Quickies

Skepchick Quickies 4.19

Amanda

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

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10 Comments

  1. It is breathtaking that US politicians are still, in the 21st century, trying to rewrite science with legislation. And, if you read the transcripts, they are, each and every one, as willfully stupid and proudly uneducated as a bag of hammers.

    This will get cut down by the first sane judge it goes before. But it will have cost millions to get that far. And it will have gotten these cretins a few more constituents from the red-neck vote, which will in turn ensure they are around next election cycle to begin their inanity anew.

    1. Poke around at what goes on in the Tennessee legislature. Go on. I *have* to, living there and all, and it is painful. Painful because I gouge my eyes with the nearest pointy implement several times an hour. Show me a Tennessee legislator, and I’ll show you someone who had the kind of science education I would not wish upon the children of my worst enemy.

  2. This “teach the controversy” bullshit is getting on my last nerve. From now on I am calling it the “argument from stupidity” because ignorance just doesn’t cover it.
    You can’t change the truth by wishing it to be different. No matter how hard you ignore gravity you will fall when you walk off the cliff. If you deny AGW it doesn’t keep the climate from changing, in fact it will probably happen quicker. And no matter how much you may hunger for it,
    CAKE IS STILL A LIE!!!!!

    1. Aperture Science
      We do what we must
      because we can.
      For the good of all of us.
      Except the ones who are dead.
      But there’s no sense crying over every mistake.
      You just keep on trying till you run out of cake.
      And the Science gets done.
      And you make a neat gun.
      For the people who are still alive.

  3. About the story about semen being an antidepressant and the guy quitting over it. I am a guy, so I don’t know every reason why women would be offended by it. But I am offended by it and think the guy was right to quit. He has shown that he isn’t capable of being the president of a big and important medical institution.

    What offends me most is that a medical authority is suggesting that women would be better off if they had unprotected sex with men and especially that a this might be something to treat depression.

    Depression is a serious and life threatening disorder that needs to be treated with means known to be effective. Unprotected sex is not a known effective means to prevent depression. Unprotected sex has a number of down sides which need to be weighed very carefully by women and their partners. Trying to treat depression should not be one of them.

    I have read the actual study and I think it was poorly done and I don’t find it compelling. The flaws in the actual study are pretty serious.

    The “data” they used was incomplete. They asked women if they had attempted suicide and then correlated that with use of condoms or not or being sexually active or not. There was no data presented as to the timing of suicide attempts and sexual activity. Since sexual trauma is an extremely common factor among women who are depressed and who attempt suicide, perhaps they should have asked questions about sexual trauma history. Being a victim of sexual trauma could explain the sexual practices, and the depression with no need to bring in magical properties of semen.

    If this article had not been about the magical properties of semen, he would never have considered mentioning it. It was mentioned because it had sexual content that could easily make women uncomfortable. In a work-type situation it would have constituted sexual harassment. As the president of a medical association, every member is in a “work-type” relationship with this guy. He should not have created a hostile work environment (which this did by putting this stuff in a journal that his subordinates are supposed to read).

    Bringing up a poorly done study in a professional setting to make your co-workers uncomfortable is unacceptable.

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