‘abortion’

Good News About (Some) Sexual Rights

A few of our civil rights in America were reaffirmed last week. Ironically, the context, as is often the case when our basic rights are trampled, was sexuality. * Forced ultrasound and required physician speech found unconstitutional Like 12 other states, North Carolina forces women undergoing a legal medical procedure (abortion) to undergo an invasive procedure (uterine ultrasound) they may not want, and to listen to their doctor recite a script that the doctor may not want to recite and the woman may not want to hear. In upholding a successful challenge to the law, a federal court concluded that…

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Science & Sex—Why Are They Now Strangers?

Two weeks ago I had the privilege of speaking at NECSS—the Northeast Conference on Science & Skepticism. I was surrounded by world-class scientists, including Yale Med School neurologist Steve Novella, Stanford physicist Deborah Berebichez, Oxford neuroscientist Heather Berlin, and even Bill Nye The Science Guy. It was glorious—no explaining why science is important to everything we do or touch or think. Every one of the 600 attendees “believes” in gravity, evolution, and the Scientific Method. I started each of the conference’s three days in a wonderful bubble. But each day, news from the outside world was an ugly intruder—which, in…

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Gay Pride—A Reminder

Today is Gay Pride Day. Across the U.S. and many other countries, colorful parades mark the 45th anniversary of the riots around New York’s Stonewall Inn, credited with launching the gay rights movement. The riots were a series of violent reactions to yet another then-completely-legal police raid on gay bars. Today it’s almost impossible to imagine that only four decades ago, being gay was grounds for harassment, arrest, and jail time. And, of course, losing one’s job, one’s apartment, and custody of one’s children. A lot has changed since then. And a lot hasn’t. A huge number of Americans still…

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National Day of Prayer: Unconstitutional & Anti-Sex

To give America an extra edge during the Cold War against godless Communism, President Harry Truman designated the first Thursday in May as the National Day of Prayer. Every year since, that’s when government officials from city council to president ask citizens to join them in the most blatantly religious activity there is: pleading to a divinity to suspend the laws of the universe, and to bend destiny on behalf of the petitioner. In response to the unconstitutionality (and sheer offensiveness) of such a public ritual, the American Humanist Association created the National Day of Reason in 2003. The National…

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Camille Paglia: Wrong About Sex Ed

We never know which Camille Paglia is going to show up: brilliant intellectual, freelance anti-Christ, or tunnel-visioned provocateur. It was the latter Paglia who wrote a recent piece in Time Magazine cleverly titled “Put the sex back in sex ed.” Of course, we sex educators have been urging this for decades. But that’s not what her article is actually about. She says we should inject gender politics into sex education. As a bonus, she also exposes her ignorance about a number of common sex education issues. Harking back to the world of Leave It To Beaver, Paglia demands that “The…

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