Quickies: Snarky Responses to Things Men Say, Movie Review of “Vaxxed”, and the Failure of “High/Low Functioning” Labels

  • Is There Wood Pulp In That Parmesan? How Scientists Sniff Out Food Fraud – “Earlier this year, Wal-Mart was sued for stocking tubs of Parmesan cheese that contained wood pulp filler. Olive oil is often mixed with sunflower oil and sold as ‘extra virgin.’ And you might recall the great European horse meat scandal of 2014: Traces of horse meat were found in Ikea meatballs and Burger King beef patties, in cottage pies sold at schools in Lancashire, England, and in frozen lasagna sold all over Europe.”
  • Roe v. Wade Was Lost in 1992 – “How ‘undue burden’—a concept nurtured by anti-abortion groups and championed by the first woman on the Supreme Court—has eroded the right to choose.”
  • The Secret to a Tattoo’s Permanence: The Immune System – “As this fascinating video from TED explains, tattoos are actually a complicated inflammatory process—a delicate balancing act between your body and the dye that’s invading it. It turns out your ethereal watercolored bird is kind of like an infection—and the reason it’s permanent is because your body keeps on fighting it forever.”
  • We watched the movie ‘Vaxxed’ so you don’t have to – ” ‘Vaxxed’ also advanced, but provided no evidence for, a conspiracy theory which has been circulating for about two years among anti-vaccine activists and concerned parents. The theory holds that the CDC has covered up vital data and committed fraud. It’s based on concerns that a CDC scientist, William Thompson, raised about a study that he and several colleagues published in the journal Pediatrics in 2004.”
  • Where the Vocabulary of Autism is Failing – Why terms like “high-functioning” and “low-functioning” (used by well-intended parents everywhere) are misleading, and how researchers are trying to get others break out of the high/low binary.
  • The Only LGBT Cemetery Section in the World Was Inspired by J. Edgar Hoover – “Matlovich designed his own headstone with great care, intending it to serve as a memorial for LBGT veterans. He chose reflective black granite so the stone would resemble the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall. He placed pink triangles on it and, instead of emblazoning it with his own name, used the more inclusive phrase ‘A Gay Vietnam Veteran.’ Most striking of all was the epitaph: ‘When I was in the military they gave me a medal for killing two men and a discharge for loving one.’ “
  • Things My Male Tech Colleagues Have Actually Said to Me, Annotated – ” ‘How did you learn to do all this?!’ The ancient Spider-Goddess Llorothaag came to me in a harrowing blood-soaked vision. In exchange for perpetual servitude as her handmaiden, she imparted knowledge of IP subnetting.”

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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. If you ask autistic people, they are usually pretty against the concept of “high/low” functioning and personally it annoys me greatly that nearly everything I read about autism is written by/for parents and caregivers and no one bothers to actually ask autistic people themselves. Grr.

    That snarky responses thing had me laughing so hard on the bus people were staring. Brilliant.

  2. The responses to the Snarky Comments post are almost as funny as the post. People (and by people, I mean women) ran with the whole ancient she-spider deity Llorothaag theme. So Llorothaag now has a Twitter account! And a Reddit! (Sub?) Alas, though: no mugs or coozies. Yet.

    Skepchick.org. You want donations? Raffle off some Llorothaag swag.

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