I'll admit that I have a tiny — and I mean very tiny — amount of sympathy for Todd Akin. His position — that there should be no exceptions for rape or the health of the mother, should Republicans be able to put an abortion ban in place — is the party position. The party platform has no such exceptions. The Republican vice-presidential candidate holds nearly identical beliefs to Akin.
And yet, many in the party are calling for him to step aside. He's got to be confused as to why stating the position of the party, perhaps inarticulately, should be met with such hostility by the party. Why don't they want the general public to know they are for a complete ban on abortion? Are they nervous women won't vote for them if we know?
I feel another tiny little bit of sympathy — again, very small — for so-called pro-life women who thought until this week that the only kinds of abortions they could ever imagine themselves needing would always be available to them, if they should be raped or find a pregnancy endangers their lives. After all, they are the exceptional women, not like the rest of us sluts who are always lying.
And, sure, let's be honest, the ones among them who can afford to go out of state will always have those options open to them. Still, it must be kind of a shock to learn that even you are not good enough to warrant an exception. (I've said it before, and I'll say it again. If you're banking on making a career of being the woman who's "not like those other girls," you should know that we are all, eventually, "like those other girls," no matter how hard we try.)
Here in Tennessee, specifically, there will be no exceptions. They're going to amend the state constitution to give legislators the right to decide if you've been raped bad enough to need an abortion. (Short answer: no.)
The people retain the right through their elected state representatives and state senators to enact, amend, or repeal statutes regarding abortion, including, but not limited to, circumstances of pregnancy resulting from rape or incest or when necessary to save the life of the mother.
In other words, no circumstances are off-limits to lawmakers.
But folks, they're not waiting to see if they can get this by voters. After all, we're fickle. We might not want to end up in some kind of prolonged custody battle with our rapists or something. So, instead, they're just closing the abortion clinics. It doesn't matter if you have the right to something, if there's no place for you to exercise it.
Over at MetroPulse, they've got the story of one such clinic.
State Republicans were gleeful about VWMC’s closure last week; Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey tweeted a link to an anti-abortion website’s coverage of the closure, and state Sen. Stacey Campfield wrote on his blog, “One down. Eight to go,” referring to the state’s eight other abortion clinics. In Knoxville, a group of anti-abortion activists is planning a “Prayer Service of Thanksgiving/Rosary” on Monday night at Tyson Park to celebrate.
I guess the national Republicans haven't told them that the public gloating is drawing unwanted attention to their abortion position.
But I welcome it. I think it's time everyone's cards were on the table. The Republicans oppose all abortions, period, unless it's their wives, mistresses or daughters, in which case, they will be sent to some blue state. The rest of us will be out of luck, even if our lives are at stake. And there will be a bunch of "pro-life" people standing around wondering how they got cheated out of the special exceptions the people in charge were supposed to leave for them.
It will be hilarious and tragic.