The other day I received an e-mail from the suddenly famous Sandra Fluke under the simple heading “Legitimate rape.” Presuming that the message was not exactly personal, I deleted it, but I could have guessed its tone and tenor.

Indeed, I had heard more about Rep. Todd Akin’s unfortunate choice of words on the subject of rape in the last few days than I had heard about the actual commission of rape in the last decade, including rapes and other sexual abuses by members of a certain political party.

Mimi Alford’s recent book, Once Upon An Affair, details a few such incidents. No one who has read the book doubts its veracity. Alford’s “affair” with John F. Kennedy began when she was a 19-year-old virgin working in the White House. To her great surprise, Alford found herself being given a private tour of the family quarters by a president whom she barely knew.

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