Linkmistress has posts that she doesn’t want to lose so she is unleashing them on the world


The Texas Tribune is tracking the catastrophic “only conservative white people matter in American History textbooks clusterfuck” that will soon be unleashed on the unsuspecting American child population here

In their January meeting, State Board of Education members came armed with more amendments to the state social studies curriculum than they could vote on — a process hardly helped by the acrimony between the board’s socially conservative bloc and more moderate Republicans and liberal Democrats. And so the SBOE kicked the process of revising the standards down the road to this week’s meeting, where social studies rewrites will resume today.

Because of the flood of amendments under consideration, we’ve produced this annotated version of the high school U.S. History standards, which have been the focus of controversy. You can see exactly what the board has added, deleted and rewritten, along with our analysis of the current arguments and historical context behind each change.MORE

A. And here I thought my American History class was a piece of shit.

B. IF I ever do have kids I’ll have to homeschool them.

C. And Texas is actually apparently majority POC. I suppose at some point there will be a grassroots movement to throw this shit out. Hopefully it won’t take too long.

Hipster Racism Because Amanda Palmer showed her ass. AGAIN.

Closeted politicians and bi-invisibility

…Amanda Mennis recently wrote me with an interesting question: Does this story of a secretly gay public figure — and the absurdly long parade of stories like it — contribute in some way to bisexual invisibility?

After all, most of the guys in these scandals (and it has just been guys so far) are married, or have some sort of sexual/ romantic relationship with women. Many of them have children. They’re clearly capable of having sex with women. Doesn’t that make them bisexual, not gay? Or at least, doesn’t it suggest the possibility that some of them are bisexual and not gay?

An interesting question. And one that I’m finding tricky to answer.

Part of the problem is that we don’t have a standard definition of what it means to be gay or lesbian or bisexual. It’s not like there’s a gay person in a vacuum in the Smithsonian, against whom we all measure ourselves to determine our own sexual orientation. Everyone defines these terms — gay, straight, lesbian, bisexual, bi-curious, heteroflexible (that was a new one on me!), questioning, queer, “basically straight but wouldn’t kick Jon Stewart out of bed,” whatever — in subtly different ways. Or not so subtly different ways.

So ultimately, it doesn’t really make sense to talk about whether someone is “really bisexual.” There is no such thing as “really bisexual.” Within reason (and please don’t ask me to define what “within reason” means), we get to decide for ourselves what sexual orientation we are, and what language we use to describe it.

But what does that mean for someone who’s closeted?MORE

Some of the downsides of the Health care bill in terms of women Yes, its more than teh abortion executive order. Which is a Big Fucking. Deal.

<Fact: The bill permits age-rating, the practice of imposing higher premiums on older people. This practice has a disproportionate impact on women, whose incomes and savings are lower due to a lifetime of systematic wage discrimination.

Fact: The bill also permits gender-rating, the practice of charging women higher premiums simply because they are women. Some are under the mistaken impression that gender-rating has been prohibited, but that is only true in the individual and small-group markets. Larger group plans (more than 100 employees) sold through the exchanges will be permitted to discriminate against women — having an especially harmful impact in workplaces where women predominate.

We know why those gender- and age-rating provisions are in the bill: because insurers insisted on them, as they will generate billions of dollars in profits for the companies. Such discriminatory rating must be completely eliminated.MORE

He’s a Terrorist. Just say it. Terrorist. For F*%k sake!

You see, the very definition of terrorism has changed, right beneath our feet. A man with strong idealogical beliefs against the government of the United States tries (and succeeds) to kill himself and take as many civilians (federal workers) as he can with him. But they don’t call it terrorism. That sacrosanct term is now reserved only for non-white people with funny sounding names. Preferably Muslim.

Trans Murder Monitoring Project: 333 cases of reported murders of trans people in the last 2 years

Integrating Primary and Mental Healthcare

Currently, primary care providers (PCPs), also called general practitioners, provide over half of mental health treatment in the United States – which results in up to 50% of mental health problems going unindentified, undiagnosed, and untreated through the primary care system. This is a wasted opportunity, as PCPs have significant opportunities to identify behavioral health problems early and provide interventions and treatments to prevent further deterioration.MORE

Videos: Dance party!

The Male “P” Spot: Why het men are so afraid to discover their own bodies’ capacities for pleasure, from a sex organ that ISN’T a penis

Has anyone, anywhere, seen a medical illustration of the prostate gland and men’s other sexual organs depicted with the prostate being touched and the penis erect? Why not? And why do these diagrams only exist to promote “checking for cancer”? Talk about stigmatising an organ!MORE

Gemini Mini Documentary

TransGriot Note: Mini Documentary on Chicago drag queen Saya Naomi Diaz Deleon or Gemini. It includes commentary from Christina Kahrl, who was recently featured on HBO’s Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel.MORE

And finally, Movie rec: Sleep Dealer

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Linkmistress has posts that she doesn’t want to lose so she is unleashing them on the world

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11 Responses to Linkmistress has posts that she doesn’t want to lose so she is unleashing them on the world

  1. 1
    Sarah says:

    This post is so awesome I don’t even know where to start. So lacking a starting point, I just want to comment on how reassuring it is to me that there are other people in the world who even think about the concept of bi-invisibility, and even have a useful phrase for talking about it.

    This hits close to home, and it makes me feel moderately better that I’m not the only one who’s noticed that bisexual folks don’t get no respect (from anyone — we’re treacherous fence-sitters to the gay community, and terrifying man-stealers, novelty sex objects or perverts to the straight community).

  2. 2
    nobody.really says:

    The Texas Tribune is tracking the catastrophic “only conservative white people matter in American History textbooks clusterfuck” that will soon be unleashed on the unsuspecting American child population here

    By what standard should school boards decide what should be in the curriculum? Especially regarding history and social studies, doesn’t this choice inevitably reflect the ideological preferences of the chooser?

    (Then again, apparently the chair of the Texas School Board just lost his reelection bid, putatively because he was being too overtly political.)

  3. 3
    RonF says:

    Having taken a look at the annotation of the changes to the Texas School Board curriculum I’d have to agree that some of those changes look pretty politically loaded. I’d like to know about your opinion of some of them specifically, though:

    c.1.A and c.1.B
    this is where they are asking the students to study in detail what I consider to be the key philosophical and key legal principles regarding our nation’s founding and structure as expressed in the origional documents expressing them, and to evaluate how those principles have been applied. Now, there’s been no question that an emphasis on them has been advanced by the Right. But objectively I have to say that it seems quite important for every American to study those. After all, it seems to me that the entire Civil Rights movement takes inspiration from them and from the deficit of their application towards blacks and other minorities in our history. I note that the commentator had no comment on this; I wonder if you do?

    Imperialism vs. Expansionism. Yeah, that’s a right-wing influenced change for sure. OTOH, to go the other way would be a left-wing influenced change. THe actual fact will speak for themselves, I should think. One word won’t cover up that we did some very bad stuff.

    Japanese War Crimes. If we’re going to teach about bad things we’ve done I see no reason not to teach bad things done to us.

    Tuskeegee Airman Commander. I’m mixed on this one. The impact of Benjamin O. Davis on the war was no greater than any other commander at his level and does not rise to the level of influence over the war effort of the other leaders named. On that basis I don’t see that he merits mention with people like Omar Bradley and Dwight Eisenhower. His role as being the first black general and his leadership of an all-black group of fighter pilots to a skill level where they were one of the best units at what they did at a time when most blacks were relegated to the lowest tasks in the armed forces and were not viewed as being capable of such is significant and I’d say that it would be well to include him where racial discrimination in American history is discussed.

    I’m no expert on Sen. McCarthy, but from what I do know I see no reason to dispute the commentator.

    What level of impact did those groups mentioned have on the advancement of civil rights compared to, say, the NAACP or other groups? Their mere existence doesn’t justify their inclusion in a high school textbook. And that’s a question, BTW; I’m not familar with the groups.

    c.10.A and B
    I’d have to look at how the roles of other Presidents in promoting various policies, etc. were discussed. If “leadership” is used for them, then this is justified. If not, then I’d say that this is agenda-based.

    There was definitely a resurgence of conservative thought and policies in America at that time. It has had notable effect on the country – even if you don’t agree with it – and should be studied.

    The fact that the standards don’t call out the names of Nader and Perot specifically doesn’t mean that they won’t be mentioned. As the commentator says, it’s just about impossible to teach about third parties without mentioning their candidates.

    “levys” indeed. But the commentator then makes an error himself. The levees did not cause the flooding. Hurricane Katrina did, putting enough force against the levees to cause them to fail. There were other factors involved in those failures and it would actually be a very good subject for study.

    I strongly agree with this change. It’s common to say of opponents towards amnesty towards illegal aliens, etc., that they oppose “immigrant rights”. That makes it sound as though they’d oppose recognition of the rights of immigrants such as the woman who works in the cube across from mine who immigrated here from Bosnia on a U.S. visa and became an American citizen. She’s an immigrant. I don’t contest her rights. The distinction between legal immigration (both for those who become citizens and those who remain resident aliens) and the presence of illegal aliens is important to understanding the entire immigration issue and to ensure that those who have a particular viewpoint can express it without having it defined for them by someone else’s rhetoric.

    What property rights are granted – or denied -by the Fifth Amendment? This doesn’t look right at all to me.

    I think it’s worthwhile to study why we moved from the gold/silver standard to fiat money. I can’t personally comment on the reasons or effects and the desirability thereof.

    The fact that McLeroy thinks it’s a bad idea for us to be in the U.N. does not mean that it’s not a good idea to consider the concept that there may be negative things about it as well as good ones. It does come to “what do we have time for.” I’d contrast that with creationism vs. evolution, though (mentioned in the commentary) because there we are dealing with scientific fact as opposed to political philosophy. There’s no serious science behind creationism.

    Oh, Plessy vs. Ferguson should definitely be in the texts, not just optional.

    I’d support putting Ted Kennedy in there as long as there was a picture of Mary Jo Kopechne right next to it. Justice Sotomayor? No. Simply being the first of gender and race is not sufficient to put her in a section talking about the contributions of leaders. Again, it would be worthwhile to mention her in a section talking about the Civil Rights struggle and how it’s changed America. Ten or twenty years from now could be a different story – by then she may have had an impact in actual court decisions.

    Country and western music has been around a long time. Hip hop, not so much. Again, 20 years from now could be a different story if it’s influence is still extant.

    I think it’s a very worthwhile thing to study the contributions and changes that different groups have brought to America, as long as that explicitly includes whites and the sub-groups they can be divided into (e.g., Scots, English, Irish, other Europeans) and groups such as Christians, rather than simply treating them as the default and not crediting them for specific contributions.

    If a Socialist had significant impact on American history then they should be studied.

    At least one of these are on every piece of money you handle, on the Great Seal of the U.S., and symbolize philosophies that were important to the founders of this country. Kids ought to learn about them.

  4. 4
    RonF says:

    The link on the guy who flew his plane into a building – yeah, I call that terrorism. It meets my definition.

  5. 5
    Jake Squid says:

    Country and western music has been around a long time. Hip hop, not so much. Again, 20 years from now could be a different story if it’s influence is still extant.

    How long do you think Hip hop has been around?

  6. 6
    Robert says:

    Hip hop has been around for about 30-35 years (late 70s). Country music went mainstream about 85-90 years ago (early 20s).

    Both have older roots, of course, in which case they’re both 50,000 years old, since there’s no real way to stop going back.

    Waiting another 20 years to see if hip hop plays out (like disco) or becomes a ~permanent cultural fixture (like jazz) seems reasonable. An alternative metric will be when a significant element of musical criticism consists of people bewailing the crap kids listen to these days, and asking “why can’t they listen to something classical like hip hop”.

    It would be interesting and appropriate to add some material about the contributions of black and Mexican musicians to country/western, however, because those contributions were pretty substantial but are not generally reflected in public knowledge of the genre. As Elvis said, the “colored people” were playing that music long before he did.

  7. 7
    nobody.really says:

    What property rights are granted – or denied -by the Fifth Amendment? This doesn’t look right at all to me.

    No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

    Looks ok to me.

  8. 8
    Jake Squid says:

    Waiting another 20 years to see if hip hop plays out (like disco) or becomes a ~permanent cultural fixture (like jazz) seems reasonable.

    I believe that Hip hop, in a form recognizable today, started in the mid-70’s at the latest. Either way we’re talking about more than 3 decades. Hip hop was certainly a cultural force by 1984 at the very latest. That’s a good long time as pop culture goes. Disco was around as a force for less than a decade. Did we wait until the ’80s to discuss the influence of Rock & Roll? I think the important thing is whether or not it was influential, not how long it was around.

    I was asking RonF because his statement, to my eyes, suggested that he didn’t really have any idea.

  9. 9
    Sailorman says:

    5th amendment property rights come up in the context of eminent domain, most obviously the comparatively recent and highly publicized Kelo case and the subsequent line of decisions based on it.

    It’s a hot issue because Kelo significantly changed the landscape and made it much easier for the government to take your property through eminent domain. Lots of people, including me, hate the decision.

  10. 10
    RonF says:

    O.K., I was not aware that hip hop was that old – I’d have placed it in the late 80’s. I accede to your knowledge of the genre. However, C&W (of which I’m not particularly a fan) has been around for a good deal longer, so while the proponent’s own biases probably led to their call to include it I do think it’s justified.

    Looks like I should have gone back and read the 5th Amendment as well. I don’t know why, but I had thought that it was in a different amendment. I should have gone back and read it before I posted. Having said that, I think that the Supremes really misread the Constitution in Kelo – it seemed outrageous to me that they would consider a taking of private property and transferring ownership (whether by sale or gift) to another private owner to be within the meaning of taking property for a public purpose. In fact, outrageous to the point that I think a Constitutional amendment to that purpose to be reasonable.

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