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Windsor vs. United States

Today, the Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit ruled that "we conclude that Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act violates equal protection and is therefore unconstitutional" [PDF of decision]. Plaintiff Edie Windsor has also petitioned the US Supreme Court to hear her case. [more inside]
posted by catlet on Oct 18, 2012 - 51 comments

Gay In The South: Uncle Poodle Speaks Out

It all started on Sept 27, when Honey Boo Boo's Uncle Lee "Poodle" Thompson made his first appearance on the show. Not a week had passed before Karen Cox's October 3rd op-ed for the New York Times using him as an example for the encouraging state of being gay in the South. October 8th, Jonathan Capehart wrote his own op-ed column for the Washington Post taking Cox to task for painting too rosy a picture of what GLBT life is like in the South, and calling for Uncle Poodle to speak out. Finally, October 10, Lee Thompson did speak out, in a profile column with the GA Voice, Georgia's gay newspaper. And what he had to say is getting positive attention.
posted by hippybear on Oct 17, 2012 - 57 comments

"I would not choose to be any one else, or any place else."

"Look, goddamn it, I’m homosexual, and most of my friends are Jewish homosexuals, and some of my best friends are black homosexuals, and I am sick and tired of reading and hearing such goddamn demeaning, degrading bullshit about me and my friends." - Merle Miller.
In 1970, two years after Stonewall, Joseph Epstein wrote a cover story for Harper’s Magazine, Homo/hetero: The struggle for sexual identity, that came to chilling conclusions: "I would wish homosexuality off the face of this earth." His incendiary language prompted author/journalist/writer Merle Miller to come out of the closet in the New York Times Magazine, with an angry and poignant plea for dignity, understanding and respect: "What It Means to Be a Homosexual." 40 years later, that essay helped inspire the launch of the "It Gets Better" campaign. Via [more inside]
posted by zarq on Oct 17, 2012 - 62 comments

Insanity, Death, or Abandonment

"A blue cloud of smoke wafted over the Famous Five statue that sits just east of the Senate doors. No one seemed to be going insane or looking like they were about to personally invade the United States. There were people of all colours in the crowd, but if any of them were members of The Ring, they hid it well. The peaceful demonstrators were, however, breaking the law, smoking a banned substance that could in theory have landed any one of them in prison." Emily Murphy’s legacy lives on in more ways than most care to remember.
posted by mannequito on Oct 1, 2012 - 14 comments

Take that, Caitlin Flanagan

Focusing on career -- how hookup culture empowers women
posted by msalt on Sep 9, 2012 - 51 comments

Once an Eagle

Eagle Scouts Returning Our Badges, a tumblr of pictures and letters from US Scouts renouncing their Eagle award.
posted by zamboni on Aug 12, 2012 - 112 comments

For the first time in Olympic history all the participating teams will have female athletes

The London Olympics has been billed as a notable step forward in gender equality. It is the first Olympics with female representation from all countries despite the many and several barriers to female sport participation that still exist in some countries (including developed ones). These Olympics have female boxers, female athletes from Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Brunei and male medal bearers But despite Jacques Rogge's declaration in his opening ceremony speech, some are more equal than others. Australia and Japan are reviewing their athletes' travel arrangements after women were given second class tickets and there is a small, but growing campaign to see male synchronised swimming form part of the program (one of two sports, the other being rhythmic gymnastics, with no male competition). [more inside]
posted by MuffinMan on Aug 8, 2012 - 101 comments

You sound like my wife.

Spike Lee on New York, Obama, film, Hollywood, reality teevee, marriage equality, Taylor Lautner, and so forth.
posted by shakespeherian on Jul 9, 2012 - 84 comments

The "Unstoppable Gay Jew"

In 1971, "decades before any state had seriously considered legalizing gay marriage, long before anyone had thought of creating—never mind repealing—a policy called “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell,” before Reagan, before AIDS, before the American Psychiatric Association determined that homosexuality was not a mental illness, and before half the people currently living in America were even born, a man named John Singer stepped into the King County marriage license office in Seattle." Meet Faygele ben Miriam, the radical activist who pioneered the fight for same-sex marriage in Washington State, 41 years ago. Via.
posted by zarq on Jun 7, 2012 - 16 comments

DOMA doomed

First Circuit Court of Appeals rules Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional.
posted by klangklangston on May 31, 2012 - 97 comments

why teaching equality hurts men

Why Teaching Equality Hurts Men: "It hurts them by making them unconsciously perpetrate biases they’ve been actively taught to despise. It hurts them by making them complicit in the distress of others. It hurts them by shoehorning them into a restrictive definition masculinity from which any and all deviation is harshly punished... It hurts them through a process of indoctrination so subtle and pervasive that they never even knew it was happening, and when you’ve been raised to hate inequality, discovering that you’ve actually been its primary beneficiary is horrifying – like learning that the family fortune comes from blood money." (via nooneyouknow)
posted by flex on May 18, 2012 - 134 comments

It Could Happen to You!

"Had Tom and I had the right to marry, many things would have been different. Losing a loved one is devastating enough, but to then be rendered legally insignificant only makes the pain worse." [more inside]
posted by ericb on May 10, 2012 - 36 comments

Evening the Odds

Evening the Odds: Is there a politics of inequality? (Nicholas Lemann in New Yorker)
posted by davidjmcgee on Apr 24, 2012 - 18 comments

This piece would suggest that the door is opening, and people are walking through it

MSNBC Talks To And About Trans People For An Hour, Doesn't F*ck It Up
posted by sendai sleep master on Apr 19, 2012 - 34 comments

How to be a fan of problematic things.

How to be a fan of problematic things.
posted by zoo on Apr 3, 2012 - 206 comments

Some are more Equal than others

The best and worst places to be a woman is an Independent on Sunday investigation to mark International Women's Day which unearths some surprising results
Are we EQUALS? Is a series of short films about whether men and women are really equals in 2012.
posted by adamvasco on Mar 4, 2012 - 24 comments

We are one Maryland, and all of us at the end of the day want the same thing for our children.

And the eighth state to make same-sex marriage legal is... Maryland. [more inside]
posted by Faint of Butt on Mar 1, 2012 - 92 comments

Our Black Year.

"So I'm literally walking around and talking to people, "Is there a black-owned restaurant, or a black-owned dry cleaner?" and folks are looking at me like I'm insane. And if I didn't know this, I'm sure that folks outside the black community don't have this as part of their reality or part of their picture for black America. When we talk about black people, the black situation, problems in the black community, you know, we start with, "Black kids are least likely to graduate from school; black unemployment is four times higher than the national average," all these numbers. But why can't we include that over 90 percent of businesses in the black community are not owned by black people or local residents? If we were to add that to the conversation, maybe folks would say, "Oh, well no wonder things are so bad there," and start thinking about things in a different way instead of allowing those awful numbers to be a reflection of our propensities. Why is it that my people are just supposed to be the perpetual consumer class, and everyone else is supposed to benefit from our money?"

posted by empath on Feb 23, 2012 - 174 comments

Good News/Bad News

Gov. Chris Christie vetoes New Jersey bill granting marriage equality. Meanwhile, the Maryland House narrowly passes such a bill. The MD Senate passed a similar bill last year, and no senators have announced any plans to change their votes, and Gov. Martin O'Malley has promised to sign it.
posted by Navelgazer on Feb 17, 2012 - 160 comments

Maureen Walsh's Moment

Republican state rep. Maureen Walsh (WA, 16th District) gives a heartbreakingly earnest speech on behalf of marriage equality.
posted by hermitosis on Feb 9, 2012 - 107 comments

Marriage Equality in Washington State Takes the Next Step

The Washington State Senate has approved SB 6239, a bill granting marriage equality, in a 28-21 vote. It now moves on to the House, where its passage is all but assured, then to the desk of Governor Gregoire, who started the process earlier this year and has promised to sign it.

But, then what? As in 2009, when citizens voted 53-47 in favor of Referendum 71 to reject overturning the legislature's domestic partnership bill, the bill will likely be subject to a citizen referendum, rendering it temporarily inactive until approved by popular vote. A recent poll found that 55% of voters would approve that measure. If that holds true, same-sex marriages could begin in Washington State starting December 7th, 2012.
posted by 0xFCAF on Feb 2, 2012 - 70 comments

“Maybe you should never transition."

"We are seeing the emergence of a new variation on an old, cissexist theme: 'No, it’s not a good time for you to transition. This is going to be so hard on us. Oh won’t you wait or reconsider this choice for us normal people?'. Their subtext is plain and unambiguous to nearly every trans person: 'Maybe you should never transition.'" [more inside]
posted by cp311 on Jan 22, 2012 - 184 comments

81 words

Being gay was considered a mental disorder by psychiatry - until 1973 - when the battle lines were drawn. Reporter Alix Spiegel continues the gripping story that spurred a radical rethink. It's the story of a closeted cartel of powerful, gay psychiatrists; of confrontations with angry activists; a shrink dressed in a Nixon mask, and a pivotal encounter in a Hawaiian bar. [more inside]
posted by infinite intimation on Dec 24, 2011 - 28 comments

"From the bottom of our hearts, we ask that you please accept our apology."

Senator Amy Koch, who campaigned this year to put a constitutional amendment on next year's ballot to define marriage as the union between a man and a woman. has admitted that she had "a relationship with a Senate staffer" who is not her husband. She has stepped down as Majority Leader of the Minnesota Senate, announced she will not seek re-election, and issued an apology. In response, the gay and lesbian community of Minnesota has issued their own apology, for "ruining the institution of marriage and causing her to stray from her husband" [more inside]
posted by dubold on Dec 22, 2011 - 70 comments

The Rights that were Left.

On December 6th, 2011, International Human Rights Day, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton delivered a speech in front of the United Nations proclaiming freedom and equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender persons (transcript included). [more inside]
posted by seanmpuckett on Dec 7, 2011 - 71 comments

Careers, Parents, and the 1%

Your parents have a huge influence on your future career. A single chart from the Journal of Labor Economics shows how much the top 1% benefit from their parent's success and networks (Results are from Canada, but the same is observed elsewhere). Nepotism is a very common phenomenon, and explains part of why income mobility between generations can be such a problem. Beyond the importance of parental networks and money, however, there is evidence that our genes influence our career choices, including whether you become an entrepreneur.
posted by blahblahblah on Dec 2, 2011 - 71 comments

Fingers crossed

Australian Labor Party's 46th National Conference starts today in Sydney. Key agenda items - Gay marriage, refugees, and Uranium sale to India. Follow it live.
posted by vidur on Dec 1, 2011 - 39 comments

"Clay and many magazine people told me not to include a lesbian article in the first issue—and so, of course, we did."

The December 20, 1971 issue of New York Magazine came bundled with a 40-page preview of the first periodical created, owned, and operated entirely by women. The first issue sold out in eight days. 40 years later, New York Magazine interviews Gloria Steinem and the women who launched Ms. Magazine. (single page version.) From the same issue: How the Blogosphere Has Transformed the Feminist Conversation [more inside]
posted by zarq on Oct 31, 2011 - 11 comments

Fertile ground for demagogues

Robert Reich talks at Google about the biggest problem facing the US economy. [SLYT, 57min]
posted by knave on Sep 1, 2011 - 98 comments

Reading the news has been rough this week. Here's some good news.

Early this morning, the law that legalized Same-Sex Marriage in New York State went into effect, with many couples choosing to tie the knot at the stroke of midnight. In New York City, the city clerk will be working overtime to process marriage licenses for the 823 same-sex couples expected to wed there today, having adding extra capacity to ensure that all couples who signed up in advance would not be turned away. LGBT weddings are expected to bring an additional $155 million in tourism revenues into the state over the next 12 months, and governor Andrew Cuomo's approval ratings are currently the highest of any US state governor following the passage of the bill.
posted by schmod on Jul 24, 2011 - 149 comments

"Don't Ask, Don't Tell" apprently about to end.

In a brief two-page order, a three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco said the "don't ask, don't tell" policy must be lifted now that the Obama administration has concluded it's unconstitutional to treat gay Americans differently under the law.
posted by andreaazure on Jul 6, 2011 - 54 comments

America's Next Great Civil Rights Struggle

The New Republic examines what they're calling "America's Next Great Civil Rights Struggle" and asks, "What will it take for America to accept transgender people for who they really are?" [more inside]
posted by zarq on Jun 29, 2011 - 173 comments

"Sex selection defies culture, nationality and creed."

"Over the past few decades, 160 million women have vanished from East and South Asia — or, to be more accurate, they were never born at all. Throughout the region, the practice of sex selection — prenatal sex screening followed by selective termination of pregnancies — has yielded a generation packed with boys. From a normal level of 105 boys to 100 girls, the ratio has shifted to 120, 150, and, in some cases, nearly 200 boys born for every 100 girls. In some countries, like South Korea, ratios spiked and are now returning to normal. But sex selection is on the rise in Eastern Europe, Southeast Asia, and the Middle East." American journalist Mara Hvistendahl's new book: "Unnatural Selection: Choosing Boys Over Girls, and the Consequences of a World Full of Men," examines and tries to predict the actual and potential effects of unequal sex ratios on men, women and the social economies of the affected regions, including the recent spike in sex trafficking and bride-buying across Asia. More. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Jun 10, 2011 - 65 comments

Some of the men think they freak this like we do, but no they don't.

Hey Beyonce, Guess What? You're a Liar. (SLYT) Angry young video blogger (vlogger?) Nineteen Percent calls out Beyonce's Run the World (Girls) for shallow girl-power lyrics. (via Feministing.)
posted by emjaybee on May 23, 2011 - 163 comments

"Discrimination generates hatred"

Brazil's supreme court recognises same sex unions. The Brazilian Supreme Court voted 10-0 (one abstention) yesterday to recognise same-sex civil unions as of equal legal validity to marriage/ with "stable" same-sex couples now able to gain certificates that allow access to equal legal rights. "Discrimination generates hatred," said Justice Carlos Ayres Britto, who wrote the ruling. [more inside]
posted by jaduncan on May 8, 2011 - 42 comments

speculative, but instructive, economics

In a pinch, upgrade the humans or redistribute the robots - "[S]uppose [as a factory owner] I replace all my workers with machines... This squeeze has many implications, one of them being that here is an important sector of the economy in which more or less all the gains accrue to the owners of capital and more or less none to the working class..." [more inside]
posted by kliuless on May 1, 2011 - 98 comments

Full veil banned for Muslim women in France.

A law has come into force in France which makes it an offence for a Muslim woman to conceal her face behind a veil when in public. [more inside]
posted by dubold on Apr 11, 2011 - 444 comments

Female workers make gains but still earn less than men. It's 2011, right?

OK News Sobering statistics in 2011 America:
  • One in three families with children relied solely on the mother's earnings in 2010, but women's earnings accounted for only about a third of married couples' income.
  • Women still earn less — about 77 cents for each male dollar.
  • [more inside]
    posted by zooropa on Mar 28, 2011 - 75 comments

    "...because I think you're a sexist, misogynist dinosaur. A relic of the Cold War, who's boyish charms, though wasted on me, obviously appealed to the young lady I sent out to evaluate you."

    James Bond star Daniel Craig in drag for International Women's Day. Daniel Craig wears women's clothes for a short film about sexual inequality for International Women's Day, narrated by Judi Dench, who plays M in the 007 films. [more inside]
    posted by Fizz on Mar 8, 2011 - 56 comments

    Same Sex Marriage in Maryland

    Last week, the Maryland Senate approved legislation that would legalize same-sex marriage. A half-hour ago, after a whole lot of drama, the bill was passed by the House Judiciary Committee.
    posted by amarynth on Mar 4, 2011 - 43 comments

    As a matter of conscience and faith, they will treat you differently

    A female has won a match for the first time at the prestigious Iowa State Wrestling Tournament . . . by default. Her opponent stated, “I have a tremendous amount of respect for Cassy and Megan (Black, the tournament’s other female entrant) and their accomplishments. However, wrestling is a combat sport and it can get violent at times. As a matter of conscience and my faith, I do not believe that it is appropriate for a boy to engage a girl in this manner. It is unfortunate that I have been placed in a situation not seen in most of the high school sports in Iowa.” [more inside]
    posted by Muddler on Feb 17, 2011 - 448 comments

    entrepreneurial paradise

    In Norway, Start-ups Say Ja to Socialism - We venture to the very heart of the hell that is Scandinavian socialism—and find out that it's not so bad. Pricey, yes, but a good place to start and run a company. What exactly does that suggest about the link between taxes and entrepreneurship?
    posted by kliuless on Jan 20, 2011 - 52 comments

    Bayard Rustin, Civil Rights and Gay Rights Pioneer

    Bayard Rustin was an important civil rights activist, the chief organizer of the 1963 March on Washington and an invaluable strategist to Martin Luther King, Jr. Despite opposition relating to his status as an openly gay man, he continued to contribute throughout his life to the struggle for racial equality and later, for gay and lesbian equality. [more inside]
    posted by Morrigan on Jan 17, 2011 - 26 comments

    Starting by fighting for her own children's rights, she ends up in government implementing the UN Convention on Disability Rights.

    Mother of disabled children changes country to suit their needs.
    posted by maiamaia on Dec 29, 2010 - 19 comments

    Well, uhhhh...

    When did you choose to be straight?
    posted by boo_radley on Dec 6, 2010 - 138 comments

    What History Looks Like

    Photos of US soldiers and vets engaged in non-violent protest against "DADT" in front of the White House.
    posted by bardic on Nov 16, 2010 - 96 comments

    They serve their country in the closet

    "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" is an exhibit of photographs by Jeff Sheng that is currently on tour in the US. A sharp contrast to his previous work: Fearless, which highlighted young Canadian and US athletes who openly identify as gay, lesbian or transgendered, this new exhibition shows gay American servicemen who cannot, so they have been photographed in uniform with their faces hidden or outside the photo's frame to protect their anonymity. Flash Galleries: DADT 1, DADT 2. [more inside]
    posted by zarq on Nov 15, 2010 - 17 comments

    Kye Allums Makes NCAA History

    Transgender Man Plays on Women's College Team. A guard for George Washington University's women's basketball team is a transgender man. Kye Allums, who was born female and has not undergone any hormone treatments, changed his name from Kay-Kay to Kye within the last year and was relieved not to lose his scholarship. "When people refer to me as 'girl' or 'she,' it doesn't sit well with me," Allums said. "That feeling you get when someone pisses you off, that feeling you get when your stomach gets hot and it aches, that's what it feels like. And that's how I know I'm not supposed to be a girl." On Nov. 13, he will be the first transgender person to compete in Division One college basketball, according to OutSports. Opposing fans used to taunt Allums about his masculine build, but it backfired. "I love it," he said. "It makes me feel better about myself to hear them call me a man."
    posted by rcade on Nov 2, 2010 - 187 comments

    Jewish newspaper: "Sorry for being so inclusive! It won't happen again."

    Two weeks ago, a Jewish newspaper in New Jersey, the Jewish Standard, published a wedding announcement for a same-sex Jewish couple. Now they're apologizing for it and saying it won't happen again. [more inside]
    posted by Tin Man on Oct 5, 2010 - 152 comments

    In America, everyone thinks of themselves as middle-class.

    Americans have no idea how rich the rich are, nor how poor the poor are.
    posted by Pope Guilty on Sep 29, 2010 - 237 comments

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