Category Archives: health

Avert your eyes…

…seriously, this is not safe for work, small children, special snowflakes, or house pets. If I had to see this, well, I sure as hell am not going to be the only one* who suffers.

* * * * * * * * * *      * * * * * * * * * *     * * * * * * * * * *

If you can’t read it, it says, “Periods are not just for women. Hashtag: Bleeding while trans”.

It’s okay. I’ll wait until you stop gagging.

This represents the epitome of what is wrong with celebrating a mental disorder. Yes, I will say that again:

Transexualism, or transgenderism, characterized by the belief that a person born biologically male, or biologically female, believes that he is a member of the opposite sex. One suffering from this belief, also known as gender dysphoria or gender identity disorder, will often undergo extreme measures to portray himself  externally in order to match these conflicted identities. These measures include but are not limited to cross-dressing, hormone therapy, and genital mutilation.

That is the basest summary. Now I’ll get into the technical:

A Biological Glossary¹, because, Facts and Science. 
We all love Bill Nye, because of Science!

Sex
1.  : either of the two major forms of individuals that occur in many species and that are distinguished respectively as female or male especially on the basis of their reproductive organs and structures
2. :  the sum of the structural, functional, and behavioral characteristics of organisms that are involved in reproduction marked by the union of gametes and that distinguish males and females
3. a : sexually motivated phenomena or behavior
b : sexual intercourse
4. genetalia

Gender
1.  a : a subclass within a grammatical class (such as noun, pronoun, adjective, or verb) of a language that is partly   arbitrary but also partly based on distinguishable characteristics (such as shape, social rank, manner of existence, or sex) and that determines agreement with and selection of other words or grammatical forms
b : membership of a word or a grammatical form in such a subclass
c : an inflectional form (see inflection 3a) showing membership in such a subclass
2. a : sex the feminine gender
b : the behavioral, cultural, or psychological traits typically associated with one sex

trans-
(prefix) 1. a prefix occurring in loanwords from Latin ( transcend; transfix); on this model, used with the meanings “across,” “beyond,” “through,” “changing thoroughly,” “transverse,” in combination with elements of any origin:

Here’s the basic, science-based, hard cold truth:
“Gender” is a language construct. In many romance languages, certain nouns are considered either masculine or feminine. The word “cat”, in Spanish, for example, is a masculine noun. One will always refer to “the cat” as “el gato”, regardless if the cat is male or female. Likewise, in French, “the chair” is translated as “la chaise”. Like Spanish, “la” denotes a feminine noun. In English, common nouns (person, place, thing) are neutral.

When it comes to humans, we are born² either male or female. We have a distinguishable and often visible sex: either a penis and testes or labia and vagina. Male babies carry the XY gene, females, XX. When puberty occurs, males will develop a deeper voice, more muscle mass, thicker and more widespread body hair, and the testes will drop further into the scrotum to facilitate the production of sperm. Females will develop breasts capable of creating milk and begin a roughly monthly menstrual cycle.

The menstrual cycle³, of course, brings me to the whole point of this. Every 28 days or so, the uterus, the only reproductive organ capable of protecting a developing baby, lines itself with nutrients and blood. If conception does not occur, the uterus empties itself of this material and begins the process anew. For anywhere between 2 and 7 days, give or take, blood and tissue exits the body via the vagina.

As ONLY females of our species have a uterus and a menstrual cycle, allow me to make it very, very clear that periods ARE just for women. There is no possible way that a biological male is ever going to ovulate, create sperm-friendly cervical fluid, conceive, and bear a child. He will never have breasts that produce milk and nourish that child. This is something exclusive to biological females.

One of the biggest problems I have is the statement, “I feel like a woman.” No person born male can ever truly understand what it is to be a woman. The closest true statement would be “I feel what I imagine being a woman feels like.” As a male, he will never experience the visceral things a female body does, will never see the world colored by the experiences of being a woman, because no matter what he does to his body, he will never be a woman. Likewise, a biological female can never truly understand what it is to be a man. We share the human experience, but it will always be through the lens of our own lives. I can imagine the discomfort of standing in front of a class with an unexpected erection because I have had to walk down the hallway with bloodstained clothes because my period started unexpectedly. I can’t tell you what the sensation in the testes during an erection feels like, nor can a man understand the unique and painful sensation of passing a large blood clot through the vagina. We cannot understand because it is outside our realm of experience. It is impossible.

So to the woman in the picture above suffering from gender identity disorder:
I’m sorry society has failed you. I’m sorry that we, as a culture, have allowed this notion of “sexual freedom” to get so far out of hand that it prevents you from getting the help you so desperately need. I can’t imagine what it is like to feel like you were born “wrong” or “broken”. You are not. You are a woman, a fellow human being, worthy of respect. I am only one small drop of water in an ocean of those who think your suffering is something that should be continued and not abated. I wish there was something that could be done that didn’t force you to poison and mutilate your beautiful body. For it IS beautiful, just as it was the day you were born and your family marveled over your adorable ears and counted each of your perfect fingers and toes. I’m sorry we are so far gone that we cannot help you. We can’t even help ourselves.

Footnotes:

*I really, really hope she cleaned up that bench. Blood-bourn pathogens, anyone?

¹ “Gender.” Merriam-Webster.com. Merriam-Webster, n.d. Web. 14 July 2017.
“Sex.” Merriam-Webster. Merriam-Webster, n.d. Web. 14 July 2017.
“Trans-.” Dictionary.com. Dictionary.com, n.d. Web. 14 July 2017.

²Intersex abnormalities, such as hermaphrodism, only account for 0.008% of live births, or roughly 8 per 100,000 live births. (http://www.leonardsax.com/how-common-is-intersex-a-response-to-anne-fausto-sterling/)

³http://uk.clearblue.com/menstrual-cycles-and-ovulation

 

 

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To Vaccinate, or Not to Vaccinate?

…that shouldn’t even BE a question.
Why? Because science.

Woooooow. Want to open up a topic for debate that will irritate both liberals AND conservatives across the board?

Vaccines.

Holy crap.

For those who have been living under a rock for the last twenty years, in 1998, British gastroenterologist Andrew Jeremy Wakefield and eleven of his colleagues published a study in the British medical journal The Lancet suggesting a link between the MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) vaccine and the onset of autism and bowel disease in children. Questions regarding the validity of the study were raised when other doctors and scientists were unable to duplicate Wakefield’s results. Sixty-seven studies conducted between 1998 and 2010 (some of which can be found HERE; HERE; HERE; and HERE) found no correlation between the MMR (or any other) vaccine and the diagnosis of autism.

Other questions surrounding the validity of Wakefield’s claims came from investigative reporter Brian Deer of the Sunday Times, the UK’s most respected newspaper. Deer discovered that Wakefield’s entire study revolved around 12 anonymous children with “apparent brain disorders” admitted to the pediatric bowel unit at the Royal Free Hospital near London between July 1996 and February 1997.

[Please let me, The Blonde, stop right there. I’m a historian and thespian. I teach. My first idea in college, though, was to become a large animal vet, so I have a pretty solid background in science. General science, biology, honors and AP chemistry, honors Physics in high school; biology, marine biology, inorganic chem in college. Even I know that one should not publish a world-shattering study, with the potential to change lives quite literally around the world, based off less than a year’s worth of research on such a small sample. My teachers and professors would have kicked my butt for even suggesting that. But, I digress.]

Parents of eight of the 12 children blamed the MMR vaccine for their children’s diagnosis of both IBD and autism. (Many children with ASD also have GI issues. No one is exactly sure why, but it’s common. AutismSpeaks explains.) As hysteria went global thanks to the likes of Jenny McCarthy, who blamed the vaccine for her own son’s autism, Deer discovered that far from a scientific breakthrough, Wakefield had been approached in 1994 by lawyer Richard Barr, a lawyer of dubious intent looking to start a speculative class-action lawsuit against the manufacturers of the MMR vaccine. What was actually planned I can’t even begin to paraphrase, so I’ll let Deer himself explain.

Unlike expert witnesses, who give professional advice and opinions, Wakefield had negotiated an unprecedented contract with Barr, then aged 48, to conduct clinical and scientific research. The goal was to find evidence of what the two men claimed to be a “new syndrome”, intended to be the centerpiece of (later failed) litigation on behalf of an eventual 1,600 British families, recruited through media stories. This publicly undisclosed role for Wakefield created the grossest conflict of interest, and the exposure of it by Deer, in February 2004, led to public uproar in Britain, the retraction of the Lancet report’s conclusions section, and, from July 2007 to May 2010, the longest-ever professional misconduct hearing by the UK’s General Medical Council (GMC).

Barr [audio] paid the doctor with money from the UK legal aid fund: run by the government to give poorer people access to justice. Wakefield charged at the extraordinary rate of £150 an hour – billed through a company of his wife’s – eventually totaling, for generic work alone, what the UK Legal Services Commission, pressed by Deer under the freedom of information act, said was £435,643 (then about $750,000 US), plus expenses. These hourly fees – revealed in The Sunday Times in December 2006 – gave the doctor a direct personal, but undeclared, financial interest in his research claims: totaling more than eight times his reported annual salary and creating an incentive not only for him to launch the alarm, but to keep it going for as long as possible.” (Brian Deer’s Research)

 

It would be the shady deal heard ‘round the world.

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