President Obama issued a proclamation at the end of May stating that June is officially Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Month, but June has unofficially been Pride Month for the LGBT community for decades. We place it in June, and our pride parades at the end of June, to mark the anniversary of the Stonewall Rebellion. This year will be 45 years.
The fact that our President is so markedly in support of LGBT rights is historic, but what really makes it remarkable to me is that he and his administration have been vocal lately about transgender rights. Sex reassignment surgery can now be covered on Medicare. Chuck Hagel is now “open” to reconsidering the military’s ban on transgender service members. This is all part of a very fast, sweeping change in our culture’s conversation about transgender people, marked just since the beginning of this month, for example, by Laverne Cox’s appearance on the cover of TIME and a viral video telling the story of a family raising a transgender child. Keep reading »
The absolute dumbest argument I’ve heard in response to Elliot Rodger’s killing spree last weekend was this: Rodger killed more men than women, so this had nothing to do with misogyny (subtext: So shut your feminist pie-hole).
It takes a lot of logical leaps to make that conclusion when you look at the overwhelming evidence to the contrary, not least of all the fact that Rodger himself explicitly stated that he hated women, that his purpose was to kill as many women as he could, that he felt that women were less than human, that his motivation was that he felt spurned by women. To wit, from Rodger himself: “I don’t know why you girls aren’t attracted to me, but I will punish you all for it.”
It’s not important what the numbers are, to me. The ratio of men to women killed or injured is largely circumstantial, and they don’t mean anything anyway, because — despite what a fair number of people apparently believe — misogynists hate men, too. Keep reading »
Maybe I’m just a sourpuss, but I’m having a really hard time appreciating the new “Feminist Frank” meme, just like I had a hard time appreciating the “Feminist Ryan Gosling” meme. I guess it boils down to this for me: It’s a lot easier to say the right things and look like a feminist than it is to actually do the right things and be a feminist. Keep reading »
Last Friday, Macklemore and Ryan Lewis performed a surprise music concert at the Experience Music Project Museum in Seattle. Awesome, right? Only, because it was a surprise, Macklemore wanted to go a bit incognito and donned a costume. But the costume was anything but awesome. To me, and many others, the costume looked like a negative stereotype of a Jewish man.
For his part, Macklemore denies that he purposefully intended to mock Jewish people with his costume. Late yesterday, he took to Tumblr to issue an apology.
“My intention was to dress up and surprise the people at the show with a random costume and nothing more. Thus, it was surprising and disappointing that the images of a disguise were sensationalized leading to the immediate assertion that my costume was anti-Semetic. I acknowledge how the costume could, within a context of stereotyping, be ascribed to a Jewish caricature. I am here to say that it was absolutely not my intention, and unfortunately at the time I did not foresee the costume to be viewed in such regard. [...] I truly apologize to anybody that I may have offended.”
Keep reading »
After almost two years at home with my son, I’m going back to work. As I’ve told people the news — family, friends, other moms, the checkout guy at the liquor store who sold me the celebratory champagne, the customer service rep from Citibank’s fraud department who called to check on my unusual activity – I’ve been taken aback by some of the responses. I assume the inappropriate reactions were simply people being dumbstruck by my good fortune, so I created a guide of what not to say when a woman tells you she’s going back to work.
Here they are, in a very particular order: Keep reading »
The first time I put a barbell across my back, I was in love.
It wasn’t like I had never lifted weights before; I had, but never like this. Thanks to the myth that I needed to do high reps with light weights to get “toned” arms and legs (because, of course, as a woman, I wouldn’t want to get too “bulky”), I had dutifully curled my tiny hand weights a million times. I never got strong or toned. All I got was bored. So I always quit. Keep reading »