08/21/2012 09:43 am ET Updated Oct 21, 2012

Todd Akin: Scientific Proof That Ignorance and Interviews Make Terrible Bedfellows

I'm having a hard time understanding where Republicans are coming from these days.

In Mitt Romney's case, that seems to be by design. He systematically refuses to tell us what he stands for beyond liking cars, lakes and trees.

I call this his McRib strategy. The details of what he's made of are a secret, but he is banking on getting people to choose him simply because he's the mystery white meat. And given many Americans' willingness to gobble up anything that looks halfway decent without thinking to ask what it actually contains, this strategy may well work for him.

But Todd Akin has confounded me in a completely new way.

In an interview on Sunday, the Republican candidate for Senate revealed that he believes that women who are raped rarely get pregnant because "[i]f it's a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down."

And here I thought I knew about how these things work. I'm not a doctor or anything, but I've owned, inhabited and operated my very own female body for my entire life. I've even had kids and everything. But the phenomenon that Akin describes is absolute news to me.

I guess if you stick with Republicans long enough, you'll eventually learn things. They may be complete nonsense, of course, but you'll learn them, nonetheless. Heck, maybe there's hope yet we'll find out what Mitt Romney stands for.

In the meantime, I'm going to try to wrap my mind around Akin's magic "rape pregnancy shield" theory. To that end, I have a couple of questions for Akin. Like this one: What's a "legitimate rape?" Because like "quiet riot" or "congressional wisdom," "legitimate" and "rape" are two words that don't seem to go together. Ever.

Next I'd like the names of the doctors who told Akin about this phenomenon so I can make sure no one that I care about ever visits one of these quacks. I know Akin lives in Missouri, but this kind of claim makes it sound as if these doctors were "educated" in schools formed in the image Republican Party of Texas. Heavy on nutty theories, short on science and critical thinking.

But Akin does have a point. When it comes to Republicans like Akin who seek to demean and violate American women by stripping us of our rights and turning back the clock, this female body does indeed have a way to shut that whole thing down. It's called voting Democratic.