Category Archives: Health

Hundredth verse, same as the first: Talking mental health after mass shootings

We’re now almost four weeks out from the shooting at an Oregon community college that killed nine people and injured ten more, and we know what that means: We can now stop “caring about mental health care” without guilt. Time heals all weaknesses in the mental health system, and while it becomes a subject under great scrutiny whenever a gunman commits a mass shooting, the passage of time, and the accompanying passage of fear, washes away those concerns pretty effectively. (Until the next shooting, of course.) And it happens isn’t because we manage to effectively address all of our problems in the interim but because discussions purportedly focused on Improving Mental Health Care are actually all about Protecting The Good People From The Crazies. Continue reading

Posted in Crime, Health, Law | Tagged , | 7 Comments

If your cause is solid, you shouldn’t have to lie about it. (Yeah, there’s more video.)

When I was little, in our house, lying was basically the worst offense you could commit. Honesty was a huge thing then, and it remains a huge thing for me now. That’s one reason all of these attacks on Planned Parenthood have been especially heinous to me — the lying to get undercover footage, the misleading editing to create violations that were never committed, the video Carly Fiorina lied about seeing. And now there’s more footage, more Carly Fiorina was right! footage, showing an abortion, unless it doesn’t, but no it totally does, or at least it looks like an abortion, but okay that’s not important because Planned Parenthood is evil. Continue reading

Posted in Health, Law, Medicine, Reproductive Rights | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

More blatant lies about Planned Parenthood: The video that Carly Fiorina didn’t see

[Content note: Graphic, if factually questionable, description of purported abortion]

At the Republican presidential debate last Wednesday, Carly Fiorina made waves with an incredible and impassioned story, describing hidden-camera footage of (purportedly) a Planned Parenthood clinic (purportedly) performing a brutal procedure. It was a very dramatic moment, recounted with great intensity, and one can only imagine how painful it must have been to watch that footage.

If it existed. Which it doesn’t. Continue reading

Posted in Health, Law, Medicine, Politics, Reproductive Rights | Tagged , , | 9 Comments

Woman faced with deportation after going in for her gyn appointment

Do you remember the movie Heathers? I doubt it could get made now, but it came out before the modern wave of school shootings, and I watched it over and over again (until my parents got worried and took my … Continue reading

Posted in Class, Discrimination, Feminism, General, Health, Immigration, Law, Medicine, Politics, Race & Ethnicity, Racism, Reproductive Rights | 9 Comments

Investigations reveal that no, seriously, Planned Parenthood isn’t selling baby parts

Recently, I disassembled accusations that Planned Parenthood is selling baby parts. (My argument was basically, “No, both Planned Parenthood and just about everyone in the medical field who knows anything about tissue research and donation agree that Planned Parenthood isn’t selling baby parts, and here’s supporting data.”) Following multiple independent investigations, however, it was revealed Friday that… Planned Parenthood still isn’t selling baby parts. Continue reading

Posted in Health, Law, Medicine, Politics, Reproductive Rights | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Going Off: A chronicle of becoming unmedicated

[Content note for depression, anxiety, and the medical treatment thereof]

In a series of posts on the NYT’s “Anxiety” blog, starting in February, Diana Spechler has been documenting the process of (with her doctor’s supervision) going off of the prescription meds that had been treating her anxiety, depression, and insomnia for over a year. Going Off opens with “Breaking Up With My Meds,” outlining how she came into psychopharmacology and why she wanted to get out of it. Continue reading

Posted in Health, Media & Media Literacy, Medicine | Tagged , , | 8 Comments

No, Planned Parenthood isn’t selling baby parts, and here’s why the lie is so toxic.

The anti-choice narrative since Planned Parenthood’s inception has been that PP has been ghoulishly profiting off of abortions, both by dragging in huge amounts of cash for the procedure and (as is currently under discussion) selling baby parts for exorbitant prices. First of all, I have to inject some basic common sense: If you’re hearing rumors that gloriously satisfy your hate-on for an organization while simultaneously sounding like a late-season plot of Charmed, they’re probably not entirely, or even a little bit, valid. “They sell and/or eat dead babies” has been a charge, throughout history, lobbed against the Chinese, Jewish, pagan, and so many other marginalized people, and never substantiated because people don’t do that. Even the people you’d really, really like to paint as monsters.

Anyway. Continue reading

Posted in Class, Health, Law, Medicine, Pregnancy, Reproductive Rights | Tagged , , | 17 Comments

Nigeria bans female genital mutilation

[Content note: female genital mutilation (obviously)]

A new ban, passed in May and signed into law by outgoing president Goodluck Jonathan, outlaws female genital mutilation in Nigeria. The practice was banned worldwide by the U.N. in 2012 and already outlawed in several states within Nigeria, but the Violence Against Persons (Prohibition) Act 2015 represents a nationwide commitment to the ban. The new law also outlaws abandonment of spouse and/or dependents without financial support, and battery. Continue reading

Posted in Gender, Health, Law | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

Apologies, Explanations, and Temporary Sign-Off

Trigger warning: pregnancy-related health emergencies Hello all, I’m really, really sorry I dropped off the face of the earth. I didn’t mean to. At first it was just an unfortunate concatenation of events (somebody should organize an F/SF con called … Continue reading

Posted in Blogging, Health, Life, Medicine, Parenthood | 19 Comments

Want to do something for Autism Awareness Month?

This series of tweets from @twoscooters sums up the major division in autism activism – the parents of autistic children not listening to the opinions of adults living with autism based on their own life experiences, and too many media and medical organisations siding with those parents: Continue reading

Posted in Health, relationships | Tagged , , | 34 Comments

Trans women and the future

CONTENT NOTE: VIOLENCE AGAINST TRANS WOMEN; DISCUSSION OF RAPE This article, by Kai Cheng Tom, is a moving and beautifully written piece about what it means to be a young trans woman of color and to read over and over … Continue reading

Posted in Crime, Gender, Health, Race & Ethnicity, Trans | 11 Comments

It’s really about ethics in food journalism

Uh-oh. Someone better warn the “Food Babe” aka Vani “there is no acceptable level of any chemical to ingest, ever” Hari about that scarily ubiquitous chemical molecule dihydrogen monoxide and the evil conspiracy to make the world believe that DHMO is totally safe for us to ingest. Continue reading

Posted in Body image, Health, Media & Media Literacy | Tagged , | 12 Comments