You think you've heard it all.......hold my Beer....
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  1. #1
    Super Moderator Platinum Member Mongoose's Avatar
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    You think you've heard it all.......hold my Beer....

    Thanks to a growing movement against policing, this summer has been largely defined by its uprisings. Across the United States, people have taken to the streets to uplift the names and lives of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and countless others. Local and federal governments have not held back in their attempts to quell dissent. As a result, police have blinded people, federal agents have detained them, and numerous protesters have been hospitalized.
    Many photos of protests share one key feature: a thick, foreboding cloud of tear gas hanging over the crowd. Tear gas, classified by the United Nations as a chemical weapon, is so common that people often head to protests with gas masks or homemade solutions like a bandana soaked in water. But while tear gas's immediate effects are unpleasant enough — including crying, running noses, and vomiting — some protesters say it has damaged their reproductive health.
    In many anecdotal cases, protesters linked tear gas to early or otherwise unusual periods. Ray, who declined to provide their last name, tells Mic that they had their first experience with tear gas while protesting earlier this year in downtown Minneapolis. While marching, someone threw a bottle of water towards police, who responded by tear-gassing the entire crowd. "Probably two days later, I got my period — about two weeks early. My next period came four weeks later," Ray says.
    The full effects of tear gas on reproductive health, specifically for people with uteruses, are not fully known. This is partially because it can be difficult to study, and some argue that the stress of protesting itself can trigger a number of physical responses, including irregular periods. However, Dr. Zoey Thill, a family physician and fellow with Physicians for Reproductive Health, told Mic in an email that "the usual 'stress response' of the menstrual cycle is for things to sort of 'shut down'. Ovulation can be delayed or can stop altogether. The complaints I’m hearing about with regard to tear gas exposure are of early periods, prolonged periods, or multiple periods in a month. These complaints can’t be explained by stress alone, and may be related to exposure to tear gas."
    "Proving a link between tear gas and reproductive health is not the point. Governments should not harm people expressing dissatisfaction with their services."
    In 1988, tear gas was linked to miscarriages in Palestine and, in 2012, Physicians for Human Rights — which has condemned tear gas — linked the irritant to miscarriages in Bahrain. For a short time, tear gas was banned in Chile because of its suspected effects as an abortifacient, although the government eventually began using it again. However, Thill cautions that searching for a definitive study to say, without a doubt, that tear gas causes miscarriages or irregular periods misses the larger point.
    "Proving a link between tear gas and reproductive health is not the point," Thill wrote to Mic. "Governments should not harm people expressing dissatisfaction with their services. Full stop."
    "To be certain, there are known bodily risks to tear gas exposure: asthma exacerbations, arrhythmias, permanent vision changes or vision loss, etc. The police use this weapon despite these known risks," Thill added. "Even if a perfectly designed study showed — without a doubt — that tear gas caused miscarriage, police would continue to use it. We are not fighting with those that respect science or bodies."
    Even then, if such a study did exist, it's hard to imagine that everyone would know about it. The information linking tear gas to reproductive harm is already difficult to find unless you're already looking for it. Oftentimes it's social media and the work of grassroots organizations like the Colorado Doula Project that helps people make the initial connection between tear gas and their reproductive symptoms. Ray says they did not "immediately contribute" their irregular period to tear gas. But "folks I follow on Instagram were spreading information about how tear gas can cause reproductive issues ... I spoke with probably four other [assigned female at birth] folks who got their period shortly after exposure to tear gas in Minneapolis."
    Some protesters, however, know the risks going in. Oluwatimah Wise, a midwife's assistant and doula, went to protests aware of the possible impact that tear gas could have on her reproductive health. "Twice now these protests have resulted in the use of tear gas. I have noticed immediate cramping the next day both times," Wise says. "This cramping has persisted on and off consistently. In addition, on one occasion, I started my menstrual cycle around a week early."
    The use of tear gas has been banned in warfare since the Geneva Protocol went into effect in 1928. However, that ban doesn't mean the U.S. hasn't used chemical weapons in war since. And with the U.S. historically positioning Black-led movements and protesters as domestic terror threats, it's no surprise that responses to protests mirror military tactics.
    Many have pointed out the irony of tear gas being technically banned in warfare but perfectly legal for police to use on protesters fighting for racial justice. "Officers responding to groups of protesters with tear gas is criminal," Ray says, "especially during COVID-19. Take this encounter as an example — dozens of officers in full riot gear had a bottle of water thrown at them, and they responded with tear gas and rubber bullets. Such a gross and excessive response."

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  2. #2
    It brings me to tears, Billy, to read about the connection between reproductive systems and (gasp!) TEAR GAS. How dare police use that on violent lowlife destroyers of America! Awful to read about. Billy, don't you care about our feelings? Now we have to experience the awful processing of reading about all this. I am about to cry, gotta sign off.


  3. #3
    And I think about Mitch, and Mike, and William, and Russ, what they now have to go through reading about this-----the trauma----and it's just sad that you would have us read such upsetting material, Billy.


  4. #4
    Super Moderator Platinum Member Mongoose's Avatar
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    Dave, you have to understand that someone has to do the dirty work. We can't have our Law Enforcement Officers playing Rambo with our Women's private parts. They already bleed enough, without help. Besides, what right do we have to stand in the way of the "Reconstruction Process". Peaceful Rioting and compassionate Looting is not a reason to call in the Police. We have a duty to support our radical youth as they attempt to redo all the shet we have fv'cked up. Now do you get it Dave?????


  5. #5
    DAMN, Billy, I gotta go see a shrink and get some meds for my PTSD now, it's acting up because of all the damage those officers have done to the reproductive systems of those poor, innocent female protesters.... OH HAVE MERCY.... she (they) may never be able to have children!!! oh the horror, to think that she may not be able to reproduce and burden the world with children that are doomed to be DUMBER THAN SHE IS simply is more than I can stand... it IS "such a gross and excessive response", just like the author says... we should IMMEDIATELY petition the city fathers and police leadership to STOP using tear gas of any kind, as well as those pesky and inefficient "rubber bullets, and replace it with M-60's issued to every 5th man... with an abundance of LIVE AMMUNITION.... then the lady protesters will no longer gave to fear that the police response to their violent "protests" will result in the use of "chemical weapons" that might interfere with their menstrual cycle or harm their reproductive organs in any way.... AND.... WE will not have to concern ourselves with the possibility that one or more of these dumb broads will give birth to a kid with the mental capacity of an earthworm....

    Problem solved, you can give me that beer now, thank you.....

    Si vis pacem, para bellum

  6. #6
    We should be so lucky that tear gas renders those fools infertile. In fact, stop trying to develop a vaccine for COVID and get to work on tear gas that when use on the riffraff will guarantee that they are unable to reproduce. Hell, I'll help fund the research.


  7. #7
    Squad Leader Platinum Member Zulu 36's Avatar
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    Well, I've got some bad news for the "banned from warfare" crowd. The US military has used tear gas in WWII against the Japanese and in Vietnam in Hue during Tet 68 (at least there). The international conventions that banned use of chemical agents and other "inhumane" weapons were never ratified by the US Senate, so have no legal effect on the US military except they tend to go along with them anyway, for the most part.


  8. #8
    Zulu, we definitely used tear gas at Hue. Also, I/We were gassed by the NVA about 6-7 different other times out in the Arizona (yes, the commies used it as well). During my entire tour I carried a gas mask strapped to my left leg. I hated the stuff and I never carried mace as a cop as the stuff had a bad effect on me.


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