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Watch A Psychologist Tell Us What No One Ever Told Us About Sex Offenders

She deserves a standing ovation. Why? Because she speaks truth, no matter how much it hurts for us to hear it.Trigger warning: Discussion of rape, sexual assault, and abuse.

Watch A Psychologist Tell Us What No One Ever Told Us About Sex Offenders

That's not all! Dr. Burrowes spoke to us about the video.

I was inspired by my own experience of meeting people socially, having the inevitable "What do you do for a living?" conversation and watching what happened. If you can make it okay for people to be curious about sexual abuse you’ll find that they have plenty of questions. I think people initially meet the topic of sexual abuse with fear, but below that fear is a strong desire to understand the topic better. Conversations about sexual abuse with members of the public are also good for me. They help to focus my own curiosity, they remind me that this is an issue for everybody to be involved in, and they help me learn how to explain things in a way that is easier to hear.


I am sure that there will be a mixture of reactions but in general this whole project feels like a risk because it is a leap into the unknown. I am asking people to look at something that scares them. Many of the things I have to say will be hard to hear. I don’t see a long line of people queuing up to be the public face of sexual abuse. But if people are interested in hearing something different, and I hope constructive, then I’m happy to be one of the people who does that.

I think the world is waking up to sexual abuse. People recognize that it is a huge problem that no society is immune from. The next step is working toward solutions. People like me need to do what we can to share the knowledge that we have. We need to help people ask useful questions and find answers that will work. Much of the talk about sexual abuse revolves around politics and policies – we want to know who to blame and who’s going to stop it from happening again. Abuse is a human problem. I’m happy to provide a space for talking about the human side of sexual abuse because I believe that is the only place where we’ll find solutions.

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Prior to European colonization of North America, millions of bison roamed the Great Plains. By the turn of the 20th century, those numbers had dropped to less than 1,000. The deliberate decimation of buffalo herds was a direct attack on the Native American people, who colonizers saw as an obstacle to their "Manifest Destiny," and who the U.S. government engaged in a systematic attempt to eliminate or force into docile submission.

For thousands of years, bison were a sacred, inseparable part of life for Indigenous tribes of the Great Plains, used for food, shelter, utensils, and clothing, in addition to spiritual and emotional well-being. Wiping out the bison population nearly wiped out the Native tribes they were connected to.

Though bison numbers have increased significantly thanks to conservation efforts, governments are still grappling with the ugly legacy, and some municipalities are taking steps to try to repair some of the damage done. As one example, the city of Denver, Colorado has taken the step of giving some of the city's bison population managed by Denver Parks and Recreation to Native American tribes engaged in bison conservation efforts.

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Images courtesy of John Scully, Walden University, Ingrid Scully
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Since March of 2020, over 29 million Americans have been diagnosed with COVID-19, according to the CDC. Over 540,000 have died in the United States as this unprecedented pandemic has swept the globe. And yet, by the end of 2020, it looked like science was winning: vaccines had been developed.

In celebration of the power of science we spoke to three people: an individual, a medical provider, and a vaccine scientist about how vaccines have impacted them throughout their lives. Here are their answers:

John Scully, 79, resident of Florida

Photo courtesy of John Scully

When John Scully was born, America was in the midst of an epidemic: tens of thousands of children in the United States were falling ill with paralytic poliomyelitis — otherwise known as polio, a disease that attacks the central nervous system and often leaves its victims partially or fully paralyzed.

"As kids, we were all afraid of getting polio," he says, "because if you got polio, you could end up in the dreaded iron lung and we were all terrified of those." Iron lungs were respirators that enclosed most of a person's body; people with severe cases often would end up in these respirators as they fought for their lives.

John remembers going to see matinee showings of cowboy movies on Saturdays and, before the movie, shorts would run. "Usually they showed the news," he says, "but I just remember seeing this one clip warning us about polio and it just showed all these kids in iron lungs." If kids survived the iron lung, they'd often come back to school on crutches, in leg braces, or in wheelchairs.

"We all tried to be really careful in the summer — or, as we called it back then, 'polio season,''" John says. This was because every year around Memorial Day, major outbreaks would begin to emerge and they'd spike sometime around August. People weren't really sure how the disease spread at the time, but many believed it traveled through the water. There was no cure — and every child was susceptible to getting sick with it.

"We couldn't swim in hot weather," he remembers, "and the municipal outdoor pool would close down in August."

Then, in 1954 clinical trials began for Dr. Jonas Salk's vaccine against polio and within a year, his vaccine was announced safe. "I got that vaccine at school," John says. Within two years, U.S. polio cases had dropped 85-95 percent — even before a second vaccine was developed by Dr. Albert Sabin in the 1960s. "I remember how much better things got after the vaccines came out. They changed everything," John says.

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