Month: May 2009

RIP Dr. George Tiller

Posted by – May 31, 2009

He was a brave man, an abortion provider in Kansas who’d been shot before, had his clinic bomed. Mike Hendricks of the Kansas City Star pretty much sums up how he was murdered, & by whom.

I’ll have more to say about choice, abortion providers, & violence, but for now I’m just sad & disappointed.

If you’re angry, send a letter of support or a donation to your local Planned Parenthood.

ENDA 2009

Posted by – May 30, 2009

Here’s a Washington Blade article about Barney Frank which discusses his opinions on this year’s efforts to get a gender-inclusive ENDA passed:

Frank said transgender activists and allies have been lobbying lawmakers to support the gender identity provisions, and he’s “more optimistic” that ENDA would pass with such a provision. But Frank stopped short of saying he was certain the bill would pass with the gender identity provisions.

“There’s no certainty in politics,” he said. “People got to lobby hard. And not lobbying Nancy Pelosi, or me, or [Reps.] Tammy [Baldwin] or George Miller — they should be calling their own representatives. I’m optimistic, but it’s not a done deal.”

& Jillian Weiss will be writing a series of articles at her Transgender Workplace Diversity blog in order to answer these questions:

  • How should gender identity be defined?
  • Does “gender identity” language protect employees other than transgender people?
  • What are the scope of the exemptions from coverage included in the bill?
  • Who supports ENDA, and why?
  • Who opposes ENDA, and why?
  • What education do Members of Congress need?
  • What should I tell my Congressperson?
  • How will the relationship between transgender advocates and the wider LGBT advocacy community play out in this go-round?
  • What has been the experience of organizations in jurisdictions with current gender identity protections?
  • What types of issues have come up with transgender workers in the workplace?
  • Is ENDA beneficial, detrimental, or neutral for the organizations that it covers?

…which will give us all more information & talking points when contacting our Representatives, as Frank says we should, so you should look up now so you’ll be ready. (On the top left side, you can put in your zip code & get the contact info for your Rep.)

Tops & Bottoms

Posted by – May 29, 2009

Now you can decide which city to live in based on whether you prefer being on the top or on the bottom.

Five News Stories

Posted by – May 28, 2009

Fairfax High School elected a male student Prom Queen.

Tom Ackerman, a gay man, has vowed to call his friends’ wives their girlfriends, because he’s decided his religious views don’t allow him to recognize opposite-sex marriage.

The New Scientist tells you everything you ever wanted to know about female ejaculation (& maybe a few things you didn’t want to know).

A woman named Brenda Lee got dragged bodily off of Air Force One when she tried to give President Obama a letter asking him to stand up for heterosexual marriage.

Publishers Weekly reports from the BEA that US Publishers have vowed to fight digitized piracy.

Dear Abby

Posted by – May 28, 2009

Check out this answer by Dear Abby (now known as Jeanne Phillips!) about whether or not a woman should tell someone about another person’s trans gender.

Well done, Abby. I’m wondering when we can work this out as a Right to Privacy issue. Anyone?

(h/t to Dawn.)

The Always-Hip OED

Posted by – May 27, 2009

Really: it’s my favorite book. This year they’ve added a bunch of new terms

  • muggle n. In the fiction of J.K. Rowling: a person who possesses no magical powers. Hence in allusive and extended uses: a person who lacks a particular skill or skills, or who is regarded as inferior in some way.
  • grrrl n. A young woman regarded as independent and strong or aggressive, especially in her attitude to men or in her sexuality.
  • gaydar n. A homosexual person’s ability to identify another person as homosexual by interpreting subtle signals conveyed by their appearance, interests, etc.
  • meatspace n. The physical world, as opposed to virtual.
  • lookism n. Prejudice or discrimination on the grounds of appearance.

For all 15, check out cracked.com. (via Queerty)

Superhero Betty

Posted by – May 27, 2009

How sweet is this? Ron Hogan is interviewed by The Undomestic Goddess and names Betty his super-hero! That so rocks.

Prop 8 Decision Rallies

Posted by – May 26, 2009

I’m looking forward to Iowans being smug toward Californians about how backward they are.

But in the meantime, you can go to a rally in a town near you.

art.not.riots.

Posted by – May 26, 2009

Today at noon the CA Supreme Court will hand down its decision about Prop 8, & I’m nervous. The wrong decision is going to set off rallies all over the country, which is a good thing, but therer is so much anger, sadness, & frustration compacted into this ruling that – well, old lady that I am, I worry about people’s safety.

Kids: art. not. riots. Pretty please, be creative, break the law, but stay safe & don’t give the haters more fuel for their fire.

My Damned tribute seems uncannily well-timed. Anti-Pope indeed.

Two Tune Tuesday: The Damned

Posted by – May 26, 2009

In honor of them playing in NYC last week, when I *wasn’t there dammit* here’s some tunes from The Damned, who threaten retirement every couple of years. I’ve seen at least two Farewell tours, maybe a decade apart, at places like The Ritz, The (New) Ritz (or the former Studio 54, depending on how you look at it), Coney Island High, Irving Plaza. Oy. Yes, I am missing NYC pretty hardcore these days.


Get a playlist!

Betty was not a big fan, having been introduced to them when they were doing kitschy goth things like

  1. “Grimly Fiendish” (which dammit I love anyway), but I took her to see them live & she was, alas, converted. What I think she said was, “goddamn they’re the loudest band ever.”
  2. “New Rose” was the first punk single. They beat everyone, including the Pistols, to that one.
  3. “There Ain’t No Sanity Clause” is very Captain Sensible: stupid and funny and fun to sing along. Uhhuh.
  4. “Smash It Up Pts 1 & 2″ is in the canon of great punk rock theme songs.
  5. “Anti-Pope” is well, perfect, & was especially for a good Catholic girl with a lot of anger.
  6. “Generals” is from the Strawberries album, which came in bright red vinyl. It’s a pretty record, & a good one. Dave Vanians’s Interview with the Vampire tribute is on that one, too. These last two are a bit of the politics I imbibed with the tunes.

Delara Darabi’s Life

Posted by – May 25, 2009

It’s a heartbreaking story of a young woman who decided to take the rap for a murder for her older brother because they both thought she was young enough not to be executed for it.

She was.

But the question the GenderBlender blog has asked is important: why haven’t we heard about it? Why doesn’t your news media cover stories like this? Why should anyone give a shit about the Kardashians?

Remember Them as Soldiers

Posted by – May 25, 2009

What bugs me about this NPR story about a Civil War soldier is that the people who live in the town Albert Casher, nee Jennie Hodgers, are embarrassed by who s/he was:

Dina says some residents believe that embracing the story of Jennie Hodgers will help bring tourists to town. “Other people, I think, frankly, would rather everybody not know we had a cross-dresser in Saunemin,” she says.

She fought from start to finish in the Civil War. She went on to live as a man for the rest of her life, having gotten used to the freedom, the income, & the friends she made as a soldier.

“The women who went to war,” she says, “who disguised themselves as men and carried a gun, were overwhelmingly working-class women, immigrant women, poor women, urban women and yeoman farm girls.”

Surely not! Women couldn’t have chosen to live as men because the rest of their choices sucked!

So this Memorial Day I’d like to honor all the transgender people who fought in their nation’s wars: the trans guys, the trans women pre-transition, the crossdressers of all genders.

Map the Fallen

Posted by – May 24, 2009

Thanks to MHB boardie Viva Zoya, I’ve found Map the Fallen – an online tool to track where the soldiers who have died were from.

There’s also a cool Twitter campaign in honor of the recently fallen.

Sex Resources for Trans Women

Posted by – May 23, 2009

Today’s Feministing “Ask Professor Foxy” column is from a trans woman who can’t find good sex resources for her. I’ve made a few suggestions, but maybe you all know other good places to check. So far I’ve recommended:

With your input, I can put a bigger list together.

Childhood Toys

Posted by – May 23, 2009

The Fisher-Price “Little People” turned 50 this year. I didn’t even know they were still around, but I probably didn’t recognize them if and when I did see them in stores.

I loved ‘em. The castle was my favorite, with the groovy carriage & the trap doors & the hidden spot behind the staircase, but I loved my Main Street and the garage & the carousel too. I remember many happy, peaceful hours playing with them, telling myself their stories.

So which ones did you have?

(via NPR)

LOL Cat

Posted by – May 22, 2009

Jude suggested an LOL Cat treatment of the photo below? Any takers? You don’t have to do the graphics – just provide the text.

Big Eyed Boy

Posted by – May 22, 2009

Yes, Aeneas is the one with the heart condition, and he tends to startle easily.

Partner Protection for Wisconsin!

Posted by – May 21, 2009

Please sign this petition in favor of domestic partner protections for Wisconsin! It looks like they will be voting on it toward the end of the week.

NYS GENDA Call-In Day is TODAY!

Posted by – May 20, 2009

The Gender Expression Non-Discrimination Act (GENDA) has been passed by the Assembly and has enough support to be passed by the Senate. Get on the phone and call the lead Senate sponsor Tom Duane and your Senator to tell them that you want them to bring GENDA to the Senate floor and pass it. It is vital that they hear from you.
You can reach Senator Tom Duane at (518) 455-2451 and you can find your State Senator’s Albany phone number here.
GENDA would amend the state’s human rights law to include anti-discrimination protections based upon gender identity and expression, providing crucial civil rights protections for transgender New Yorkers by banning discrimination in housing, employment, credit, public accommodations, and other areas of everyday life.
With more than half of the Senators indicating their support for GENDA, we know that we have enough votes to get it passed in the Senate if it comes to the floor for a vote. So now is the time to call Senator Duane and your State Senator!
Talking Points:

  1. Reach Tom Duane at (518) 455-2451 and find your Senator’s Albany phone number here. Call their offices on Wednesday to tell them that the time is now to end discrimination against transgender New Yorkers. Remember to give them the number of the GENDA bill (S.2406).
  2. Ask your Senator to vote for GENDA, and ask lead Senate Sponsor Tom Duane to bring the bill to the floor for a vote now.
  3. Tell them about the broad support for GENDA statewide, including:
  • 78% of New York voters
  • Unions representing 2.1 million working New Yorkers
  • 27 Fortune 500 companies based in cities like Rochester, Corning, New York City and White Plains.
  • 344 clergy and lay leaders, representing over 20 different denominations

Do it! Don’t just Twitter it!

Two Tune Tuesday: Happy Birthday Dad

Posted by – May 19, 2009


Get a playlist!

My dad turns 81 today, & this is some of the stuff that he listened to, & that I loved right from the start (Hampton) or had to learn to love over time (Sinatra). I grew up in a family where the radio was always on, usually on WNEW AM (& because my mom insisted on not only listening to the old stuff, WNEW FM, too, where I grew up as well on Vin Scelsa, of all DJs). My peers’ parents were usually a little younger, the first wave of Boomers (born in the 40s & 50s), & my parents were born in the 20s & 30s, so the music I grew up with was significantly different. Honestly, I’m glad: I missed all that hippy crap.

Do bi do bi do is highly preferable poetry, no?