The Baby Who Had No Gender
Beyond the online condemnation for two Toronto parents who reportedly refuse to make public the gender of their youngest child, there's a deeper question on how gender forms, scientists say.
What's the Latest Development?
In order to keep gender-based stereotypes from affecting their youngest child, named Storm, a Toronto couple is refusing to tell anyone "its" gender. "'We thought if we delayed sharing that information, in this case, hopefully, we might knock off a couple million of those messages by the time Storm decides Storm would like to share [his or her gender],' Storm's mom Kathy Witterick told the Toronto Star." Katrina Karkazis, an anthropologist at the Center for Biomedical Ethics at Stanford University, says the child's gender neutrality won't last long. Because of children's strong sense of gender difference in others, Storm will self-identify as soon as she has the verbal capabilities to do so.
What's the Big Idea?
To what extent are Storm's parents keeping the child from harmful gender stereotypes and to what extend are they avoiding the inevitable, possibly at the risk of confusing their child about what its role in society should be. "It's unclear whether the experiment will work out, said Karkazis... That's because gender messages are inescapable in our society, she told LiveScience. However, Karkazis said, Storm's parents are correct in thinking that people treat children differently based on gender, sometimes in very subtle ways."
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In his final years, Martin Luther King, Jr. become increasingly focused on the problem of poverty in America.
- Despite being widely known for his leadership role in the American civil rights movement, Martin Luther King, Jr. also played a central role in organizing the Poor People's Campaign of 1968.
- The campaign was one of the first to demand a guaranteed income for all poor families in America.
- Today, the idea of a universal basic income is increasingly popular, and King's arguments in support of the policy still make a good case some 50 years later.
She met mere mortals with and without the Vatican's approval.
- For centuries, the Virgin Mary has appeared to the faithful, requesting devotion and promising comfort.
- These maps show the geography of Marian apparitions – the handful approved by the Vatican, and many others.
- Historically, Europe is where most apparitions have been reported, but the U.S. is pretty fertile ground too.
For Damien Echols, tattoos are part of his existential armor.
- In prison Damien Echols was known by his number SK931, not his name, and had his hair sheared off. Stripped of his identity, the only thing he had left was his skin.
- This is why he began tattooing things that are meaningful to him — to carry a "suit of armor" made up the images of the people and objects that have significance to him, from his friends to talismans.
- Echols believes that all places are imbued with divinity: "If you interact with New York City as if there's an intelligence behind... then it will behave towards you the same way."
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