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Addiction doesn’t strip us of our humanity

Emergent Divergence

Trigger Warning: This article contains discussion of addiction, death, metaphors around death, dehumanisation, and mistreatment.

What defines us as a human?

Is it rhetorical ability? Emotional experiences? Perhaps the tools we use?

I would argue that one of the defining characteristics of our humanity is our ability to to recognise humanity in others, or perhaps more specifically, our ability to deny the humanity of others. Thanks to years of colonialism, warfare, and eurocentric beliefs, we have developed a strange sort of morality. This morality is what we use to ordain or deny a person or object as human/human-adjacent.

Unfortunately, when you are an addict, human-adjacent would be a big step up in how the world sees you. For as long as we have existed, we have been ignored, spoken over, driven out of our homes, and killed. This because contemporary spins on normative morality posit that to be an addict…

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Autism “cure” culture and normative violence

Emergent Divergence

TRIGGER WARNING: This article contains detailed discussion of harmful “cures”. It also mentions ABA, MMS, Chelation, and has in depth discussion around normative society and the murder of Autistic people.

For as long as I have been an advocate, many of my fellow Autistics have spoken out against cure culture. From Applied Behavioural Analysis (ABA) to Miracle Mineral Solution (MMS), there are myriad “treatments” that claim to purge the autism from autistic people. I could speak at length about the direct harm that these quack interventions inflict, but there is a deeper level of conversation to be had.

We are engaged, at present, in a culture war. On the one hand, we have Autistic culture which teaches us to be neurologically queer in every sense of the words. Be ourselves, connect with the self and express it in a way that honors our neurocognitice style. On the other hand, is…

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ABA: Essentialism in practice

Emergent Divergence

For as long as I have been part of the online Autistic community, we have spoken out against and educated on the topic of the harms of Applied Behavioural Analysis (ABA). While I could discuss the real world trauma and attitudes that proceed and preceed ABA respectively, today I’d like to take a more philosophical approach (I know, surprising right?).

It seems to me as though the existence and practice of ABA comes down to essentialism, or in more accessible terms; it comes down to the belief that people belong to specific categories with specific traits. This essentialism than has a provincialist spin put on it where by those with a predominant neurocognitive style widely apply their experiences as the “correct” experiences.

This allows for a discourse in which the Autistic person is then subject to “behavioural intervention” for “their own good”. However, the problem with behaviourism on the whole…

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Comfort Zones or Safe Spaces?

mainer74

Time to call us our bullshit:

TMI (too much information!) is code for “Why don’t you have the grace to be ashamed enough to die in silence so we can share thoughts and prayers at your funeral?”

I am old enough come from the stoic back woods west bumfuck area of the world where we sucked it up in silence and put a good face on all the bad things. There was nothing wrong, everyone kept up a good face, a stiff upper lip, and makeup hides lots of things. Especially when you are trained to not notice, like you are trained to pretend not to hear.

Now we come to the internet age, the age of the overshare, the “oh my god don’t you have any boundaries” age. The Age of TMI, too much information.

While I have said it often enough, it really is possible to have a…

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The Modern Satanist: Where Do I Belong?

Ariadne's Labyrinth

For many years when someone talked about Satanists, it was assumed that they were part of the Church of Satan. The Church of Satan was founded in 1966 by Anton Szandor LaVey and is still one of the largest Satanic organizations in existence. But as time passed, more groups have popped up, some with new progressive ideas and others that are more sinister in nature.

But as a self-identified Satanist, do we HAVE to belong to any group? Ultimately the answer to that question is: “No. Satanism is a self-defined practice that proclaims the highest power to be “Self” and to reject any power that attempts to command oneself against one’s will.” Satanism can come in many forms, though certain Satanic scholars will argue that point. Some Satanists believe in a personal Satan while other’s, arguably the majority, define Satan as a literary character that embodies Autonomy, Science, Power and…

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Abortion: The Real Victim

Bad Atheist

The race to make laws restricting a woman’s right to control her own body and make her own decisions is moving rapidly. Especially with the looming Supreme Court decision that will likely overturn Roe v Wade. Many of the state laws being proposed or have been enacted would not even allow abortions in cases of rape and incest. The reason given for not allowing that exception is, I think, illuminating. It sheds light on the problem with the whole movement to outlaw abortion.

Their argument for forcing women and girls who became pregnant through either rape or incest to give birth regardless of their wishes is a simple one. In more ways than one. Namely that just because the mother was a victim of a heinous crime that doesn’t mean we should create another victim by killing the fetus.

So the concern is all about the fetus. They pay the…

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Poem: A Gestational Father on Seahorse Day!

Mx. Anunnaki Ray Marquez

You were stuck

Inside of me

They had to free you, as you kicked my ribs to get out

They cut you out of me so you could breathe life

Some shamed me for it

Saying I was somehow less than all women

With their actions, or lack of actions

They are afraid to stand in solidarity

to this day

Yet there you were a beautiful and perfect newborn

At my breast, you drank my milk

I was never your mother

They are now the ones stuck

They need you to free them a new generation

They cut me out of today’s celebration

so they can believe their binary myth lies

They still shame me for it

Too ashamed to mention my name for fear they would be shamed for it too

So they, oops, and conveniently forget my existence

When just yesterday they met me with a smile and…

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Peer Review: Obesity II – Establishing Causal Links Between Chemical Exposures and Obesity

SLIME MOLD TIME MOLD

A new paper, called Obesity II: Establishing Causal Links Between Chemical Exposures and Obesity, was just published in the journal Biochemical Pharmacology (available online as of 5 April 2022). Authors include some obesity bigwigs like Robert H. Lustig, and it’s really long, so we figured it might be important. 

The title isn’t some weird Walden II reference — there’s a Part I and Part III as well. Part I reviews the obesity epidemic (in case you’re not already familiar?) and argues that obesity “likely has origins in utero.”

“The obesity epidemic is Kurt Cobain’s fault” is an unexpected but refreshing hypothesis

Part III basically argues that we should move away from doing obesity research with cells isolated in test tubes (probably a good idea TBH) and move towards “model organisms such as Drosophila, C. elegans, zebrafish, and medaka.” Sounds fishy to us but whatever, you’re the doctor.

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Childhood trauma leads to lifelong chronic illness — so why isn’t the medical community helping patients?

ACEs Too High

ADonnaDadWhen I was twelve, I was coming home from swimming at my neighbor’s dock when I saw an ambulance’s flashing lights in our driveway. I still remember the asphalt burning my feet as I stood, paralyzed, and watched the paramedics take away my father. It was as if I knew those flashing lights were a harbinger that my childhood was over.

At the hospital, a surgeon performed “minor” elective bowel surgery on my young dad. The surgeon made an error, and instead of my father coming home to the “welcome home” banners we’d painted, he died.

The medical care system failed my father miserably. Then the medical care system began to fail me.

At fourteen, I started fainting. The doctors implied I was trying to garner attention. In college I began having full seizures. I kept them to myself, fearful of seeming a modern Camille. I’d awaken on the floor drenched…

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The myth of survivor solidarity: Why it’s so hard for us to all just get along

ACEs Too High

As a Weinstein survivor, I’ve noticed that journalists love to explore the presumed solidarity among “sister survivors” – in our case, the over 100 women who came forward about Weinstein’s sexual predation. But what journalists don’t write about are the challenges in preventing any group of trauma survivors from imploding. Only when we survivors understand the impact of trauma can we overcome the underlying forces that threaten to pull us apart and stand together against injustice and abuse.

Journalists often look for a “feel good” element to a story, particularly when reporting on distressing subjects. It makes sense. Why not try for a little positivity when there is enough bad news nowadays to sink us into overwhelming despair? As a Weinstein survivor, I’ve noticed that one positive spin journalists love to explore is a presumed solidarity among “sister survivors” – in our case, over 100 women who came forward publicly…

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