Today’s Lady News: Bill Maher Calls Sarah Palin A “MILF”

  • Ugh. Obnoxious comments from “Hardball”‘s Chris Matthews and “Real Time”‘s Bill Maher, who were discussing Sarah Palin and Michele Bachmann on TV. Matthews said, “They showed up together looking — well, they’re attractive ladies.” And then Maher added: “I think you’re right. You hit on something there. They’re attractive, especially to the Republican Party which is not known as the party that does really well with the opposite sex. Usually they’re doughy white men. I think they look on Michele Bachmann and Sarah Palin as, you know, MILFs … and I agree. They’re morons I’d like to forget.” Hey, guys? It’s still sexist — and unprofessional — when liberals say it.
  • [NYMag.com]

  • Constance McMillen, the Mississippi high school student who was now allowed to attend prom with her girlfriend because she is a lesbian, will be grand marshal of New York City’s famous gay pride parade on June 27. (I’d rather go to prom, but, hey, it’s still cool.) [New York Times]

  • Only nine lesbians — Suze Orman, Rachel Maddow, Ellen DeGeneres, Wanda Sykes, etc. made it onto Out magazine’s list of the “Power 50.” This is a drop from last year, when only 12 gay women made Out‘s list. [AfterEllen.com]
  • Louisiana’s House Insurance Committee voted yesterday to bar state insurance companies from writing any new policies that cover abortion, except in cases to save the life of the mother. [NOLA.com]
  • Firefighter Jane Draycott filed a lawsuit against the Houston Fire Department on Tuesday claiming she was retaliated against when she complained about sexual harassment in 2000. In the years since she filed a formal complaint against that firefighter, Draycott said she found pictures of her children that she kept in her locker ripped up in the trash and a firecracker was placed in the stall of the women’s restroom. Draycott was part of another lawsuit against the HFD with female firefighters last year. [Houston Chronicle]
  • USA Today takes a look at Muslims who file discrimination complaints in the workplace over the attention paid to their head scarves. [USA Today]
  • Federal immigration officer Isaac Baichu, 48, has pleaded guilty to charges that in 2007 he asked a Colombia woman for sex in exchange for a green card. The woman had recorded Baichu’s demand on a cell phone hidden inside her purse, which she then took to The New York Times and a district attorney’s office in Queens, New York. [AP]
  • Providence police officer Marcus Huffman was found guilty today of raping a now 22-year-old woman in the bathroom of an empty police station while on duty in 2007. The victim said Huffman offered her a ride home after she was turned away from a nightclub for being too drunk. Huffman, whose lawyer argued it was “consensual sex” despite the fact that the victim is a lesbian, has been suspended without pay. [AP]
  • The Commerce, Labor and Agriculture Committee of the Tennessee State Senate approved a bill yesterday that would prevent tax money from being used to cover abortion services. [WHNT]
  • Smitten Kitten, a sex shop focused on women’s pleasure, has opened a new location in Denver, Colorado. [Feministing]

INTERNATIONAL

  • Rapes of women in the Democratic Republic of the Congo increased 17-fold between 2004 and 2008, according to a report by Oxfam and the Harvard Humanitarian Initiative. Experts say rape is used as a weapon by men at war. [Telegraph UK]
  • Both the Simone de Beauvoir Institute at Concordia University and the Anglican diocese of Montreal have condemned a bill that would ban Muslim women in Quebec from receiving government services, like health care or education, while wearing a face-covering veil. “We feel in effect this bill will limit Muslim women’s autonomy and freedom,” said Gada Mahrouse of the Institute. “They are going to be housebound.” [Montreal Gazette]
  • A study of homicide victims in New Zealand has found that immigrant women from Asia and the Pacific are more likely than any other group to be killed by their partners. In the five-year period studied (2002 to 2006), women were 13 times more likely to be killed by their partners than men. [New Zealand Herald]
  • The Central London Employment Tribunal has ruled that harassment experienced by two female bankers was trivial and “no offense was intended” and therefore it did not amount to sexual discrimination. [Telegraph UK]
  • A 20-year-old woman, Laura Hall of Worcestershire, has the dubious distinction of being the first person to receive a “Drinking Ban Order”: banned from entering a pub or club or drinking alcohol in a public place for two years. [BBC]
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