Politics

Recent posts

Confusion About Whether Pregnant Women Can Die

Republican Representative Joe Walsh has said that abortion is never necessary to save the life of a mother because “with modern technology and science, you can’t find one instance” of a pregnant woman dying. Um, no, sorry, that’s not the case. Medical advances have certainly aided women in surviving pregnancy and childbirth, but it’s not been an absolute triumph. For instance, The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists have stated in this article: “Abortions are necessary in a number of circumstances to save the life of a woman or to preserve her health. Unfortunately, pregnancy is not a risk-free life event.” Continue Reading →

A Pansexual Elected Official

Mary Gonzalez, elected to the Texas House of Representatives, recently came out as pansexual. She chooses that term because “gender identity isn’t the defining part of my attraction,” hence saying that she’s bisexual doesn’t technically describe how sexual attraction works for her. Significantly, she chose to come out after the election cycle, so while acceptance for alternative sexualities is increasing, it’s perhaps not yet to the point where displaying a non-heteronormative sexuality while campaigning is a good idea, sadly. Follow us on Twitter @mysexprofessor. Follow Jeana, the author of this post, @foxyfolklorist. Continue Reading →

On Rape And Pregnancy

I did not watch, read, or listen to the news for over a week, as I was busy getting married on the beach, going on a mini-honeymoon in Santa Barbara, and then performing dance for 4 days straight at one of the largest gaming conventions in the country. Beyond the chores of unpacking and laundry and scraping glitter off everything, all I wanted to do was sleep and recover. And then I came home to this. “This” being Representative Todd Akin’s comments about how in regard to the possibility of pregnancy after rape, in his understanding, ”if it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.” Far more bloggers than I can count have protested the idiocy behind these remarks, and pointed out the irony that a member of the Committee on Science, Space, and Technology would be so ill informed. Continue Reading →

Fashion Vs. Coin-Collecting

In response to yet another ridiculous example of making assumptions about women in political power according to how they dress, Feministe has come up with a brilliant comparison of fashion and coin-collecting. Here’s how this works: both fashion and coin-collecting are hobbies, yet fashion is gendered in ways that coin-collecting is not. No one automatically assumes that you collect coins, but women are assumed to be into fashion because, well, that’s what ladies are into, right? Coin-collecting comes up in conversation either briefly or not at all, or if both parties are into it, while fashion is something you can apparently ask any woman about anytime. See where this is going? Continue Reading →

Thanks, Tennessee Legislature!

Dear Tennessee Governor Haslem and the Tennessee legislature,

I just wanted to take this opportunity to thank you.  Due to your hard work at drafting and passing the HB 3621 and SB 3310 law, my sex therapy practice will continue to be profitable for years.  While your law outlawing the teaching of  ”gateway sexual activity” and “non-coital sexual activity” is on the books, thousands of Tennessee teens will be taught that their sexual feelings are bad and that they need to refrain from any kind of affectionate touching until their relationship is recognized by the state, and the only way to be sexual with someone is through coitus in marriage.  And my fellow sex educators in your state have their hands tied in terms of giving these confused teens options and speaking frankly about things they could do to deal with these sexual feelings in a way that lower their risks of making their partner or themselves pregnant or contracting STIs. So, thank you, because as a sex therapist, I will reap the benefits of this law for many years.  People will come to me confused as to why the sex in their marriage has fallen apart, or asking how they can stop being attracted to their same gender because they were never taught that same gender attraction was possible, or that any kind of sex exists besides coitus in the context of marriage. Perhaps I’ll even get a chance to meet with a young man who is diagnosed with HIV because his school didn’t address the type of sex he was having, and the risks involved with that. In short, your legislation will allow many more people to be undereducated about sex and relationships, which will lead to problems down the road, even in their state-approved marriages.  They will come to my sex therapy practice to talk about their deep dissatisfaction with their sex lives which may have been prevented were it not for your legislation. Thanks also for helping people think that sex should be painful and scary, and not the pleasurable, wonderful thing that it can and should be.  Those people will need counseling in the future when they don’t want to have sex because they simply don’t like it, or because their head is so filled with sex-negative messages that even when they want to enjoy sex, they can’t get to the point where it feels good. Continue Reading →

Obama Endorsed Gay Marriage…So What?

This afternoon I received a phone call from my father in which he asked me, his voice oozing excitement, if I had heard what the president said. “Yeah, Obama endorsed gay marriage, right?” Apparently my nonchalance was apparent, as my dad wasn’t satisfied. “Well, what do you think?” Of course he asked me not only as his daughter, but as his queer, activist, blogging daughter, so I knew I had to give him a good answer. Continue Reading →

Clarifying Arizona’s 20-Week Abortion Limit

I’ve seen a lot of furor online at Arizona’s proposal to ban abortions after 20 weeks – especially regarding the definition of pregnancy as starting two weeks prior to insemination, at the start date of the last menstrual period. Yes, this legislation is absolutely infuriating and wrong-headed, but not just for the reasons you think. As explained at Feministe, doctors have always calculated gestational age using the first day of the last period. It’s weird but that’s how it’s  done. So in medical terms, the new law wouldn’t change anything in terms of how we count… Continue Reading →

Why Slutty Disney Princesses Aren’t Funny

This post about “If Disney Princesses Went to College” is, on the surface, kinda funny. Like, yeah, Belle (from Beauty and the Beast) would totally be the hot bookworm girl that all the engineering guys are drooling over. But then it gets strange. And strangely misogynist, and sex-negative, and slut-shamey. So apparently Ariel (from The Little Mermaid) is a slut because… Continue Reading →

Conservatives Watch More Pornography In The US

According to this report, the states that have the highest levels of pornography consumption are also the most politically and religiously conservative. The explanation offered thus far is that anything that is repressed – as sexual desire, in this case, is repressed as immoral, sinful, or evil – simply becomes more desirable due to human nature. The hypocrisy is a bummer, since it appears that the people who want to police the behavior of others the most are incapable of being honest about their own desires and needs. Follow us on Twitter @mysexprofessor. Follow Jeana, the author of this post, @foxyfolklorist. Continue Reading →

Open Marriage In The News

As is often the case, topics in the news prompt people to think about the concepts being discussed and possible to evaluate them in a new light. Currently, thanks to Newt Gingrich, the spotlight is on open marriage. The concept of open marriages or open relationships is far from new, however. It’s simply that most people in open relationships do not see the benefits to being “out” about them, much as gays and lesbians remained closeted (and some still do) out of legitimate fears of retaliation from people in their communities. One of the reasons, too, that open relationships are not widely discussed is that they’re difficult to label and define. Continue Reading →