As a baby boomer, I grew up in an era where the only women who had access to safe abortions were the wealthy. They could fly somewhere and have it done and be back home before anyone knew they were gone. Women who did not have wealth were forced to use less safe methods to abort the fetus.
PBS has aired the show, Call the Midwife, for two seasons now. Watching that show, I have become a strong supporter of abortion rights. Please understand that I am not an advocate for abortions per se. Abortions are only one option that must remain available for all women.
If you want to see what life was like for women and their families before contraception and abortion was available to women, then you should watch this program. It is horrifying to watch. Yes, I know that abortions are horrifying too. But, so is cancer and stroke and kidney failure. Read more
I thought I would start by listing a group of ideas that are held by the majority of educated Americans. If after you read them you think that no, these are “liberal” ideas, think again. In fact, if you were a Nixon voter, you probably agreed to all of them but the one on climate change, which was unknown at the time. In fact, these are not political ideas at all.
Noah’s Ark is just a fable
Evolution is the founding principal of modern biology (and so modern medicine).
The science is strong that the burning of fossil fuels has started climate change.
Tax rate changes within a narrow range have little to do with the rate of growth in our economy.
Cutting tax rates does not pay for itself through growth.
Gasoline prices are set on the world market and will not be influenced significantly by US oil production.
The free market leads to the fairest price. It does nothing else. Read more
Public polling shows that a majority of Americans now support legalizing marijuana, but will Congress even consider taking pot off the banned substances list?
Today, two members of the House — Rep. Jared Polis [D, CO] and Rep. Earl Blumenauer [D, OR] — are introducing legislation to change the federal marijuana laws. Polis’ “Ending Federal Marijuana Prohibition Act” would regulate marijuana like alcohol, and Blumenauer’s “Marijuana Tax Equity Act” would establish a federal marijuana taxation structure. The introduction of the bills is a first step, but it doesn’t mean that there is broader institutional interest in Congress for taking up the issue of legalizing pot. Read more
I live in one of the states whose governor decided to refuse cooperating with the federal government on implementing ObamaCare — in Oklahoma. I am also one of many who do not have health care but needs it. My income is not low enough to qualify for Medicaid and not high, enough to afford health care, that is — under the old system.
ObamaCare is the first time I will be able to afford health care. I will still have to pay for part of my health care but at a rate, I can afford. However, my governor, Mary Fallon, does not seem to care much about my health care or others like me. Even though I am a full-time working Oklahoman who pays state taxes, what I need and many other Oklahomans need does not seem to be of a concern to Governor Fallon. Read more
Children even in poverty-stricken areas go to bed at night dreaming about what they want to be. They dream of being firefighters, police officers, doctors, presidents and even super heroes. The hunger and poverty they have known all their short lives cannot stop them from having those dreams. It is when they grow a bit older and see the reality of their situation through the eyes of the adults in their lives, that they begin to accept the limitations that are put upon them, because of their poverty.
In America, part of our infrastructure is our schools. As a nation, we have always held that education is important to us. We know that a good education is what will give our young people a chance to compete and a chance at success they would not have otherwise. We as parents want our children to have opportunities that we did not have ourselves; this has been a tradition for a long time in America. Wisdom tells us that our children are the future. Read more
During this year’s TAM, I had the distinct pleasure of accompanying Steve Novella and Michael Shermer to debate an antivaccinationist at FreedomFest, a conservative/libertarian confab that was going on in Las Vegas at the same time as TAM. That antivaccinationist turned out to be Dr. Julian Whitaker, a man who champions Dr. Stanislaw Burzynski and is one of Suzanne Somer’s doctors. There’s no polite way to put this, Steve Novella wiped the floor with Dr. Whitaker, mercilessly pummeling him with facts, analysis, and logic to the point where even the audience appeared to be grumbling. Read more
If you haven’t yet read Maryn McKenna’s riveting Atlantic article “How Your Chicken Dinner is Creating a Drug-Resistant Superbug,” you should. McKenna, working with the with the Food and Environment Reporting Network, has delved into research that’s been accumulating about the association between the extensive use of antibiotics in poultry and the increase in drug-resistant urinary tract infections. Read more
It’s very clear that a lot of Americans are concerned a great deal with the new health care law the Affordable Care Act . It’s also quite understandable to be concerned; it does turn the health care system in this country up on its heels. It will change a lot of lives and yet for many, just force them to tighten their budgets more.
The way I see it, the health care law is a rough draft of what this country really wants. It is up to us, the American people to see that our legislators give it to us. We do that by demanding change, not repeal but a fix on the issues we’re mainly concerned about. Read more
The day that the United States Supreme Court upheld the Affordable Care Act, also known as ObamaCare, I was expecting the worse and the end of hope for millions like me. After seeing the conservatively controlled court delivered several rulings that reflected what I believed was their partisanship, I expected the justices to throw the health care bill out on a 5-4 ruling.
So I was very happy to see Chief Justice John Roberts come out of the conservative fold and show that he was more than just a partisan player but someone who saw the need that was spread out over America; families hanging on the edge because of a health care crisis, along with the financial devastation it caused in its wake. Read more
After The United States Supreme Court upheld the Affordable Care Act on Thursday, Facebook, Twitter and thousands of websites across the Internet were overwhelmed with comments. Many of those comments were about outrage and showed a great deal of anger from many Americans who think the bill is a government takeover of the health care system. They’re all wrong; it is anything but a government takeover. Read more
And now for something completely different.
Except that it isn’t really. I say that it isn’t really different because, although this post will seem to be about politics, in reality it will be about a common topic on this blog: Anti-science. And where is this anti-science? Sadly, it’s in the platform of a major party of one of the largest states in the country. It also meshes with the anti-science inherent in a lot of so-called “complementary and alternative medicine” (CAM) and all comes together in one place: The proposed 2012 Platform of the Republican Party of Texas. It’s all there, as you will see. Read more
Recently Ron Paul admitted he won’t be able to clinch enough. This isn’t news, of course. Even though the media has ignored and deliberately miscounted delegates, every true champion of liberty knew his campaign wasn’t about winning, but about educating and spreading an ideology. Read more
If there’s one thing shared in common among nearly all advocates of pseudoscience, it is the belief that they know The Truth. More importantly, they know The Truth, and The Powers That Be don’t want you to know The Truth and will do almost anything to makes sure that The Truth stays secret. Think about it. This sort of thinking is common, be it among advocates of alternative medicine, cold fusion advocates, HIV/AIDS denialists, 9/11 “Truthers,” birthers, creationists, moon hoax believers, or Holocaust deniers. Read more
Much about the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act’s health insurance mandate has caused a great deal of concern for Americans of all stripes. The mandate is viewed by many as government overreach and it very well may seem like that. What we must realize though is that the health care bill was brought before Congress because health care costs were spiraling out of control and almost 50 million people were without any health care whatsoever – still are until the health care bill completely kicks in come 2014. Read more