Equality Roundup: Eyes, Bis And Food That’s Fried
Three new bits of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender science: Public Library of Science (PLoS One) has just published a peer-reviewed take on eye dilation and arousal that further supports the idea of a biological underpinning to sexual orientation, and gives more depth to the common depictions of arousal patterns. Part of that is finding a subset of men who have “true” bisexual arousal patterns, something too often debated in LGBT science.
That ties in with a new study being conducted in Canada about the negative health outcomes of the ways bisexual people are treated. That exclusion can come both from the heteronormative population, as well as the social services set up in the LG(b)T community, where further rejection can impact things like mental health and substance abuse counseling.
Finally, the Hastings Center’s Bioethics Forum has a piece on the dangerous off-label use of a steroid during pregnancy to prevent the babies from becoming lesbians, or exhibiting “masculine” behavior. Basically, while the hormone has some legitimate use in preventing (very rare) defects, some quacks are giving it “off-label” (read “untested”) in order to prevent the presumptive little Suzy from wanting to play with cars instead of cupcakes. The problem isn’t the hormone per se, but rather the unethical way it’s sometimes used based on assumptions about gender norms by some quacks. Biologist PZ Meyers goes at the quacks with both barrels.
While we at EQCA knew Chik-Fil-A was against the freedom to marry from way back when — they’ve given over $1.1 million toward the dangerous conversion “therapy” — we thought everyone else knew too. Still, Noah Michelson makes a good case for why this isn’t about free speech and Michelangelo Signorile wonders where we go next.
Despite sturm und drang from critics of Obama’s recent turn for the freedom to marry, support of marriage for same-sex couples hasn’t hurt him with African Americans, and the GOP is keeping mum. You can see how your current senators and reps do on LGBT rights here.
Another nice moment from Obama: Obamacare will ban discrimination against trans folk.