Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Dr. Demento: Dix P. Poppas and his Cruel and Horrifyingly Usual Sexually Violent and Violating Perpetration of Girls and Intersex Children, and the U.S. History of A Few Atrocities against Women of Color

Dix P. Poppas, MD
[image is from here]

The professional version:

Dix P. Poppas, M.D. Dr. 
Dix P. Poppas - Urologist, Cornell

Dix P. Poppas, M.D. is Chief of Pediatric Urology at Children's Hospital of New York Presbyterian - Weill Medical College of Cornell University. He is the Richard Rodgers Associate Professor of Pediatric Urology in the James Buchanan Brady Department of Urology at Weill Medical College. Dr. Poppas holds joint appointments as Associate Professor of Pediatrics and Associate Professor of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at Weill Medical College. His practice is limited to pediatric urology with special interest in genital reconstruction, laparoscopic and robotic surgery, intersex disorders and minimally invasive procedures for treating vesicoureteral reflux. Dr. Poppas has extensive experience in minimally invasive surgery and pediatric laparoscopy. He was chosen as one of the "Top One Hundred Minimally Invasive Surgeons in New York" and was the only pediatric urologist to be selected.

He serves as co-director of the Laboratory for Minimally Invasive Urologic Surgery where his efforts are focused on developing advanced laparoscopic and Robotic surgical techniques for tissue reconstruction using novel tissue sealants to replace sutures and staples during surgery, as well as investigating the mechanisms and potential treatments for inhibiting and reversing fibrosis in the obstructed kidney using antibodies and gene therapy strategies.

Dr. Poppas is a diplomate of The American Board of Urology, Fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics and Fellow of the American College of Surgeons. He has been awarded The E. Darracott Vaughan Young Investigator Award by the National Kidney Foundation, The Edwin Beer Award of The New York Academy of Medicine, and was selected as an American Foundation for Urologic Disease/National Kidney Foundation Research Scholar.

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I recently learned of something happening in my country that is so vile that it makes me wonder which medial and political officials, and what other WHM's practices and laws, support such activity, and why the perpetrating doctor isn't immediately arrested. It's not that the overall policies of this country would prevent sexual violence against women and intersex people of all ages, sizes, colors, ethnicities, and sexualities. I'm not surprised that doctors in this country are doing that is grossly harmful and violatingly abusive to girls and intersex children. I am nonetheless horrified, however. The doctor is part of Cornell University, in a medical school in NYC. But before we get to him, let's familiarise ourselves with the history of white men's crimes against women's bodies, particularly against women of color.

The political version:

Forced Sterilization in America: It Inspired the Nazis and Went on Longer

The very first nation to take an official and organized approach to eugenics, involving forced sterilization of "undesirables," was the United States of America. Starting with Michigan in 1897, forced sterilization in the US lasted into the 1960's and was given Supreme Court approval in Buck v. Bell in 1927. More than 60,000 people considered undesirable, including the mentally ill, the "promiscuous," the poor, Native Americans and the physically disabled, were compulsorily sterilized under official policy in the United States. The very last state-sanctioned, forced sterilization program in the US was in Oregon, only ending in 1981.
According to the anthropological study of Judaism called Unsettled (reviewed here), the Nazi eugenics program in 1930's and 1940's Germany was inspired by and specifically modeled on America's eugenics program. Our shame was their inspiration.

America is certainly not alone in having as part of its history the forced sterilization of citizens based on junk science, but our programs were among the earliest and lasted the longest, though Nazi Germany easily surpassed us in terms of both numbers and enthusiasm.

Each forces sterilization has a face and a story going with it, and thanks to BBC news one woman is going very public regarding her secret and forced sterilization in the 1960's by official US policy...or, more specifically, official North Carolina policy. [The rest is here.]
See also, here at the organisation Libertad Latina. And here for an article on abuses in North America. And here at the Assata Shakur forum website, for an article on the illegal sterilisation of Black women in North Carolina.

I live in a country that tries its best--or worst--to make it seem like "atrocities" don't happen here. Not between our shores. The news media is complicit in demonising so many people who are not the ruling class here.

I have posted before about Columbus and Co. and their abuses of girls and women in the Americas. Note that "the Americas" implies more than one and that means the U.S. DOES NOT EQUAL "America". Our ruling class's arrogance does mean to have the world believe this. But "America" is a place that has rejected capitalism, if we're talking about many countries in South America. And "America" has national health care and a very low gun murder rate, if we're talking about Canada. The U.S. of A. is the most violent and predatory nation on Earth, but holds itself as the BEST.

What makes it NOT THE BEST is the harmful and oppressive practices it has made a bad habit of perpetrating.  Primarily this falls into two categories: men's abuses and subordination of women, and whites' abuses and subordination of people of color. Taken together, this means that white men rule and women of color resist. White het men rule over everyone but that's a dirty little secret men like Jeff would rather ignore. "Pay no attention to the WHM behind the curtain", is basically Jeff's message. And like in The Wizard of Oz, WHM are both much larger and much smaller than they make themselves out to be. This group seems to have the least grasp of the power it holds, collectively, and the responsibility it has to use that power to eradicate, rather than more deeply embed their historic atrocities against people they oppress.

What women of color have had to resist is both the same as and different than what white women here, and what men of color here, have had to fight against for survival. Noting this does not minimise the entirely disgusting things white het men find to do to white women and to men of color. From marital rape to lynching, white men in the U.S. have a long history of committing crimes against humanity. But women of color are not immune to any dreaded activity WHM conceive of to terrorise people for their race and gender.

Here is the post I did on the Savage Rapist Columbus.

Below is other information on what white het men have done to women of color inside the U.S.:
During the late 1960s and the early 1970s, a policy of involuntary surgical sterilization was imposed upon Native American women in the United States, usually without their knowledge or consent, by the federally funded Indian Health Service (IHS), then run by the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA). It is alleged that the existence of the sterilization program was discovered by members of the American Indian Movement (AIM) during its occupation of the BIA headquarters in 1972. A 1974 study by Women of All Red Nations (WARN), concluded that as many as 42 percent of all American Indian women of childbearing age had, by that point, been sterilized without their consent. A subsequent investigation was conducted by the U.S. General Accounting Office (GAO), though it was restricted to only four of the many IHS facilities nationwide and examined only the years 1973 to 1976. The GAO study showed that 3,406 involuntary sterilizations were performed in these four IHS hospitals during this three-year period. Consequently, the IHS was transferred to the Department of Health and Human Services in 1978.

During this and earlier periods, similar involuntary sterilization programs were being performed on other women of color, among them Chicanas of the Los Angeles area (Acuña 2004). It is estimated that by 1966, one-third of the women of childbearing age on the island of Puerto Rico had been sterilized without their "informed consent." In addition, MULANEH (Mujeres Lationoamericanas de New Haven), a mainland Puerto Rican women’s organization, discovered that 44 percent of Puertorriqueñas in New Haven, Connecticut, had been sterilized by 1979. In Hartford, Connecticut, the figure stood at 51 percent. Women in Puerto Rico were also part of experimentation studies of the early birth control pill before it was released on the U.S. mainland. [The rest is here.]
With the above as the context, we now move to the current atrocity. I want to thank Melissa at The Feminist Texican [here] for posting about this nightmare, which was where I first learned about it. From there, I checked a blog I link to on Intersex people's human rights, here.

What follows is from the same blog, Intersex News:
June 18, 2010
A couple of days ago, Alice Dreger and Ellen K. Feder jointly posted a brief article (Bad Vibrations) on the Bioethics Forum of the Hastings Center’s website.

The piece picked up on an earlier article, Nerve Sparing Ventral Clitoroplasty: Analysis of Clitoral Sensitivity and ViabilityPDF here – published in 2007 by Jennifer Yang (a pediatric urologist), Diane Felsen (a pharmacologist) and Dix P. Poppas, M.D in The Journal of Urology.

Dreger and Feder’s piece focuses attention on Dr Poppas, a pediatric urologist at New York Presbyterian Hospital, Weill Medical College of Cornell University whose “special interest in genital reconstruction [and] surgical aspects of disorders of sexual development” has apparently led him to carry out a program of research on 51 girls aged between 4 months and 24 years old (mean age ± SD 4.6 ± 6.8 years) in which he performed nerve sparing ventral clitoroplasty, which included “followup testing of clitoral viability and sensation after clitoroplasty“. [Read the complete article here]

I honestly do not want to know more than this information tells me. I know about the many horrors men visit on children and adults. Having girls', intersex children's, and women's privacy invaded, bodies violated, and sexual organs medically traumatised is not something that ought to be a focus on a white man's blog in graphic detail, in my opinion. Beyond this post, I am not likely to discuss this again, other than to update the reader on what happens to Dr. Poppas.

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