— Mia Mingus, Moving Toward the Ugly: A Politic Beyond Desirability (via a-bayani)
If I put a gun to someone’s head, say, a 30-year-old healthy male, pull the trigger, and kill him, assuming an average life expectancy of, say, 84, you can argue that possibly 54 years of life [were] stolen from that person in a direct act of violence.
However, if a person is born into poverty in the midst of an abundant society where it is statistically proven that it would hurt no one to facilitate meeting the basic needs of that person and yet they die at the age of 30 due to heart disease, which has been found to statistically relate to those who endure the stress and effects of low socioeconomic status, is that death, the removal of those 54 years once again, an act of violence?
And the answer is ‘Yes, it is.’
You see, our legal system has conditioned us to think that violence is a direct behavioral act. The truth is that violence is a process, not an act, and it can take many forms.
You cannot separate any outcome from the system by which it is oriented."
this is so fuckin important
34% of trans women who had attempted to access shelters were denied entry outright. Of the respondents who did manage to access a shelter, 25% were evicted after it became known that they were trans. 55% were harassed by shelter staff or residents, and 29% of trans women were physically assaulted. 26% were sexually assaulted at shelters. Overall, 47% were treated so poorly that they chose to leave the shelter.
In the event of an intersex birth or infant genitalia that are seen in any way as “ambiguous,” we do NOT consent to ANY form of surgical intervention, including but not limited to tissue biopsies or exploratory surgery, reduction of any tissue, or “reconstruction” of any kind.
I included the bit about biopsies and exploratory surgery because doctors have been known, in the fairly recent past, to straight up lie about cancer risk or otherwise use consent to a diagnostic procedure only to irrevocably surgically alter infant genitals in the face of parental resistance.
Just for reference, about 1 in 1000 infants is identified as intersex at birth due to genital “ambiguity”; the actual prevalence of intersex conditions is probably somewhere around 1 in 150, since the majority of intersex people have genitalia that appear “normal” by medicalized standards.
Put this in your birth plan, if you have one (it’s a good idea to have one; think about what you want, whatever that is, so that you can advocate for yourself and your child). Talk about the existence of intersex and the inadequacy of our binary model for “biological sex.” The more we talk about these things, the more information any new parent of an intersex child is likely to have, and the better equipped they will be to protect that child from medical authority figures who may act to protect social norms rather than their patients.
If you’re creating a birth plan, consider writing out specific NON-consent to any form of surgical intervention in the event of the birth of an infant whose genitalia are considered by any care provider to be in any way “ambiguous.”
Recent legal cases concerning intersex people subjected to such surgeries without consent are cautiously promising; having a written refusal of consent could make the difference in at least some cases.
Poor people with diabetes are significantly more likely to go to the hospital for dangerously low blood sugar at the end of the month when food budgets are tight than at the beginning of the month, a new study has found.
Researchers found no increase in such hospitalizations among higher-income people for the condition known as hypoglycemia, suggesting that poverty and exhausted food budgets may be a reason for the increased health risk.
Hypoglycemia occurs when people with diabetes have not had enough to eat, but continue taking medications for the disease. To control diabetes, patients need to keep their blood sugar within a narrow band. Levels that are too low or too high (known as hyperglycemia) can be dangerous.
Researchers found a clear pattern among low-income people: Hospital admissions for hypoglycemia were 27 percent higher at the end of the month than at the beginning. Researchers said they could not prove that the patients’ economic circumstances were the reason for the admission, but the two things were highly correlated.
The study, published online Monday in the journal Health Affairs, comes as Congress continues to debate legislation that includes the food stamp program for poor Americans. House Republicans are advocating $40 billion in cuts to the program, a step that Democrats oppose."
America: where we kill the poor.(via scientia-rex)
Female-assigned intersex kids’ vaginal canal size is also assessed by doctors, to ensure that it’s long enough to fit a penis inside of it. Doctors might surgically construct or re-construct vaginas, which can result in a host of health problems and necessitate multiple, multiple surgeries. This is especially the case since most intersex kids have these surgeries very young, and when their bodies grow into their adult forms, more surgeries are necessary to keep their vagina size in proportion. Non-surgical methods are also used to increase or maintain vaginal length by regularly using medical dildos to stretch the vagina over months and years. (It’s kind of like braces for your vagina, but much, much worse.) Just like there are no standards for how long a clitoris “can” be before it’s classified as a penis, there aren’t absolute standards as to how long a vagina is for it to be of “normal” length.
I had a dilation procedure performed for almost every exam I had with intersex doctors from the time I was 8 until I was 16, so that they could check how long my vagina was as I grew. I absolutely hated these procedures. I mean, imagine a man as old as your father or your grandfather, who you don’t know, inserting a medical dildo into you each time you saw him, knowing that you can’t question the doctor’s orders and just accept that you have to undergo these uncomfortable procedures for your health. Imagine a decade or so later, realizing that these procedures did nothing to track your health, and had everything to do with grown men feeling good about the fact that you could fuck some dude someday like a “normal girl”. That all those traumatizing procedures weren’t actually medically relevant at all, and it actually was within my right to refuse those examinations.
I didn’t know any of that at the time.
I also had no idea that I wouldn’t want to ultimately have the kind of sex they assumed I’d be having, adding yet another layer of this-was-totally-unnecessary/messed-up to my history.
Other kids shouldn’t have to go through this. Other adults shouldn’t have revelations some day far into the future that what was happening to them WASN’T okay, and their traumatic feelings ARE valid, and the whole system of how intersex people are conceptualized and “treated” IS entirely fucked.
And it’s gotta change. We’ve gotta change it."
—-Claudia at Autostraddle
I just read this article and was reminded once again how invisible the intersex community often is… we need to signal boost this shit to let people know that this kind of “medical treatment” is NOT okay.
Intersex oppression is patriarchy, it is heterosexism, it is misogyny; it is simultaneously violent and invisible.
white people: made fun of on the internet
black people: profiled in real life and can be killed for looking out of place in a neighborhood
yeah i feel u it really does go both ways
Just because you believe one is worse doesn’t make it okay to do either
"Believe one is worse".
Are you saying it’s a matter of opinion that being killed is worse than being made fun of on the internet?