"I find many adults are put off when young children pose scientific questions. Why is the Moon round? the children ask. Why is grass green? What is a dream? How deep can you dig a hole? When is the world’s birthday? Why do we have toes? Too many teachers and parents answer with irritation or ridicule, or quickly move on to something else: ‘What did you expect the Moon to be, square?’ Children soon recognize that somehow this kind of question annoys the grown-ups. A few more experiences like it, and another child has been lost to science. Why adults should pretend to omniscience before 6-year-olds, I can’t for the life of me understand. What’s wrong with admitting that we don’t know something? Is our self-esteem so fragile?"
Carl Sagan, The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark (via thedragoninmygarage)
Abortion was not just legal—it was a safe, condoned, and practiced procedure in colonial America and common enough to appear in the legal and medical records of the period. Official abortion laws did not appear on the books in the United States until 1821, and abortion before quickening did not become illegal until the 1860s. If a woman living in New England in the 17th or 18th centuries wanted an abortion, no legal, social, or religious force would have stopped her.
Reminder that records of contraception and abortion exist all the way back to 1550 BCE in ancient Egypt!
This was a really fascinating read. Until the early 19th century, abortion was legal until “quickening,” or when the pregnant person first felt the baby kick - anywhere from 14 to 26 weeks into the pregnancy. Society only began to condemn it when people decided white, middle- to upperclass women weren’t having enough children soon enough in their lives, and when male doctors started taking over traditionally female health care fields, like midwifery.
Yep, shockingly enough, it’s never, ever been about the life of the fetus - only about misogyny, racism, and classism (ableism, too, though the article doesn’t discuss it).
The bolded is hella important.
From the first article: “Increased female independence was also perceived as a threat to male power and patriarchy, especially as Victorian women increasingly volunteered outside the home for religious and charitable causes.”
Quick reminder that the modern pro-life movement didn’t even begin until the 1970’s. Conservatives were angry about the birth control pill and Roe v. Wade, and so the pro-life movement was developed as a TARGETED response to women’s lib and reproductive rights. In a lot of non-Western countries, the idea that an embryo is assigned any value or rights at all is just mind-boggling.
Post solstice swim sun #darkmofo #hobart
world cup is so good this year you guys