Skepchick Quickies 6.19

Happy Juneteenth! On June 19, 1865, slaves in Galveston, Texas, were informed of their freedom. It only took two years after the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation.

BONUS: Lemonade Stand Mid-Quarter Report and Updates.


Mary Brock works as an Immunology scientist by day and takes care of a pink-loving princess child by night. She likes cloudy days, crafting, cooking, and Fall weather in New England.

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  1. Mary

    I heard about that story about the myth that rape rarely causes pregnancy coming Nazi Germany. Although, given the nature of that regime, it sounds horrifyingly plausible to me, the thing is I remember reading somewhere about it originating much earlier than the Third Reich. It might be interesting to do a bit more research on the subject.

      1. From the original article:

        “In the aftermath of Akin’s statement, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported on a 1972 essay by an obstetrician named Fred Mecklenburg, who cited a Nazi experiment in which women were told they were on their way to die in the gas chambers—and then were allowed to live, so that doctors could check whether they would still ovulate. Since few did, Mecklenburg claimed that women exposed to the emotional trauma of rape wouldn’t be able to become pregnant, either. (He also argued that rapists are infertile because they masturbate a lot.) The essay was published in a book financed by A.U.L.”

        So what she is saying is that it originated in 1972 with Mecklenburg making specious conclusions using data collected by the NAZIs.

        I don’t know which is worse, repeating NAZI propaganda or using NAZI data collected under threat of execution. The NAZI data set is in any case invalid because lack of food causes the menstrual cycle to stop. Stress is not the same thing as trauma.

        In this particular case there is a direct way to test Mecklenburg’s hypothesis. He instead decided to use 30 year old data gathered in a highly unscientific fashion by war criminals running an extermination camp.

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