Tag Archives: privilege

The New Republic, White Tears & The Privilege To Be An A-Hole About Leaving Your Job

The New Republic’s publisher, Chris Hughes, is getting backlash from a bunch of white guys and yaaaaaaawwwwwnnnnn… Oh, I know already that that first sentence is exactly the kind of youthful, web-influenced repartée about which the now-former editors of The New Republic are experiencing such fist-shaking outrage. I’m not, in the words of Lloyd Grove’s puff piece on the house-clearing at TNR, a “belle-lettrist.” That’s all right. 

Some background, and I’ll try to be brief, because this truly is boring and irrelevant, and has absolutely no impact on anything of serious import in the world: Chris Hughes, a co-founder of Facebook, bought The New Republic in 2012. Hughes is 31 and, clearly, interested in digital strategy. He’s publisher and editor-in-chief of the magazine. Keep reading »

Frisky Rant: If You’re Privileged And You Know It, STFU

Frisky Rant: If You're Privileged And You Know It, STFU

A little background on me. I’m almost 35 years old, I went to an in-state university (UC Santa Cruz), I worked two jobs almost full-time during school, my parents helped me financially in ways that they could, and I had to take out student loans that I am not yet, but almost done paying back. I consider myself much luckier than many. I was able to find a way to afford to go to college in a country where getting a higher education has become more and more expected and less and less feasible. I do not for a second think that I am better than those who had to incur more debt in order to do so. The same cannot be said for xoJane writer Jessica Slizewski, who penned one of the most idiotic and tone deaf pieces I’ve possibly ever read on the internet, entitled “Unpopular Opinion: I Don’t Have Student Loans And I Don’t Feel Bad For People Who Do.” Keep reading »

Harvard’s Government School Orientation Will Now Have A “Check Your Privilege” Session

harvard-051514

Last week, the dean of Harvard University’s prestigious Kennedy School of Government agreed to include “power and privilege training” for every new student at orientation.

As NYmag.com notes, activists like Reetu Mody, a first-year grad student at the Kennedy School, found themselves disturbed by how often their opinions, especially those suggesting a racial bias, were dismissed in class discussions. The Kennedy School is known for grooming future world leaders, but apparently it doesn’t offer a very wide range of viewpoints in the classroom. In response, concerned students created a Tumblr called HKS Speak Out, a website that allows students to anonymously share their frustration with the limited sense of diversity on campus. In an open letteron the blog published on April 29th, students asked for “a mandatory power and privilege training that examines components of race, gender, socioeconomic class, sexual orientation, ability, religion, international status, and power differentials for every incoming HKS student starting August 2014,” among other requests.

Keep reading »

One White Feminist’s Slow, Bumbling, Slightly Embarrassing Road To Understanding Intersectionality

One White Feminist's Slow, Bumbling, Slightly Embarrassing Road To Understanding Intersectionality

As will probably become very obvious over the course of this essay, I don’t have an academic background in feminism or gender studies. In fact, I’ve taken exactly one women’s studies class, my freshman year of college, and while I enjoyed the reading list and some of the class discussions, the academic side of feminism didn’t appeal to me.

For me, feminism is more of a basic instinct than a complex thought process. I have always been a feminist because I feel feminism in my bones. Since I was very young, I knew that men and women should be equal, that it was wrong that we weren’t, and that I would do whatever I could to help achieve gender equality. Of course I was a feminist. Keep reading »

Frisky Rant: Thought Catalog Writer Whines About Being “Hated” For Being Privileged, I Play World’s Tiniest Violin

Straight Privilege
bisexuality
How being bisexual affects her perspective on straight privilege. Read More »
Privilege In "OITNB"
Piper in prison on Orange Is The New Black
Piper in "Orange Is The New Black" is the poster girl for privilege. Read More »
Privilege Of Marriage
Andrea Grimes knows she is privileged to be able to marry. Read More »
Frisky Rant: Thought Catalog Writer Whines About Being "Hated" For Being Privileged, I Play World's Tiniest Violin

Someone call the waaaaaaambulance, we’ve got a whiner on our hands. Over at Thought Catalog, in a piece titled “Being Privileged In Not A Choice, So Stop Hating Me For It,” writer Kate Menendez says she is fed up with other people judging her for her privileged background. She’s sick of being self conscious that, thanks to her parents paying for college and grad school, she had no debt. She’s over pretending that the fancy suits she wears to her internship are hand-me-downs, when she bought them full price herself. She’s tired of getting dirty looks from her doorman when he hands her a delivery from J. Crew, dammit! Yes, doorman. She lives in an expensive high-rise building, get over it, poors, because Kate can’t help it! She writes:

So stop making me feel like I’ve done something wrong. Stop making me feel like I am less deserving. I didn’t ask to be born into this kind of circumstance and I’m tired of being judged for it.

In some ways, Menendez is right of course. It isn’t her “fault” that she was born to parents who “work hard and did much better than they ever expected in their careers.” There is certainly no reason to “hate” her for being lucky enough to have college and grad school paid for, to have the money to buy nice suits and get her hair highlighted. When it comes to accepting these opportunities and privileges, Menendez has done nothing wrong. But I am having a hard time believing that Menendez actually has experienced “backlash” for simply being privileged. Aside from her interpretation of the looks her doorman gives her, Menendez offers no actual examples of the hate she’s received, just blanket statements about people needing to “lay off.” Without any concrete examples, I’m inclined to believe that the “judgment” Menendez feels is actually youthful self absorption making larger conversations about privilege all about her. Keep reading »

It’s OK, The Word “Wife” Isn’t Going To Bite

What "Wife" Means
The connotations of the word "wife" worry bride-to-be Andrea Grimes. Read More »
What Does A "Real Wife" Do?
This hashtag from Twitter makes us despair for humanity. Read More »
Beyonce & Mrs. Carter
On Beyonce and the luxury of playing "Mrs. Carter." Read More »
wife husband

A woman goes through life with a number of labels that she doesn’t have any control over, either by birth or by society’s imposition. But one label she should get to choose is whether she wants to be someone’s “wife” or not.  This should be a right for all of us.

A recent piece on Salon.com by soon-to-be-married author Tracy Clark-Flory about the word “wife” really pissed me off.  Clark-Flory wrote about going over the language of her wedding ceremony script with her fiancé and getting to the part that says “I now pronounce you husband and wife.”

Husband? Wife? I could barely conceal my gagging sounds. He said something to the effect of, “Ew, gross.”

She continues:

It makes me feel like Betty Draper, like I should be fetching his slippers and a scotch on the rocks — and remembering to get the roast bird out of the oven. (In reality, I’ve only just recently expanded my cooking repertoire beyond Kraft mac ‘n’ cheese and things you put in the microwave. He, however, will roast a chicken and make a rustic tart from scratch — all in one night.) I am a daughter, partner and friend — but a wife? I can’t help but imagine saying “I’m his wife” with heavy air quotes, a roll of the eyes or exaggerated feminine cheer.

Clark-Flory then expresses concern that the Middle English/Old English terms for “wife” and “husband” translate, roughly, to “vagina” and “householder.” It’s not that I don’t understand Clark-Flory’s discomfort with both words or their histories (although dredging up the Old English definition? really?). But I’m uneasy with how glib she was about that choice when so many people are scrambling to have the same one. Keep reading »

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