Tag Archives: Science (Or Not)

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

Anat/Phys 101 with Mary Sue McClurkin: The body’s largest organ is the baby

Birmingham, Alabama, is home to a world-renowned teaching and research institution. Discoveries in cancer research, endocrinology, transplant medicine, surgery, and literally dozens of other specialties have significant impact across the globe. Twenty miles south in Pelham, Alabama state Representative Mary Sue McClurkin is stupid as a bucket of hair and thinks a baby is a bodily organ. Continue reading

Posted in Law, Medicine, Reproductive Rights | Tagged , , , | 120 Comments

The idea that “life begins at conception” is a Biblical view younger than the Happy Meal

In fact, it’s really only been considered Biblically “true” since 1979 — before that, Evangelicals held widely varying positions, and even some of the most vocal “life begins at conception” voices today didn’t think that zygote life was the equivalent of born-human life in the 1960s and 70s. But political necessities change, and with them Bible interpretations. Read that whole piece; it’s fascinating. Also worth considering the role played by the new Right, and the need to replace full-throated support for segregation with other issues that could rally racist whites, particularly in the South. Continue reading

Posted in Politics, Religion, Reproductive Rights | Tagged , , , | 20 Comments

Donate for an Actual Cure

It’s October, it’s Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and the U.S. is awash in a sea of bubblegum pink. The most recognizable, of course, is that of Susan G. Komen for the Cure and their ubiquitous pink ribbon, pink t-shirts, and potentially carcinogenic co-branded pink products. Luckily, there are plenty of ways to help “end breast cancer forever”–catch it early, treat it effectively, and discover and eliminate the reasons it occurs in the first place–without going through SGK. The simplest way is just to go straight to the source. Continue reading

Posted in Health, Medicine | Tagged , | 17 Comments

Why aren’t there more women at STEM conferences?: This time, it’s statistical.

UC-Davis professor and perennial noticer of gender imbalance at conferences Jonathan Eisen received an e-mail invitation and call for submissions to the 2013 Winter Q-Bio Meeting: Quantitative Biology on the Hawaii Islands. Nice, right? Sun, science, slate of speakers almost exclusively composed of dudes. (On the plus side, Dr. Lahav, at least you’ll never have to wait in line for the bathroom.) Continue reading

Posted in Education | Tagged , | 84 Comments

Brittany Wenger knows how to diagnose cancer online. Not bad for a gi-irl.

The grand prize in this year’s Google Science Fair went to Brittany Wenger, 17, who wrote a “global neural network cloud service” app to help doctors diagnose breast cancer. Wenger’s Cloud4Cancer correctly identifies 99 percent of malignant tumors. Continue reading

Posted in Medicine | Tagged , , | 12 Comments

The Non-Case Against Gay Parenting

By now you’ve probably seen the right-wing-funded study that says the children of gay parents fare far worse than the children of straight parents. And hopefully you’ve also seen that the study’s methodology was so sloppy that by its terms, Ted Haggard is a “gay dad.” But one thing I haven’t seen discussed is how the results of this study — even assuming it were accurate, which it’s not — should influence same-sex marriage rights litigation. The answer: It shouldn’t. I explain why in the Guardian. A taste: Continue reading

Posted in GLBTQ, Law, Marriage | Tagged , | 43 Comments

The Morning-After Pill: Birth Control, Not Abortion

I know this is tough for people who oppose basic sex ed to understand, but you do not actually get pregnant the second a dude ejaculates inside of you. The sperm have to swim! The egg has to be released! The two must meet! There are many factors. And the morning-after pill interferes with some of them, keeping the egg from getting fertilized in the first place: Continue reading

Posted in Health, Reproductive Rights | Tagged | 44 Comments

Women Are Better Than Men?

That’s Roger Ebert’s argument. And listen, I love me some Roger Ebert, but this is a big piece of crap. His point basically comes down to, “Women are nurturing and wonderful and non-violent, men are competitive and want to see boobs, because Evolution.” And ugh I don’t even have the time to pick through this mess, but y’all should go for it in the comments. I’ll start: Most people have the capacity to be wonderful, non-violent, nurturing and loving. Most people also have the capacity to be competitive, driven, aggressive and ruthless. Most people are capable of great kindness; most people are capable of being total assholes. The degree to which any of us displays any of these traits depends largely on circumstance and partly on individual personality and temperment. Those things are certainly influenced by gender, but our gender does not in fact hard-wire us to be nice or awful. Continue reading

Posted in Gender | Tagged , | 70 Comments


A Feministe reader working on a short story writes in with some fun hypotheticals. Respond away! Continue reading

Posted in Reproductive Rights | Tagged | 53 Comments

Homophobic? Maybe you’re gay.

Also maybe not. But maybe. You might be. You probably are. Whether you are or not, why are you so homophobic all the time? Chill bro, it’s better over here. And you don’t have to get down in an airport bathroom. Unless you’re into that sort of thing. Continue reading

Posted in GLBTQ | Tagged | 47 Comments

“The dangers of carbon dioxide? Tell that to a plant, how dangerous carbon dioxide is.”

Thank you, Rick Santorum, for that little bit of TRUE SCIENCE. So now we can take you our back and bury you in a pile of dirt and manure, right? Plants love that, so it must be ok. Continue reading

Posted in Elections | Tagged , , | 27 Comments