News you can relate to

Some stories that caught our eye this week:

Why The White House Wants You To Live In The United State Of Women “With an ambitious agenda to tackle the biggest issues holding women back from total equality, leaders from the White House, Hollywood, major corporations, and civil society gathered together in one room to propose solutions.”

Domestic violence survivor stunned by $21 million award in lawsuit against her ex-husband “Bailey was found guilty of misdemeanor domestic violence and was sentenced to 180 days in jail — 178 of which were suspended — and two years’ probation, according to court documents. “I just felt like he was getting away, and he really rocked my world,” Kershaw told the Dispatch last year. So, she said, she decided to sue him in civil court.”

The Stanford Rape Case’s Judicial Fallout “A jury pool’s mass refusal to participate because of the presiding judge’s actions in an unrelated case appears to be unprecedented, at least in the modern era.”

News you can relate to

Some stories that caught our eye this week:

Seattle councilwomen’s vote against NBA plan inspires sexist rage “The five female council members have not commented on the gender insults. But their four male counterparts, along with Mayor Ed Murray, have supported them. The mayor called the hate talk “misogynistic sexist vitriol.””

Listen to Every Word Janet Mock Has to Say about Trans Black Women “When folks say that they’re fighting on behalf or advocating for the protection of girls and women, they’re usually speaking about a very specific girl,” says Mock. “She’s usually not trans. She’s usually perceived to be straight. She is usually the epitome of respectability. She hasn’t engaged in sex work. She is white and/or as close to whiteness as possible.”

Make It Work: Organizing with a gender frame toolkit “Intersectional gender analysis.” Great concept, jargon-y term. It sounds like something out of an academic textbook. (Oh wait, it definitely is.) But, underneath those eleven syllables is a profoundly powerful framework: a framework that is worth your attention…. This toolkit is a playbook for how to win big.”

And finally, a joyous celebration of women from Laura Mvula. She wrote it after being inspired by Maya Angelou’s poem “Phenomenal Woman”.

News you can relate to

Some news stories that caught our eye this week:

Men or Women, what’s the problem? “I never thought about what it would feel like to have to decide which bathroom to use. And I certainly never thought of the humiliation and violence that trans people endure as a result. In that ah-ha moment, the light bulb went on in my head (and heart). The best thing about being human is gaining knowledge and then acting on it.”

Beware of the friendzone “It should go without saying that women aren’t carnival prizes to be won. But just like with lots of things that should go without saying, it needs to be said, as there still seems to be some debate as to whether women are autonomous humans with the right to give as much or as little of themselves to people as they want.”

Abuse comes in many forms “Advocates are catching on that many survivors are seeking shelter because they can’t afford to be anywhere else,” Pentico said. “They don’t have the financial services to fly to a parent’s house or rent a hotel room. In a sense, many women are being battered because they can’t afford to not be battered.”

Princess boy

A new children’s book, My Princess Boy, tells the story of 5-year-old Dyson Kilodavis – a Seattle boy who loves dressing up in pretty, sparkly dresses – and his family’s support for him to be himself. A video of the Kilodavis family’s appearance on a local talk show has been viewed over 100,000 times. What Dyson’s family is doing is so simple, yet it has clearly touched a nerve.

Kids do all kinds of funny things, but when boys cross gender lines, adults get anxious. Why? Sometimes it comes from a homophobic fear that a boy who wears princess dresses will grow up to be gay. Sometimes they’re just worried that he’ll be rejected by peers and targeted by bullies.

I think we should worry more that when we pressure boys to reject “girl things” it sets them up to feel ashamed of important parts of themselves – the sweet, the expressive, the magical. Michael Kaufman argues compellingly that societal pressure on men to conform to “expectations of masculinity” contributes to men’s violence against women and homophobic violence.

I have four young sons who like baseball and racecars and mud. They also like tight sparkly jeans, pink cowboy boots, and tutus. They like the things that make them happy not because they are “boy things” or “girl things” but because they are fancy, or fun, or (in the case of the glitter jeans) “sooo rock and roll”. I want them to know that the sparkly things in life are not off limits to them now or ever. Boys need adults’ permission to like what they like, and they need to see grown men who embrace beauty and sweetness.

Even though he liked the pull ups labeled “GIRLS”, my 3 year old was suspicious: “Are these for girls?” he wanted to know. I told him, “Well…they’re for anybody who likes butterflies. And rainbows. And pink.” Relieved, he shouted “Oh good! I like butterflies!”

Me too.