We all know at least a little bit about our government’s hyper-overreaction to “the red menace” back in the 1950s. Men and women throughout politics, the media and Hollywood lost their jobs if anyone thought they were a Communist or Communist-sympathizer. A lesser known story, however, is how the U.S. government also tried to get rid of homosexuals. Lesbians and gay men were thought to be “sex perverts” and could lose their jobs serving the U.S. government if anyone found out. A new documentary called “The Lavender Menace,” which is currently in production, introduces us to the men and women who lost their jobs during this time and shows how a few of them, including an adorable old man named Frank Kameny, fought back. Keep reading »
Hey there, Niko Alm. I really love that you were so adamant about wearing a spaghetti strainer in your driver’s license photo that you fought for three years to obtain the right. You even claimed to be a follower of “Pastafarianism,” and submitted to a mental health test to make sure that you were competent enough to drive. It turns out you were, and that strainer does really make the outfit. Let’s go on a date — you can drive. [NPR] Keep reading »
Let’s get one thing straight: my period and I are not friends. And that’s why last week, when I was going through the worst of it, I started referring to my period as The Deathly Hallows. It just seemed appropriate, you know? Granted, I’ve never seen a Harry Potter movie or read the books, but come on, what’s more deathly or hallows-y than bleeding for five days straight? With that in mind, I’ve decided we need to come up with some fresh new period euphemisms, because “Aunt Flo,” “the rag,” and “my monthly lusty bloodletting” just aren’t cutting it anymore. Keep reading »
“I believe too many women are sitting on the sidelines and aren’t engaged in the issues that affect them. I’m particularly concerned about younger women — women 40 and under who are not engaged at all. Some of it has to do with the fact that women are busy; they’re focused on their careers; they’re focused on raising children. But a lot of women also believe that their voice doesn’t matter, that their views are not important, and that their vote doesn’t make a difference. And that’s really what I want to challenge with American women.
Right now, less than one percent of women in Congress are under 40. I want to really work over the next few years to bring more women off the sidelines and get them engaged. To care about the policies and decisions that are being made because I don’t want them waking up a year from now, two years from now, 10 years from now, and realizing that they don’t agree with the laws that are being written and the agenda of this country because they didn’t participate.”
—Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) is my number one favorite politician right now, precisely because she utters quotes like this. Instead of being preachy about why we need more women in politics “just because” (which is how we could end up with President Michele Bachmann), Sen. Gillibrand is simply and succinctly pointing out that legislation is passed by those who care enough to make it work. Horrified that your state doesn’t recognize gay marriage or de-funded Planned Parenthood? Do something about it — run for office. If you don’t, someone else will! [Marie Claire] Keep reading »