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letters | TODD AKIN UNDER FIRE

Congressman’s comments on rape show ignorance, lack of compassion

 Todd Akin of Missouri, a Republican candidate for Senate, faces calls to quit the race after his comments about rape.

ASSOCIATED PRESS

Todd Akin of Missouri, a Republican candidate for Senate, faces calls to quit the race after his comments about rape.

I WAS profoundly saddened to read of Todd Akin’s comments about the supposed low incidence of pregnancy from “legitimate rape” as he sought to justify his position against allowing abortion regardless of the circumstances surrounding a pregnancy (“Mo. congressman’s rape remarks bring national firestorm,” Page A1, Aug. 21).

Such words betray an appalling and dangerous ignorance, and an absence of simple human compassion. Akin suggests that a woman’s body mysteriously ends a pregnancy by “shutting the whole thing down.” If only. Politicians are policy makers. Akin’s utter lack of facts (let alone tact) should disqualify him from a position where he has the power to change lives.

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I was raped at 13 in my bedroom by a stranger who climbed a fire escape and broke in through a second-floor window. That was 40 years ago. A recent “look-back” investigation by a determined detective discovered that the same serial predator had raped over 40 young girls in the Boston area over a 2-year period including almost 20 in my upscale urban neighborhood.

Akin would prefer a world in which barely pubescent girls like me would be forced to endure not only the unspeakable trauma of rape by a psychopath but to follow that with a sickening and growing daily reminder culminating in the birth of the psychopath’s child — for me it would have been almost exactly on my 14th birthday. Where is the love and compassion in surely sacrificing a young girl’s sanity to save a teaspoon of cells teeming with the DNA of a monster?

Amy Vorenberg

Concord, N.H.

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