What else we're reading

David Brooks on chemical determinism, the coming battle over Mifeprex, "a horny woman's dream," and more.

Published September 19, 2006 12:00AM (EDT)

New York Times (subscription required): David Brooks opines that differences in male and female brain chemistry mean that humans are happier with gender roles "that nature and evolution laid down long, long ago." Unfortunately, he writes, "some feminists still argue that talking about biological differences between the sexes is akin to talking about biological differences between the races." We tried to be outraged, but just found ourselves fatigued. Brooks needs to mix it up a little more.

Village Voice: Death by stoning and other methods of so-called honor killing remain legal in Iran. Nat Hentoff wonders why no one's taking Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to task on the issue.

Kaiser Network: Republican Senator Jim DeMint makes an issue out of medical abortion drug Mifeprex, threatening to prevent acting FDA commissioner Andrew von Eschenbach from being appointed permanent agency head unless FDA Mifeprex off the market.

War Room: Embattled Republican Senator George Allen can't seem to say his name without putting his foot in his mouth lately -- but his Democratic challenger, former Navy Secretary Jim Webb, isn't getting any awards for diplomacy or eloquence, either. When asked to comment on his 1979 article on women in the military, which was titled "Women Can't Fight" and which claimed that the gender ratios in Naval Academy dorms were "a horny woman's dream," Webb dithered, dodged and tried to point the finger back at Allen. Read the full transcript here.

San Francisco Chronicle: Women in Darfur refugee camps risk rape to search for food in areas where the Janjaweed militias roam.

The Guardian: Kira Cochrane sings the praises of the morning-after pill, and lays into those who present emergency contraception as a bad thing: "While the widespread, regular demonization of contraception probably doesn't have much effect on women once they reach their 20s," she writes "for teenagers it must be hugely off-putting. On the one hand, it makes them feel (quite rightly) that there is a strong chance of being harshly judged if they seek out contraception, on the other, they are constantly fed the message that it doesn't prevent pregnancy anyway. Is it any wonder they're still fumbling in the dark?"

By Page Rockwell

Page Rockwell is Salon's editorial project manager.

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