Interesting posts, weekend of Mother’s Day 2010

05/09/2010 at 3:21 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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Dear internet, how do I turn comments off on Yahoo! News articles? I like to cruise the Yahoo news but I hate the comments that appear beneath the articles. I try look away but it’s like a train wreck.

Also, I’m on Twitter now! How do I do a twitter link? It’s just like a regular link, right? Anyway, look for me @femswfsd. I sure am lonely on Twitter and could use some new friends on there, because I have … 2 twitter friends right now. One of them’s Figleaf and the other is a stranger. Look at how much Twitter influence I have on the web. Harnessing the power of Twitter to change the world since May 2010. I don’t even know how to make a good tweet. All I want to do is Tweet about what I just ate for lunch. I’m too verbose for that platform but I’ll try it… Or maybe I’ll post real-time updates of whatever post I’m working on and whatever media/journalism/blog post has infuriated me that day. I’ll try not to start any big TwitterWars.

I’m still real busy with meatspace and family crisis stuff & it’s pretty draining so I’m still expecting to have some irregularity in posting activity sometime shortly. Looks like summertime will be crunch time.

I’m reading a book right now and I’d like to write up a review of it when I’m finished. Don’t worry! I won’t be as nitpicky with this next book review as I was with Sex is not a Natural Act. I may be able to start up another continuing series after I finish the book though – not about the book per se but about the topic it covers – so we’ll see where it goes from there.

Friendly reminder: I am looking for Guest Posters. I want to hear more perspectives on the themes dealt with here at Feminists with Female Sexual Dysfunction. Because I am dealing with such a sensitive topic, I don’t think I can actively recruit new posters, since if I went onto someone else’s blog and said something like, “Hey u wanna write a post about your sexual health and/or feminism on a public forum?!” that would probably be very invasive. For this reason, Guest Posters requesting to remain anonymous will also be taken seriously.
At this time, criteria for inclusion is, “If you think you would fit in here, you probably would.” This may be subject to change but for now we’ll try that & see how it goes.
In an attempt to preemptively fight spam and rude comments, this blog’s email is private. Please leave a comment on this post if you want to write something. I’ll screen comments so you can remain anonymous if you want. That way I’ll have your email and we can collaborate.
Have something you’ve been working on? Send it my way.
Comments made by new e-mail addresses here are auto-screened before going live, so if you want to stay anon use an e-mail address that you haven’t used here before.

Now then, on with the weekly blog link roundup. Posts I found interesting over the last week. Share links if’n you got’em.

First up there were a bunch of articles about female sexual dysfunction and women & girls’ sexual health.

Over at RH Reality Check, Bianca I. Laureano posted (VIDEO) A Review Of Orgasm, Inc. It’s a pretty in-depth review in praise of Liz Canner’s documentary and in condemnation of the medical model of FSD. I like the questions that Laureano wrote at the end of the review, although I’m still not convinced that a purely social construction model of sexual health & dysfunction is the best & only response to sexual medicine. I haven’t watched the film yet but obviously, eventually I won’t have any choice anymore. Unless one of the readers here has watched it and wants to write up their own review?

Why am I not entirely convinced that a purely social construction model is the best and only defense against Big Pharma? One of the reasons is because I keep running into stuff like this: Women Have Lots of Casual Sex — Get Over It – Oh well that doesn’t sound too bad of a title, right? And for the most part it’s an okay post content wise; except for the survey it talks about wasn’t particularly rigorous in the science department due to the way in which it was conducted so it probably can’t be generalized to the population at large. But the article contains this rather unfortunate line:

Unfortunately, most of the research on women and sex these days seems to focus on “sexual dysfunction.” There’s little research, says Wentland, on women who actually like sex, and what little there is, is hopelessly out of date and doesn’t reflect what’s actually going on out there. So she did her own.

Yes it’s so unfortunate that there’s any research about sexual dysfunction because all people with sexual dysfunction automatically dislike sex, always hated it, will always hate it and so their feedback is completely worthless. I mean obviously people who have for example pain with sex or who have difficultly orgasming automatically dislike all sex, amirite or amirite? Those two groups, people who like sex and people with sexual dysfunctions are totally mutually exclusive and there is absolutely no movement or overlap between the two categories so who cares about people with sexual dysfunction, research on sexual dysfunction is a total waste of time and will never do anybody any good ever. Either you work right or you don’t.
BTW in case you couldn’t tell the preceding paragraph was completely sarcastic and I don’t mean a word of what I just said. That line, why is that even in this article. Why would Wentland even say that.

But wait, there’s more – an anonymous tipster passed this article along to me. Polly Vernon watched Orgasm, Inc. and was so blown away she wrote a review & analysis of it up. The race to discover Viagra for women – I like seriously don’t even have the energy or the peace of mind to write an in-depth analysis of this one because like all these articles have thrown me into rage-rage-rage reaction mode. But in the mean time here’s some of my initial impressions of Vernon’s impressions: I’m getting the impression that Vernon doesn’t believe that FSD exists for anyone ever and that to her “Disease” and “Illness” = bad, bad, bad. You don’t want to think of yourself as chronically ill! Sucks for those women who actually have a bona fide medical condition that might be classified as “Disease” or “illness” or as chronic, I guess. Of course it sucks for the women who do not have anything that can be verified medically too. I think it’s very interesting that in that article Canner herself claims that she believes that a few women probably do have FSD but this article only does not explicitly state who’s FSD is valid and why. The only clue we have here as to who’s FSD is valid and why is mention of postmenopausal women in Europe who use the Intrinsa patch (not approved for use in the USA.)

[Trigger warnings] – The American Academy of Pediatrics has issued a policy statement re: FGC in the USA. In the USA, FGC is illegal and the AAP has until now discouraged any genital surgery on girls that was not medically necessary. If you will scroll down to p. 1092, you will see some paragraphs saying that some pediatricians working in areas with large immigrant populations are worried about the criminalization of all FGC in the US. Their fear is that families heavily invested in the ritual will do anything to see their daughters go through FGC, and that as an alternative it might be safer for doctors to offer a (what they think is) relatively harmless incision.
As someone who has actually had genital surgery herself, I felt that First, Do No Harm was the safest place for me to read about the AAP’s change of heart. It’s all relative of course but what I mean is that the surgery I had, I’ve seen other people describe it, too, as “Mutilation.” Even though it wasn’t, and I don’t feel mutilated or disfigured, and the person who did the surgery was a surgeon, not a mutant-maker. So Melissa made it clear not to use that term in the comments thread there. But like that surgery I had, it was without a doubt one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do. It’s a big deal! And I was an adult at the time, an adult in pain. This change of policy would impact little girls. But my clitoris remains exactly the same as it ever was. What are the risks of this surgical nick? Clitorodynia and scar tissue is a real thing, you know. But it’s not all about me…
This post from Feministing was okay too but maybe skip the comments and maybe the blog post title isn’t entirely accurate. Female Genital Cutting Added to Possible Procedures via American Association of Pediatricians.
There’s voices I’m noticing missing from these blog posts, that is the voices of girls & women who’ve undergone FGC. Right now these conversations are taking place between folks who have probably never experienced anything like FGC. Which can be a big problem, in light of the recent Clitoraid controversy.
EqualityNow is urging the AAP to retract their most recent statement and points out that this “Ritual nick” offered by a doctor would still count as Type IV cutting which offers no health benefits.
Two rules for if you want to comment here on this blog post roundup about the AAP policy: Keep in mind that this blog’s very own author has experienced a medical vulvovaginal surgery, so please use the term FGC rather than FGM. Because come on I’m standing right here. Second, this isn’t the time nor place to bring up male circumcision. Thank you for your cooperation.

Today is Mother’s Day and Renee has a challenging post at Global Comment about it. Mother’s Day: What are we really celebrating?
Coincidentally, today is also the 50th anniversary of the FDA’s approval of The Pill. There was a big roundup of posts about that at RH Reality Check.

Huge eco-disaster in the Gulf Coast; an oil rig exploded, killed workers and then the oil has been spewing out for days and days. Old Feminist wrote about some of the cleanup possibilities.
Is there anything you can do immediately, in addition to long-term working to reduce your own dependence on oil? Actually, there may just be… Got Hair? Consider donating it to A Matter of Trust. They make hair mats that can be used to clean up oil spills!

Nashville is drowning – Inland US is struggling with major, deadly floods too.

Jeans or short skirt, we still wanted it – [Trigger warning] Short post but it addresses a double-bind faced by women who have experienced sexual assault. In this case, the jeans part refers to an Australian case where a sexual assault victim’s perpetrator was found not guilty by reason of her jeans were too tight.

Gynecologist Practiced Medicine for 9 Years, Despite Multiple Rape Allegations From Patients – [Trigger warning] This is terrifying. A gynecologist sexually assaulted, molested & harassed patients for years. And there were complaints against him, but nothing was done about it.

UK Election (Not Quite) Final Results – There were elections in the UK this week. There isn’t a >50% majority this time.

Nope, that’s full blown misogyny – The Catholic church wants to investigate nuns on the grounds of pro-feminist sentiment. What?

An Open Letter to Ms Magazine Blog - Anna calls out Ms Magazine on their ablist language & assumptions, especially after they put out a video where they claimed to totally care about PWD.

Why is the National Day to Prevent Teen Pregnancy on Cinco de Mayo? - Not just a coincidence, this was a deliberate choice by National Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy.

Multiple Chemical Sensitivity Awareness – One of the overlapping conditions that Jeanne lives with.

“Slut Panel” postmortem: Shame, shame, go away – You can be labeled a “Slut” in the most negative sense whether you’ve actually had sexual activity or not. It’s a perspective thing. Unfortunately you can be shamed for being a virgin for “Too long,” too. Virgin/Whore dichotomy.

Old and Improved: Long-Term Sex and the Myth of the Slow Decline – A refreshing perspective on the adage that with age and familiarity comes decline in sexual performance & satisfaction.

10 Myths About Sex and Virginity- Debunked – Another sex-positive and refreshing perspective on common cultural (in the US at least) sex adages. Very nice.

How Justin Long Confronted The “Third Rail” Of Interracial Porn Racism…And Survived – A very interesting post about interracial pornography, starring an essay by performer Justin Long.

Cosmocking: May ’10! – Holly does this month’s Cosmo breakdown. It’s a big one and a good one.

I’m sure there’s more…

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