Deciphering the tension between expert and amateur power/knowledge is always a challenge. We live in an anti-intellectual culture, and our easy rejection of experts and our bootstrapping, overweening self-confidence make me enormously uncomfortable. On the flip side, the undeserved sense of superiority deeply embedded in intellectuals, particularly academic intellectuals, can be offensive. (I’m the biggest offender, too.) Plus, the long history of “expertise” that locked out the voices and experiences of non-dominant people from major cultural forms has caused centuries of erasure and lost knowledge. As I say often, there are good reasons for the slogan, “The Personal is Political.” Forgive me for rehashing the
Edie and Thea got gay married. The linguistic shift from gay marriage to marriage equality is interesting, like all politically motivated discursive choices. Adding the gay label to marriage “spotlights” same-sex marriage, emphasizing its abnormality. Spotlighting, or using marked language, highlights what is notably outside the norm and establishes the unmarked category as neutral, making it the default setting or normal. Male nurse is to nurse as gay marriage is to marriage. Marked language, then, reifies heterosexual marriage as standard. “Marriage equality” makes sense, then, as the phrase of choice. The language of equality locates gay marriage in the venerable tradition of civil rights, and
This week I received many Facebook messages urging me to tell my friends “where I like it” in my Facebook status. I’ve seen my friends post such mysterious statuses as “I like it on the chandelier” and “I like it on my car seat.” This morning I posted, “I like mine without pinkwashing.” Many people didn’t understand my status or why the meme makes me so angry. I have two simple answers: 1. I hate pinkwashing. 2. This is nothing but Facebook slactivism. Put differently, I do not believe that if I post an “I like it…” status on Facebook, I have done something significant
Democrats cheat on their wives too (obviously), but they don’t run on pro-family, pro-marriage, anti-gay platforms. The LA Times reports that California legislator was caught on a hot mic bragging about his sexual escapades. Apparently this man is having affairs with two different women, one of whom is a lobbyist. Go figure. CBS video of Duvall with some of the video shows some of the conversation. He’s seriously a dirty old man. So Duvall resigned and this is his apology: “I am deeply saddened that my inappropriate comments have become a major distraction for my colleagues in the Assembly, who are working hard on the
The Southern Christian Leadership Conference is internally conflicted over gay rights and Proposition 8 according to the Empowering Spirits Foundation. Apparently the national SCLC leadership threatened to remove the Los Angeles chapter’s president (Rev. Eric P. Lee) because of his outspoken support of gay marriage. My first response was of course, SCLC…Southern…Christian. What should we expect? But it’s disheartening nonetheless. The tension between “blacks and gays” (a linguistic construction that perpetuates the invisibility of gay blacks, not to mention the complete absence of the L, B, and T part of GLBT or of any other non-white queer in this struggle) has been part of the
I am making steps toward my goal of cleaning my office this summer. Yesterday, I tackled one of my bookshelves and encountered my 1929 edition Oz book, Ozma of Oz. I’ve always loved the art by John R. Neill, and I especially like the 1929 art nouveau cover. Finding this book raised many fond memories for me. I learned to read with the Oz books, starting with my father reading them to me, and then me slowly taking over and reading ahead. I’ve always loved Baum. Not many people know that he wrote a whole series of fourteen Oz books, as did several other authors
Baptists Are Saving Homosexuals! (aka BASH). This is a MUST SEE link.