Friday, June 12, 2015

Weekend Links: The What a Week Edition

I'm still catching up from my self-made crunch time, so this week's post is going to be to the point... straight to the links!

You have probably heard about the white woman who has said she's black and leads the Spokane NAACP. I have no idea what to say about that story, but if you want to read about it, Jamelle Bouie's piece in Slate is a place to start.

Before that story took over everyone's attention, there were two other big stories this week: the fallout from Elinor Burkett's piece in the NY Times about transgender women and there was Tim Hunt.

Let's take them in order. I find the back and forth about transgender women and feminism basically impossible to follow, and I have a strong suspicion that the number of people who actually have a problem here is quite small. I was going to just ignore this story, but then I saw this article from Jaclyn Friedman, and I found it very useful and wanted to share it.

I am clearly not all that versed on the concerns of academic feminism or on transgender issues, but I also suspect that if we could get better at actually treating each individual with the respect they deserve, some of the issues around words and pronouns would be less contentious. I suspect that the words hurt more because they are representative of a lack of respect that is more pervasive and damaging.

I have no data to back up that suspicion. I am going to continue to try to broaden my understanding of gender, anyway. This article discusses some books I might read and then give to Pumpkin since I was shocked to discover that she is now "middle-grade." (Yikes.)

I'll read them first mostly to screen for violence and tension of the sort that Pumpkin doesn't like and to be ready to answer questions.

On Tim Hunt... I think the best response was the #DistractinglySexy hashtag. And then I saw some men arguing it was an "aggressive" response and I almost lost it. Lighthearted pictures laughing at what is frankly a rather painful subject are aggressive? Really? I want to buy them a dictionary.

And that's all the time I'm going to spend on that one.

Moving on.

I thought this blog post about two intersecting issues in academia and how "the public" might view them was really, really interesting, but do not feel up to commenting on it. If you feel up to commenting on it, feel free to do so in my comments section!

This story of how a fake viral news story screwed up three people's lives is horrifying.

This tweet is very true:

I need something happy to end with, right? I have a house for a mechanical hamster, courtesy of Pumpkin.

And did you somehow miss seeing the pictures of the betrayed dog? If so:

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