Feminists Can and Must Demand a Supreme Court Justice Who Answers on Roe

Donald Trump will soon announce his nominee to fill the Supreme Court seat Justice Kennedy will vacate later this month—and women’s rights are at stake.

Abortion rights activists outside of the Supreme Court. (Victoria Pickering / Creative Commons)

Trump ran on a platform of outlawing abortion and even once said women who obtain them should be “punished,” and his nominee will come from a list hand-picked by the anti-feminist, right-wing Federalist Society. Trump himself has said that he wouldn’t be asking his nominee about Roe—but his commitment to appointing anti-abortion and otherwise anti-woman judges to the bench at every level of the judiciary is apparent. It is not Trump and his associates or the Republican party members in the Senate who need Justices to disclose and be accountable to their views in hearings—it is the Americans impacted by their regressive interpretations of the law.

Trump has already successfully appointed one far-right Justice: Neil Gorsuch last year assumed the vacated seat of the late Antonin Scalia, which was left open due to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s outright refusal for an entire year to hold hearings on then-President Barack Obama’s nominee, Merick Garland. Gorsuch, who had a record of ruling in favor of corporations and against women’s rights, has already proven to be a staunchly conservative vote on the Court. In hearings, he refused to commit to a stance on Roe or even on Brown v. Board of Education.

A GOP-fostered lack of transparency in Supreme Court candidates has now become the norm—even as the rights of women, people of color and LGBT communities hang in the balance. Linda Greenhouse, winner of the Pulitzer Prize in Journalism and lecturer at Yale Law School, argued last week in the New York Times that Justice Gorsuch’s refusal to disclose his stance on past Supreme Court rulings was abnormal—and implores Democrats and Republicans to challenge rhetoric that inquiries about the views of Supreme Court nominees are somehow invasive.

With the future of the court—indeed, of the Constitution as we know it—now at stake, it’s urgent for the senators and the public to understand that Justice Gorsuch’s stonewalling of the Judiciary Committee was not consistent with historical practice and should not be viewed as a norm. Rather, it should be called out for what it was: a derogation of the democratic principle at the heart of Article III of the Constitution, the judiciary article that places the confirmation of life-tenured judicial nominees in the hands of the people’s representatives. Until recently, the modern confirmation process has assumed at least a modicum of substantive engagement between those representatives and the nominee.

Justice Gorsuch and his senatorial enablers based the claim that it would somehow be unethical for him to discuss his own views about the Constitution on something he and others referred to as the “Ginsburg rule.” Supposedly, during her 1993 confirmation hearing, then-Judge Ruth Bader Ginsburg refused to give meaningful answers to the senators’ questions. That is a myth. As the current documentary film “RBG” reminds us, she fully embraced the constitutional right to abortion. She was confirmed by a vote of 96 to 3.

Not only is there no “Ginsburg rule,” but the two Republican nominees who came after her, John G. Roberts Jr. and Samuel A. Alito, were both more forthcoming than Justice Gorsuch. While both fenced with the senators about Roe v. Wade and refused to be pinned down, they each accepted the holding in Griswold v. Connecticut, the crucial pre-Roe decision recognizing a right to privacy that gave married couples the constitutional right to contraception. “I feel comfortable commenting on Griswold and the result in Griswold,” then-Judge Roberts told Senator Herb Kohl, a Wisconsin Democrat, during his 2005 hearing, “because that does not appear to me to be an area that is going to come before the court again.” (Let’s hope that’s still the case.)

You can read the full piece here.

Anna Lipton is an editorial intern at Ms.

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The post Feminists Can and Must Demand a Supreme Court Justice Who Answers on <em>Roe</em> appeared first on Ms. Magazine Blog.

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Jeremy Wade: My Wet-and-Wild Search for Missing River Monsters…and Answers

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I have a confession to make: For nine years I made a TV show, River Monsters, that left some people believing that everywhere you go, there are fish that can bite pieces out of you or pull you under. But it’s not quite like that.

The fish are real enough—from dog-sized super-piranhas in the Congo to 300-pound river stingrays in South America, and armor-plated alligator gar in the U.S.—and you’d be well advised not to get too close to most of them. But the thing is, they’re really hard to find. So the chances of ever being in the wrong place at the wrong time are reassuringly small.

But (anglers would say) surely that’s the whole thing about big fish: They’re a lot smarter than small fish, and there aren’t so many of them. That’s true, but they haven’t always been as scarce as they are now. Fish have been in our rivers for 300 million years. This decline has happened in just a few human generations—the last 100 years.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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Russia Wants Answers Over Chechen Leader Ramzan Kadyrov’s Blocked Instagram

A Russian internet watchdog is demanding answers after Chechnya’s authoritarian leader Ramzan Kadyrov was apparently denied access to his Facebook and Instagram accounts. Kadyrov, who has been accused by numerous human-rights groups of assembling “concentration camps” of Russian LGBT people (and executing many of them), is accusing the U.S. government of pressuring the social-media giants to disable the accounts, which he claims were blocked over the weekend without any explanation. Watchdog Roskomnadzor said it intended to make an official request to the companies for more information. Kadyrov, who has more than 3 million followers on his Russian-language Instagram account, was hit last week with travel and financial sanctions from the U.S. over alleged human-rights abuses as part of Magnitsky Act rules. Kadyrov is steadfastly loyal to Russian President Vladimir Putin and has used his accounts to threaten critics of the Kremlin.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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The Knicks had just completed a first half that was … gee, what’s the word? Oh, right. Lousy. So coach Jeff Hornacek let his gang know, collectively and individually. “We came in here, watched film and coach kind of got on me,” Courtney Lee said. “I really didn’t like what was being said.” And what…
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Silicon Valley Answers to Congress Amid the Russia Probe: The Daily Show

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New ‘Back to the Future’ Comic Book Answers Burning Questions

New 'Back to the Future' Comic Book Answers Burning Questions

Answers? Where the Back to the Future franchise is going, we don't need answers.

But we're getting them anyway! And they should be fun nonetheless. While fans will likely never see another sequel to the 1985 time-travel classic, there have been new comic book series depicting "untold stories and alternate timelines" and more. Another one will apparently be even more tied to the original trilogy. 

According to Bob Gale, who wrote the movies and now works…

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BabyCenter Book Club: A bunch of questions and your answers

by

Maggie Downs

posted in Life

The first time I heard about How Not to Hate Your Husband After Kids, I was at the park. While my son was diving down the slide with some other kids, a mother I don’t know well initiated a conversation and asked if I had read it.

The woman was French, and I thought something must’ve been lost in translation. A book called How Not to Hate Your Husband After Kids? The title was so blunt, so funny, so honest. It couldn’t possibly be real.

Turns out the book is most definitely real, and the French woman was right. (As French women so often are.) I picked up a copy and was immediately engaged with the narrative, which is part-memoir, part-self help, all-necessary for my life at this point in time.

Um, just look at how many page flags I have in my copy.

The cover of How Not to Hate Your Husband After Kids, including yellow and purple page flags sticking out of the side of the book

 

How Not to Hate Your Husband After Kids details the story of journalist Jancee Dunn, her sometimes clueless husband, and their efforts to salvage the marriage after the birth of their daughter. Dunn contacts some of the country’s best thinkers, researchers and helpers – from marriage counselors to sex therapists, even an FBI hostage negotiator.

I assumed the book would be a lighthearted and frothy look at how relationships change after the arrival of a baby, but what I found instead was far richer and more nuanced than anything I expected. This is a unflinching dive into the lives of two people who have made themselves vulnerable, plus the steps they took to repair their marriage. Dunn lays it all out for the reader, including the research and science to support it all, so similar techniques can be implemented by anyone who needs them.

Here’s Dunn and her husband, Tom.

A Caucasian couple, Tom and Jancee, both wearing dark colored shirts and standing under a tree, arms wrapped around each other.

 

I selected this book for the inaugural BabyCenter Book Club for that reason. Not only is this an entertaining read, it’s a profoundly helpful one.

I’d like to kick this off by posing a few different questions about the book. Answer in the comments – and feel free to ask your own questions too. I’d love to hear responses from other readers.

  • Dunn wrote about some concepts that I had never heard of before, like the FBI hostage negotiator’s seven techniques of active listening or her Exit-the-Dragon strategy to cool her temper in the midst of an argument. Did any of these concepts resonate with you? Did you learn some devices that you can put to use in your own relationship?
  • Sometimes so much of my focus is on my child, I neglect seeing the cracks in my relationship with my partner. Did you see your own life reflected in any of the arguments that Dunn had with her husband? (Confession: I realized I’m a big-time maternal gatekeeper here. I tend to brush aside my husband’s attempts to help, because I falsely believe I can do it better, faster, correctly.)
  • Dunn explores other facets of parenting that I didn’t even realize were contributing to issues with my husband and child – things like time management, chore distribution, finances, and clutter. Which areas could use some improvement in your own household? Did the author explore any strategies or tips that you found helpful?
  • What did you think of this book overall? Is it something you would recommend to other couples? Pregnant friends? New parents?

Next week I will post a Q&A with Jancee Dunn about the process of writing the book, the techniques that had lasting power, and how things stand now. Stay tuned!

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Jenny Mollen Hoping for a ‘Miracle’ After Brother’s Hospitalization: ‘As Far as Answers Go, We Have None’

Jenny Mollen‘s brother has been hospitalized, the actress revealed in a lengthy personal essay published by Marie Claire on Monday.

“This was a very hard piece to write but a story I wanted to share,” she prefaced on Instagram. “A little over a month ago, my family suffered a devastating blow when my older brother landed in the hospital. It’s my hope that this piece serve not just as an account of what transpired but also an explanation to all our friends who have questions and concerns. If you know any of the people involved, please respect the fragile state we are all in and resist asking how things are going. When there is a major change, trust that my father will be shouting it off his roof top.”

In the essay, Jenny, 38, traces through the backstory of her relationship with her half-brother Brad Mollen, 45, before taking readers through his ongoing health crisis in detail: Brad, whom she described as her “health nut of a Spartan-racing, selfie-taking sibling,” was first driven to the emergency room after complaining of dizziness.

“After several minutes, he went unconscious,” she recalled. “A team of doctors descended, but nobody could figure out what was happening. It was clear he had an infection, but what, how, and why was uncertain. The ER was flummoxed.”

An echocardiogram was ordered and doctors discovered a tumor “the size of a racquetball” in Brad’s left atrial valve.

“An atrial myxoma is a rare non-cancerous tumor that grows on the heart and, if caught, can be easily removed. In my brother’s case, however, the tumor was infected with a secondary staph infection, causing it to become friable and throw off little blood clots to his extremities,” Jenny explained, noting that Brad suffered between 11 and 15 mini strokes.

After undergoing surgery to have the tumor removed, Brad woke up to temporary paralysis on the left side of his body and the inability to speak, swallow, or open his right eye.

“He couldn’t verbalize what he was feeling and instead made sounds that pierced straight through me,” wrote Jenny. “Chilling, guttural howls that reminded me of that scene in the movie Blackfish when they separate the mother Shamu from her baby.”

The hospital inserted a feeding tube, but 24 hours later his white blood cell count was up to 28,000. As it turns out, the tube wasn’t inserted correctly and was leaking fluid into the rest of his body. He was rushed to a second hospital where an emergency laparoscopy was performed to clean out his insides and replace the tube.

“My plane touched down in Phoenix just as they were closing my brother’s stomach back up,” recalls Jenny. “When I walked into the hospital, I found my dad pacing in the waiting room, trying to make sense of the series of events. … None of our questions had answers, making it that much harder to stop asking them.”

Brad, non-responsive, was moved to the ICU.

“I touched his hand, told him I was there, and gave him s— about shaving his arms — a fact I hadn’t realized until that moment,” she wrote. “I know he could hear me. I know if he could speak he would have been inquiring about how his new scars would make him look in a bathing suit. Reading his mind, I assured him that the incisions were thin and that I would get him to the best laser guy as soon as he was ready.”

Since everyone recovers from strokes differently, there’s “no definitive prognosis” for Brad — something Jenny admits she and her family are struggling with.

“The parade of specialists, hospitalists, residents, and nurses treating him seem like Vegas palm readers, spouting theories and hunches that only lead to confusion and further despair,” she said. “For my dad — the doctor with all the answers, the father of three healthy children — this not knowing has been unbearable. This isn’t something he can diagnose, understand, or simply exercise away. Every day is a fight to maintain Brad’s dignity and care. But as far as answers go, we have none.”

Jenny admitted that after “so may years of stability,” Brad’s health crisis has left the family in shock — largely because they had been so “confident in the notion that nothing that bad could happen.”

“There’s this unspoken assumption when you’re the child of a doctor that nothing is ever wrong with you — or at least nothing horrendous enough to warrant your father leaving work,” she said. “Sure, there had been appendicitis, tonsillitis, car accidents, premature births, broken bones, and botched Botox, but for the most part we were a healthy family with good genes and disciplined fitness regimens.”

Throughout the essay, Jenny also touched on her many differences from Brad.

“Despite all his charisma, Brad is the type of guy I’d instantly vote out of my Bachelorette mansion,” she said. “Not because he wouldn’t be super fun to picnic with on a pile of custom Chris Harrison pillows, but because he’s a self-admitted chauvinist, the kind of Neanderthal man I could picture clubbing a woman over the head and dragging back to his cave to cook and make babies. And though we do share the same body dysmorphia, tendency to over analyze, and need for approval from strangers on Instagram, the only bond that truly ties us is our love for our father.”

Sitting at his hospital bedside, Jenny said she started thinking about the future and what it held — “if he’d recover or if he wouldn’t.”

“I made peace with the circumstances by convincing myself that if he got better, maybe this would give him a new life purpose and direction,” she said. “Maybe he’d become a motivational speaker, a physical therapist, or an advocate for stroke victims worldwide. If he didn’t recover completely, maybe it would actually improve our relationship: I could invite him on vacation, throw a sombrero on his head, a beer in his good hand, and pretend he agreed with all my feminist views.”

“A very bad thing happened to my brother,” Jenny concluded, “and all I can do is wait, hope for a miracle, and pray the moment comes when he sits up and thanks me for totally maintaining his Invisalign.”

A GoFundMe has been set up to help Brad and his family.


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Toddler Invites Reddit To Ask Him Anything, And His Answers Rule

Some of the things that fly out of a toddler’s mouth are straight-up comedy gold.

Matthew Clark, a 27-year-old dad from Texas, is keenly aware of this. Especially since he has an imaginative 3-year-old son named Caleb, who he says is a bit of a know-it-all.

“I can ask him what 2+2 is and if he says 10, I can’t convince him otherwise,” Clark told the Huffington Post.

Recently, Clark saw some AMAs that piqued his interest. AMA stands for “Ask Me Anything,” on the content-sharing platform Reddit. Celebrities or people with notable jobs or life experience use AMAs to answer questions asked by Reddit users. But Clark noticed that regular people were also creating AMAs, and he thought it would be funny if an AMA featured Caleb.

“He’s always been funny and creative with his answers to things so I knew he would be good with random questions,” Clark explained to HuffPost.

On April 13, Clark created an AMA for Caleb with his own Reddit username, MyUnAlteredMind. People began to ask him all kinds of questions.

Needless to say, Caleb’s answers were pretty interesting.

Clark said he conducted the AMA by asking Caleb the questions and then typing his son’s responses.

“I just told him some people had questions and they needed help with the answers,” Clark told HuffPost. “Things went fine during it. He had his moments when his favorite cartoons came on and he didn’t want to answer as much, so we just let him be.”

But for the most part Caleb was a good sport.

At times he even got kind of deep.

Caleb even had a favorite question. Someone asked him about his favorite book and it definitely distracted him from watching his cartoons.

Clark said that after a while Caleb got a little cranky.

“He answered a lot and then slowly became annoyed when asked too many so we had to slow it down or just not ask any,” Clark said.

But Caleb still let loose a few gems.

All in all, Caleb’s AMA was a hit on Reddit, receiving more than a thousand comments.

“I think people responded the way they did because deep down we all love silly answers and reminisce when life was magical and not just black and white,” Clark said. “We miss what only children can experience.”

Plus, Caleb just happens to be pretty cool.

That’s right, kid.

— This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

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WATCH: Embracing the Mystery (Not Having All the Answers)

It can be very frustrating when we don’t know what to do… how to handle certain situations… what the future might bring. But, that’s how life is sometimes – we’re never going to know everything (unless you are Dr. Bernofsky…). So, we can let that be a source of energy-draining upset, or we can accept it. Maybe even embrace it. I hope this will help you do so.

If you are new to tapping, it will be beneficial to also watch the first episode in the “Tap Out Your Fears” series — which explains the basics of EFT — click here.

As with any of my tapping videos, this is an abbreviated process for releasing uncomfortable feelings and enhancing good ones. Some folks may find their fear dissolve after just one tapping session, but for others, it will take some repetition, bringing the discomfort down little by little each time. (Still others may uncover specific issues that are best addressed directly with a wellness practitioner.) In any event, this brief video should help at least take the edge off the discomfort, freeing you up to enjoy life much more. Let us know how it helped you!

For a picture of the tapping points — and more info on EFT — click here.

Tapping can sometimes bring up long-buried emotions, which is why I state that, before tapping along, folks must take full responsibility for their own well-being. For more information about that, please read this disclaimer.

Until next time, feel free to tap along with any of the many videos I have on YouTube or the many recordings I have at www.TapWithBrad.com.

For EFT with kids, please visit: www.TheWizardsWish.com.

For more by Brad Yates, click here.

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Lauren Conrad Answers All Your Pressing Wedding Style Questions

You don’t need to be on Pinterest to get a ton of style, cooking and decorating inspiration. You just need to follow Lauren Conrad on Instagram. And if you’re a bride-to-be, then LC is like the ultimate wedding fairy. The designer recently opened up at Martha Stewart’s Wedding Party event in Chicago (alongside the Martha Stewart Weddings Editorial Director Darcy Miller) about the do’s and don’ts of bridal party dressing, the inspiration behind her Paper Crown bridesmaids dress collection and the totally amazing gift she gave to guests at her September 2014 nuptials to William Tell. (Brides, you should probably bookmark this immediately.)
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Single on Thanksgiving? Here Are Quick Answers to Your Relatives’ Most Annoying Questions

The questions arise when you’re passing the potatoes or putting out the nut cups. Are you seeing anyone special? Playing the field? When are you going to settle down?

Singles are often grilled about their personal lives in a way their married relations rarely are. When was the last time your sister and brother-in-law were asked to defend their “married lifestyle” to a table of 12?

Most of the time, the inquisitors don’t mean to make their single relations uncomfortable. They’re just curious, and maybe a little concerned. But they can still drive even the most self-possessed singleton to the cocktail cart. So, here are a few conversational exit strategies to some of the holiday’s most irritating questions.

What They Say: “Why are you single?”

What They Mean: “You’re a very appealing person, so clearly, this is a choice you’ve made.”

What You Hear: “What’s wrong with you?”

How to Respond: “I don’t know.”

This might sound weird, but I find it’s the easiest answer. Otherwise, you’re likely to start dissecting all of your psychological eccentricities, musing about whether you’re too picky or too independent, slowly shredding your dignity like a cocktail napkin. “I don’t know” stops the conversation.

What They Say: “Are you seeing anyone special?”

What They Mean: “I’m curious about your life.”

What You Hear: “Prove that you’re not a lost cause.”

How to Respond: “Not at the moment.”

Again, short and light is key. The temptation might be to give a passionate speech about how amazing your solo life is and assure your curious relative that you’re too busy with work and friends to even think about dating. That’s fine if it’s true, but oftentimes we give the “too busy” speech as a hedge against pity, bending over backwards to assure family members that our lives are deeply fulfilling, non-stop fun or both. That’s too much work, and it can also send the wrong message. Who knows? Your cousin might have a cute neighbor or co-worker she wants to introduce you to. “Not at the moment” leaves you open, but also assures your relatives that you’re not worried about your romantic future, so they shouldn’t be either.

What They Say: “Aren’t you afraid you’ll spend the rest of your life alone?”

What They Mean: “Because the idea scares the crap out of me.”

What You Hear: “I’m looking into your future, and I see a cranky hoarder with 35 cats.”

How To Respond: “I’d be more worried about spending the rest of my life with the wrong person.”

Being alone is a big fear for a lot of people, which is why many choose to settle for mediocre relationships. You may not always love being alone, but if you have been on your own for a while, then clearly, you’re not afraid of it. This is not necessarily true for the person passing you the cranberry sauce.

But again, be gentle and avoid righteous speeches, since they rarely take dinner table talk to a good place. And remember, there is one guaranteed way to change the subject: Stop answering so many questions about your life, and start asking others questions about theirs.

Sara Eckel is the author of  It’s Not You: 27 (Wrong) Reasons You’re Single. You can get a free bonus chapter of her book at saraeckel.com. You can also find her on Twitter and Facebook.

This post originally appeared on eHarmony.com.
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Questions and Answers: A Guide to Fitness and Wellness

Questions and Answers: A Guide to Fitness and Wellness


Questions and Answers: A Guide to Fitness and Wellness delivers the serious content you want in a Student Question and Answer format that’s fun to read and an online learning space that commands active learning. We began by collecting over 1,000 Fitness and Wellness questions asked by real students. Questions like, “How can I improve my self-esteem?” or “Do I really need 8 glasses of water a day?” introduce each section of material throughout the program. With its series of assignable videos that debunk common health and fitness myths (“Sit Ups Make Your Stomach Flatter” or “Marijuana gives you munchies”), Questions and Answers: A Guide to Fitness and Wellness grabs hold of students’ attention and doesn’t let go. The real-life behavior change case study videos found online provide students with unmatched relevance. Students click, watch, and learn as they follow real college students attempting to change their behavior for an entire semester, and hopefully for life. With its online fitness assessments, assignable interactive animations, and online labs, Questions and Answers: A Guide to Fitness and Wellness engages students like no other fitness and wellness program.
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Questions and Answers: A Guide to Fitness and Wellness, 2nd Edition

Questions and Answers: A Guide to Fitness and Wellness, 2nd Edition


Questions and Answers: A Guide to Fitness and Wellness delivers the serious content you want in a Student Question and Answer format that’s fun to read and an online learning space that commands active learning. We began by collecting over 1,000 Fitness and Wellness questions asked by real students. Questions like, “How can I improve my self-esteem?” or “Do I really need 8 glasses of water a day?” introduce each section of material throughout the program. With its series of assignable videos that debunk common health and fitness myths (“Sit Ups Make Your Stomach Flatter” or “Marijuana gives you munchies”), Questions and Answers: A Guide to Fitness and Wellness grabs hold of students’ attention and doesn’t let go. The real-life behavior change case study videos found online provide students with unmatched relevance. Students click, watch, and learn as they follow real college students attempting to change their behavior for an entire semester, and hopefully for life. With its online fitness assessments, assignable interactive animations, and online labs, Questions and Answers: A Guide to Fitness and Wellness engages students like no other fitness and wellness program.
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