Akin’s wife appears to us as a wan facsimile of a vibrant, authentic female, something not altogether real, unmoving and unblinking as her husband tries to backpedal violently, saying “No no no, of course rape is a terrible thing, of course women should never get raped, and that’s why I sure hope they stop asking for it very soon because angry Jesus does not like it one little bit.”
What do you think is going through Lulli’s mind in this photo? How many layers of willful denial, how many blinders must be in place in order to stand up there and not reach over and punch her husband in the face?
Is she truly proud of her man? Is part of her thinking, “Oh please, rape ain’t so bad, most of those hussies probably deserved it”? Is she thinking, “Dear God, what has become of my life?” Or is she thinking, maybe, with a hint of abject sadness, of the terrible icepick of fear and misogyny she and her husband have drilled into their six children, and particularly their daughters?
Oh my God, the daughters. Just look. Look at the two Akin managed to drag on stage with him. It is they who inspired this column. It is they who have a look in their eye like they’ve just been made to swallow a fistful of broken glass. Again.
It is impossible not to extrapolate, not to interpret those expressions as a kind of numbed-out revulsion. It’s clear they’ve been forced to get on stage with their father as a show of family “solidarity,” as if to prove that not all women detest Todd Akin, that, when it comes to the GOP, even a mildly powerful white man can still force women to do his bidding, even after insulting and demeaning them so horribly he should be ashamed to speak to his daughters for a solid year."