Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Exposing Men: The Science and Politics of Male Reproduction

Exposing Men: The Science and Politics of Male Reproduction

HERE IS WHAT I SEE WHEN I READ THE REVIEW FOR THIS BOOK: I SEE HOPE
OPINION: by Sharon L. Perry

This sounds like an excellent read. The author touches on many of the issues that lie at the heart of why the Children of Male Vietnam Veterans are ill but also why we can’t get any answers:

MALE REPRODUCTIVE SYSTEM NEGLECTED BUT I CALL IT DISCRIMINATION
This author writes that the male reproductive system is neglected along with… a devalued male role in producing healthy children. Thusly, there are 4 assumptions, according to the author, regarding the male relationship to human reproduction:
Men are assumed to be:
1) Secondary in biological reproduction.
2) Less vulnerable to reproductive harm than women.
3) To be virile.
4) To be distant from the health problems of the children they father.

SOUND FAMILIAR?
Daniels shows us that “cultural beliefs cast semen, as well as the male reproductive system, as ‘inappropriate’ for scientific investigation and, as a result, the male
reproductive body remained relatively understudied.”

PERIOD PRIOR TO CONCEPTION
The author also points out that the period prior to conception, is considered less important to study than it is to treat or study women. So is that why women Vietnam veterans children have been approved for more birth defects linked to agent orange than the men?

GENETIC CONTRIBUTION OF MEN LESS IMPORTANT
Daniels also writes “At conception, it is often assumed that the genetic contribution of men is less important in causing miscarriage or in transmitting genetic disorders to the fetus…which often unjustly minimizes the role of men.” How many wives of Vietnam veterans miscarried? Has this been over looked as well?

DIOXIN & THE MALE REPRODUCTIVE SYSTEM
Daniels depressingly but convincingly sets forth the serious havoc
wreaked on male reproductive capabilities by such toxins as dioxin and
polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). Now we are getting somewhere….

STUDIES OF MALE REPRODUCTIVE SYSTEM DISCOURAGED
Researchers who want to study male reproductive issues face many barriers: Often they are discouraged from pursuing such studies, publication is difficult, funding scarce.

VIETNAM VETERANS, AGENT ORANGE, EVIDENCE SUGGESTS MEN MORE AT RISK
AND, yes she writes about Vietnam veterans suffering from agent orange exposure and the paradoxes our society creates for men. The authors conclusion, is astonishing but also maybe a Godsend for the children of male Vietnam veterans suffering, that “evidence suggests that men (reproductive health) are even more at risk than women.”

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

We have two adult children of Viet Nam Vet. They both have several diagnosis which fall in the critieria. One son gets SSDI the other not, but I was wondering if the VA would give them anything?

Agent Orange Legacy - Children of Vietnam Veterans said...

If the Vietnam veteran is disabled through the VA, yes. If the child has not married and was diagnosed prior to age 18 you/they can apply for 'helpless child'. The only other compensation available for children of male veterans, at this time, is for spina bifida. The compensation paid through 'helpless child' depends upon whether the veteran is still living or not. If the veteran is living then the veteran receives a nominal fee for the dependent, however. If the veteran passes on, as did my husband, then the child receives a check assuming they are not a minor) and other benefits.