This Week in Ladybits
North Dakota turned the crazy up to 11 when its legislature passed an abortion ban at six weeks, or just two weeks after a missed period, otherwise known as “well before many women know they’re pregnant.” The legislature is also working on a TRAP law, a total ban at 20 weeks and — say it with me — a personhood bill.
For crying out loud, North Dakota, if you want press and attention, how about you try waterslides and pot legalization instead of treating half your citizens like chattel.
A straight shot south, the state of Texas is going to have to restore some of those family-planning funds they’ve been cutting because — Whoopsie! — it turns out that when you cut all the family planning funding, you get a huge increase in pregnancies.
And the always wonderful Ana Marie Cox noted that CPAC indicates that women won’t be stampeding towards the Republican party anytime soon. Unless the women in question have picket signs.
This Week in Science
Nature did a special supplement addressing the gender gap in science.
Jezebel covered the massive gender imbalance in visas for skilled STEM workers.
This Week in Other Kinds of Thinkiness
Slate’s XX wondered if Femen’s topless protests do more than flip people’s lids.
Anna North at BuzzFeed wondered why the media is so endlessly fascinated with (well to do) women who choose to become traditional (well to do) housewives.
Slate’s Dave Weigel profiled Senator Barbara Mikulski (D-MD).
And The Atlantic looked at the problem with single-sex workplaces.
This Week in Progress
Senator Rob Portman (R – Ohio), two years after his own son came out to him, finally decided that he’s in favor of gay marriage. And, yes, that is way better than rejecting his son or calling it a “lifestyle choice” and doubling down against marriage equality or any of a hundred jerkball things he could have done. Points on that count.
But, as many have pointed out, if Portman and his GOP pals need to have direct experience and a couple of years of thinky time before they realize that other people could use some rights and/or empathy too, we’re in for kind of a long road. As Irin Carmon noted in Salon, none of these fellas seem to have noticed that they have daughters too.
This Week in Ugh
Oh, hey! Virile young studmuffin Senator Mitch McConnell (R – KY, Where He’s Going To Get His Ass Whipped By Ashley Judd) had a heelarious joke to make about my role model/drinking buddy Hillary Clinton.
Geddit? Because Hillary Clinton is so decrepit? And Mitch ‘n’ pals, with their with-it 19th-century values are so much on the cutting edge that they can’t keep their dungarees from fraying? I would be more annoyed by this, except for one thing. McConnell is seriously worried that Ashley Judd is going to paste him.
Also in the world of awful, great big chunks of the media reacted to the Steubenville rape case verdict — the rape, you’ll recall, that the rapists helpfully documented via text messages and social media — by wondering if those poor misguided boys were going to be OK, and if the verdict was fair to the rapists. (There’s a Change.org petition aimed at CNN if you’re not cool with that.)
The state of Arizona still has an unhealthy obsession with birth certificates. This time, it’s a legislative attempt to stop *trans folk from being able to use public restrooms. I’ve got to figure out a way to boycott that state harder.
The New York Times gave us the jaw-dropping news that some states allow people who are under restraining orders to keep their guns.
And the NYPD may start arresting domestic violence victims if they have outstanding warrants when they call the police for help. Yes, the victims.
This Week in Awesome
Tavi Gevinson, who is 15, gave a kickass TEDxTeen talk on “strong” female characters and feminism. Can’t wait to see what you do next, Ms. Gevinson. (Via Upworthy.)
Kansas secretary of state Kris Kobach (R) has been working to repeal a state law that allows students who are the children of undocumented immigrants to get in-state tuition at Kansas state schools. Mr. Kobach got righteously smacked down this week by Native American state representative Ponka-We Victors (D), who said, “I think it’s funny, Mr. Kobach, because when you mention illegal immigrants, I think of all of you.” Bad. Ass.
Case in point: For once I’m glad to see Sarah Palin back in the media. Tina Fey took a moment to dip back into that impression on Inside the Actor’s Studio.
Want to know who pioneered the improv studies that helped Fey hone her remarkable comedy chops? Head over to the Northwestern University library for the Viola Spolin tribute exhibition.
Have a great weekend. Get out there and start something wonderful yourself.