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Scientists test whether giving men estrogen could help them survive coronavirus — and conspiracy theorists run wild

By David Futrelle

Cis woman are much more likely to survive coronavirus than their male counterparts, and we don’t know why. Could if be differences in lifestyle? (Men are more prone to smoke and less prone to wash their hands.) Or could it be something more basic — like the sex hormones estrogen and progesterone — that offer cis women special protection from the deadly virus?

The New York Times reported yesterday that scientists in New York and California are testing the latter proposition, giving (consenting) male patients with coronavirus doses of estrogen or progesterone to see if this helps them survive. In the giant game of telephone that is the internet, this news quickly turned into “doctors are giving men estrogen to protest them from coronavirus,” as if this had suddenly become some sort of widespread practice.

And the people who are already obsessed with the alleged dangers of estrogen to manly men started to lose their shit.

On 4Chan’s /pol/ board, the news quickly became “Jews are injecting you with estrogen now. They don’t even hide it any more.” One anon charged that

They want [to] trivialize HRT usage, make it a regular medicine and low key put in the mind of people that masculinity is a disease. It’s no coincidence that a jewish woman is behind this.

Responding to a photo of one of the researchers, another anon wrote:

Just look at her fce, she’s a dyke who have been fantasing about feminizing men for a while and this is just an excuse. 

On Twitter, meanwhile, assorted conspiracy theorists put forth similar, er, hypotheses.

https://twitter.com/OldRowSwig/status/1254841649592745984
https://twitter.com/DrThomasPaul/status/1254885154742366208
https://twitter.com/qanonjim/status/1254868452029980677

You know, Q Jim, I would be surprised if that was the case. Very surprised.

It’s no shock that a Qanon conspiracist has glommed onto this news. I’m just waiting for the incels and MGTOWs to discover the story.

Send tips to dfutrelle at gmail dot com.

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Universal Kami
Universal Kami
2 years ago

Re: adrenochrome

Isn’t that basically what some cultures do to non-human animals so the meat “tastes better”?

Why is this being applied to humans now?

Well, it’s been applied to humans for a few years now, but c’mon.

Although I could be wrong about what adrenochrome actually is, I know I’m not wrong that some people honestly think torturing an animal will make it “taste better”.

I’m not a vegan by diet, and I know humans are naturally omnivorous, but I advocate for the less harm done to our food the better.

I know humans are animals, too, but I mean usually every society has some taboo against cannibalism.

Anti-Semites and their ilk never fail to disappoint me.

Ohlmann
Ohlmann
2 years ago

@naglfar : then you are speculating :p

More seriously, that don’t look like a plan Trump could come up with. Similarly, I don’t think he intend to spread the virus. If he intended that, I believe he would accidentaly create a serum against it TBH.

@Universal Kami : I am not aware of any culture where “beast that suffered” would taste better, so that look like speculation. I would also like to point out that plants can completely suffer too. The good thing is that because it’s less noticeable, less people wound tress and plants out of sheer cruelty.

Alan Robertshaw
2 years ago

@ universal kami

I mean usually every society has some taboo against cannibalism.

I’m not sure that’s the case. There have been plenty of cultures where cannibalism, whether for survival or just ritual purposes, has been perfectly acceptable. After all, apart from the disease risks, there’s no logical reason not to engage.

I think Kryten expressed it best.

Naglfar
Naglfar
2 years ago

@Ohlmann
I know, I was trying to make a joke about Trump’s very poor management.

Ohlmann
Ohlmann
2 years ago

@Alan Robertshaw : I am not aware of a culture where survival cannibalism is perfectly acceptable. All the one I know have religious or superstious meaning attached. One where it’s accepted would be an interesting sight to me.

Moggie
Moggie
2 years ago

Huh, looks like I picked the wrong thread to post Alex Jones’s cannibal fantasy.

weirwoodtreehugger: chief manatee

Two threads where cannibalism is being discussed?

2020 sure is swell.

Naglfar
Naglfar
2 years ago

Re: cannibalism
Parker Malloy gave us a jazz version of Alex Jones’s cannibalism rant.

Alan Robertshaw
2 years ago

@ ohlmann

I think this is a book I’d like to read.

https://www.nationalgeographic.com/news/2017/02/cannibalism-common-natural-history-bill-schutt/

I used to have a great book called Cannibalism and the Common Law. Annoyingly I lent it to someone and now it’s out of print.

One spooky bit of cannibal trivia is that here, the key case on necessity as a defence to murder involves four adrift sailors who drew lots and then killed and ate the cabin boy, one Richard Parker.

There’s an Edgar Allen Poe novel, The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym that’s about four adrift sailors who draw lots and then kill and eat the cabin boy Richard Parker. But that novel was written in 1838 and the real case didn’t happen until 1884!

Kevin
Kevin
2 years ago

@ Alan

‘The Wreck of the Whale Ship ‘Essex” is a first hand account of a similar shipwreck incident.

It involved survival cannibalism and had a terrible long term psychological effect on at least one survivor, who I understand spent the rest of his days under treatment for a severe eating disorder in consequence.

The author gave Herman Melville permission to adapt some of the book’s passages for use in ‘Moby Dick.’

On a more general note.
Pertaining to ‘animal that suffered’ my maternal grandmother, who had been a cook/housekeeper to minor gentry, would not buy meat she believed had come from any animal she believed had been unduly stressed at slaughter, as she considered it unsafe to eat. She always decided this on inspecting the cut or carcass, and would advise the local butcher accordingly, advice the butcher would act on. I’ve no idea what signs she was looking for though.

Naglfar
Naglfar
2 years ago

@Ohlmann
I don’t know how one could tell by looking, but it appears that meat from tortured animals does taste worse.

Alan Robertshaw
2 years ago

@ Kevin

‘The Wreck of the Whale Ship ‘Essex” is a first hand account of a similar shipwreck incident.

It was a not uncommon situation. There was even a “custom of the sea” protocol for dealing with it.

At the trial of Dudley and Stephens a barrister offered to represent them because he’d been involved in a similar incident a few years previously and, like the public at large, couldn’t see what the fuss was about. Parker’s brother later went into business with Stephens.

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Helena
Helena
2 years ago

These conspiracy theories are so stupid. In interest of facts though… the hand washing thing is dubious studies. Interestingly studies have found women have dirtier hands than mens (possibly due to moisturiser use, difference in skin and sweat), although won’t do anything for Corona.

Also after bathroom for men and women is apples and oranges. Not to get too graphic but a man can be in and out in 30 seconds without touching anything, not even his button or fly need to be touched, which makes me quite jealous… women will have to touch all sorts, seats, doors, buttons, zips, and of course the area and even inside potentially depending on what’s going on in the month… so on a large sample size (negligible difference person to person but large sample size) it would make sense more women wash their hands… and actually more worrying that so many women don’t!

Everyone needs to wash their hands though!

Alan Robertshaw
2 years ago

Trump has invoked the Defence Production Act to compel meat producers to stay open as “an essential industry”. That seems fine with the owners of course.

Not so good for the employees though. The act provides protection to employers from prosecution for breaches of health and safety. The OSHA have issued the following guidance.

Additionally, because of the President’s invocation of the DPA, no part of the Joint Meat Processing Guidance should be construed to indicate that state and local authorities may direct a meat and poultry processing facility to close, to remain closed, or to operate in accordance with procedures other than those provided for in this Guidance.

So States and local authorities can’t force a factory to close, or comply with normal safety precautions.

The unions say they have 20+ confirmed deaths in the industry and 5,000+ confirmed cases of COVID-19. Those people are now allowed/obliged to return to work.

Masse_Mysteria
Masse_Mysteria
2 years ago

@Helen
Interesting to think about moisturiser use and hand clealiness, especially since washing your hands a lot can lead to having to use more hand cream.

Also,

Not to get too graphic but a man can be in and out in 30 seconds without touching anything, not even his button or fly need to be touched,

Um, a friend of mine would like to know how to go to the bathroom without touching his fly. I’m not curious at all.

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