Wednesday, May 21, 2008

They're onto us, Kathleen

Many folks have been following the Kathleen Seidel subpoena story--it's being discussed in various sectors of the blogosphere, not "just" on blogs about autism but on blogs about science, law, and blogging itself. (I Speak of Dreams has been compiling a good long list of blog responses to the controversy.)

My in-house science consultant (aka, my husband, the physicist) pointed me to this choice quote in the response by one of the attorneys seeking access to Seidel's email files. Apparently they think her connections should be treated as suspect because she's
"a person utilizing investigative ability well in excess of that available to the mother and housewife she claims to be..."
Uh, whuh? I can't understand, maybe I'm a little distracted, what with the jangle of minivan keys in my pocket and the Spongebob songs running on a loop in the next room... but "mother and housewife" status doesn't limit my "investigative ability," and it is surely completely irrelevant to Ms. Seidel's capacity for finding and analyzing published or public-record legal and scientific documents, too. Now I'd say more about this, but my suspiciously excessive ability to use a search engine doesn't get the dishwasher loaded or the other kid off the schoolbus...

14 comments:

Heather Munro Prescott said...

Hi Penny,

I was totally unaware of this issue so thanks for informing me. I just blogged about the impact of misinformation about vaccines as part of a longer entry on HPV vaccines.

Terri said...

THIS is why they tell us never to say "just a mom"--because someone will believe it! Didn't go to law school isn't the same as couldn't have (or not employed as a lawyer currently isn't the same as couldn't be!)

Parenting does not actually steal brain cells (certain days notwithstanding!)and in fact it is plain amazing what a parent can learn to do if their kids need it.

The NERVE!!!!

Kathleen Seidel said...

> The NERVE!!!!

I'll say. Doesn't it remind you of the expression "barefoot and pregnant"? What's especially incredible about it is the fact that references to my marital and reproductive status appear in every one of the five filings submitted last week. Two of these folks managed to pass the bar exam, one has both a Ph.D. and an M.D., and one has a graduate degree in theology.

Welcome to the 21st century!

FridaWrites said...

What, female and smart and primary caregiver for children? Pure sexism, plus a genuine attempt to repress blogging about disability and health issues.

Thanks for the updates--it's been a while since I've read about this case.

I hope this does not become a precedent. I've read in some insurance cases that now the claimant's email and computer records are all being requested in order to attempt to "prove" that the claimant is healthier than he/she is.

Good luck, Kathleen! This isn't right.

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