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How I Lost Faith in the “Pro-Life” Movement

How I Lost Faith in the “Pro-Life” Movement
UPDATE: Welcome readers from facebook and elsewhere! Please subscribe through the buttons at the right if you enjoy this post. The spring of my sophomore year of college I was president of my university’s Students for Life chapter. The fall of my junior year of college I cut my ties with the pro-life movement. Five years later I have lost the last shred of faith I had in that movement. I was raised in the sort of evangelical family where abortion is the number one political issue. My views on fetal personhood and women’s bodily autonomy have shifted since that day, but when I first started blogging a year and a half ago I was nevertheless very insistent that the pro-life movement should be taken at its word when it came to rhetoric about saving “unborn babies” from being “murdered.” I have come to the conclusion that I was wrong. As a child, teen, and college student, I sincerely believed that personhood, life, rights, and the soul all began at fertilization. What about the Zygote? Related:  Women's rights

The Odds That a Panel Would 'Randomly' Be All Men Are Astronomical Thousands of Chinese investors who have sunk an estimated $6 billion into Fanya Metal Exchange are trying to get their money back through public protests and even, at one point, kidnapping the exchange’s founder and turning him in to the police. The government has mostly ignored their plight, despite the fact that China’s state banks recommended Fanya to customers, its national television stations tacitly endorsed the exchange, and local regulators approved it. Now these investors, along with experts in the global metals industry, are starting to wonder: Did Fanya ever really buy, sell, and trade billions of dollars of rare metals, as it claimed—or was it, as one Chinese analyst says, a Ponzi scheme? Quartz spoke to investors, industry experts, analysts, and Fanya’s business partners about the company. The bottom line: When new investment opportunities are created in China, “government supervision always comes afterward,” Tang said. A short history of Fanya A “parallel universe”

On Resistance Several weeks after the demonstrations in Washington, I am still trying to sort out my impressions of a week whose quality is difficult to capture or express. Perhaps some personal reflections may be useful to others who share my instinctive distaste for activism, but who find themselves edging toward an unwanted but almost inevitable crisis. For many of the participants, the Washington demonstrations symbolized the transition "from dissent to resistance." I will return to this slogan and its meaning, but I want to make clear at the outset that I do feel it to be not only accurate with respect to the mood of the demonstrations, but, properly interpreted, appropriate to the present state of protest against the war. On October 16th on the Boston Common I listened as Howard Zinn explained why he felt ashamed to be an American. The weekend of the Peace Demonstrations in Washington left impressions that are vivid and intense, but unclear to me in their implications. What comes next?

» Giant List of Self-Care Skills for Babies,Toddlers and Preschoolers Positive Parenting Connection Giving children a chance to practice self-care skills is a fantastic way to help them feel capable and increase their self-esteem. It helps create a great sense of autonomy, a drive to learn and grow. Self-care is also an opportunity for children to feel in charge of their body and know that they are trusted by their parents. Here is a list of Self-Care Skills for Children From Crawlers to 5 years sorted by Age: Self-Care Skills for Babies (crawlers) to 12 months Throw own bib in laundry hamper Clean face and hands with damp wash cloth (finish up with help) Stow own shoes away (with help/works well to have one assigned spot) Feed self a snack (cereal 0’s, cubed soft fruits etc…) Hold a spoon and toothbrush to imitate parents/siblings Play alone for 10-30 minutes* Self-Care Skills from 12-18 monthsContinue all of the above plus Self-Care Skills from 18 months- 2 year olds Continue all of the above plus Undress pants/shorts Explore how to dress self (shirts tend to get stuck!) Peace & Be Well,

16 Moving Images From Trayvon Martin Rallies Across The Country By Igor Volsky "16 Moving Images From Trayvon Martin Rallies Across The Country" Thousands of Americans across the country protested the George Zimmerman verdict on Sunday, “chanting, praying and even fighting tears” after the jury acquitted the neighborhood watchman of all criminal charges for killing 17-year-old Trayvon Martin. Though some pundits predicted race riots in the aftermath of a not guilty verdict, the rallies proved overwhelmingly peaceful and deeply moving: NYC, NY via AP NYC, NY via @shokufeyesib NYC, NY via @IrvingDeJohn Miami, FL via AP Oakland, CA via @shadirahimi Milwaukee, WI via AP Newark, NJ via AP Atlanta, GA via AP Detroit, MI via AP Seattle, WA via Milwaukee, WI via @ShantTHEGREAT Jacksonville, FL via AP Chicago, IL via ‏@soit_goes

8 Myths That Fuel the Assault on Abortion Rights The ink is barely dry on the bill Scott Walker signed outlawing abortion for Wisconsin women, including victims of rape and incest, after 20 weeks of pregnancy. In Georgia, Rep. Earl L. “Buddy” Carter is trying to introduce legislation that would halt federal funds for Planned Parenthood after a deceptive and misleading “sting” video went viral. In June, murder charges against Kenlissia Jones, who terminated her pregnancy using pills bought on the Internet, were finally dropped after much public outcry. And Paul Joseph Wieland, a local Missouri state representative and current holder of the Most Embarrassing Dad of the Year Award, is trying to get a court to block his adult daughters’ insurance from providing them with birth control. I’m leaving a lot out. So let’s clear up a least a few of these. 1. Concern trolling is one of anti-choicers' favorite methods for attempting to shut down arguments in favor of reproductive rights. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7.

We've Been Arguing About Irony vs. Sincerity for Millennia - R. Jay Magill Jr. Forget that recent, naive New York Times column. Proto-hipsters were around before Christ. Two-hundred-something years ago, after the earnestly murderous trials of the French Revolution, irony appeared on the cobblestoned streets of Paris. Young aristocratic men called Incroyables took to dressing in a fashion not at all unlike today's hipsters: tight pants, thick glasses, bright green coats with exaggeratedly high collars, and huge, brightly colored ties. Royalists, anti-Jacobin and anti-Girondist, these youths sought to parody fashion and politics, to arouse laughter and shock in their onlookers. Christy Wampole's "How To Live Without Irony," published in the New York Times on November 17, 2012, pinpoints the newest version of this ironic interrogation. A follow-up article that week, on this very Atlantic website, by Jonathan D. If you go too far with irony, you get the radically superficial society of late 18th-century France. Thankfully, none of this came to pass.

30 Things to Stop Doing to Yourself When you stop chasing the wrong things you give the right things a chance to catch you. As Maria Robinson once said, “Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending.” Nothing could be closer to the truth. But before you can begin this process of transformation you have to stop doing the things that have been holding you back. Here are some ideas to get you started: Stop spending time with the wrong people. – Life is too short to spend time with people who suck the happiness out of you. Update: Read our follow-up to this post: 30 Things to Start Doing for Yourself Photo by: Rob Brucker

8 Things Some A$$#ole Says in Every Debate About Sexism #4. The Nicer Detonator Alexander Bedrin/iStock/Getty Images Assholes act as if anger in response to centuries of systematic oppression is equal to centuries of systematic oppression, and the two cancel out. "Maybe if you were nicer about asking," they say, and it's impossible to respond properly, because only comic characters can scream so loudly it ruptures their eardrums and pulps their skulls. Photodisc/Photodisc/Getty Images0Though exposure to such bullshit may cause women to evolve a Naturschrei organ. "Maybe if you were nicer about the constant stream of poison you're subjected to, I'd consider not pissing into it." It's another way of reframing an urgent discussion of sexual equality as a patriarchal indulgence. Comstock/Stockbyte/Getty Images"I'll shove this cone through your cornea, you patronizing jerk." The kicker is that deploying the nicer detonator is the best possible way to trigger an explosion of anger. #3. Photodisc/Photodisc/Getty Images #2. Digital Vision. #1.

Why are Millennials so ironic? Because we know we’re being screwed. | Radical Social Entrepreneurs The New York Times recently published an article called “How to Live without Irony“. The (slightly cranky) piece diagnoses hipster culture as the malaise of spoiled and superficial Millennials. They (as a Millennial I should say ‘we’) can commit to nothing. We are meticulous planners of our image. We use irony to deflect anything that might betray genuine emotion or seriousness. Ironic living, writes the author, “is the most self-defensive mode, as it allows a person to dodge responsibility for his or her choices, aesthetic and otherwise.” Unfortunately, the author suggests Millennials should fix themselves by using fewer inside jokes and having less eccentric wardrobes. She just doesn’t get it. Why do we get all our news from Jon Stewart and the Onion? Even if we don’t understand all the gory details, Millennials are aware that American society is not healthy. We jail more people than anywhere else in the world, mostly for a War on Drugs that Millennials do not believe in.

Hakula: Learn the Natural State of 'Fearlessness' The Natural Fear-Free State of Calm… Hakula, is the natural state of optimal human performance. It is the opposite of the tunnel-vision-fear state many have experienced, because it creates a feeling of calm, and enables the greatest perspective and flexibility of behavior and response. It is so powerful it is one of the key tools we teach our one-on-one clients in our VIP program. How to Practice HakulaPick a spot on the wall, somewhere higher than eye level, around the center of your field of vision. (This state of focus-with-peripheral-awareness was named ‘Hakula’ by the ancient people of Hawaii). When to use Hakula Hakula is perfect for the kinds of situations in which you used to experience fear because it shifts the mind into a state where it is ‘contextually all-aware’. Typically with our clients, we find that if clients think about a problem, then shift into Hakula, the problem immediately seems trivial.

XY Bias: How Male Biology Students See Their Female Peers Over the last three years, Sarah Eddy and Daniel Grunspan have asked over 1,700 biology undergraduates at the University of Washington to name classmates whom they thought were “strong in their understanding of classroom material.” The results were worrying but predictable. The male students underestimated their female peers, over-nominating other men over better-performing women. Put it this way: To the men in these classes, a woman would need to get an A to get the same prestige as a man getting a B. “A lot of people make the assumption that issues of gender in biology are gone because so many women enroll,” says Eddy. Her study is the latest to show the challenges faced by women in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). The causes of this attrition are manifold, but sexual discrimination is an indisputable part of it. It begins early. Performance? The team also found that the ‘celebrities’—the three students in each class with the most nominations—were all men.

How to Live Without Irony Leif Parsons The Stone is a forum for contemporary philosophers and other thinkers on issues both timely and timeless. If irony is the ethos of our age — and it is — then the hipster is our archetype of ironic living. The hipster haunts every city street and university town. Manifesting a nostalgia for times he never lived himself, this contemporary urban harlequin appropriates outmoded fashions (the mustache, the tiny shorts), mechanisms (fixed-gear bicycles, portable record players) and hobbies (home brewing, playing trombone). He is an easy target for mockery. How did this happen? Life in the Internet age has undoubtedly helped a certain ironic sensibility to flourish. Furthermore, the nostalgia cycles have become so short that we even try to inject the present moment with sentimentality, for example, by using certain digital filters to “pre-wash” photos with an aura of historicity. But Y2K came and went without disaster. I, too, exhibit ironic tendencies.