollars less in taxes (maybe) is completely inexplicable, and that's putting it mildly.

Mel Mintz, Pikesville

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