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Weekly Reads: Anti-Choicer’s New Delusion

Plus Calling Out a Children's Book Author and more!

Howdy Readers… If you are reading this then the Cheeto Tinted Tyrant hasn’t blown us all to bits yet. Small victories folks…

(CN: Ectopic Pregnancy, Baby Loss… Moving the featured article beneath the links in case any readers need to skip it for their mental health.)

So Links first!!!

Darcy Reeder, (buy her a coffee,) who writes about parenting at Medium shares the story of how she called out a children’s book author for ignoring women…

The book, Moonshot: The Flight of Apollo 11, written and illustrated by Brian Floca, is a gorgeous, informative read, made to inspire another generation of stargazers. Unlike many dry books on the topic, this one has a gripping narrative. It managed to keep even my 3-year-old engaged.

Still, as I read I found myself changing words to make the story more gender-inclusive. Instead of “men,” I said “people,” “astronauts,” “scientists.” I wanted my daughter to be able to picture herself on that rocket ship, or in Mission Control.

Our storytime happened to take place in October 2017, just as the #MeToo movement was starting to gain momentum. Women were going public with stories of sexual harassment and outdated, gendered power structures. My own #MeToo stories were swimming in my head when I read Moonshot to my daughter. That night, I could not abide one more message of men’s competence alongside women’s invisibility. Fired up, and bursting with anger at the patriarchy, I did something I don’t usually do: I wrote the author to complain.

And it worked! Not only did the Brian Floca respond kindly to her criticism, a few months later Darcey received a special gift…

Floca mailed us a free, signed copy of the new expanded edition of Moonshot, released in honor of the 50th anniversary of the first moon landing. He made changes. Wonderful changes. I cried, with the realization that my anger, my voice, had made a difference.

The word “men” still shows up often in the book, but it’s not there alone anymore. On the Launch Control/Mission Control page, just as I requested, he changed “each man” to “everyone.”

And he added an entire page of drawings, featuring a diverse group of people working to make the moon landing possible.

Now that the kids are back ion school, parents might need some help decoding this years friendship drama.

White Supremacists are recruiting teenage boys online, here’s what to look for. 

How is children’s literature approaching and explaining climate change?

Here’s a nice meme…

Now on to the crummy stuff…

The newest battleground in the abortion debate is a life threatening condition. If you follow the abortion wars you hear a lot about exceptions to abortion restrictions based around the health and safety of the mother. If the mother’s life is at risk, then maybe we intervene (it’s a big maybe.) And the most obvious of those situations would be an ectopic pregnancy.

Ectopic pregnancies can be deadly.

The condition happens in about 2 percent of all pregnancies, when a fertilized egg implants somewhere outside the uterus — usually in the fallopian tube, a tiny structure connecting the uterus to the ovary. If the pregnancy continues to grow and develop, the tube can rupture, and the pregnant person can hemorrhage and die.

In most cases, the only way to treat an ectopic pregnancy is to terminate it with medication or surgery. But now, some abortion opponents are arguing that patients with ectopic pregnancies can simply be monitored until they miscarry — or even that such pregnancies can be carried to term.

Wait… what was that last bit?

“Knowing that a medical condition carries a very small chance of death is scary,” Georgi Boorman wrote at the Federalist on Monday. But, she asked, “is that very small chance enough to prompt you to suffer through purposely destroying your own child?”

The argument is starting to make its way into legislation, with a recent Ohio law including a special provision for the surgical reimplantation of ectopic pregnancies into the uterus, something doctors say is not possible.

My state sucks. This approach is part of a larger movement to winnow away at exceptions to the kind of abortion bans that GOP legislators have been pushing around the country, like Alabama’s near total ban (that doesn’t even go this far.) But actions like this are a step past where even zealous anti-choicers are comfortable treading.

Historically, anti-abortion groups have supported allowing abortion in the case of ectopic pregnancy, arguing that it is morally distinct from abortion in other cases. For example, the American Association of Pro-Life Obstetricians and Gynecologists (AAPLOG) said in a 2010 statement that the group “recognizes the unavoidable loss of human life that occurs in an ectopic pregnancy, but does not consider treatment of ectopic pregnancy by standard surgical or medical procedures to be the moral equivalent of elective abortion, or to be the wrongful taking of human life.”

Others have argued that ending an ectopic pregnancy should not be considered an abortion at all. Anti-abortion activist Lila Rose, for instance, said in a recent video that removing an ectopic pregnancy “is not to intentionally kill that child; that’s not an abortion procedure.

As for the science fiction option of reimplanting an ectopic embryo into the uterus, that’s fantasy. The reality is summed up best by experts.

“If you have never treated a woman with a belly full of blood from an ectopic you should shut the fuck up and sit down and learn before you get someone killed,” Dr. Jen Gunter, an ob-gyn and author of the recent book, The Vagina Bible, wrote on Twitter on Monday. She also retweeted doctor and patient stories of ectopic pregnancies, including stories of “shredded” fallopian tubes, massive blood loss, and friends and family lost to ectopic pregnancies caught too late.

A big thanks to

Let’s end on a happy note, or two or three. Tomorrow The Girl and I get to see Indigo Girls at the historic Taft Theatre. This is my favorite song of all the songs ever sung.

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Lou Doench

Lou Doench is a 48 year old father of three. Twelve years ago he married the coolest woman in the world and gave up the lucrative career of being a photography student to become a stay at home husband and Dad, or SAHD. An atheist geek, or a geeky atheist if you prefer, Lou likes reading, photography, video gaming, disc golf, baseball and Dr. Who. He has been playing Dungeons and Dragons since 1976. Born and raised in Cincinnati, Ohio. He is also an excellent home cook, not that his children would know because they only eat Mac & Cheese. Follow Lou on Twitter @blotzphoto or check out his photography at www.flickr.com/photos/blotz/

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