Because women who straddled a motorcycle were “distracting” men from driving safely, a county in Kenya is proposing a law that could force women to sit sidesaddle while a man drives the motorcycle or bike. Kisumu County assembly members agreed that the sitting position of women straddling a bike, called ‘bet angewa,’ was unconstitutional and un-cultural. Because women were “exposing their bodies” by opening their legs on the bikes, men began losing respect for them. Now it is the safety and mobility of the women that will be put at risk — especially when they’re wearing long, flowing clothing hanging over the sides of the bike. Kisumu County is actually not the first place concerned about women straddling male bike riders; a city in Indonesia enacted a law requiring women to ride sidesaddle on bikes and motorcycles. Sure there’s a better way to solve this conundrum somehow? One that is less dangerous? [Salon via Standard Media] [Image via MrJam.org]
A show about women in prison could have easily devolved into mindless titillation or stereotypical boredom. But Netflix’s breakout hit “Orange Is The New Black” has skillfully avoided either trapping. Instead, viewers are treated to a show with well-thought-out story lines, sharp social commentary, diverse, multi-faceted characters with compelling backgrounds, and stellar performances. One of these standouts is actress Laverne Cox, who captures audiences with her portrayal of transgender prison inmate, Sophia Burset.
Looking at her career thus far, it’s easy to see why some have deemed Laverne a trailblazer in many ways. Not only has she made the enviable leap from reality star (appearing on VH1’s “I Want to Work For Diddy”) to skilled actress, but she’s also a producer and transgender advocate. Laverne’s visibility as a trans actress of color is breaking barriers on many levels, and hopefully will pave the way for more rich roles created for trans actors.
I had the chance to speak with Cox and learned more about working with Jodie Foster, her relationship to her activism and her art, and the future of trans actors. Keep reading »
Four former players for the Vanderbilt University football team were indicted on Friday for the alleged rape of an unconscious female student this past June. The Nashville college dismissed the four young men and barred them from campus while the investigation is underway. Keep reading »