The Dawn Chorus

Fresh Australian Feminism

Posts Tagged ‘hpv’

Jezebel’s Moe And “Condom-Gate”: Hang The STIs, Bareback Feels Better!

Posted by Clem Bastow on July 26, 2008

Another week, another Jezebel “controversy” – Jezebel writer (and star of the last Jezebel vs. the world debacle, and who this week joined and then left Radar within a matter of whiplash-inducing moments) Moe Tkacik has walked into another blogosphere fracas with her Thursday post, “Sex Without Condoms Is Actually Better Than Diamonds, People!”

Here’s an excerpt:

[…] I have only really engaged in bareback sex with the types of dudes who don’t fear HPV and whose diseases I don’t particularly fear, because the worst thing I can think of about most of them is the ensuing lifetime of awkward conversations, and the worst thing about that is that awkward conversations summon memories, and summoning bad memories every time you’re about to fuck a new person is no way to live, but, if you can smile and say (hypothetically!) “Hey, just so you know, I have [insert STD here], but I got them from this really hilarious guy who is still one of my best friends, so it was kind of worth it,” before you do it with a new person, it’s almost nice. Like: oh yeah, that was a good time.

My instinctual reaction was (and remains), man, when did women buy the “But it feels better, baybeee” line, too?

I know Moe has made a point of discussing her experience with STIs, and I commend her for that – such is the state of the world that people who have STIs (or have had) are made to feel as though a) they can’t discuss it freely because b) it’s gross or yucky or dirty. Like Moe, this is something I feel particularly strongly about.

But considering this, I find it hard to believe that Moe can be so glib about practising unsafe sex. Because you know what? It’s easy to buy the ‘bareback feels better’ line – until an STI stops the party.
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Posted in Blog Watch, Media Watch, Sex And Love, Women's Health | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | 13 Comments »

“Should Parents Be Worried About HPV Vaccine?” How About Women?

Posted by Clem Bastow on July 9, 2008

This CNN article raises some of the emerging concerns about adverse reactions to the Gardasil HPV vaccine; some girls and women who get the course of jabs are experiencing side-effects ranging from nausea to, well, death (apparently). The American stats are as follows:

Gardasil has been the subject of 7,802 “adverse event” reports from the time the Food and Drug Administration approved its use two years ago, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Girls and women have blamed the vaccine for causing ailments from nausea to paralysis — even death. Fifteen deaths were reported to the FDA, and 10 were confirmed, but the CDC says none of the 10 were linked to the vaccine. The CDC says it continues to study the reports of illness.

But what bothers me about the piece is not so much the worrying emergence of stories such as Oklahoma’s Jesalee Parsons, 13, who developed Pancreatitis after her shot (which is, to be sure, horrifying), but the way CNN has pitched the piece: its title is “Should Parents Be Worried About HPV Vaccine?”

Fair enough, it’s a question that needs to be asked, as many of Gardasil’s recipients have been young girls. But what about those of us over 18 who went and got the injection ourselves? Are we irrelevant? Do we only need to, as The Simpsons‘ Helen Lovejoy likes to scream, think of the children?

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Posted in Media Watch, Women's Health | Tagged: , , , , , | 3 Comments »