Category Archives: News

From women’s health to feminism to politics – news that’s real and relevant to you.

What Grosses You Out?

Gross Beauty Rituals
The gross things we do to be beautiful. Read More »
Toilet Grossness
Real World logo
"Real World: New Orleans" had a toothbrush in the toilet incident. Read More »
Nasty Habits
Addiction turned this woman into a hooker. Read More »

If I find a hair in my food, I freak out. Like, gasping and gagging and other generally outrageous reactions will ensue. Ever since I was little, hair in food has been #1 on the list of things I find completely disgusting, which also includes naked mole rats, the smell of eggs, and the word “buffet.” A few days ago NPR did an interview with Rachel Herz, the author of a new book called “That’s Disgusting: Unraveling the Mysteries of Repulsion,” and it turns out the things that repulse us are determined by a number of factors, many of them cultural. Cheese, for example, is a staple of the western diet but in some cultures it’s considered to be the equivalent of cow excrement. Apparently we learn to be grossed out by certain things, and, conversely, we can learn to be not grossed out by certain things. So let’s talk about the things that trigger our personal “yuck!” reflex. What grosses you out? Is there anything that used to gross you out that doesn’t anymore? [NPR]

Today’s Lady News: Judge Orders Abusive Husband To Take Wife To Red Lobster

  • Oh, Florida. A judge in the WTF-is-going-on-here state sentenced a man accused of shoving his wife against a sofa and grabbing her neck to take her on a date to Red Lobster and a bowling alley. No jail time! Cheddar biscuits instead! The judge called this incident “very, very minor” without any serious violence. I call this a warning sign to the wife that her husband is abusive and she should hightail it out of there. I also call this another example of this country not taking violence against women seriously. Domestic violence doesn’t have to be life-threatening for it to be troubling and if this guy gets off with a slap on the wrist (if you could call it that) this time, what’s to stop him from escalating next time?  Today it’s shoving her against a couch and grabbing her neck. What about tomorrow? Hopefully when this couple visits a marriage counselor — also a part of the man’s sentencing — the therapist can persuade the wife that no amount of lobster tails in the world excuses a partner using force against their loved one. [MSNBC] Keep reading »

Oklahoma Senator Constance Johnson Suggests “Every Sperm Is Sacred”

State Sen. Constance Johnson photo

Following in the footsteps of Janet Howell, the Virginia state senator who added a rectal exam amendment to a bill that required women to get an ultrasound before having an abortion, Oklahoma Senator Constance Johnson found a clever way to protest the controversial “fetal personhood laws” cropping up in conservative states. Senate Bill 1433 says “the unborn child at every stage of development (has) all the rights, privileges, and immunities available to other persons, citizens, and residents of this state,” which would legally make it damn near impossible for a woman to get an abortion. Johnson’s “Every Sperm Is Sacred” amendment, which she voluntarily withdrew but not before emphasizing that her point was to draw attention to the sexism inherrant in these “fetal personhood laws,” would have added language stating “any action in which a man ejaculates or otherwise deposits semen anywhere but in a woman’s vagina shall be interpreted and construed as an action against an unborn child.” Because every sperm that dies in a dude’s balled up dirty sock technically could have been a baby. 

Constance Johnson, hero of the week. [Care2.com]

Lost In Translation: Here’s One Ironically Big Foreign Language Foul

Concierge. Chignon. Soirée. Saying things in French just makes you seem so fancy, right? Hate to break it to you, Nancy’s, purveyor of fine frozen foods, but your use of “petites bites” isn’t what you think it means. Because the French translation of this is “little dicks.”

Little dicks, big compliments? Well, that’s one way of saying size doesn’t matter.

Today’s Lady News: Obama Could Compromise On Birth Control Coverage Under Health Care Reform

  • The Obama administration is open to a “compromise” on the health care reform requirement that religiously-affiliated employers cover preventative care, including birth control, without co-pays or deductibles. Some schools and hospitals balked that the only exemptions made were for explicitly religious employers. But this morning, David Axelrod, an advisor on the president’s re-election campaign, said the administration will “look for a way” to make everyone happy. [New York Times
  • Mitt Romney said that Susan G. Komen for the Cure was right to cut grants to Planned Parenthood. Perhaps he would not have held this same position years ago when he attended a Planned Parenthood fundraiser and his wife donated money to the clinics. Or, many years after that, when he signed a pro-choice pledge organized by PP. [Huffington Post, Think Progress]
  • HealthCare.gov now enables you to search for health plans with coverage for same-sex relationships. [Think Progress] Keep reading »

Brilliant Idea: PA College Dispensing Plan B From Vending Machines

I Took Plan B
Our writer took the morning-after-pill to thwart unwanted pregnancy. Read More »
Should Men Pay?
Should men help pay for the Pill? Read More »
Vending Machines
pregnancy test photo
Switzerland put pregnancy tests in vending machines. Read More »

Taking the morning-after pill in a timely fashion has been one of the biggest hurdles to overcome when it comes to reproductive rights. Emergency contraception (which prevents ovulation so an egg cannot be fertilized, as well as thins the lining of the uterus so a fertilized egg cannot be implanted) is most effective if taken within five days of unprotected sex — but the sooner the better. Even though EC, in theory, became more accessible when the FDA announced it could be sold over-the-counter to women age 17 and up, that did not play out in reality. Women who live in rural areas, as well as women who live anyplace where a pharmacist can cite a so-called conscience clause and tell her “no, not dispensing that!”, still have to do a lot of frantic scrambling at an already stressful time.

But one college in Pennsylvania has a brilliant idea on how to make EC more accessible when it is needed most: Shippensburg University  in Shippensburg, Pennsylvania, put a vending machine filled with Plan B in the health center. Keep reading »

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