Required Reading

A few articles that I feel may be of interest to my readers and so I am sharing here. Because I could share them on Facebook, but first they’d be there and then they’d be gone and they deserve sharing for longer than that.

First up: @JacquesR with a hefty dose of rational support for the SANBS “ban” on homosexual men donating blood:

The South African National Blood Service (SANBS),  illustrates the problem well, introducing all sorts of moral complications at the same time. As reported in the Cape Argus, a gay couple recently had their blood donation deferred (or rejected), thanks to the SANBS policy of deferring donations from men who have had sex with other men in the last six months.

One narrative that fits this policy is that the SANBS is homophobic, and this narrative has enjoyed strong support on social media for the last few days. But as I wrote in a 2011 column, deferring blood from this category of donor isn’t atypical, and South Africa’s blood service is in fact fairly liberal in this regard. In the UK, the deferral period is one year, while in the US a lifetime restriction applies for men who have had any sexual encounter with another man at any time since 1977.

Then, you can move onto Signe Rousseau’s post on the Coca-Cola Company’s new “anti-obesity” ad; a column in which she unnecessarily begins a sentence with the word “So”, but we’ll overlook that just this once because the points it makes are wonderfully concise and cut through the agenda-laden BS:

I’m not here to protect nor to promote Coca Cola products. But these knee-jerk reactions to corporate/industry involvement in anything “healthy” as being fuelled by anything but sleazy ulterior motives strikes me as incredibly unproductive in any public health conversations.

Finally, one to file under Told?, Can you believe that they need to be:

A girls’ primary school in Bloemfontein has adopted a code of ethics for parents to be applied at all sport events, the Beeld reported on Tuesday. The Laer Meisieskool Oranje’s sport field behaviour code of ethics for parents stipulates that parents should behave respectfully during sporting events and matches.

According to the code, parents may not get involved in physical violence, libel or abusive language or use indecent signs during sport matches.

What? Really? The parents must refrain from physical violence while watch their primary school girls play sport? There’s not even any excuse for that when watching adults playing sport. But primary school girls? What is wrong with these parents that they need to be told this?

They keep coming…

That’s Keean’s rabbit (freshly in from Bloemfontein) on the left and, on the right, a bunny from sisters Kristen and Lize in PE.

And here’s Keean explaining to his local radio station exactly why he has decided to send his rabbit down to Nic in Cape Town (and winning big brownie points at school).

Keean on OFM


Many thanks to Tim at OFM for permission to use the audio clip.