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The calm answer to the question, 'If gay people can get married, what about polygamy?'

Looking for a reasonable response to people who freak out about gay people getting married? Here's one.

I don't know if you heard, but gay people can now get legally married across the entire United States.

As of this moment, weeks after the ruling, with gay people getting married all over the country, I have noticed no change in my straight marriage. My wife has not divorced me because other people are now allowed to copy our totally original idea of legally becoming one entity for tax purposes and celebrating our perfect* love with the world.

(*She would argue that maybe it's not perfect.)

Most people were pretty happy when they learned about it. Some people weren't. Some responded with, "Polygamy is gonna become law now," which seems to me to be a bit of an exaggeration. Who made that argument?


Apparently, Supreme Court Justice John Roberts thought that could happen.

He had this to say in his strongly worded dissent of the ruling.

I was going to show you some really panicky freaked-out mildly insulting tweets here, but then Justice Roberts, in his dissent on the marriage ruling, made the calm, reasonable version of those in his argument.

So how do you respond when someone says, "If gay marriage, why not polygamy?"

John Corvino, chair of the department of philosophy at Wayne State University, is here to address the arguments of those who aren't happy.

They are totally different things to argue about.

People who like to ride down slippery-slope arguments tend to say stuff like: "What about incest? What about bestiality? What about polygamy?"

Let's get the insane ones out of the way first. Incest and bestiality.

GIFs via John Corvino.

Incest and bestiality are forms of abuse. They are perpetrated by people who are straight and gay. Sexual orientation has no relevance to abuse.

And I'm pretty sure you can't get consent from a kitchen appliance.

Which leaves just polygamy.

I didn't know that much about polygamy. So I looked it up. There are actually multiple sub-forms of polygamy.

Polygamy has its own set of issues to deal with and lends itself to abusive practices. It's rarely truly consensual. Polygamy isn't an equal-opportunity thing in the cultures where it's practiced, for the most part. It tends to be something where multiple women are subjugated and married to one man.

As Jon states, polygyny is one man, multiple wives. The vast majority of cultures that allow polygamy act in this way. Women tend to be subjugated, and poor men tend to become unmarriageable. Meanwhile, rich men tend to collect wives as trophies, and this tends to make things worse for society.

When you have one wife and multiple husbands, it's called polyandry. This is exceedingly rare and generally happens in cultures where brothers both marry the same woman because there's a high risk of male death and they want their lineage to continue.

Lastly, there is also group marriage between multiple men and multiple women. This one is the least problematic regarding the persecution of women, but also the least common. They'll have to speak for themselves.

Ergo, polygamy has nothing to do with two consenting adults committing to each other for life.

The next time someone asks you about the slippery slope, you'll know what to respond with.


You're welcome.

Joy

Nurse turns inappropriate things men say in the delivery room into ‘inspirational’ art

"Can you move to the birthing ball so I can sleep in the bed?"

Holly the delivery nurse.

After working six years as a labor and delivery nurse Holly, 30, has heard a lot of inappropriate remarks made by men while their partners are in labor. “Sometimes the moms think it’s funny—and if they think it’s funny, then I’ll laugh with them,” Holly told TODAY Parents. “But if they get upset, I’ll try to be the buffer. I’ll change the subject.”

Some of the comments are so wrong that she did something creative with them by turning them into “inspirational” quotes and setting them to “A Thousand Miles” by Vanessa Carlton on TikTok.

“Some partners are hard to live up to!” she jokingly captioned the video.

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All images provided by Adewole Adamson

It begins with more inclusive conversations at a patient level

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Adewole Adamson, MD, of the University of Texas, Austin, aims to create more equity in health care by gathering data from more diverse populations by using artificial intelligence (AI), a type of machine learning. Dr. Adamson’s work is funded by the American Cancer Society (ACS), an organization committed to advancing health equity through research priorities, programs and services for groups who have been marginalized.

Melanoma became a particular focus for Dr. Adamson after meeting Avery Smith, who lost his wife—a Black woman—to the deadly disease.

melanoma,  melanoma for dark skin Avery Smith (left) and Adamson (sidenote)

This personal encounter, coupled with multiple conversations with Black dermatology patients, drove Dr. Adamson to a concerning discovery: as advanced as AI is at detecting possible skin cancers, it is heavily biased.

To understand this bias, it helps to first know how AI works in the early detection of skin cancer, which Dr. Adamson explains in his paper for the New England Journal of Medicine (paywall). The process uses computers that rely on sets of accumulated data to learn what healthy or unhealthy skin looks like and then create an algorithm to predict diagnoses based on those data sets.

This process, known as supervised learning, could lead to huge benefits in preventive care.

After all, early detection is key to better outcomes. The problem is that the data sets don’t include enough information about darker skin tones. As Adamson put it, “everything is viewed through a ‘white lens.’”

“If you don’t teach the algorithm with a diverse set of images, then that algorithm won’t work out in the public that is diverse,” writes Adamson in a study he co-wrote with Smith (according to a story in The Atlantic). “So there’s risk, then, for people with skin of color to fall through the cracks.”

Tragically, Smith’s wife was diagnosed with melanoma too late and paid the ultimate price for it. And she was not an anomaly—though the disease is more common for White patients, Black cancer patients are far more likely to be diagnosed at later stages, causing a notable disparity in survival rates between non-Hispanics whites (90%) and non-Hispanic blacks (66%).

As a computer scientist, Smith suspected this racial bias and reached out to Adamson, hoping a Black dermatologist would have more diverse data sets. Though Adamson didn’t have what Smith was initially looking for, this realization ignited a personal mission to investigate and reduce disparities.

Now, Adamson uses the knowledge gained through his years of research to help advance the fight for health equity. To him, that means not only gaining a wider array of data sets, but also having more conversations with patients to understand how socioeconomic status impacts the level and efficiency of care.

“At the end of the day, what matters most is how we help patients at the patient level,” Adamson told Upworthy. “And how can you do that without knowing exactly what barriers they face?”

american cancer society, skin cacner treatment"What matters most is how we help patients at the patient level."https://www.kellydavidsonstudio.com/

The American Cancer Society believes everyone deserves a fair and just opportunity to prevent, find, treat, and survive cancer—regardless of how much money they make, the color of their skin, their sexual orientation, gender identity, their disability status, or where they live. Inclusive tools and resources on the Health Equity section of their website can be found here. For more information about skin cancer, visit cancer.org/skincancer.

The mesmerizing lost art of darning knit fabric.

For most of human history, people had to make their own clothing by hand, and sewing skills were subsequently passed down from generation to generation. Because clothing was so time-consuming and labor-intensive to make, people also had to know how to repair clothing items that got torn or damaged in some way.

The invention of sewing and knitting machines changed the way we acquire clothing, and the skills people used to possess have largely gone by the wayside. If we get a hole in a sock nowadays, we toss it and replace it. Most of us have no idea how to darn a sock or fix a hole in any knit fabric. It's far easier for us to replace than to repair.

But there are still some among us who do have the skills to repair clothing in a way that makes it look like the rip, tear or hole never happened, and to watch them do it is mesmerizing.

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Pop Culture

Artist uses AI to create ultra realistic portraits of celebrities who left us too soon

What would certain icons look like if nothing had happened to them?

Mercury would be 76 today.

Some icons have truly left this world too early. It’s a tragedy when anyone doesn’t make it to see old age, but when it happens to a well-known public figure, it’s like a bit of their art and legacy dies with them. What might Freddie Mercury have created if he were granted the gift of long life? Bruce Lee? Princess Diana?

Their futures might be mere musings of our imagination, but thanks to a lot of creativity (and a little tech) we can now get a glimpse into what these celebrities might have looked like when they were older.

Alper Yesiltas, an Istanbul-based lawyer and photographer, created a photography series titled “As If Nothing Happened,” which features eerily realistic portraits of long gone celebrities in their golden years. To make the images as real looking as possible, Yesiltas incorporated various photo editing programs such as Adobe Lightroom and VSCO, as well as the AI photo-enhancing software Remini.

“The hardest part of the creative process for me is making the image feel ‘real’ to me,” Yesiltas wrote about his passion project. “The moment I like the most is when I think the image in front of me looks as if it was taken by a photographer.”

Yesiltas’ meticulousness paid off, because the results are uncanny.

Along with each photo, Yesiltas writes a bittersweet message “wishing” how things might have gone differently … as if nothing happened.
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