Quickies

Skepchick Quickies 5.25

  • Acupuncturist pricks holes in rape conviction – “Three men who spent nearly a decade in prison on rape charges were freed after an acupuncturist determined that they were virgins, a police official says.” From Justin.
  • Copernicus reburied as hero in Poland – “Nicolaus Copernicus died a nobody in 1543, and his theory that the Earth revolved around the Sun was condemned for centuries by the Catholic Church. He finally got his due this Saturday – the former heretic received a hero’s burial.” From Nick and Paul.
  • Martin Gardner dies at 95 – “Prolific mathematics and science writer Martin Gardner, known for popularizing recreational mathematics and debunking paranormal claims, died Saturday.” From Paul.
  • Greenwood Indiana high school circumvents law again - To find a a way around a court order against having prayer at their graduation, the school will “break with tradition” and not screen student speeches.

Amanda

Amanda is a science grad student in Boston whose favorite pastimes are having friendly debates and running amok.

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20 Comments

  1. In all fairness, the men weren’t released because the accupuncturist said they were virgins. They were released because after the accupuncturist’s claim, the case was reexamined and some shoddy policework came to light.

    I suppose this does mean it’s time for a double-blind study of that capillary below the ear that’s supposed to indicate virginity.
    Which will probably find no correlation whatsoever.

  2. @Reverend Kel: That’s easy. I learned that in junior high. If the capillary is burst behind the right ear, that means he’s gay. If it is burst behind his left ear, then he’s straight. If it is burst behind both ears, that means be is probably in a band.

  3. I see this Greenwood High School thing completely the other way around. They aren’t going to vet the speeches. At all. For anyone. This is an awesome opportunity for a skeptic:

    “Was in the 7th grade when he first stroked me with his noodly appendage…”

  4. @davew: Unfortunately, given that this high school is run by an administration that considers this to be a valid tactic for proselytization, and given further that it was the student body that originally decided they wanted to have a prayer read at the graduation, it’s unlikely that there will be many students of “alternate” viewpoints willing to express them before – to coin a phrase – God and everyone.

    And that’s completely aside from the fact that it’s the school administration that chooses the student speakers in the first place.

  5. I’m sorry this is off topic, but I’ve been looking for an article that I’m 99% sure I saw here on Skepchick awhile back.

    It had to do with an article in a newspaper about a rape study. The article said that women who dress less modestly are more likely to get raped, but the study I think said the opposite of that.

    I was having a discussion with somebody this weekend, and he was using the argument that women should cover up to avoid getting raped. He was somewhat playing devil’s advocate and knows it’s a bad argument now, but I still want to show him that article. I’ve been searching for it but haven’t had any luck…I also thought it was mentioned on the SGU but couldn’t find it in the show notes…could somebody point me in the right direction or tell me if I’m completely imagining things?

    Sorry again to go off topic!

  6. Re the rape in Vietnam. Even if they were released based on other evidence, the case was opened up because the President of the Country got a letter from a woman who claimed to be able to validate a sexual experience from a capillary behind the ear. So essentially the President has enough confidence in this idea to start that ball rolling.

    And worse, she is now being sought out by others to verify their virginity for rape charges. This is not a good thing.

    Although, in the scheme of all horrible things I suppose its not anywhere near the top. Its still not good.

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