What I’m Reading #1

I’m sad that I don’t write more. I read a ton of articles (thanks Facebook, feedly, and Twitter) and posting all of the links to FB/Twitter seems like a bit . . . much for my friends & followers. So, in the vein I suppose of my favorite Autostraddle column Things I Read That I Love, I’m going to write What I’m Reading lists every once in a while. Comments appreciated!



My Father Once Tried to Take Me Away From My Mother Because She’s Gay

The Atlantic, 22 June 2013

{LGBT rights, history, family, parenting}

This story is devastating, but I suppose it has a happy ending. It’s stories like these, though, that remind me of how far LGBT rights have come. I don’t know what would’ve happened to me if I had been brought up back then…if I ever would’ve figured out my sexuality or if I would’ve gone with what was “normal”, since I wouldn’t have known anything else. I imagine my whole life would’ve been drastically different, which is probably obvious, but this makes it all the more poignant. Also, for the record, battles like this aren’t over yet. Same-sex couples aren’t allowed to adopt children from Russia anymore, and can only adopt in some states (joint same-sex adoption is protected in 23 states plus DC, and prohibited in 7). This article is also super relevant to the episode of Switched at Birth I’m currently watching, in which a character tries to remove his biological daughter from her adopted home–where she is the child of two gay parents. Unfortunately, it’s so easy for me to see this plot line turning for the worse; despite his shaky track record (immigration difficulties, abandoning his first daughter when she was 3), he could probably easily convince a judge that the couple is unfit to raise the child. Kansas (the state the show takes place in) doesn’t have any laws prohibiting joint adoption, but it doesn’t protect it. Despite all of our pride rallies, obviously, we still have a ton to work for. 


The Invention of Jaywalking

Gizmodo, 22 July 2013

{jaywalking, history, fun facts, social campaigns}

I loved this article, for one, because I am a self-proclaimed professional jaywalker. Since I’m from NYC, it comes naturally to me. I’ve been told by countless old ladies to get out of the road because they’re concerned for my safety, and been warned that in Boise they, perhaps, actually ticket jaywalkers. But why walk further if the path you have is more efficient? I ask. I am always one for efficiency. Anyway, this history is really fascinating and not something I had ever thought about (in particular, how society had to adjust to the addition of cars on the road). I really can’t think of anything in my lifetime that has required so much social adaptation…the closest I get is to it is adjusting to the internet and technology, but that’s mostly a private, personal experience. Not something that the government has to get involved in, really, anyway.


NYC Mayoral Candidates Spend A Night in the Projects

NY Times, 21 July 2013

{housing, nyc, mayor, class}

This is of special interest to me because I have no idea who to vote for in the upcoming mayoral primary for NYC. I’m glad that they point out that this is a bit reality TV-like, because that was my first thought. It’s very gimmick-y, and I’m a bit skeptical about how this will really affect their policy. Politicians who care about social justice and the poor will be invigorated, and those who don’t will be able to shake off their experience easily enough. I feel like the most interesting part of this is who they’ve decided to bring as their guests. (Spoiler alert: de Blasio is the only one with a family member, his daughter whom I happen to know, Quinn brought her spokeswoman, and Weiner, unsurprisingly, was alone.)


Mormons Find Internet, Lose Faith

NY Times, 20 July 2013

{mormons, faith, internet, europe}

Mormons fascinate me. I could (and have) watch “And I’m a Mormon” videos for hours. I don’t know what it is. Maybe it’s because they’re Christians, technically, but so far removed from Christianity. Maybe it’s because they never show up in the places you’d expect (none of the people I know from Salt Lake City are Mormons, and none of the Mormons I know are from Salt Lake City, for example). My religious studies professor called them the Jews of Christianity, I think. Or maybe that was another religion. At any rate, I think it’s interesting to read that all of those people who argue about religion at the Internet might actually be inspiring some people to question their beliefs.


Five Questions: A Vigil for Trayvon Martin

NY Times, 21 July 2013

{trayvon martin, race, interview, vigil}

Last week I went to the Boise, ID Trayvon Martin vigil, so I want to answer the questions that they ask.

1. I was there because I wanted to get off of my ass and do something to show my support for the Martin family. I was there because I didn’t know anyone in Boise who cared about this in the way that I did, and I wanted to find hope.

2. Frustration, and a lack of surprise.

3. Universal background checks, smaller magazines, no military grade, no Stand Your Ground. The obvious stuff. That said, I’ve never seen the appeal of owning a gun, so I don’t really understand why people want them to be unrestricted so badly in the first place.

4. Hopefully, it will make people think a bit harder about their privilege. Make the government a little less white. Realistically, if it got rid of just one Stand Your Ground law, I would feel a little bit better. Also, fuck Stop and Frisk and racial profiling B.S.

5. This isn’t about you. Because I’m not sure that it is. Under Stand Your Ground, as I understand it (hah), Zimmerman was kind of covered. Which sucks. And is dumb. But it represents a systemic problem, and not an individual one.


For Funsies:

Carlos Danger Name Generator

The Slate, 23 July 2013


Internet-Themed Crayons

Gizmodo, 22 July 2013


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