Recommended Reading for June 15, 2010

dhobikikutti (DW): This is also needed: A Space In Which To Be Angry

And what I have realised is that there is a sixth component to [personal profile] zvi‘s rules, and that is that complaining about and calling out what you do not like does help, slowly, painfully, get rid of it.

Every time I see friends who make locked posts about fic that Others them, that writes appropriatively and ignorantly and dismissively and condescendingly and fetishistically about their identities, I think — there needs to be a space where this can be said.

damned_colonial (DW): Hurt/comfort and the real world [warning: derailing in comments]

Writing a short ficlet in which someone who has been abused/injured/disabled/etc is “comforted” and feels better seldom bears much relation to the reality of abuse/injury/disability/etc. Which, OK, we write a lot of unrealistic things. The problem with this one is that the idea of hurts being easily cured/comforted is one that also exists in the real world and harms real people. Almost anyone with a real-world, serious “hurt” has had people dismiss and belittle their experience on the assumption that they “should be over it by now” or that “if you just did X” the problem would go away. People are often treated badly or denied care on these grounds.

Pauline W. Chen, M.D. (New York Times): Why Patients Aren’t Getting the Shingles Vaccine

“Shingles vaccination has become a disparity issue,” Dr. Hurley added. “It’s great that this vaccine was developed and could potentially prevent a very severe disease. But we have to have a reimbursement process that coincides with these interventions. Just making these vaccines doesn’t mean that they will have a public health impact.”

Trine Tsouderos (Chicago Tribune/L.A. Times): The push and pull over a chronic fatigue syndrome study

Nine months later, the joyous mood has soured. Five research teams trying to confirm the finding have reported in journals or at conferences that they could not find the retrovirus, known as XMRV, in patients diagnosed with chronic fatigue syndrome, casting grave doubts on the connection.

Kjerstin Johnson at Bitch Magazine’s Sm{art} blog: Riva Lehrer’s body of art

To Lehrer, who has spina bifida, “Disability and art are natural partners. In order to have a good life with a disability, you have to learn to re-invent your world almost hour by hour. You discover ways to re-imagine everything, and how not to take the average answers to everyday questions…”

3 Comments

  1. A friend of mine explores her thoughts on the whole h/c idea here:
    http://mullenkamp.livejournal.com/1227028.html

  2. This quote from the CFS article is setting off all my WTF alarms…

    “So research dollars will go for XMRV-infected men with cancer but not women with CFS,” she wrote in an e-mail. “[This] left me no recourse but to play the autism card! Will they ignore the children too?””

    1) There’s no published link between XMRV and autism! If she’s got a link betwen XMRV and autism (and multiple sclerosis, for that matter) she should bloody well publish it instead of speaking at conferences with that fraud Andrew Wakefield.

    2) Autistic adults. They, uh, well, they exist. And I can’t believe I had to type that, but I’m kind of in shock at her ‘think of the children’ nonsense.

  3. The article on the shingles vaccine doesn’t mention people with reduced immunity due to medical conditions, medication, etc. who are also at a higher risk of catching shingles. I presume if older people are hardly being offered the vaccine then this group won’t be either. I only mention it because people seem to consider shingles as a condition that younger people never get, I had it when I was 9 (due to being on immuno-supressant drugs) and I’d like to see children with reduced immunity offered this vaccine because they are especially at risk as they are more likely to come into contact with the chicken pox virus (that can also cause shingles) than lots of other groups.