The Politics of Hormones: Here We Go Again
It’s hard to believe that in an age where we can have “Face Time” with our iPhone® contacts, and SKYPE® with our business associates and college professors around the globe in real time, that we still can’t think of any other way to explain women except by way of their uterus and menstrual cycles.
But, as it turns out, according to an article recently posted (and rapidly removed) on CNN’s website this week, that’s exactly what we are still doing. According to the article, a scientific study was done at the University of Texas in San Antonio that looked at a hypothesized correlation between women’s voting patterns and the varying stages of their menstrual cycle.
Seriously – I’m not kidding.
Apparently, the “scientists” concluded that when a woman is ovulating, she feels “sexier” (there is actually some physiological truth to that, by the way) and therefore tends to lean more toward liberal views on social issues such as marriage and abortion.
Unfortunately, the actual article was taken down after CNN received a barrage of complaints. So I haven’t been able to find out how we tend to vote when we reach menopause. I’ll keep you posted.
I’ve struggled over the past few years as a women’s health writer and advocate to keep from assuming that all of the challenges women face when trying to get help for perimenopause is somehow rooted in sexist, misogynistic attitudes which are deeply engrained in a patriarchal medical system.
Professional feminist literature does not make this easy, I can assure you. Neither do ridiculous articles like this which is supposedly based in real “scientific research.” What’s worse, there were actually women involved in conducting the study and releasing the findings. It’s just embarrassing.
Since all of the brouhaha erupted in the last 24-hours, CNN has tried to minimize the damage by releasing a statement:
“After further review it was determined that some elements of the story did not meet the editorial standards of CNN.”
There’s not much else to be said, unfortunately. Yes, it would be really easy for me to launch off into a rant over the sexist and misogynistic suggestions of such a study. But then I might also run the risk of being accused of engaging in irrational, hormonal “hysteria” over a bunch of nothing. Oh ironies of ironies. So, I will refrain.
Sometimes, a quiet, non-response is better in order to allow prattling fools to just prattle on. I will leave you instead with a very brilliant summation from the late comedian, George Carlin, on the differences between men and women:
“Here's all you have to know about men and women: women are crazy, men are stupid. And the main reason women are crazy is that men are stupid.”
And there you have it.
Magnolia Miller is a certified healthcare consumer advocate in women’s health and a women’s freelance health writer and blogger at The Perimenopause Blog.