sexuality

As the White House continues dealing with well-publicized problems with the HealthCare.gov website, there's at least one big question related to the Affordable Care Act that's outside the president's control: Can employers with religious objections be compelled to provide access to contraception coverage for their workers?

Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor has granted a temporary injunction while she considers a challenge to the contraception requirement by a group of nuns called the Little Sisters of the Poor. The Catholic organization serves the poor elderly.

"Attorney General Eric Holder announced Friday that the federal government will recognize the 900-plus same-sex marriages that took place in Utah during the two weeks when such unions were legal," NPR's Nina Totenberg writes for us.

That means those couples "will be eligible for all federal benefits," NPR's Carrie Johnson adds.

In a statement, Holder says that:

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Governor Chris Christie's administration is under fire for ordering  lane closures  that blocked access to the George Washington Bridge for four days last September, indulging in an egomaniacal fantasy of vengeance against a political foe who refused to recognize the Christie administration's self-professed superiority.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Today on The Nose, we'll talk about this relatively insignificant bit of Rush Limbaugh peevishness, and the degree to which each of us thinks he or she has (informally speaking) patented something: a word, a phrase, a style we've made our own.

Also, Adam Platt's decision to dispense with the fiction that he, as a restaurant critic, is anonymous. It's not exactly the same as claiming to create, but Platt is talking about the anxiety of influence in a different way. How can one do "pure" work? 

Pope Francis continues to shake up the Vatican establishment. This time, in what observers are calling a major move, he reshuffled the membership of the Congregation for Bishops, one of the most important organizations in the Vatican.

In the biggest shakeup announced on Monday, Francis removed Cardinal Raymond L. Burke from the group and replaced him with another American, Cardinal Donald Wuerl of Washington, D.C..

Carles Tomas Marti on Flickr Creative Commons

Here in the West, Zen Buddhism is often where you go when you've concluded the religion you grew up with is marred by venality, hypocrisy, misogyny, patriarchal structure, and an insufficient commitment to peace and love. 

Buddhism seems to have less hierarchy and more commitment to pure enlightenment and oneness. So, what do Buddhists do when Buddhism falls down on the job?

Hawaii's Senate has given the OK to a bill allowing same-sex marriage, which now goes to the governor, who is expected to sign.

Gay marriage is legal in 14 states and the District of Columbia. Illinois passed a similar law last week, which is awaiting the governor's signature.

Reuters says the measure in Hawaii cleared the state Senate on a 19-4 vote, with the chamber's lone Republican joining three Democrats to oppose the bill.

Ray Hardman / WNPR

On Thursday, the U.S. Senate passed the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, or ENDA, which would ban discrimination of employees based on sexual orientation or gender identity. On Friday, U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal urged House Speaker John Boehner to take up the bill in the House.

Dok1 / Creative Commons

On The Nose this week, a viral video musical tribute to Chinese food triggers cries of racism, a father welcoming his fourth daughter into the world, and opens up a can of complicated thoughts about that. And we talk about the time we walked in the shoes of the opposite sex. Listen to our weekly culture panel live from New Haven on WNPR.

Chion Wolf

Author David Schickler wanted to be a priest as a young man, but he struggled between his desire to serve God and to be with women. He said, “For me to have become celibate for life would have been to become half human.”

Michael Childers

Fear of Flying sold 18 million copies worldwide and helped tip feminism into a new focus on fulfilled sexuality. But it also introduced a meme so pervasive that the book's author, Erica Jong, worried the phrase "zipless f--k" would appear on her tombstone.

Jong recenly defined the phrase on NPR's Weekend Edition:

robertelyov, creative commons

What I remember of middle school sex ed consists mostly of what the kids told me in the back of the bus (gasp!). When they split the boys and the girls up into groups at school, I was given a “starter kit.” It was a cardboard box full of scary and curious feminine hygiene products. I don’t know what the boys got.

Arielle Levin-Becker

Joycelyn Elders is a doctor and a public health administrator and advocate. She was appointed the first African American surgeon general during the Clinton administration -- and then fired from her post  for some frank comments around sex and AIDS prevention. 

Chion Wolf

If men are from Mars and women are from Venus, asexuals seem like brothers and sisters from a distant solar system. 

Western societies are gradually growing accustomed -- with varying degrees of comfort -- to the initials in LGBT, but what about A? On our show today we explored the idea that some people have no sexual orientation -- not because of a hormonal deficiency or a position on the autism spectrum or some buried childhood sexual trauma -- but because they don't have a discernable sex drive.

On The Colin McEnroe Show we have a (possibly misguided) notion that we can find at least a little bit of humor in subjects that most public radio shows would treat with utter seriousness. Not everyone agrees, and a certain percent of my negative email is from people who cannot believe that we have injected levity into something deserving only sober contemplation. 

NASA Goddard Space Flight Center/flickr creative commons

The world’s most popular astrophysicist, Neil deGrasse Tyson, joins us. Plus a look at Secret Sex Lives, Suzy Spencer’s year on the fringes of American sexuality.

Chion Wolf

Advocates of same-sex marriage in Connecticut are celebrating the Supreme Court ruling that strikes down the federal Defense of Marriage Act and California's Proposition 8. Both banned gay marriage.

Beth Kerrigan was the lead plaintiff in the Kerrigan v. The State of Connecticut, a case that struck down a Connecticut law banning same-sex marriage,

Kerrigan says she is "overwhelmed" and "ecstatic" about the ruling.

She says with the Supreme Court ruling, her marriage to Jody Mock means a lot more now, than it did earlier this week.

Flickr Creative Commons, David Jones

A Connecticut man and his husband got married in this past weekend. Now on a honeymoon in New York, they were waiting to hear whether their marriage -- recognized by the state, but not by the nation -- would get the approval of the U.S. Supreme Court. WNPR's Jeff Cohen has this report.

Quinn Dombrowski/flickr creative commons

Five words: Dr. Ruth is our guest.

Alan Cleaver, Flickr Creative Commons

Middletown Police are investigating an attempted sexual assault at a fraternity on the Wesleyan University campus. A lawsuit is pending over a 2010 rape at the same fraternity.

About a week ago, Middletown Police responded to a call at the Mu Epsilon Chapter of Beta Theta Pi at Wesleyan. Police say an individual was allegedly assaulted, but was able to fend off the attacker and flee during an attempted sexual assault. The name and sex of the victim have not been released and its not clear if it was a Wesleyan student. 

Richard Smith/flickr creative commons

Today: Sex! Or. Well. Not sex. But talk about sex. Laurie Santos is back again. She teaches Sex, Evolution and Human Nature at Yale, and she'll take your calls! So call us with your questions, your concerns, your anecdotes. Or maybe not your anecdotes so much. But your questions and your concerns! If nothing else, this promises not to be your standard hour of public radio.

Wolcott Schools Allow Student To Wear Anti-Gay Shirt

Mar 15, 2013

Wolcott Public Schools will allow a student to wear an anti-gay T-shirt to school after the district faced the threat of legal action by the American Civil Liberties Union of Connecticut. 

Jean KOULEV/flickr creative commons

Today: Sex! Or. Well. Not sex. But TALK about sex. We had so much fun putting together last November's show on the ‘strange’ sex that people and animals have (separately—not together), that we've invited Laurie Santos—she teaches Sex, Evolution and Human Nature at Yale—back to do it again… but this time live, and with your calls! So call us—203 776-WNPR—with your questions, your concerns, your anecdotes. Or maybe not your anecdotes so much. But your questions and your concerns! If nothing else, this promises not to be your standard hour of public radio.

Flickr Creative Commons, kristina sohappy

A first kiss should be great. But it almost never is. Did anyone have a first kiss that was heavenly? We'll find out today.

As one of our guests points out, a kiss is usually our first sexual experience.  In fact, if it's not, there's a good chance that something almost literally out-of-order has transpired. But we almost never know how to do it right. In one of Salinger's short stories a little boy asks, apropos of nothing, "Why do people in movies kiss sideways?" And a soldier answers: perhaps because their noses are too big and get in the way.

NASA Goddard Space Flight Center/flickr creative commons

The world’s most popular astrophysicist, Neil deGrasse Tyson, joins us in advance of his appearance at the Connecticut Forum on Saturday. Plus a look at Secret Sex Lives, Suzy Spencer’s year on the fringes of American sexuality.

Flickr Creative Commons, mnchilemom

Today's show is about gay farmers -- and about the possibility that there's a gay farming movement. There's a documentary film about American gay farmers currently in the late stages of editing. And, as you'll learn today, there's a gay farmer reality show.

Chion Wolf

“We’ve been fighting about gay marriage for what, 15-20 years now.  Is there any evidence that fighting gay marriage is contributing to a greater appreciation among the broad society of the marital institution? Is there any evidence that the re-institutionalization of marriage is happening as a result of opposing gay marriage? And the best answer I can give to that is 'no.'” - David Blankenhorn

David Blankenhorn And The Battle Over Same-Sex Marriage

Jun 22, 2012
Chion Wolf

“We’ve been fighting about gay marriage for what, 15-20 years now.  Is there any evidence that fighting gay marriage is contributing to a greater appreciation among the broad society of the marital institution? Is there any evidence that the re-institutionalization of marriage is happening as a result of opposing gay marriage? And the best answer I can give to that is 'no.'” - David Blankenhorn

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