Skepchick Quickies 4.5


Amanda works in healthcare, is a loudmouthed feminist, and proud supporter of the Oxford comma.

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  1. Misleading headline there on the Treyvon article. The actual text of the article never says the police "relied on" voice stress testing in the investigation, only that they administered the test and that's why Zimmerman's lawyer thinks he's innocent. It's fine to criticize the police department for even using a technology that has little actual utility, but the last thing this case needs is more sensational headlines.

    1. True. I'm just SO angry that legitimate forensic sciences are constantly being contested in courts but that this complete bullshit was let through in this case.

      1. I blame Maury Povich.
        No, no, wait–hear me out.  One of his big schticks is "Is my S.O. cheating on me?"  Now, since women only matter because they have a uterus, the show uses genetic testing on their kids–if the kid is proven to be the suspicious beaux's, then they get a pass (I guess cheating women aren't smart enough to use a condom?).  But with dudes, of course, unless you've got another woman claiming that he's the father of HER kid, they resort to a lie-detector test.  The guy who administers the test insists, repeatedly, that they have a "98% accuracy" rating.  This, of course, far surpasses even, say, the FBI's claims for their own polygraph tests (and ignores that even with that level of accuracy, over several hundred shows, Maury's destroyed the relationships of at least a handful of innocent men).
        Perpetually airing that claim, though, makes folks think we're living in the sci-fi future where cops can administer a quick-and-easy test and determine The Truth instantly.

  2. I loved the Smithsonian piece. It is a great example of activism that's found a possible solution and is working towards it.

  3. From the juvenile blood plasma story:
    "The prevalence of juvenile blood plasma use in Hollywood has not been documented, but the adoption of children for blood harvesting may be on the rise. Indian juvenile blood farms have yet to be exposed, but the exploitation of the poor to increase the health and longevity of the wealthy is well entrenched in American society."

    1. There's no evidence that any of this is happening, but it's on the rise, and totally is happening.

    2. Yea. The credibility of the article jumped off a cliff at that paragraph. 
      Although I will give it points for reminding me of a dystopian novel where young people were only kept alive to donate their organs to older people.

      1. I'm thinking about including it as a feature in the next modern-day or dystopic-future RPG I run….

  4. Ah, "House of the Scorpion", where the drug lords in charge of the US/Mexico border raise clones of themselves for organ replacement. The protagonist is the one clone he keeps for about a decade, letting him grow to a relatively normal young adulthood, then harvesting the body entirely.

  5. Oh man I can see the headline:

  6. Hmmm . . .  For bonus points, which group of old rich white guys is using their political cout to prevent abortions and limit or prohibit the use of contraceptives?
    Not that I'm implying anything.

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