Today’s Lady News: Tennessee Wants To Ban Teachers From Saying “Gay” Until 9th Grade

  • Tennessee’s state legislature is noodling a “Don’t Say Gay” bill that would prohibit teachers from using the word “gay” in the classroom until the 9th grade. (Yeah, seriously.) The Tennessee Senate is expected to vote on the bill this Thursday. [Queerty]
  • Stephanie Coontz’s Mother’s Day piece for the New York Times op-ed page is a must-read for anyone who has ever thought critically about stay-at-home moms, working moms, and how best to be happy after having children. [New York Times]
  • Also in honor of Mother’s Day, Save The Children released its annual report, “State Of The World’s Mothers.” The best places in the world to be a mom? Norway, Australia, Iceland, Sweden and Denmark. The worst place? Afghanistan. The United States only comes in at #31 among the 43 developed countries ranked. Um … “USA, USA”? [Save The Children]

  • Rep. Barbara Lee, the lone vote in Congress against the 2001 invasion of Afghanistan, addresses Osama bin Laden’s recent death. [The Root]
  • Eighteen musicians who are also moms talked to Paste about motherhood on the road. What up, Kimya Dawson! [Paste Magazine]
  • Chaz Bono — Sonny and Cher’s transgender son whose transition from female to male is the subject of “Becoming Chaz,” which airs on Oprah’s network on Tuesday night —was profiled in The New York Times this weekend. [New York Times]
  • Good news! Jane Pratt, the former editor Jane and Sassy magazines, has hired some of our favorite ladies for xoJane.com, her new online magazine. Emily McCombs, a longtime Frisky contributer, is managing editor; Cat Marnell is beauty editor; and the beloved Christina Kelly from both Jane and Sassy is a contributor. xoJane.com launches one week from today and we at The Frisky are totally psyched. [Styleite]
  • Ann Curry will co-anchor “The Today Show” show alongside Matt Lauer when Meredith Viera leaves the show in June for NBC News. Natalie Morales has been named a news anchor and NBC News White House correspondent and MSNBC anchor Savannah Guthrie with co-host “Today”‘s third hour. Meredith has been a co-anchor with Matt on “Today” ever since Katie Couric left for “CBS Evening News” five years ago. [MSNBC]
  • Meet rapping Judge Merrilee Ehrlich who sentences at-risk kids to poetry-writing sessions instead of traditional community service! [The Grio]
  • What makes a perfect female action hero? [Jezebel]
  • Playwright Lynn Nottage addresses the stereotyping of black domestic workers onscreen in her new play, “By The Way, Meet Vera Stark,” which will play off-Broadway in New York City. [The Root]
  • Sci-fi writer Joanna Russ, who wrote in the genre long before other women writers, died in April at age 74. She is the author of The Female Man, Souls and Picnic On Paradise among others. Joanna Russ is considered to have paved the way for famous female sci-fi author, Ursula K LeGuin. [New York Times]
  • Sada Thompson, a Tony- and Emmy-award winning actress who also appeared on the show “Family,” died on Wednesday at age 83. [New York Times]
  • This book review of Feminism FOR REAL: Deconstructing the Academic Industrial Complex of Feminism , edited by Jessica Yee, totally makes me want to check the book out. [Feministe]

INTERNATIONAL

  • Uganda’s parliament has been holding hearings on an anti-gay bill with harsh penalties for “homosexual behavior.” In past iterations of this bill, the death penalty was one such “punishment” for gays; landlords were also discouraged from renting to gays or else face seven years in prison. As it is still being debated, it is unknown what this latest version of the bill will include. [AP]
  • What does Carla Bruni, a musician, actress and model who is also the French First Lady, mean for France today? [Guardian UK]
  • I’m not sure what I think of this article on “bad girls” — pegged to Kate Middleton, somewhat improbably — in the UK’s Independent newspaper. I mean, what does it even mean to be a “bad girl” these days? [Independent UK]
  • Porn star Gemma Massey recently spoke with the BBC about her job and her lifestyle. [BBC]
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