QUICKIES 02/13/2012


The White House announced a planned compromise that will mean that women will still get free contraception, but that religious organizations will not have to pay for it. Instead, the insurance company will be required to reach out to women and directly offer contraception.

The Republican verbal assault on women’s healthcare continues: Rick Santorum does not believe insurance companies should cover contraception – any contraception – at all, saying, “This is something that is affordable, available. You don’t need insurance for these types of relatively small expenditures.”

Gee, Rick, maybe God’s using the insurance company to give me the gift of a depo shot, in a very broken way? Or are only rapists agents of divine will?

A person with a uterus has given birth in the UK. What makes this newsy is that this person is also the first transman that has had bottom surgery to do so, though the bigger story may be that this shows how far queer health and trans-acceptance has come.

But I’m not the only one who noticed. At the end of the article, the author let a transphobe chime in, presumably out of some misplaced fealty to “balance:”

But not everyone is supportive of trans men having children. Trevor Stammers, director of medical ethics at St Mary’s University College told the newspaper: “The fact that the medical profession is facilitating and encouraging this is a serious problem. You are hardly going to end up with a baby that’s going to have a happy, productive and optimal childhood.

The fact that St. Mary’s University College employs a “director of medical ethics” who feels no compunction announcing to the world his desire to restrict the medical and reproductive rights of the unwashed masses who might not provide an “optimal childhood,” whatever that means, is a serious problem.

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  1. Melissa McEwan over at Shakesville has some great points about how the compromise over contraception could still have negative impacts on the lives of women. The main article is here, and the comment in which she discusses her concerns (and the subsequent comments) begins here.

  2. It is a shame the Pink News article used the transphobic comment at the end, recently they have been very good with trans issues.

    An transwomans take on the press reaction can be seen here:

    What is worrying the UK trans community is that the quote confirming the story seems to have come from the Beaumont Society, this is an organisation which was setup over 40 years ago to support trans people but in giving this quote they have put the parent(don’t want to assume that they identify as either mother or father), their partner and child at risk of press intrusion as you can be sure the tabloids will be trying to find them.

    • I had the same reaction when I first read the article, but we had a lot of trouble finding any article on the story that didn’t contain transphobia. Most of them put the words “male mother” in scare quotes.

  3. the second-to-last quote in that article about the trans man bugs me almost as much as the last one: ‘Christopher Inglefield, a surgeon specialising in gender reassignment surgery told the Sunday Times: “The obvious thing is to get them to store eggs before they have the surgery, so they can have babies later using a female surrogate.”’

    yeah, cause we’ve all *obviously* got 10 thousand dollars just lying around for that procedure, and i’m sure we’ll all have another 30 thousand ready by the time we’re ready for a surrogate. it’s not like there are any other costs involved in transition, after all… [rage]

    also, let it be on record that i really dislike the term “male mother” and i highly doubt whether they asked this guy what his feelings were about the term.

    • I didn’t notice that. Why is that the obvious thing when this guy could obviously still produce eggs, which could have conceivably been harvested before they implanted in his still-working uterus?

      And of course, having your eggs harvested and implanted in the nearest “female surrogate” (I’m glad he clarified, so we didn’t accidentally find a transmale surrogate and fuck up his vision) is the obvious thing for a man to do.

      A c-section would be a terrible ideal that any rational human would avoid. That’s why only women can be expected to endure a 30% c-section rate. It’s the pregnancy version of a Man Cold:

      • *he* says he considers it the “obvious” thing because it’s been suggested that there are links between long-term testosterone usage and reproductive system cancers. but it should be said that trans men are a small population, and trans men who keep their uteruses long-term are an even smaller population, so this claim is a bit tenuous. it just pissed me off the way he said it.

        lol at the “female surrogate”. missed that one.

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