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The first woman president (second from L) meets the first black president (second from R)
* Happy birthday, “post-racial America”! Writing in the Washington Post, Kathleen Parker does not see race. In response to criticism that calling Barack Obama the first woman president was (among other things) racist, Parker pens a column explaining that she can’t write racist things, because she is white, and white people have the luxury of not being racist, like black people are:
But I also recognize that my life experience is different from that of most African Americans. And that experience allows me both the luxury of seeing people without the lens of race, but also (sometimes) to fail to imagine how people of other backgrounds might interpret my words.
She also has trouble seeing Obama as “exclusively black” because she has learned that she and the President are eighth cousins once removed—-a genealogical “nugget” she had previously intended to write an entire column about. That detail alone strikes me as a fireable offense.
I hate it when people call women “females.” I have one friend who does it because she was in the military and it was standard practice there, and occasionally I’ll say it when I specifically mean biological females rather than women, but 98% of the time it’s douchebaggery. Rule of thumb: if you say “females and males” it’s okay, but if you say “females and guys/men,” you’re probably a douchebag.
* Virginia resident Andrea examines U.S. immigration laws through the lens of her attempts to get her British fiancee a visa. In short, they have it easy, and they still don’t have it easy:
One of the things I hear a lot in any discussion of people who come here illegally is some permutation of “Well why don’t they just do it legally?” If they know that I’m currently going through the immigration process with my fiance, people will often ask “Doesn’t it make you mad that you’re going to all this trouble and people are just coming over here illegally?” The answers to these questions are, in reverse order, “No, I am thankful that we are able to do it legally fairly easily” and “Wow, you have never dealt with immigration, have you?”
* In Newsweek, Julia Baird tells us to “stop ogling Republican women”:
It’s odd to see how some men insist that when women start to grasp power, we should think of them primarily as playthings and provocateurs. Is this the best way to explain their success? They aren’t challenging the status quo. They’re being wild! They’re not trying to lift the ban on offshore drilling. They’re being naughty! When four women beat a field of men on the same night recently, competing for primary and gubernatorial nominations, it was widely referred to as “ladies’ night.” Aren’t ladies’ nights those promotions where women are allowed free entry into bars to provide fodder for the men?
* Scarleteen continues its “queering sexuality in color” series, this time with Dharshi, a 25-year-old South Asian lesbian:
The problem is that the queer community where I live is predominantly white, and tend not have familiarity with issues such as my marriage predicament. Sometimes I do feel pressure from the queer community to come out, as if that will be the solution to all of my problems. I do have some wonderful white gay and lesbian friends though who make an effort to listen and understand. One woman in particular is my mother’s age and her advice and sharing of her life experience has really helped me through the hard times. Also when I watch her with her partner and her kids, I feel optimistic that maybe that kind of future is also possible for me. I love meeting other queer people of colour, particularly from the South Asian community, but I don’t often get this opportunity.
Photo via Beverley & Pack, Creative Commons Attribution License 2.0