Tag Archives: genetic studies

Birth control just cold screwing up human evolution

11 May

Hey Mandy, were you wondering why Jason totally ignored you at the party last night? It’s because you’re on birth control! Oh you little slut, your slut plans have been interrupted. Jason can no longer “smell your pheromones” or whatever, and ironically you now have the best birth of control of all: hot guys won’t fuck you!

From the WSJ:

The females given the contraceptive became overall less appealing to the males than before getting the injection, says Christine Drea, a professor in Duke’s evolutionary anthropology department and senior author on the study. The contraceptive erased all the normal information the odor signals conveyed, she says.

That’s pretty terrifying, except that this was a study done on female lemurs. Scary news for lemurs on birth control!

What other horrible outcomes does hormonal birth control produce?

Research is still in the early stages to explore the implications of taking hormonal contraceptives for women’s choice of mates and for fidelity in relationships. Researchers speculate that women with less-masculine partners may become less interested in their partner when they come off birth control, contributing to relationship dissatisfaction. And, if contraceptives are masking women’s natural ability to detect genetic diversity, then the children produced by parents who met when the woman was on the pill may be less genetically healthy, they suggest.

Jesus, this just gets worse. So not only do you end up fucking Leonard, the skinny, high-voiced dude who was standing over in the corner of the party playing Angry Birds on his Android, but you’re going to end up bearing his weakling, half-wit spawn.

Can we take some comfort in the fact that the research is still in the “early stages” and might just be completely fucking wrong, or a totally incomplete picture? Sure, that should never stop us from all the fun of “speculating wildly” in order to help us remember and reinforce the narrative that women who exercise family planning are “going against nature.” It’s like they’re gays or something.

Meanwhile, “less-masculine men” should thank their fucking stars for The Pill. Make sure your girlfriend never stops taking it, or you can expect to come home and find her fucking Plumber Bob in some position you never even tried with her. And while you’re at it, also don’t forget that you should be looking in the mirror every day worrying whether you’re a “less-masculine” or a “more masculine” guy. Literally the future of the human race depends on this.

ELSEWHERE ON THE WEB:

  • CBS New York, an alleged actual journalism place, put out the most idiotic article possible about birth control (presumably about the study discussed in the WSJ article, but it makes no mention of that whatsoever, or of what study they are writing about). The brilliant headline: “Study: Hormonal Contraceptives May Take a Toll on Relationships.” The “journalistic approach” of “reporter” Derricke Dennis to this topic is to interview a bunch of random yahoos in the street and then one random doctor who had nothing to do with the study, the end.
  • An actual doctor, Margaret Polaneczky, wrote for the blog Read New York about why the sweeping generalizations in the WSJ article are bogus.
  • News of the lemur study actually appeared in July, 2010. This is the most recent study that the WSJ piece discusses, meaning that the article has absolutely no news peg whatsoever. It’s just a “look at all this stuff I googled and here’s what I’m going to say about it” piece. Good journalism!

Headline writers can confirm your stereotypes, say genetics

9 Feb

Social scientists from the University of Edinburgh have some exciting news for British headline writers: women are genetically 50% sweet, and men are genetically 80% dicks. Oh, headline writers, enjoy thy Wednesday-morning bounty!

“Women nice by nature, but for men it’s an effort” – Daily Mail Online

“Miss con-gene-iality” – Royal Society

“Genetic tests prove the fairer sex is kinder too” — The Independent

“Women found to have ‘nice’ gene” – Scotsman.com

And India just went ahead and skipped the “men are mean” angle and went for the “born a bitch” headline:

“Being nice or nasty is in women’s genes” – The Times of India

The study looked at 958 pairs of identical and non-identical twins and asked them a variety of questions about their feelings, such as “would you mind going to court to testify about an accident you witnessed?” Hint: if you answered no, you are probably a male because you are genetically more of an asshole.

I couldn’t read the full article because it is restricted to members of the Royal Society (here is the abstract), but I am left with a huge question: the scientists apparently thought the fact that twins being raised in the same household “controls” for environment, but how did they control for the gender-specific socialization that occurs from birth? We all know how often Brits can be found at the bottom of a bar stool under the shards of some broken pint glasses, but it’s probably safe to assume they could still tell the difference between their male and female twins enough to throw the dump truck and the barbie doll across the room in the right directions.