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Comment Archives: stories: News & Views: Straight Dope

Re: “Can air injected into the bloodstream really kill you?

I had a friend who was a junkie and when I asked if he had to be careful when he was hitting up not to inject air, he said it was more important to "get it all." He wanted me to shoot up too, but I passed.

Posted by John W Shreve on 02/18/2014 at 10:40 PM

Re: “Are transsexuals mentally ill?

I find it interesting that several of those who responded to this journalist revelation have no transgender friends or association with transgender persons. To be socially ostracized is alarming for anyone, regardless of sexual orientation, gender, ethnicity, religion or anything else that ignorance has chosen to label one with. Statistics are numbers that apply to those who are looking for numbers. Beyond that are real human lives that have journeyed in their own shoes with the cards that have been dealt. There have and always will be different personalities that can deal, while others look for crutches to mask their pain. Until we learn to show respect and empathy to those who are struggling to find their place in society, they will continue to look for their happiness until the day they are no longer a part of this World. The Napoleon comment was way unnecessary and frankly very disrespectful to those of us who are far from mentally ill or confused about who we are. The previous responder had many good things to say, which are more of the reality of what we "Transgender" folk go through. I knew from the earliest age of understanding that something wasn't right with my physical...not mental...being. By the time I left for college, I finally had an epiphany that my physical sexual organ could be corrected to align my body with my mental state. I have a sibling that was born with a cleft lip and pallet and went through countless surgeries through the years to make her like everyone else. My gender reassignment was no different than this. Transsexuals are required to have psychological evaluations and to live in their new physical gender for a period of time to make certain that they are truly candidates for the SRS surgery. There are successful outcomes and there are also those who are not successful. The success is greatly accomplished from acceptance of themselves and others. I was 24 when I had my final SRS surgery. I had been shunned by my family and completely on my own. I knew then that my contentment in life was in my hands. A few years later, my family came to understand and recognize that I was still the same warm, loving, funny, and beautiful soul that they always knew. I am now 55 and have never regretted my decision for a minute. I will not lie and say that things were always perfect, for I had to deal with the occasional stupidity of man kind which is way more of a mental disorder than I have ever had. The thing that I find most interesting is that this forum is in "Creative Loafing" which is supposedly a very liberal and unbiased paper for all of God's Creatures. Those who claim to be liberal are the first to point fingers and are accepting of only the things that work for them. If there was ever a discriminated group of persons, then it is the Transgendered. I challenge all who may read this to really come to know someone who is Transsexual. You may be pleasantly surprised and nurtured from what they have to offer from their personal trials and tribulations.

Posted by Shannon Lummert-Helmer on 11/25/2013 at 8:56 PM

Re: “Are transsexuals mentally ill?

Maybe to clarify things, there should be a differentiation between "unhappiness" and "pain". It makes sense to me that in all cases where humans suffer pain long-term they will likely be unhappy. It also seems instinct from the day we are born we cry out if we feel discomfort. As a baby, this is the closest behavior that represents human nature that we will ever see before we are socialized to get our needs met through socially acceptable means. It's well known that there are 2 main reasons people seem to do something: 1) Pleasure- seeking 2) Pain Avoidance...which by the way differentiates the crossdresser/ transvestite that receive pleasure (excluding guilt) from engaging in things that are considered stereotypically opposite to their assigned gender (on the outside appearance). For a transsexual it seems like a painful experience and they become unhappy with their external organs and attempt to alleviate that by taking hormones and undergoing the necessary surgury.
Its seems to me it would be much like having a 3rd partial arm that is unuseful and physically unpleasing to them and others (not to mention they are laughed at, spitted on, discriminated against, abandoned by family and in some cases murdered;that is of course they don't suicide themselves first). Many people that are transsexual hate themselves for being who they feel they are (refer to internalized transphobia). Here is some questions i invite anyone to ask themselves...Why do they hate themselves? Did they hate themselves at 5 years old when many had their first memories of who they felt they were? If not, At what point did transsexuals start hating themselves? when did it become a disorder? How can a person really have an identity a disorder, when identity is who you feel you are in the first place? If a women is in a stereotypically male occupation such as engineering does she have and occupational identity disorder? Why is there differences in autopsies of transsexual's brains (wiki brain BSTc for more)? How can thalidomide (chemicals) during fetal development cause birth incongruency with natural DNA, but excessive stress hormones (chemicals) couldn't)? Would society ever tolerate the level of discrimination transsexuals experience with any other birth defect like autism, downs syndrome, or children of thalidomide? If in fact people who are transsexual are not born that way and get surgeries for cosmetic reasons... how is that different with people getting plastic surgeries and the ever popular hair transplant....not to mention any modification that could be made by dieting or working out a gym with weights and taking supplements. Should these people be labeled as mentally ill? Arn't they unhappy with something about themselves too? Are they just trying to be happy too? Should people who modify their body like Arnold Swartznegger get checked for narcissism and histrionic personality disorder before determing wheter he could have made steps to hyper-masculinate his body? Why does every genetic trait besides gender have a variation (hair, skin, eyes, face shape, height, predispositions)? I'm wondering if we should take it easy on transsexual's as they are just trying to accomplish the same goals as you an I, to be loved and accepted as well as to secure food, clothing, and love in the pursuit of health, happiness, and prosperity. In my opinion we have much larger things to be concerned about like genocide and poverty to be concerned about how others feel comortable living their lives. My final thought is a quote: "it's no measure of health to be well-adjusted to a profoundly sick society." ~Krishnamurti

Posted by Food_For_Thought on 11/25/2013 at 3:37 PM

Re: “Are transsexuals mentally ill?

Maybe to clarify things, maybe there should be a differentiation between "unhappiness" and "pain". It makes sense to me that in all cases where humans suffer pain long-term they will likely be unhappy. It also seems instinct from the day we are born we cry out if we feel discomfort. As a baby, this is the closest behavior that represents human nature that we will ever see before we are socialized to get our needs met through socially acceptable means. It's well known that there are 2 main reasons people seem to do something: 1) Pleasure- seeking 2) Pain Avoidance...which by the way differentiates the crossdresser/ transvestite that receive pleasure (excluding guilt) from engaging in things that are considered stereotypically opposite to their assigned gender (on the outside appearance). For a transsexual it seems like a painful experience and they become unhappy with their external organs and attempt to alleviate that by taking hormones and undergoing the necessary surgury.
Its seems to me it would be much like having a 3rd partial arm that is unuseful and physically unpleasing to them and others (not to mention they are laughed at, spitted on, discriminated against, abandoned by family and in some cases murdered;that is of course they don't suicide themselves first). Many people that are transsexual hate themselves for being who they feel they are (refer to internalized transphobia). Here is some questions i invite anyone to ask themselves...Why do they hate themselves? Did they hate themselves at 5 years old when many had their first memories of who they felt they were? If not, At what point did transsexuals start hating themselves? when did it become a disorder? How can a person really have an identity a disorder, when identity is who you feel you are in the first place? If a women is in a stereotypically male occupation such as engineering does she have and occupational identity disorder? Why is there differences in autopsies of transsexual's brains (wiki brain BSTc for more)? How can thalidomide (chemicals) during fetal development cause birth incongruency with natural DNA, but excessive stress hormones (chemicals) couldn't)? Would society ever tolerate the level of discrimination transsexuals experience with any other birth defect like autism, downs syndrome, or children of thalidomide? If in fact people who are transsexual are not born that way and get surgeries for cosmetic reasons... how is that different with people getting plastic surgeries and the ever popular hair transplant....not to mention any modification that could be made by dieting or working out a gym with weights and taking supplements. Should these people be labeled as mentally ill? Arn't they unhappy with something about themselves too? Are they just trying to be happy too? Should people who modify their body like Arnold Swartznegger get checked for narcissism and histrionic personality disorder before determing wheter he could have made steps to hyper-masculinate his body? Why does every genetic trait besides gender have a variation (hair, skin, eyes, face shape, height, predispositions)? I'm wondering if we should take it easy on transsexual's as they are just trying to accomplish the same goals as you an I, to be loved and accepted as well as to secure food, clothing, and love in the pursuit of health, happiness, and prosperity. In my opinion we have much larger things to be concerned about like genocide and poverty to be concerned about how others feel comortable living their lives. My final thought is a quote: "it's no measure of health to be well-adjusted to a profoundly sick society." ~Krishnamurti

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by Food_For_Thought on 11/25/2013 at 3:33 PM

Re: “Can I avoid paying a tax bill by writing 'accepted for value' on it?

What on Earth is a 'citizen', let alone a 'Sovereign citizen'?


A Sovereign is a feudal position. A Citizen, is.... well..... actually I dont know. It probably is some sort of label that is associated with the 'Society' fiction.

Humans are almst always slaves - its just the way that the State (feudalism) has to function.

0 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Koddswallopp on 05/18/2013 at 5:56 PM

Re: “How sharp are katanas?

Richtig was a prick for doing that.

Posted by Jesse James Giswold on 02/22/2013 at 9:59 AM

Re: “Is marijuana stronger than it used to be?

Potency is a red herring. Average use today may be of marijuana that is about 2 to 3 times as potent as decades ago but users simply use less to get the same effect with less smoke. Even 30 years ago, much more potent strains than are normally used today were available, but were seldom used. As with alcohol and tobacco, users generally prefer milder versions.

http://bigbudsmag.com/grow/article/marijua…

Posted by Lousie Thomas on 02/04/2013 at 4:36 AM

Re: “Were Christians really thrown to the lions?

The owls are not what they seem.

Posted by oydave on 12/03/2012 at 11:46 PM

Re: “Were Christians really thrown to the lions?

NO!
"Christians" is the modern sense, most definately did NOT get thrown to lions in Rome!
THEY DID NOT EXIST IN ANCIENT ROME!
Monotheistic sun worship was popular in Rome and these monotheistic eastern sun worshippers are what get called "christians" in ancient Rome,they have in fact NO CONNECTION WITH MESSIANIC JUDAISM ,which is the belief system we call christianity today
http://cuthulan.wordpress.com/2009/09/02/t…
Constantine the Great was a monotheistic sun worshiper,there is NO evidence that his mother was a "christian".In 321, Constantine instructed that "Christians"(sun worshipping monotheists) and non-Christians(Rome pagan gods) should be united in observing the venerable day of the sun, referencing the esoteric eastern sun-worship which Aurelian had helped introduce. Furthermore, and long after his oft alleged "conversion" to Christianity, Constantine's coinage continued to carry the symbols of the sun, even after the pagan gods had disappeared from the coinage. Even when Constantine dedicated the new capital of Constantinople, which became the seat of Byzantine Christianity for a millennium, he did so wearing the Apollonian sun-rayed Diadem; no Christian symbols were present at this dedication.The Council of Niceae was NOT to form a christian creed BUT to form a Roman State Religion and many gods where debated, Mithras and Asian zoraostrainism where the main influences .This is a documented fact and is proven by the coins that where minted after 325AD baring Constantine on one side and Sol Invictus on the other.
EXAMPLE
QUOTE
"Tertullian doesn't claim he witnessed any martyrdoms-by-lion personally, and anyway he was a Christian himself."

Tertullian was an Asian zoroastrian influenced monotheist not a "christian"
Quintus Septimius Florens Tertullianus, anglicised as Tertullian (c. 160 – c. 225 AD)
He is the first Christian author to produce an extensive corpus of Latin Christian literature.
He wrote his trinitarian formula after becoming a Montanist. Montanism originated in Phrygia, a province of Asia Minor, and flourished throughout the region, leading to the movement being referred to elsewhere as Cataphrygian (meaning it was "from Phrygia") or simply as "Phrygians". It spread rapidly to other regions in the Roman Empire at a time before Christianity was generally tolerated or legal. However, unlike many Church fathers, he was never canonized by the Catholic Church, as several of his later teachings directly contradicted the actions and teachings of the apostles.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tertullian

Actually ALL Abrahamic monotheism is just origianl fascism.
Invented by men with greed in thier hearts and swords in their hands,
Cyrus the Great for judaism ,
http://cuthulan.wordpress.com/2009/09/02/t…
Constantine the Great for christianity
http://cuthulan.wordpress.com/2009/09/02/t…
and Othman the 3rd Caliph for islam.
http://cuthulan.wordpress.com/2009/09/02/t…

Posted by Cuthulan on 12/03/2012 at 5:02 PM

Re: “Did the Middle Ages not really happen?

No, Dave's not here.

Posted by oddball on 09/21/2012 at 9:58 AM

Re: “Does castration = longer life?

@zelot: How, precisely, am I irresponsible? All of my pets are spayed or neutered, and I've never had one get hit by a car.

I've worked at an animal shelter and rescued more dogs and cats than you ever will; the people who claim they're going to make sure their non-neutered/non-spayed animal won't get loose are always the ones who show up at shelters with litters of puppies or kittens that they hadn't planned on.

Just do us all a favor and don't have another pet.

Posted by J to the G on 09/06/2012 at 11:38 AM

Re: “Does castration = longer life?

J to the G: you are an the idiot, because you think that everyone is irresponsible as you are.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by zelot on 09/02/2012 at 10:03 PM

Re: “Does castration = longer life?

@zelot: You're an idiot - just remember that when you're begging animal shelters to take the puppies you didn't want to have and have no means/intention of taking care of. Also, if you want your dog to live longer, don't let it run around outside unrestrained.

1 like, 1 dislike
Posted by J to the G on 08/31/2012 at 11:35 AM

Re: “Does castration = longer life?

I decide not to have my new female dog fixed, because I had my old female dog (which was kill by a car) fixed and at that time I said to myself; I would never put another female dog through that pain, I will go through the pain of taking care of things two months out of the year.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by zelot on 08/31/2012 at 10:03 AM

Re: “Are transsexuals mentally ill?

"Categorization of persons is part of our evolution."

yes, but i was talking about the accuracy of such categorizations. i wasn't describing their origin or purpose. human beings naturally organize information into a mental framework but that doesn't mean the categorizations are accurate. we think tall people are capable and that tomatoes are vegetables

1 like, 3 dislikes
Posted by eric pfeifer on 08/20/2012 at 12:13 PM

Re: “Are transsexuals mentally ill?

"gender 'disorders' are based in the erroneous human need to neatly categorize people who fall on a spectrum."

Categorization of persons is part of our evolution. Unless you plan to rewire the encoding of the human mind it will exist at the least through the rest of our lifetimes, and quite likely much longer.

4 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Voxpopuli on 08/20/2012 at 12:03 PM

Re: “Are transsexuals mentally ill?

gender 'disorders' are based in the erroneous human need to neatly categorize people who fall on a spectrum. there's really no such thing as man or woman - there are males with male traits, males with mixed traits, males with female traits, vice versa - there are even people of no sex/gender, or mixed sex/gender. there's no reason we should try to impose a false dichotomy on people

" i don't know anyone personally that is transgender (that i know of)— do transgender individuals have the operation and then decide to be "straight" in their new gender, for example would they change from a male to a female, and then date men? or do some change from male to female, and then carry on lesbian relationships?"

it depends on the person

first off, i'll be using the terms sex and gender. sex means the physical genital attributes of a person - if you have a penis, or vagina, or some combination, and the hormones and body structures that go along with that. gender is your relative quantity of 'femaleness' or 'maleness' or both or neither.

sex and gender are not the same thing! also, they both exist on a spectrum. i can be a big burly manly man but also like 'feminine things' like makeup and fashionable clothes and little dogs and that's ok. i can be the nicest dressed dude at the logging camp. it's my life to live as i please

brains are sexed. brain structure can be 'male' or 'female' or both. this structure impacts the gender of a person. but, brain sex does not always match physical sex. it's possible to be born with a female brain in a male body. depending on the individual's brain structure and the breadth of the brain/body discrepancy, this can result in trans/cisgender 'disorders' where a person literally feels uncomfortable in their own skin. therapy, hormone treatments, and surgery can assist a person in modifying their body to better match how they fundamentally, deeply, feel about themselves

it's important to note that these gender issues are decoupled from sexuality. there is a common myth that trans/cisgendered people are just perverts. but just because sex is involved does not imply that sexuality is the root cause. it's about self-perception and self-esteem

so, back to your original question. since gender issues and sexuality are decoupled, then it follows that being transgender does not necessarily make you homo, hetero, bi, or any other sort of sexuality. there is some correlation, because the hormone/genetic factors which trigger transgenderism overlap to some degree with those that determine sexuality. but is a person born with a straight male brain in a female body really a lesbian?

" it's not that i'm not accepting, it's that i'm not sure that they don't have another underlying problem. for example a bisexual person might just be obsessed with sex or maybe decided to "try out" being gay. honestly i don't understand bisexualism, to me it just says that you aren't going to be satisfied unless you have both, which rules out monogamy. "

sexual identity is fluid. think of it like politics - democrat and republican are artificial labels we construct to attempt to group like-minded people. some people are strong democrats, some people are weak republicans, some people are centrists or independents.

the same is true for human sexuality. some people are strong hetero - basically uninterested in same-sex encounters. some people are more towards the center - they don't pursue same-sex, but might not say no if they're horny and like someone. some people (bisexuals) are in the middle, and don't care either way. some people are asexual, some people only like petite sassy latinas, etc. so on. human sexuality is weird

also your logic doesn't follow re: "which rules out monogamy". bisexuality doesn't preclude monogamy. it just means that you could be in a committed relationship with a man or a woman. being sexually fluid doesn't mean that you're unsatisfied if you only screw people of one sex in a given period of time. it's not like bisexuals have a quota or anything

"wanting to have multiple sex partners, eschewing monogamy, having to have surgery to "correct" the body you were born with— i sympathise with these people, i really do. but i don't think it should be something we as a society want to promote."

these are two distinct concepts you're confusing here

a person can have multiple sex partners without being a bad person, or without being monogamous. monogamy is a state of mind and a negotiated condition in a relationship, not a law. trans/cisgenderism is a gender issue, not a sexual issue. and if anything, society should promote freedom of expression and acceptance of how an individual chooses to define their gender

1 like, 3 dislikes
Posted by eric pfeifer on 08/20/2012 at 11:26 AM

Re: “Are transsexuals mentally ill?

i'm not sure. i guess it's different than being gay, it's not that you're attracted to the same sex necessarily, but that you feel that you are the wrong gender? i don't know anyone personally that is transgender (that i know of)— do transgender individuals have the operation and then decide to be "straight" in their new gender, for example would they change from a male to a female, and then date men? or do some change from male to female, and then carry on lesbian relationships?

call me close-minded or whatever, but i'm accepting of gay and lesbian couples, but when it comes to bisexual and transgender— it's not that i'm not accepting, it's that i'm not sure that they don't have another underlying problem. for example a bisexual person might just be obsessed with sex or maybe decided to "try out" being gay. honestly i don't understand bisexualism, to me it just says that you aren't going to be satisfied unless you have both, which rules out monogamy.

the reason i say i'm still accepting is because i don't want to pass laws against people who want to do this sort of thing, but i'm not sure it should be societally encouraged to have multiple sex partners— if you want to do that, whatever, but it's like alcoholism.

to me two gay people wanting the right to marry the love of their lives is one thing— if you're gay, you can't change that and society should accept that.

wanting to have multiple sex partners, eschewing monogamy, having to have surgery to "correct" the body you were born with— i sympathise with these people, i really do. but i don't think it should be something we as a society want to promote.

2 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by kiteless on 08/20/2012 at 2:59 AM

Re: “Is a cruise ship a cheap alternative to an old folks' home?

"But the day will come when we'll aspire to nothing grander than the comfort of friends and family and a quiet place to sit."
Kind of depressing lol

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by presvinay on 06/21/2012 at 1:05 PM

Re: “Was Jesus copied from the Egyptian god Horus?

Rewriting a character in "more realistic terms" makes the story less of a fable? Okay.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by Georgie Edward Hill on 06/12/2012 at 12:35 AM

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