For folks who don't know, the LRU is a compilation of items from the past week that may be of interest to VPers and is intended to broaden the kinds of conversations we have here.
To submit articles for next week's round-up, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have additional articles you'd like folks to know about this week, feel free to comment directly to this post.
As a reminder, in lieu of trigger warnings, I use keywords describing the themes of the piece. Please skim these before deciding to read the excerpt or click through for the full article. Outside sources are not safe spaces, and mainstream sources' comments should almost always be avoided. The links I highlight don't necessarily reflect VP's views, or even my own, for that matter.
This week's round-up includes: quotes from a Kentucky judge on gay marriage ban; on the neutralizing of men; disability and accommodation; remote control contraception; covering while breastfeeding; celebrities and sexual entitlement; transitioning, access, and privilege; sexual assault and social media; and the respectability politics of birth control.
- All The Snarkiest Quotes From The Judge’s Ruling Overturning Kentucky’s Gay Marriage Ban by Ampersand at Alas! A Blog (Keywords: United States, same-sex marriage, heterosexism, judicial politics)
These arguments are not those of serious people. Though it seems almost unnecessary to explain, here are the reasons why. Even assuming the state has a legitimate interest in promoting procreation, the Court fails to see, and Defendant never explains, how the exclusion of same-sex couples from marriage has any effect whatsoever on procreation among heterosexual spouses. Excluding same-sex couples from marriage does not change the number of heterosexual couples who choose to get married, the number who choose to have children, or the number of children they have.
- Let's Stop Neutralizing Men by Valerie Alexander at The Huffington Post (Keywords: gender, gender binary, language, sports)
Only one thing mars my enjoyment of watching the World Cup, and it's the absence of one small word. Just a tiny qualifier in a statistic that really should be corrected as our men's team continues to gain respect internationally. So I ask the American commentators, please stop announcing that Landon Donovan is the "all-time U.S. leading goal scorer." He is not. With 57 international goals, he's not even in the Top Five.
The all-time U.S. leading goal scorer is Abby Wambach, with 167 goals, followed by Mia Hamm (158), Kristine Lilly (130), Michelle Akers (105) and Tiffeny Milbrett (100). In fact, Abby Wambach is the all-time leading goal scorer in the world, among all soccer players, male or female.
- The Manor Theater, AMC Loews Ignore, Refuse Disability Accommodation by Sue Kerr at Pittsburgh Lesbian Correspondents (Keywords: disability, accommodation, movies)
The problem here is that refusing a pretty simple accommodation (two reserved aisle seats held until 15 minutes before the show begins) again isolates people and shrinks their world. Granted, I can go see another movie at another theater that will accommodate me. But like many people, I want to see this particular movie for my own reasons. I have money for a ticket, I have a way to get there, I can mobilize myself all around. I don’t need the best seat in the house, I don’t need any particular seats. I just need one simple accommodation.
- New implantable, remote-controlled contraceptive lasts 16 years by Becky Crew at Science Alert (Keywords: science, research, medicine, birth control, technology)
A new candidate for the perfect contraceptive has surfaced - a wireless, remote-controlled implant that can be turned on and off at the push of a button.
Developed by US tech start-up MicroCHIPS, the device will begin pre-clinical testing in 2015. If the testing is a success, the device will be on the market by 2018.
- Why Can’t You Just Nurse With a Cover? An Answer in Photos by Megan at Mothering (Keywords: babies, motherhood, breastfeeding, shame, photos)
A closer step to judiciousness is another group who answer this debate with attempted political correctness. They acknowledge the benefits of and sometimes admire mothers for providing their children with breast milk, and it’s even okay for a mother to leave her hole and nurse in public, but if, and only if, you would please cover up.
I once described to a friend an outing where my nursing was responsible for making a table of five adults leave their seats at an ice cream shop and her response was, “Well, I mean, if you didn’t have a cover, I understand.” What I’ve come to understand is that the real misunderstanding is the reality of nursing with a cover.
- Woman 'Denies' Tour de France Winner's Kiss, Gets Called A 'B*tch' by Alanna Vagianos at The Huffington Post (Keywords: boundaries, consent, sports, media, shame, feminism, gendered slurs)
While the swing-and-a-miss kiss was without a doubt awkward, no person (of any gender) owes another person a kiss -- regardless of the situation. Whether Nibali won a Tour de France race or cured cancer, the women who surround him are entitled to brush off his advancing lips. Kisses are for those who want them.
- Transitioning, Access, and Privilege by Hex at Disrupting Dinner Parties (Keywords: gender, genderqueer, Privilege, trans, transitioning, hormones, medical care)
I’ve been out as trans for almost a year now. I’ve been using the same pronouns and presenting myself roughly in the same way for most of that time. About two months ago I started taking testosterone. Soon after starting I told an acquaintance about it and she immediately said “Oh, I have a friend who’s doing a project and wants to include a trans voice. Can I give him your name?” Of course, the tokenism at work here could be the subject of a whole post of its own, but the salient point is that I had been trans all along, but it was only after starting hormones that she thought to mention this. In fact, as people found out about my taking hormones – long before there were any actual effects – my preferred pronouns were used more consistently. I started getting requests to sit on panels or to lead trainings. In short, people became noticeably more respectful of my identity.
- Stand with Jada by Maya at Feministing (Keywords: social media, victim blaming, shame, sexual assault, rape)
IJada had no idea what happened to her that night until she started seeing images and videos being passed around on social media and got texts from friends asking if she was ok. Then–with almost unimaginable callousness–her peers started mocking her assault by posting images of themselves lying on the floor in the same pose as Jada’s unconscious body under the hashtag #jadapose.
- The respectability politics of birth control by Irin Carmon at MSNBC (Keywords: US, birth control, health insurance, slut shaming, Supreme Court, PCOS, endometriosis)
Love explained to lawmakers that birth control had ended years of pain, easing her struggle with polycystic ovary syndrome and endometriosis.
The committee listened. The final version of the bill, signed into law by Jan Brewer that year, provided reimbursement if an employee provided written proof that there were “medical indications other than for contraceptive, abortifacient, or sterilization purposes.” Only upon protest did legislators include language that pointed out that employment discrimination law exists – i.e., you can’t be fired for using birth control.
So what if an employee who got that reimbursement had sex without intending to have a baby? Would she have to give the money back?
As always feel free to share your thoughts on any of these articles, along with whatever you've been reading or writing recently!