Sugar and Spice

Madeline Kara had diabetes. Childhood diabetes is one of the most common chronic diseases of children with type 1 diabetes affecting around 1.7 per 1000 Americans and a varying amount for type 2 (because ethnicity and socio-economic status plays a role).

I said “had”, because Madeline Kara passed away from a diabetic HONK coma. (Hyperglycaemic Hyperosmolar Nonketoic Coma – Uncontrolled diabetes is deadly.)

Because her parents would rather pray to god than let humans use their skill, ingenuity and knowledge to save their daughter’s life.

To realise how dangerous religion can be, we must first understand what a Delusion is. You are delusional can mean “You have no grasp of what’s going on”. But in medicine? A delusion is a psychiatric disorder where the patient holds a firm belief in something that can be empirically proven to be false. However any proof provided will be rejected out of hand and any attempts to convince the patient that their delusion is incorrect will merely become part of the delusion.

Leilani and Dave Neumann were so deluded by their faith that even after their daughter died they insisted that she would come back to life…

If we ignore the faith aspect of things, Leilani and Dave would be sectioned. They are clearly delusional. No psychiatrist in the world would consider them to be responsible for their actions because they are genuinely not thinking using the same logic that we come to accept as normal. They don’t believe in something we understand as real. However what complicates this is faith. Religion is the world’s most acceptable delusion. The joke amongst psychiatrist is that “God” is the only acceptable voice in your head.

Many people don’t know this but you are legally obligated to pull in an ambulance if someone is in trouble. This case is remarkable in Wisconsin because it sets a precedence for parents being liable for their actions with regards to faith. In the USA a whole bunch of states (I tried researching and I got up to 12) have clauses for the protection of parents who use prayer rather than medicine.

When tried both were sentenced to 25 years in prison, except the judge reduced the sentence to a month in prison every year for six months and then 10 years of probation. But here is the thing.

Why? If the reason they did this was “Aliens” they would be sectioned under various mental health acts (Insanity isn’t “getting off lightly”. Insanity Pleas are often WORSE than prison since they can keep you forever because your condition may require permanent care and it’s actually pretty hard to get it). But their sentence was reduced because they believed in a god. Wisconsin is one of those states with a law protecting faith healing. At best it can be tried as child abuse, not homicide.

It doesn’t matter what the outcome of the case is. The parents are not “guilty” of anything. It’s clearly a mental health issue and they are ill. They cannot be held responsible because they are clearly medically delusional about their actions. Punishing them will not make them understand. It won’t bring back Madeline and it won’t convince the faith healers to stop and take responsibility.

What matters is there is religion out there that CREATES these people. That feeds and creates this delusion.

It’s Against My Religion

It’s Against My Religion to Fund Contraception For My Employees.

This doesn’t make you a principled christian. This makes you a tosser. Birth Control is vital to a healthy society. Our society has the things it does because we live in a society where we have created artificial largesse through technology and by artificially controlling our population’s growth. Otherwise you just have… places like India. Where everything doesn’t work because there are so many people. India would be kicking so much arse if it had 3/4 of the population. It’s standard of living would be among the highest in the world.

Artificial largesse is the method of western growth. We curtailed our birth rates to an equilibrium so we aren’t as affected by fickle nature of weather and resources reliant on that because we are using less (a lot less) than we actually have of resources such as food and water. Contraception is vital to this.

To have a religious exclusion for christians means a religious exclusion for all faiths.

You would not get your insulin if a Hindu or a Muslim employer decided to apply this level of dickery (Relax, I have NEVER heard of a Muslim or a Hindu refusing to fund Insulin for Diabetic employees. This is just a really christian form of religious dickery).

And it is just that. Petty Dickery.

We Are The Worst Thing On Earth

Sometimes you have people who simply don’t get it. In this case it is Chaz Muth of the Catholic News Service who launches an attack on the Reason Rally and the values of secularism in the USA. And what he doesn’t get mirrors the official party line of the pope.
It’s a movement that concerns Catholic leaders worldwide, including Pope Benedict XVI.

Actually it is a movement that doesn’t concern catholic leaders. It’s not their problem and it’s not a problem. The Pope doesn’t actually have any power over people who don’t believe in his divine ability. He is just an old dude who doesn’t have sex who is in charge of a bunch of men dressed in black who go around people’s houses telling them what to do.

“Radical secularism” threatens the core values of American culture, the pope warned a group of U.S. bishops visiting the Vatican in January. He called on the church in the U.S., as well as politicians and other laypeople, to render “public moral witness” on crucial social issues.

One of the core american values is a separation of Church and State. It’s in the constitution. By law the church has and should NEVER have any say on what crucial social issues is. Because this is an organisation that thinks gynaecology is a bigger evil than child molestation. They have ceased to be a moral example. The pope’s picture is better suited to an article on hypocrisy rather than morality.

“The larger concern with secularism is that it damages people, and that it actually keeps people from being reasonable with one another,” said Chad C. Pecknold, assistant professor of systematic theology in the School of Theology and Religious Studies at The Catholic University of America in Washington.

I think Chad C. Pecknold needs to look up the spelling of Sectarianism.

“It creates a great level of intolerance for people of faith. I think secularism for Pope Benedict is a feature of this growing bifurcation between faith and reason,” he told Catholic News Service.

Yes. Yes it does. Catholics clearly had no qualms about not tolerating beliefs in the various parts of the world when they sent missionaries to convert people. It’s also good to see that people realise that Faith has nothing to do with Reason. Yes, secularism causes a bifurcation between faith and reason because non secular societies do not allow reason. In a faith based world it is acceptable to fuck children and get away with it if you are sufficiently sorry. In a faith based world it is acceptable to fly planes into buildings, burn women, rape, pillage and loot. It is a world without reason because reasonable people are not allowed to speak out against a world where belief in magic is more important than reality.

Why should we be tolerant of a group of people who explicitly believe in a myth? Why should we be tolerant of a group of people who explicitly do things that are clearly stupid? Why should we be tolerant of a group of people who believe in things that are clearly harmful? Why should our beliefs as atheists be disrespected but Catholic belief accepted as sacred? Oh right! Because of that whole hypocrite thing the Pope has going for him.

Pecknold, who also is the author of the 2010 book “Christianity and Politics: A Brief Guide to the History,” said secularism is a greater threat to humanity than to the Catholic Church because it could lead to great social unrest and fragmentation.

The forces of secularism in Africa are trying to educate people and stem the spread of a deadly disease. The forces of Catholics run around encouraging the kind of behaviour that spreads the deadly disease. There are 24 million HIV positive people in the world.

20 Million are in Africa. The Catholic Church is part of the problem. These 20 million people will die of their disease (At the moment. We may come up with a cure but I am sure the catholics will claim that we are fighting god’s will or something equally idiotic in the hope that they can spread more desperate misery). Something tells me that catholics also think that secularism fragments the world because it prevents catholics from behaving like the good old days when it was completely acceptable to torture someone till they turned Catholic. After all, if everyone was catholic they wouldn’t be fragmented anymore.

Vilification of Muslims in the United States following the 9/11 terrorist attacks in New York, Washington and Pennsylvania can be viewed as an example of secularists’ intolerance.

The majority of attacks on Muslims in the US following 9/11 were carried out by CHRISTIANS. Ann Coulter? Christian? Fox? Christian? Republican Party? Christian.

Oh and my intolerance of muslims boils down to it being a world view that cannot take criticism without wanting to kill someone. It’s a faith that oppresses women. It’s a faith that encourages ignorance. It’s a faith that encourages terrorism. These are not intolerant statements. These are facts. I accept that there are muslims who do not fit into this mould, but I understand that there are a lot who are part of the problem either by participation, being complicit or by clouding the water by not admitting that the faith has a problem and that it requires mordernisation.

In short? I understand what VALID criticism is. There is a difference between saying “I think the culture of Burkha and the mistreatment of women is bullshit” and “Muslims are sneaking Sharia Law into our schools! Heave a brick at them!”. Valid Criticism is obviously something the church cannot grasp because it is a theocratic institution. No criticism in those is ever valid.

Richard Dawkins, vice president of the British Humanist Association and author of the 2006 book “The God Delusion,” was quoted as saying religion is dangerous “because it gives people unshakeable confidence in their own righteousness. Dangerous because it gives them false courage to kill themselves, which automatically removes normal barriers to killing others.”

It does. I know plenty of Christians who don’t care about what happens to their children. I know plenty who pray rather than seek medical help.

And one has to realise that Dawkins is pointing out that there are people “of faith” like the murderer of Dr. Tiller whose “crusader mentality” allowed him to commit an act of considerable evil. Or the same mentality encouraged in jihadi terrorists.

“These are all examples of an attempt to cause civil unrest, which I don’t think are sustainable,” he said. “It could actually lead to greater and greater social unrest, and could potentially give so much power to culture wars that we become an increasingly fragmented society.”

No. They are examples of a society where freedom of speech is protected. Remember this man is part of an organisation which fights against the right of two people who love each other to be married. This is a billion dollar multi-national organisation that demands the right to bully children until they kill themselves. The only reason he fears a culture war is because he is losing because superstition cannot match reason. Because we live in a world where reason is rising and superstition is not.

Naturally the society he wants should be run on catholic values. If we stated that we are solving this problem of “fragmentation” by adopt
ing Sharia Law he would throw a hissy fit and demand the secularisation of the nation too. When catholics discuss the evils of secularisation they clearly mean the evils that affect them and prevent them from creating a catholic society. They have no qualms about other faiths being oppressed.

The poll numbers revealing growing atheist numbers and events like the “Reason Rally” have theology scholars focusing on what they believe is driving the secularism movement.

I think theology scholar is an oxymoron. I know people who are Shakespeare scholars but I don’t see them claiming the veracity of Bottom the Donkey.

“The cultural conditions have become more conducive to atheism. We can see that in economic ways in that we are encouraged to think of ourselves as economic individuals,” Pecknold said.

Oh heaven forbid human beings are economically independant and are allowed to make their own choices! If humans didn’t depend on the church then we cannot make them think that the effort of humans is really the achievement of a mythological being.   

“We see that in the Tea Party, a libertarian approach to economic good in which economics is something that is merely representing my own self-interests,” he said. “That kind of radical individualism in economic terms or philosophical terms is itself kind of a practical atheism, in which you detach yourself from any sort of transcendent notion of the good, any sort of sense of a common good that you would participate in.

The tea party are idiots who would probably send their own children to work in the mines on a Sunday if they found out that child labour laws and weekend holidays were ideas brought about by communists. The Tea Party is a movement mainly driven by Christian libertarians who want zero government interference because they have no goddamn idea how the world works and assume that removing all rules makes society function smoothly rather than have one that implodes into Somalia. It’s a group driven by greed. Atheism is NOTHING like that.

The idea in atheism is that there is no god because there is no evidence of one. Just as Chaz Muth and Pecknold don’t believe in Krishna, the atheists doesn’t believe in Jehovah and Jesus. The inability to grasp this simple notion is astounding.

“A kind of view in which I can participate in something bigger than myself is kind of eroded from our economic practice as human beings.”

No. Atheists well and truly understand working something bigger than them. By definition a rally is an assembly of people who are working for something bigger than themselves. It’s typical catholic party line drivel. Atheism is evil because it actively stops catholic theological nonsense from being applied to everyone. The idea of secularism is completely lost on a group of people who don’t grasp that secularism means the ability to practice whatever religion (unless it actively harms people) free of interference. It means that muslims cannot declare that all catholics have to pay extra taxes. Or protestants declare that catholics should all convert or catholics declare that protestants all convert. It’s also a place where religious belief doesn’t get enshrined in law.

And that is what Catholic Party Liners hate so much about secularism. Because it prevents them from forcing other people to follow their rules.

As for me? I spent my day single handedly being as horrible as possible!

I spent my day being as evil as possible and providing healthcare in a rural environment. Instead of letting these people pray, I in my incredibly secular way encouraged them to come and seek medical aid instead of prayer.

So very evil! Bwahaha! First healthcare! Then their souls!

Hail to the King

Apparently the Catholic Church in the USA wants to raise awareness of freedom and wants to spend a fortnight trying to raise awareness and campaign for it. But I wanted to do a bit more poking around so I found the actual letter which the bishops wrote and I don’t think they know what freedom means.
Of particular concern are certain attempts being made to limit that most cherished of American freedoms, the freedom of religion. Many of you have pointed out that concerted efforts have been made to deny the right of conscientious objection on the part of Catholic individuals and institutions with regard to cooperation in intrinsically evil practices. Others have spoken to me of a worrying tendency to reduce religious freedom to mere freedom of worship without guarantees of respect for freedom of conscience.

That doesn’t sound like freedom. That sounds like good old “I want to be free to impinge on other people’s freedom” which is catholic theology 101.

Conscientious Objection is only good if your conscience objects to things that are bad. The KKK are conscientious objecters against miscegenation. Their stance is not valid. The Men’s Rights Activists actively campaign against women due to faulty perceptions on feminism. Their stance is not valid.

We sadly have to live in a world where we respect people’s superstitions and treat them as equal to reality solely on the basis of their age. It’s a testament to human idiocy that we think a 2000 year old faith in a dead jewish carpenter has any meaning in today’s world where we walked on the moon and have done miracles far greater than Jesus. If your belief in ancient superstition produces a conscientious objection that is immoral, then it is well within our rights to treat you as immoral. The beliefs of many people involve Female Genital Mutilation, should we treat their beliefs as sacred or as superstitious nonsense that harms society as a whole? What about Sati? Child Sacrifice? Purdah and Hijab? Are these ideas that need to be supported or superstitions to be fought?

With this in mind let’s see what Freedoms we are impinging on?

HHS mandate for contraception, sterilization, and abortion-inducing drugs.The mandate of the Department of Health and Human Services has received wide attention and has been met with our vigorous and united opposition. In an unprecedented way, the federal government will both force religious institutions to facilitate and fund a product contrary to their own moral teaching and purport to define which religious institutions are “religious enough” to merit protection of their religious liberty. These features of the “preventive services” mandate amount to an unjust law. As Archbishop-designate William Lori of Baltimore, Chairman of the Ad Hoc Committee for Religious Liberty, testified to Congress: “This is not a matter of whether contraception may beprohibited by the government. This is not even a matter of whether contraception may be supported by the government. Instead, it is a matter of whether religious people and institutions may be forced by the government to provide coverage for contraception or sterilization, even if that violates their religious beliefs.

The HHS mandate is a requirement that healthcare providers meet a basic standard of Gynaecological and Obstetric healthcare. That contraception, abortion and sterilisation are vital parts of Gynaecology and Obstetric healthcare and form a vital part of women’s rights in particular the right to control their own reproductive cycle and the rights of families as a whole to determine how many children they have as children are an economic burden mainly because we don’t live in the “good olde days” where we could just send our children to work in a factory or a mine. (Amusingly enough? It was the communists who created that law and campaigned for it. The tenth plank of the Communist Manifesto infact. Children to recieve free education and children to not work in factories. I joke that if Americans realise this they would stop their children from being educated and send them to work up chimneys if only out of spite.)

This law is not unjust so much as a basic requirement of medical services. The law from the government is very simple. Your Healthcare Service Provider Must Meet A Basic Standard. The Catholic Church REFUSES to meet a BASIC standard of healthcare and so does not make the cut. This is a law that applies to EVERYONE and what I see is a bunch of Celibate Men in Robes dictating what medicine a bunch of Non Celibate Women recieve based on the teachings of a 2000 year old book assembled by a bunch of Roman Bishops under Constantine rather than a bunch of Trained Medical Professionals With Years of Experience And a Scientific Understanding of Human Function and Physiology. You can pray to whatever gods there maybe for your unconquerable soul but you still pay a doctor to treat you rather than a priest. Why is it that a bunch of priests get to decide then what is healthcare and what isn’t?

It’s very simple. What the Church has an argument against is Gynaecology. The Vagina is Evil and Must Be Punished after all. If a insurance company or health provider didn’t offer you blood transfusions or organ donation then you would consider them to be goddamn quackery at the highest level.

There are said to be five pillars of medicine. The Catholic Church wishes to be a healthcare provider while only providing Medicine and Surgery while leaving out Social/Preventative Medicine, Obstetrics/Gynaecology and Compassion.

Christian students on campus.In its over-100-year history, the University of California Hastings College of Law has denied student organization status to only one group, the Christian Legal Society, because it required its leaders to be Christian and to abstain from sexual activity outside of marriage.

The California Hastings College of Law recognises the Catholic Law Students Association, it refuses to recognise the Christian Legal Society because the Christian Legal Society fails on two accounts to be a inclusive society. It discriminates on the basis of religion and sexual orientation.

For a student group to recieve public funds and official recognition, it must be open to all students regardless of race, sex, ethnicity, religion, disability or sexual orientation. The Catholic Law Students Association meets these standards. Hell… The Muslim Law Students Association meets these standards (AKA A Gay Jewish Female to Male Transexual with no legs can go join the Muslim Law Students Association if he so chose to) but the Catholic Church wants what effectively is a hate group with
special laws to encourage hate.

Thou Shalt Not Tell a Lie, but Thou Can Tell Half The Truth.

Catholic foster care and adoption services. Boston, San Francisco, the District of Columbia, and the state of Illinois have driven local Catholic Charities out of the business of providing adoption or foster care services—by revoking their licenses, by ending their government contracts, or both—because those Charities refused to place children with same-sex couples or unmarried opposite-sex couples who cohabit.

Again… Because the government has set a basic standard of service and these organisations do not provide a service that meets basic standards. They have not driven any organisation out of business. They have merely stated that your organisations have a bunch of nonsensical rules which prevent children from recieving the best possible service in finding adoptive and foster parents. Because the Catholic Church lives in a magic world where Celibate Men in Robes are more normal than people who Love Each Other.

There are more children than permanent adoptions and the Church actively prevented people from adopting either because they didn’t have a certificate declaring them to be Husband and Wife (Because you automatically become a great parent because of the certificate!) or because they were gay. The government is completely right in denying these organisations money as per the separation of Church and State (since the overarching ideology in selecting placements is one of a primarily religious nature) and because it is a discriminatory organisation that prevents children from finding homes.

Discrimination against small church congregations. New York City enacted a rule that barred the Bronx Household of Faith and sixty other churches from renting public schools on weekends for worship services even though non-religious groups could rent the same schools for scores of other uses. While this would not frequently affect Catholic parishes, which generally own their own buildings, it would be devastating to many smaller congregations. It is a simple case of discrimination against religious believers.

It is not discrimination against small church holdings so much as an important LAW in america about separation of Church and State. I understand this is difficult for Catholic Bishops to understand so to put it in a simple way “Render Unto Caesar”. The rules of man state that tax payer money cannot be used to promote religion. AKA You Cannot Utilise Public Property (A School) For Church Purposes. And it is embarassing that I as someone who is not american (I am a Limey) have a better grasp of the rules of America than American Bishops.

Neither the Catholics, Protestants, 7th Day Adventists, Mormons, Watchtower, Muslims, Jews, Hindus, Scientologists, Pagans or the Cult of Cthullu have any right to utilise the school for this purpose. It is not discrimination and the argument is frankly moronic to make.

Non Religious Groups By Defnition Are Not Religious And Therefore Exempt From The Separation of Church And State. At it’s heart this argument is a complaint that the American Government does not allow Catholics to spread their nonsense on public property. It boggles the mind that the Catholic Church cannot grasp this basic concept. You can run whatever you want in your churches or your homes. The schools are off limit.

Discrimination against Catholic humanitarian services. Notwithstanding years of excellent performance by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Migration and Refugee Services in administering contract services for victims of human trafficking, the federal government changed its contract specifications to require us to provide or refer for contraceptive and abortion services in violation of Catholic teaching. Religious institutions should not be disqualified from a government contract based on religious belief, and they do not somehow lose their religious identity or liberty upon entering such contracts. And yet a federal court in Massachusetts, turning religious liberty on its head, has since declared that such a disqualification is required by the First Amendment—that the government somehow violates religious liberty by allowing Catholic organizations to participate in contracts in a manner consistent with their beliefs on contraception and abortion.

The Catholic Church is not being disqualified again due to religious belief but because it refuses to provide basic healthcare. In addition many Catholic Humanitatrian Services are complicit in the spread of HIV and AIDS in Africa. Giving them Money is not helping the HIV control efforts considering the church is still actively responsible for spreading superstition and lies about condoms in HIV ridden Africa.

The issue is that the Church and it’s organisations provide a shoddy service that can be obtained better by sponsoring any number of other charities. Religious institutions can be excluded from government contracts if they fail to meet the basic requirements of the contract which includes proper medical care for women (and men. The Church is against vasectomies too). Why should they pay the Church to produce an inferior service and reduce the choices of women who really need help.

If you don’t like abortions, if you don’t like condoms or the pill or the copper T, if you don’t like vasectomies or tubal ligations then don’t have one. No one is forcing the Pope to get the Snip. But what the Pope and his celibate flunkies are doing is forcing women to undergo a procedure (Delivery of Pregnancy) by producing an inferior service in the USA and expecting to get public funds to be shit at their job.

“In the face of an unjust law, an accommodation is not to be sought, especially by resorting to equivocal words and deceptive practices. If we face today the prospect of unjust laws, then Catholics in America, in solidarity with our fellow citizens, must have the courage not to obey them.”

I can only see one law that is unjust here. Being banned from ministering to illegal immigrants. That’s just a petty law enforced by people who think illegal immigrants are stealing american jobs because the average american really wants to go pick fruit all day for minimum wage. This is a petty law and a pointless one at that.

Coopting the words of Martin Luther King which was spoken during the fight against the American Apartheid where black people were treated as less than human is a callous disregard for history and indeed for the meaning. Using it to defend the right to discriminate against women and GLBT is mindbogglingly idiotic and an insult to the ideals that Martin Luther King stood for.

Freedom to spread hate and lies is not freedom. Freedom to deny women healthcare is not freedom.

A Mugging – Inspired by Project Unbreakable

I was working on this idea for a while before a friend saw a similar idea on Project Unbreakable (Trigger Warnings but Empowering – It is a collection of statements made by rapists to their rape victims) and linked me to it. I decided to combine both of the ideas into one… It’s parody but as always, warnings apply.

Dispatch – 999 Emergency, How can I help? 

Man – Hello? I have just been mugged and I don’t know what to do?
Dispatch – Are you okay? Where were you when you were mugged?
Man - I was walking back after a few drinks on Moss Lane when two men in hoodies and tracksuits grabbed me and said “Give me all your money or I will batter you”,

Dispatch - And you co-operated with them? Just like that? Without a fight? 

Man – What was I supposed to do? There were two of them and I was terrified. They may have hit me! And I was drunk, I had no way to defend myself.
Dispatch – Well do you give money to charity? 
Man – Yes, but what does that have to do with this?
Dispatch – Maybe you are a philanthropist? Maybe you wanted to give them money. If you walk down the street after dark, and then you gave money to someone without a fight. Are you sure this was a mugging not you regretting a donation? You could really ruin someone’s life like this. 
Man – What!
Dispatch –  What were you wearing at the time?
Man - A suit but I don’t see what that has to do with anything.
Dispatch – Oh, so you were dressed in a fancy suit, walking down a dark street while drunk and after closing time. I bet you were opening up your wallet and fanning yourself with your money. It’s only natural for someone to mug you. You were pretty much asking to be mugged. I think people will say that you are just a rich philanthropist and I don’t think we can get a conviction even if we nab your “mugger”…

Immaculate Contraception

Apparently I simply missed out on the whole Sandra Fluke deal and am astounded that this is even up for debate. Rush Limbaugh’s insults are just an endemic problem with right wingers and their inability to understand basic human decency. And the internets have responded with both MRAs and conservatives coming out of their way to attack her.

Firstly? She is a private figure asked to testify about the value of contraception in her life. The assault on her by Rush are slander.

Secondly? Just quoting republican talking points doesn’t make it true.

The issue is that the woman’s boss can decide what healthcare she receives as part of her insurance based on his belief in an imaginary being. The issue is that catholic providers don’t want to give women contraception because apparently in Catholic Land contraception doesn’t work (because a bunch of celibate men whose only qualifications are celibacy and belief in an imaginary entity should be in charge of women’s healthcare).

The idea is that insurance companies should ATLEAST follow a basic standard of healthcare. This isn’t socialism so much as basic fucking sense. The inability to provide a basic standard of healthcare is what is the problem. The four pillars of being a doctor are “Medicine”, “Surgery”, “Social/Preventative Medicine” and “Obstetrics and Gynaecology”. Note how this is about how an insurance company doesn’t have to cover obstetrics and gynaecology not based on the customer’s choice but based on the employer’s belief in what effectively is an imaginary friend.

It’s simple. This is a culturally acceptable belief. If your boss was a Christian Science worshipper and believed in prayer would you accept prayer over medical aid as your health plan? If your boss was a scientologist, would you accept one of their sessions over time with a psychiatrist for your depression? If your boss was a Jehovah’s Witness would they be allowed to not cover any surgical procedure involving a blood transfusion or organ transplant?

Then why is it acceptable that Catholics insurers are allowed to simply not adhere to a pillar of medical care?

The Ninth Commandment

It amazes me how easily some christians breaks the commandments while claiming to be good. I have no qualms about someone who isn’t a “holier than thou” christian not following the more stupid rules of christianity. I have no issues with them. They realise that their faith isn’t perfect and adapt it to fit the reality of modern life.

There are plenty of catholic women who use actual birth control rather than wishful thinking and there are plenty of catholics who think the church’s behaviour is reprehensible. And then we have the American Life League whose lying bullshit is so noxious that one can scarcely believe that they can actually claim to uphold the ninth commandment.

A few points?

  • Abortion is not Killing. Life is not viable in any significant way till around the 24th week. Claiming it is life is completely true while also being completely dishonest since it is discussing potential life. By this logic life never really starts and stops but is a continuation. The idea is that conception is this mystical act which imbues a zygote with a soul which is a laughable concept since there is no soul (It’s an illusion. The soul is wishful thinking that our brain’s thought pattern will survive the destruction of the brain.) The sperm and egg are both alive. By this argument abortion may be murder, but ejaculation is genocide.
  • Mountains of birth control sounds like a good thing. One notices that the Catholic church encourages it’s members to not use birth control but doesn’t actually feed the children born from the lack of birth control. The ability to decide when and where we have children enables us to provide the best situations for our children. The game is quality not quantity and sensible people understand that. 
  • Obsession with Sex is planned parenthoods job. Their entire job is to encourage people to have safer sex, use contraception when avoiding pregnancy and finally to provide abortions if all that advice falls on deaf ears. A fairly health attitude to sex. While the Catholic church is just as obsessed with sex. Only with an unhealthy attitude of celibacy, masochistic beliefs, unsafe sexual practice and plain stupidity. The rules of catholicism with regards to female health are drawn up by a bunch of celibate men, many of whom are virgins whose qualifications are not based on science and medicine but in the idea that somehow belief in an imaginary friend entitles you to discuss biology, sociology and genitalia that you are unfamiliar with. 
  • Plenty of catholics use sex toys and have wide and varied sex lives. Sex isn’t bad. Of course a bunch of celibate people are going to think it’s bad. They aren’t having sex. They don’t know how good it is and indeed how to be safe and following their advice is a terrible plan. 
  • Vagina Macaroons sound pretty awesome
  • The things that play a central role in planned parenthood’s community activities just sounds retarded. One can easily say that alcohol, biscuits and crushing guilt feature heavily in catholic activity but that isn’t strictly true. The silliness is a means to an end, which is the discussion of safe sex.
  • For a group of people whose clergy have become synonymous with paedophilia, these catholics are awfully daft at accusing planned parenthood of perversion. What’s truly shocking is the double standards we apply to priests many of whom have escaped prosecution or been handed light sentences. Perverse? Sex is fun. Teaching kids to be safe and have respect for themselves is what sex education should be about. Because teaching them that about evil vaginas and penises just is a lie.
  • Planned Parenthood may get government money to teach “unrestrained sex” but the catholic church pays no taxes.
  • Only morons would think science and pornography are interchangeable. Oh baby, your fallopian tubes make my vas deferens spasm. Enough vocalisation, let us engage in coitus.
  • I don’t think sex is that addictive. Sure it’s nice, but I don’t get sick if I don’t have any sex. 
  • Masturbation is not a gateway to sex. By their logic eating is a gateway to obesity so you should NEVER EAT.
  • It’s Perfectly Normal is about puberty and the changes that occur. It teaches that the hormonal feelings are perfectly normal. The changes are perfectly natural. And the desire to masturbate and explore sexuality is perfectly natural in the context of a respectful relationship. Obviously the church wouldn’t like this. How can they make people feel guilty of unnatural desires if people figure out that those unnatural desires are actually pretty natural.
  • Cartoon people having sex is funny. Not sexy.
  • Anatomical drawings are informative, even if they are cartoons. Not sexy. Do you know what kills most people’s masturbation? Seeing cutaway sections of penis. 
  • If a dirty old man showed these things to a kid in a church, he won’t be arrested either. There is a massive difference between paedophilia and sex education. A dirty old man wants to fuck the kids. Planned parenthood prepares kids for these kinds of situations by teaching them respect. 
  • I don’t think I was told anything stimulating and intimate about sex in Sex Education. How sexually repressed do you have to be to find sex education titillating?
  • A lot of their argument consists of “ZOMG PENIS! VAGINA! DRAWINGS! Good grief? I have dissected human vaginas and penises and even helped in sectioning cadavers for educational cross sections. Trust me, it’s not sexy to see anatomical drawings of the damn things. At no point have I masturbated to Netter’s Anatomy.I am sure someone somewhere has but different strokes for different folk. I prefer my ladies real and alive and without cross sections. 
  • Oh no! Planned Parenthood are telling the truth about mastrubation! Now catholics cannot say that it makes you go blind or that masturbation can cause your cock to fall off. 
  • Orgasms are pretty sweet (if you hadn’t had one? Look forward to it). Anal Sex isn’t for everyone, take precautions and you will be fine. Oral sex is amazing. Just thought I should state the obvious. Good grief, this video paints a dire picture of catholic sex. 
  • All sexual orientations between consenting adults are perfectly acceptable. The ALL’s guilt tripping nonsense is responsible for the culture of bullying and hatred towards homosexual teenagers that results in their higher than average suicide rate. It can only get better when we completely marginalise people like these from modern society and make them irrelevant to normal discourse.
  • Encouraging the use of condoms and dental dams reduces pregnancy and the spread of STDs. Abstinence doesn’t work. It really doesn’t because sex is hardwired into human beings. It’s why catholic priests fuck up so easily. It’s because the most unnatural thing on earth is denying sex on purpose solely because you believe that it gives you magic powers to talk to some magic being. 
  • Being gay is precisely like being left handed. I didn’t have the best childhood upbringing as a left hander. I was routinely treated by other indians as broken and people did try and correct my hand usage. You are born left handed, the catholics once beat the fuck out of you if you were left handed. Today it’s
    the gays. The word Sinister comes from “left handedness”. Incidentally if you want a fun fact of trivia the opposite of Sinister is Dexter. 
  • Oh noes! The kids will have to meet gays. Seriously? Have you seen what the average 13 year old watches on TV? Have you seen a Rihanna video? The Pussy Cat Dollz? Christina Aguillera? How is this any different from that? 
  • 1/4 girls has an STD. That is true. The majority being HPV. Nearly 90% of STD cases are due to HPV. Not all STDs are alike. 
  • Planned Parenthood throws sexy parties? That seems unlikely. 
  • This man’s definition of sexy scares and terrifies me. Raise your hands if you think penis tentacled monsters are sexy. Raise your hands if you think condom balloon kama sutra is funny. 
  • Showing people dressed up as genitalia during a demonstration about sex rights is pretty retarded. It’s planned parenthood supporters making a stand. Planned Parenthood probably don’t dress up as penises and vaginas for normal work. If they did it would be highly amusing but also highly inappropriate.
  • It doesn’t matter what a woman wears, no means no. Neither Burkha nor Bikini are permission for rape of any sort. 
  • This fisting kit blatantly says “how to make a dental dam” on it. And straight people like fisting too. It is estimated that more straight men enjoy receiving anal sex than gay men. And if that is the case? No glove! No love! 
  • Japanese culture has a penis festival? They sound pretty awesome.
  • Planned Parenthood gives out free contraception. I don’t know about you but “get the kids addicted to sex so we have to give out more contraception” doesn’t seem like a solid business strategy. Remind me again, in order to run a business are we supposed to make money or put it into condoms that we give out for free?
  • Birth control in the form of condoms reduces STD tests and Abortions
These are roughly all the lies. I lost count, I really did. Do any real people believe in this nonsense or is this group a parody? I cannot tell.

But just to be on the safe side, fund Planned Parenthood. At the best, your money will go to guaranteeing your children and your daughters in particular receive healthcare and education about sex  that is untainted by people whose qualifications are belief in magic. At the very worst you will piss off the ALL.

Back to the Grind

So I am done with exams (finally!) and can get back to regular posts and the like. And this seems like a good time to discuss the whole abortion issue that has raised it’s ugly head.

See the problem with abortion is that it’s not a good thing. None of us like abortions, even the doctors who do them. An abortion isn’t celebrated with balloons and ice cream and get well cards. It’s a tragic but necessary procedure. The final throw of a dice to deal with a pregnancy. Not one person says “I LOVE ABORTION”. Instead it’s a serious decision made when people cannot care for a child at all.

Oh it’s easy to say “Spend 9 months being pregnant then give it up for adoption!”. To which our response is “sure”. First find a way to adopt every single bloody child from the already full to the brim adoption system and foster care system. There are always more children than people willing to adopt. And while new born babies are easier to adopt, you are placing pressure on a system which is already full to the brim.

Abortions happen whether you like it or not. The difference between a Medical Termination of Pregnancy and some yahoo with a coat hanger is that it’s safer (by a lot) to get it done by someone who knows how all your bits function. It’s also less traumatic since some abortion methods are the equivalent of being punched in the stomach or having bits jabbed into your cervix and uterus which can cause infections or even shock and death. (Trigger Warning)

A non medical abortion is a terrifying incident. If the likes of Mitt Romney have their way this poor girl who was so terrified into harming herself in such a horrific way would be prosecuted for murder. Do you think it’s right or fair?

It’s insane that we can even discuss the banning of abortion as a legal alternative. Will the Republicans fork out money to care for these children? Not bloody likely! Quantity of life is not quality of life unless you think that somehow more people = better which simply makes you dumb. It shows a complete lack of grasp of any reality in the republican and indeed the various Christian denominations which rally against abortion.

The truth remains that it matters if you ban abortion. It’s not that abortion rates drop but it’s that abortion safety drops. Abortion rates drop with the adoption of responsible sex education and placing the onus on both genders to keep safe. Pro-life education however is a big fan of abstinence only education. And these are things that americans who are pro-life do know about.

Many pro-life organisations in the USA do missionary work in the Philippines. I have wrote about them before and I feel it’s only fitting for us to revisit the topic. If only to see what a world would be like where pro-lifers have their way. It’s a terrifyingly graphic article with graphic videos produced by Likhaan. It may not be suitable for all.

But I do feel it’s worth seeing what the reality on the ground is in a country with no choice. The reality on the ground in places like the USA was before the legalisation of abortion. 

Ooh another awesome link!

Skeptical OB is a blog written by Dr. Amy and I approve of her message against “home birthing movements”.

I understand the need of home birth in India, not everyone has access to medical care in India that includes a trained Ob/Gyn. The options for a large part of India (Majority of India is a rural rather than urban) is the traditional midwife.

So it makes sense to give her some help to reduce the mortality rate she faces. To give her some training to atleast ensure that childbirth without complications have a higher survival rate. It’s simple things like sterile packs to make a sterile environment and education. India’s perinatal mortality rate in 1999 was 34 per 1000 (infant mortality is from birth to a year and is an indicator of a lot of really basic healthcare and disease prevention schemes. Perinatal mortality rates are an indicator of presence of pre birth and post birth care. That period of 3 months (6 to 9 months and the first month of the baby’s life) is the “big risk period”.

For instance the modified infant  mortality rate in India is 72 out of 1000 live births. However in the peri-natal period nearly 30 babies die. Basically it’s 30 in the last two months of pregnancy and first month of pregnancy and a further 42 after that. A lot of it is down to indian women eating badly due to poverty a lot of it is untrained midwives rather than obstetricians who just aren’t available (when you have a billion people…)

To India the easiest fix was to deal with midwives. In the western world that kind of behaviour is “bloody inexcusable”.

The obstetricians are our “midwives” because they are incredibly well trained and educated. They are no slouches when it comes to “normal deliveries” and definitely trained and qualified enough to deal with the many issues that can occur out of a normal pregnancy plus they are trained in emergencies which do occur and when they do occur are deadly to both.

So read away! It’s heartbreaking to read the stories on Dr. Amy’s site and it’s a rather forgotten piece of woo that we rarely hear about (I certainly didn’t know that there was a home birth movement until this morning). 

Rights of the Silent majority – Death by a Thousand Cuts

It’s a well known fact that the best form of healthcare is preventative. In medicine there exists the idea of community medicine (an actual field in India) which consists of number crunching and ideas such as immunisation, contraception use, registry of drugs and education.

The majority of diseases are preventable by things we take for granted in the west. Remember one of the major sources of Cholera world wide was once the UK as was Typhoid. These diseases now rarely occur in the west to the point that they have become newsworthy material when they do occur. However cholera, typhoid, amoebic dysentery and all manner of nasty gastroenteric diseases are all facts of life in the third world.

The simple reason is the existence of plumbing and solid universal sewerage in the west. The disease cannot spread as fast as sewage and drinking water are kept separate (indians still think I am lying when I say you can drink tap water in the UK with no ill effects.). We have routine garbage collections and we dispose of it relatively hygenically compared to the piles of garbage left on the streets out in third world countries. All these spread these diseases.

Hygienic conditions came about in the west with improving standards of living, dropping populations and the idea that you can save more lives by these methods than by fire fighting.

Planned Parenthood and the CDC are the bodies responsible for this. Planned Parenthood is a Obstetric/Gynaecological community medicine project. It’s role is to provide and care for women and their children. And like all obstetricians and gynaecologists their roles are varied. They are providers of sexual and reproductive healthcare and that is vital for a healthy population. And it’s worth being free since most of us will probably utilise it’s efforts in one way or another.

Planned Parenthood are not just about the A word. They provide an entire list of services aimed at both genders which help with

Abortion – I am obviously the guy on the left here!
My course does require me to learn how to do the procedure

1. Abortions - The majority of abortions these days are early first trimester abortions. The rise of sex education, the rise of cheap birth control, the morning after pill and the HCG urine test (Clear Blue) have all lead to the drop in the number of abortions. Most abortions are chemical abortions where you take a pill that either prevents implantation or that prevents the foetus from developing. Most pregnancies are terminated in the first trimester (Nearly 80%) with the remainder in the second trimester (usually due to disease, foetal abnormalities and or illness but a few choice abortions do occur in this period). Third trimester abortions or Late term abortions are incredibly rare and are administered for very few reasons. Most doctors wouldn’t perform it without indications. There are no choice late term abortions to my knowledge, most people would chose to keep the child. Those that do terminate usually are victims of abuse, victims of disease or the child has severe congenital abnormalities.

Aaargh! My catholicism is weakening!

2. Birth Control - Another big bugbear of the religious lunatics who plague the USA. Birth control will apparently cheapen sex and encourage promiscuity (because the 300 million people who live in the USA – the third most populous nation on earth got there by binary fission rather than by a short period of meiosis, some muscle contractions and a long period mitosis). I am medically speaking not a fan of abortions. I would rather we had fewer abortions. Which is why I am a big fan of birth control and education. The more birth control we use the fewer abortions we need and the fewer abortions we need the fewer women who suffer from the side effects of abortions that can include permanent sterility and loss of sex life. Abortions are traumatic events both physically and psychologically, we should try and reduce the numbers of them. And the best way to do so is via birth control. Banning abortions actually seems to make them increase because with abortion bans comes birth control bans. 

Add caption

3. Body Image – This is something worth campaigning for. The USA has two attitudes to body image. One that either revels in hyper healthy behaviour or one that revels in gluttonous excess. The normal range is unaccounted for. You are either thin or you are fat. Beautiful or ugly. And that hurts the normal men and women out there. Eating disorders are on the rise in men too. For me poor body image is either a lack of acceptance of your own issues if you have them or a complete hatred for your own body. Some people are fat and do need to lose weight as part of basic health. Some kids are overfed and are obese for that reason. Sometimes the only reason obesity runs in a family is because the habit of eating unhealthily runs in a family. The other part of the problem is normal people thinking they are fat despite all evidence to the contrary and forcing themselves to be like their role models who are only thin by the grace of photography, photoshop and a lifestyle that they can afford. It’s a fine line to walk between encouraging healthy eating with exercise to reducing the obesity rate and good body image. 

I am sorry, it’s
You only have 3 days left to learn to spell it.

4. General Healthcare – The Planned Parenthood runs a variety of screening services in various areas ranging from anaemia, diabetes, cholesterol, hypertension, hormone function tests. They are also a distribution point for general vaccines. These are things that sound minor but can save lives. A lot of people are endemically anaemic. Black people in the USA are prone to both diabetes and sickle cell anaemia. Vegans as well are prone to anaemia. A lot of people have high cholesterol and hypertension. Thyroid hormone tests can turn a lethargic child with hypothyroid into a healthy happy child. Growth hormone tests are actually one of the reasons there are fewer individuals with dwarfism these days as people simply catch it early and administer the hormone. There are suggestions of deafness clinics being run here as well since we can correct deafness to an extent nowadays and it’s better if we catch it earlier. 

The alternative to Planned Parenthood

5. Men’s Health - Men’s health is a rising field. There are diseases that men are prone to that they rarely seek help for. Planned Parenthood offers testicular screening for men. Testicular cancer is a big killer of young men between the ages of 20 to 40. In the USA roughly 350 men a year die from it and around 8000 are affected. They also offer screening for prostate cancer which is the male equivalent of breast cancer. Regular screening means that it can be caught early which means that it is less likely to have metastasised leading to a 100 percent recovery rate in primary site cancers. Planned parenthood also run fertility clinics for men which fits hand in hand with the reproductive services they offer. They also offer STD clinic support which is vital to reducing the spread of venereal diseases. Their campaigns to spread awareness about contraception is vital to encourage men to be aware of it just as much as women and to reduce the spread of STDs as condoms are vital to that. 

Don’t shake your belly
like a bowl full of jelly.

6. Pregnancy - Most people know the basics of how to get pregnant. We didn’t get to 6 billion people worldwide without knowing how to do the horizontal monster mash. But what people don’t know is how to deal with pregnancy. You do have to tell people not to drink, smoke and do drugs. You do have to tell people not to do things. You do have to screen for anomalies and you do have to treat various conditions. The maternal mortality without medicine is roughly 15 to 20%. The miscarriage rate is around 30%. The infant mortality rate is 25% within the first year. For the most part of human history populations have been stable due to this attrition rate, instead making up for our small numbers with our tools. As we developed society we quickly learnt things that improve our pregnancy survival. Planned Parenthood is just continuing in this trend. They also provide screening for ectopic pregnancy, ultrasound scans and amniocentesis. They also help with prevention of premature births by providing a front line screening for histories of premature births and encouraging progesterone use in women prone to it. Not to mention screening women for foetal blood issues (women with some blood types can produce antibodies to their own foetus), HIV (preventable transfer to children) and addictions (the infamous crack baby). 

Yes. They do come in pink.

7. Women’s Health - The Planned Parenthood offers a huge range of gynaecological help that women require. From the simplest of yearly check ups to pelvic examinations and pap smears. The clinic is also on the frontline of HPV vaccination (which must be given at a young age for maximum protection, not because we want 13 year old girls out turning tricks.) and cervical cancer screening which goes hand in hand. Like all gynaecologists they also provide support for ovarian cancer, breast cancer and yeast infections. They also provide a menopause clinic which is vital for improving lives. We often forget that while men have viagra women have the equivalent in HRT, often forgetting that many older women maintain an active sex life post menopause due to this. 

I looked up sex clinic on google images,
here are some kittens instead.

8. Sex Clinic - Planned Parenthood offers unbiased education about sex and support for sexual outlooks that isn’t tarnished by religious affiliation. They provide healthcare and education to all genders and sexual orientations without bias. They offer STD clinics that provide a huge range of coverage and can help limit the spread of most infections from pubic lice to AIDS. They don’t regard sex as a huge taboo and something dirty and instead encourage a healthy concept of it. And that is something vital for a modern society. And something vital for us to learn to limit the spread of AIDS.

Ultimately it boils down to this. Without Planned Parenthood there is a gap in the provision of these services, one that the private sector cannot or will not fulfil. There will be people who fall between the ga
ps either because they cannot afford it or because it was not convenient enough. It won’t kill many people but a handful more will die because of these gaps in service. Planned parenthood is about family planning at it’s heart and most of that is about ensuring people have as many children as they wish to have. If you wish to fuck like rabbits and join the quiverful movement, then be my guest. However don’t deny the sane people the chance to have two kids and make sure they can feed them.

It won’t be murder, it will be letting people die. It’s not personal like a knife in the heart but it’s still deaths that we could have stopped. And the people most affected will be the poor whose healthcare plans are already being repealed due to the failure of medical socialisation in the USA. The people who die from the lack of service will be anonymous.

This is without factoring in the abortion rates in women who cannot afford private abortions and so must turn to non medical abortions resulting in deaths. That we can never calculate without actually seeing the effect of the ban. But this isn’t just about women, men will be affected too. A lot of what we forget about planned parenthood is that it does offer services to men as well.

Save your Planned Parenthood americans, it’s a lot better than the alternative.