Quickies: African American history museum, new Librarian of Congress, and harassment at Apple
- Why does the FDA still discriminate against men who have sex with men – “The California legislature ended their session last week by calling on President Obama to compel the Department of Health and Human Services to end federal blood donation policies that discriminate against men who have sex with men (MSM).”
- National Museum of African American History opens – “In the spirit of Langston Hughes’s poem “I, Too,” their message is a powerful declaration: The African-American story is an American story, as central to the country’s narrative as any other, and understanding black history and culture is essential to understanding American history and culture.” From Donna.
- First African American and first woman librarian of Congress sworn in – “Since its inception in 1800, all 13 librarians of Congress have been white men. That all changed in July, after the Senate voted 72-14 to confirm Hayden in her new position.”
- Emails leaked by Apple employees reveal harassment and jokes about rape and “man periods” – “One female engineer at Apple escalated a complaint about the male coworkers on her team, one of whom made jokes that “an office intruder was coming to rape everybody”–and unfortunately, according to the employee, this wasn’t the first time that her coworkers had made rape jokes of this kind.”
I’m also forbidden from donating blood due to excessive concern about blood communicable diseases that almost all people like me don’t have.
I spent a year in mainland Europe when I was 3, putting me at unknown risk for carrying mad cow disease prions that may affect other people’s brains differently than my own.
This whole issue pits the scientific skeptic in me who knows that risk factors are a real thing, and no medical professional wants to increase the chances of getting HIV into the blood supply, against the modern progressive who knows how easy it is to blow the risk out of proportion when specifically targeting attributes of marginalized people.
As long as the AMA, a well qualified organization for the issue, is calling for reform due to social and medical changes since the ban was created, I’ve got to suspect that any latent fears about HIV transmission rates are indeed overblown by socially conservative elements.
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