Archive for ‘reproduction’

February 21, 2011

Planned Parenthood is not synonymous with abortion

by d
Picture Of Ortho Tri-Cyclen oral contraceptive...

Image via Wikipedia

Planned Parenthood has a really descriptive name. It does exactly what the name implies. We don’t talk much about “family planning” these days, and we should.

Before modern science kicked in, conception was, for the most part, a game of roulette. Folk remedies and leather condoms weren’t nearly as effective as people wanted them to be, but they kept trying. All it took was some observation and life experience to see how inconvenient–and dangerous–the lack of control could be.

When a woman gives birth too young, she and the child suffer. (18 is the minimum recommended.) If she has children too close together, she and both children can suffer. Doctors and midwives knew these things; parents knew them. But what do you say to a couple who have had the number of children they want? Spend the rest of your lives together in separate beds? More babies happened.

Margaret Sanger, Planned Parenthood’s first president, was a remarkable woman who saw the effect this had on people, particularly poor people and women. She also saw this suffering as, at best, unnecessary. At worst, it was a deliberate means of keeping women in subjugation.

In 1912, after a fire destroyed the home that William designed, the Sanger family moved back to New York City, where Margaret went to work in the East Side slums of Manhattan. That same year, she also started writing a column for the New York Call entitled “What Every Girl Should Know.” Distributing a pamphlet, Family Limitation, to women, Sanger repeatedly caused scandal and risked imprisonment by acting in defiance of the Comstock Law of 1873, which outlawed as obscene the dissemination of contraceptive information and devices.

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January 6, 2011

Femme Funnies: The Little Adventures of Penis & Vagina

by d

Some really adorable cartoons to enjoy! Click Read More to see another two.

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December 30, 2010

The HPV Vaccine and You

by d
Pathology: EM: Papilloma Virus (HPV) Electron ...

HPV. Image via Wikipedia

If someone came up to you, out walking with your young child, and said, “Hey there, I have a vaccine that will prevent your child from ever getting a black eye!” would you say, “How insulting! My child will NEVER have a black eye! I am raising him/her properly and they shall never get into any sort of a scuffle! We use our WORDS in this family!”

(This would, of course, be followed by an incident where your child has an accident that gets them not one, but two black eyes.)

Of course you wouldn’t say this. You would recognize that accidents happen, that even if your child is an angel other people are not, and that your little darling might have a moment of poor judgment at some point in the future. You might still refuse the vaccine, but you wouldn’t act as though this sales rep were trying to blacken the family name.

That’s why I don’t understand statements like this:

“I was greatly offended that Merck suggest I vaccinate my nine-year-old daughter against an STD,” says Kelley Watson, a mother of two in the Chicago suburb of Oak Park.

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December 22, 2010

Aunt Flo and the Mystery of the Recalled Tampons

by d
tampons for sale at the checkout counter in Bu...

Image by joguldi via Flickr

A panic is sweeping the internet. For weeks now I’ve been seeing comments sprinkled across forums and news articles along the lines of, “My favorite o.b. tampons are gone–what should I try instead?” I didn’t think much of it, I’m not a fan of o.b. But you can’t ignore a rumor when the NY Times confirms that there’s truth in it:

Bonnie Jacobs, a spokeswoman for McNeil, said that the company had discontinued the ultra line but that other o.b. products should be available soon.

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November 14, 2010

Paganism — Not What You Heard

by V

Comic by Roxy!

 

Paganism is often depicted as evil and Satanic, despite the prevalence of peace and equality throughout the majority of Pagan religions.

(A giant programming note: pagan religions are generally very peaceful. That’s not to say that there aren’t people who engage in “Devil worship” but these are usually not people who honestly believe in what they’re doing. They think they’re being rebels, they’re doing it to go against the grain, to shock people, and to rebel against their parents, society, their church, their school, whatever it is that they feel needs to be taken down a peg. They get their information from Hollywood and myths perpetrated by Christians. And the only way you can consider them to really be pagans is to use the broadest sense of the word “pagan” which is anything other than Christianity. Which also includes Hindus, Jews, and Buddhists among other non-Christian faiths.)

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October 29, 2010

No, really, you need to vote.

by d

If you’ve paid any attention to this year’s US elections you know that there is some crazy shit going down.

The stats tug my heart in different directions. We’ve seen record numbers of women filing to run for office, and the numbers remain high as we go into the elections next week. There are also way, way too many candidates who can best be described as anti-woman. And too many of them are themselves women.

The ‘anti-woman’ term is a loaded one, but here’s how we’re defining it today: anti-abortion, even in cases of rape or incest, or incestuous rape. This includes the likes of Sharron Angle and Christine O’Donnell, and, 79 others.

Also at stake are education and health care in general. Many candidates want to roll back both. Yes, the rumors you heard were true–more than one loon out there wants to disband the Department of Education. And they think so-called ObamaCare is going to destroy this country, never mind that it will provide maternity coverage and guarantee care for children with “pre-existing conditions.” Keeping women and children healthy and educated is pro-woman, pro-child, pro-humanity. These candidates are not.

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October 27, 2010

What Women Want: Shaving?

by roxythekiller

Art by our own Roxy

Fear of my bodily hair consumes me— and rudely interrupts my sexual fantasies: I slide off my panties, and the sexy, shirtless guy lounging on the bed says in Antonio Banderas’s husky accent: “That’s not a pussy, that’s a Persian cat!”

Yikes.

Most men will never know why their girlfriends aren’t up for sex: shaving. Yes, shaving— female shaving: a time-consuming ritual which includes scraping hair off the armpits, crotch, butt, and vaginal regions. Although some women enjoy shaving, just as some men enjoy plucking their eyebrows, most of us shave for one key reason: Fear. Specifically, fear of rejection… that we won’t land that job, that guy, or worse, the acceptance of our friends and family. Although fear of rejection is about as old as mankind, and fundamentally human, the fear which compels women to shave their bodies is a recent one, encroached in disturbing double-standards and prejudice that dehumanize us.

Where the hell did this custom come from?

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September 27, 2010

Deliribint (n) – see Ann Coulter

by d

She's their Judy Garland!

bint (n) – a woman or girl, derived from the Arabic for “girl” or “daughter.” May be used derogatorily, but typically is more affectionate than slanderous.

delirium (n) – a temporary state of mind characterized by confusion, disorientation, anxiety, and hallucination. AKA madness.

deliribint (n) – a woman or girl who has gone so far off the deep-end her fellow females are anxiously awaiting the end to her screeching. Hypocrites who think their gender/peers should be oppressed in ways that prevent them from spreading this very message.

This is a term coined by my mother, who is an absolute genius. “Deliribint” sums up what I think of women who inspire in me an astonishment that, before now, went beyond words.

Deliribints are women who make your jaw drop down to your tits and hung there for minutes on end. They hold views that run completely counter to the way they themselves are living their lives, and insist that others should, too.

For instance, Anna of Domestic Felicity is arguably not a deliribint because she actually practices what she preaches. She is living the life of a homemaker, which she feels all women should do. But she does not climb on soapboxes to proclaim this. She blogs about it, but is not an activist.

Now, Ann Coulter, on the other hand, is the original deliribint. She has insisted that women are too dumb to vote. In fact, she is a raging misogynist.

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September 22, 2010

SCOTUS Justice Scalia: Women not protected under Constitution

by d
Official portrait of Supreme Court Justice Ant...

Image via Wikipedia

US Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia has said some highly offensive things in the past, and made rulings that still make blood boil. But this latest statement is outrageous.

Leave it to Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia to argue that the Constitution does not, in fact, bar sex discrimination.

Even though the court has said for decades that the equal-protection clause protects women (and, for that matter, men) from sex discrimination, the outspoken, controversial Scalia claimed late last week that women’s equality is entirely up to the political branches. “If the current society wants to outlaw discrimination by sex,” he told an audience at the University of California’s Hastings College of the Law, “you have legislatures.”

But Justice Scalia’s attack on the constitutional rights of women — and of gays, whom he also brushed off — is not just his usual mouthing off. One of his colleagues on the nation’s highest court, Justice Stephen Breyer, has just come out with a book called Making Our Democracy Work: A Judge’s View, which rightly argues that the Constitution is a living document — one that the founders intended to grow over time, to keep up with new events. Justice Scalia is roaring back in defense of “originalism,” his view that the Constitution is stuck in the meaning it had when it was written in the 18th century.

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September 18, 2010

Women Only Vote For Women Who Are Pro-Woman

by d

We’ve run several posts recently about women achieving in politics, both through election and appointment. But there are plenty of women getting ahead in politics right now who I am not happy to cheer for. I’m talking about women like Sharon Angle, Sarah Palin, Michelle Bachman, Christine O’Donnell–the list is growing apace, which is itself highly unusual. When did women become so ubiquitous in US politics? And why on earth are so many of them conservative?

There’s a notion floating right now that conservative women are ‘taking back’ feminism. They’re gonna wrench the womens movement out of the hands of screechy, man-hating, too-ugly-to-get-a-date-so-I-went-lesbian feminists, and turn it into a means to justify the lifestyles they themselves are now leading (lifestyles made possible by those feminists). I am happy for these women who are taking to politics, but I’m not happy about the ones who use their soapboxes to work against womens’ interests. There’s nothing like the hypocrisy of, say, Ann Coulter, who says women are too stupid to vote or manage money, yet she herself has made quite a pretty penny telling people how they should vote.

This year’s influx of female candidates is so anti-abortion, they qualify as anti-woman. Too many do not support the one clause that usually makes anti-abortion legislation more widely palatable–they don’t support exceptions in the case of rape or incest.

MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow ran a segment this week about “Women Candidates vs. Womens’ Rights.” Go watch the video here, or continue reading for quotes. There are some beautiful ones from both her and her guest, Melissa Harris-Lacewell.

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