Sunday News Round-Up, Attack Kitty Edition
I haven’t done one of these in a while, having been distracted by the heat, the carless situation, dad’s cancer, mom’s hip replacement re-replacement, work, leveling my first character in Warcraft (now a level 71 undead frost mage – I don’t want to duel you!), and life in general. Tonight, though, I’m at my parents’ house (sitting with mom after said re-replacement), in a town with <30 thousand people that gets really, truly dark at night, World of Warcraft won't run on this computer, and I think I've reached the end of the internet. Might as well do something.
The FDA has issued a warning not to use emergency contraception labeled as Evital. The agency says,
These products may be counterfeit versions of the “morning after pill” and may not be safe or effective in preventing pregnancy. Evital has not been approved by the FDA for use in the United States. This potentially ineffective and suspect counterfeit emergency birth control may also be in distribution in some Hispanic communities in the United States.
The FDA announcement linked above has an image of the packaging for the drug in question and further details.
The FDA is also proposing guidelines for mobile medical apps (like you use on a smart phone). I haven’t fully parsed the implications of the proposal yet, but public comment is being accepted through October 19.
CNN has a piece on breast ironing in Cameroon. This is not a custom I know much about, and I’m always hesitant to jump in where I know so little, but I feel comfortable saying that this must be a painful procedure that doesn’t achieve the apparently desired goal of preventing sex ad pregnancy.
The New York Times talks about Title IX, the law requiring that women and girls have equal access to participation in school sports, focusing on a lack of investigation and enforcement when schools are thought to not be following the law.
Washington became the first state to specifically provide for offspring from donated eggs and sperm to access the donors’ medical history and names once the offspring turn 18. This is an issue I’ve written a tiny bit about at Our Bodies Our Blog.
Shockingly, Bill O’Reilly is kind of an uninformed jerk about unintentional pregnancy and birth control. The professional blowhard stated that “Many women who get pregnant are blasted out of their minds when they have sex and are not going to use birth control anyway.” Right. Half of all pregnancies in this country are unplanned, and it’s obviously just because women are too drunk and high to use contraception. A lot of attention has been paid to this comment, but O’Reilly also stated in the same segment that HHS should pay for “everybody’s birth control, all the women in the world, or here in the United States, or maybe both.” Yeah, we’re going to pay for birth control for *all the women in the world* – even those women in the many countries with lower rates of teen and unplanned pregnancy. Sure, that seems likely and logical and fact-based, doesn’t it? *headdesk* Media Matters has more, including response from the National Women’s Law Center.
C-section rates apparently hit an all-time U.S. high of 34%. I feel like “new high” is the news we get every year now on c-sections.
Al Jazeera English has a short piece on the ethics of clinical pharmaceutical research in India, where research participants may not clinically benefit from drugs being tested and may be vulnerable to exploitation.
Max Barry has a nice piece about gender through the lens of how we gender animals and the gender of Smurfs.
Kari Paul at the Ms. Blog explores the topic of sexual assault on campuses and the lack of arrests or serious addressing of this problem.
Connecticut added gender identity and expression to the state’s anti-discrimination laws. Good job, Connecticut!
Anita Sarkeesian talks about the “mystical pregnancy trope,” especially in sci fi/fantasy, in which women are used for their reproductive capacity and often forcibly impregnated. I hadn’t really noticed it as much as I should, maybe you haven’t either – check out the video (via Sociological Images).
Hey, it’s World Breastfeeding Week.
Honestly, I can watch True Blood as a bit of fluff and as somebody who likes to see on-screen adaptations of books. There are a lot of problems with it. Watching tonight’s episode, I really wondered how many gratuitous rape scenes one show can possibly have, especially after Alan Ball’s comment on the serial rape of Jason that he’s basically getting what he deserved for his sexual history. Feminist Frequency also has some TB commentary and links to more.
Relatedly but not surprisingly, the blogger at The Frisky wrote critically today about how True Blood handles rape, and the very first comment is of the “relax/don’t watch then” variety. Don’t worry your pretty little head! *predictable-but-disappointing-argh*
I’m proud of our Nashville students who came out to protest stupid, offensive, and mean “don’t say gay” legislation in Tennessee.
Apparently one place in Minnesota has similar “don’t say gay” rules in its schools; CNN covered the issue and the National Center for Lesbian Rights has a letter you can sign onto to express your support for students in the affected school district who are trying to change the policy.
The CDC is talking about antibiotic-resistant gonorrhea.
Somebody threw a Molotov cocktail into a Planned Parenthood of North Texas clinic. The clinic provides health care, including birth control and screenings, but doesn’t even provide abortions. Alex Pareene at Salon’s War Room points out that nobody seems to care about this form of domestic terrorism.
Last but not least, everybody wish Hilary luck on her last board exam and subsequent residency application process.
1) It’s the attack kitty edition because, in noting on Facebook that I am away from home, I told the Internet not to get any ideas – the house is guarded by the spouse, attack kitties, and weirdly commandable suits of armor.
2) Yes, I suspect there are some conversations we could have about gender and Warcraft. If you want to talk about that, we can do so in the comments.