WRITING ON FEMINISM & GENDER ROLES

Hell Yeah, I Wear A Fanny Pack

BuzzFeed, February 2015 

"I am constantly negotiating the things I will and will not do in my ongoing quest to be both accepted by society and also have a soul and fight the good feminist fight. And I’ve realized that while I will (or at least have) let a stranger pour hot wax on my vulva, I draw the line at carrying a big-ass shoulder bag."

What Happened When I Lived According To The Pinterest Popular Page

BuzzFeed, December 2014

"Since its launch in 2010, Pinterest has earned a reputation as a site for Mormon housewives, mommy bloggers, and basic white girls. I am a woman of color with a full-time job, I spend less than 30 minutes getting ready in the morning, and I still like Pinterest. Characterizations of the site as a 'a churning cycle of interest, hope, inspiration, jealousy, desperation, despair and depression' always irked me because I think Pinterest is a useful bookmarking tool. The site had never made me feel bad about myself. Then I discovered Pinterest's 'most popular' page, which is essentially a collage of white girls with impossibly great hair, superhuman nail art skills, and apparently enough free time to create a tidy basket of 'postpartum supplies' for 'every bathroom' in the house. Suddenly I could see where Pinterest got its reputation."

My Life Is Good*

A Practical Wedding, April 2013

"Defenders of creepshots believe that by being attractive and in public, a woman is asking for attention, and therefore she has no right to be upset about what kind of attention she gets. And similarly, we believe that when a woman shares her good news or talks about her life in a positive way that she’s doing it for attention, to show off, or because she wants commentary from everyone. But women don’t post on social media for attention; we post because we have something to say. Because in so many other areas of our lives, we’re denied a platform. The internet feels like a godsend for those who can’t get past the gatekeepers and be heard in real life. But we can’t believe a woman would be posting for herself, or for the attention of a select audience. And even if we can believe it, we don’t care; we buy into the idea that she’s a woman, so merely existing in public is enough to make her public property."

Feminism And The “New Domesticity”

A Practical Wedding, July 2013

"I grew up believing that the domestic arts are important, special, and valuable. I’d always been incredibly proud of all of my mom and grandma’s talents, and felt proud of myself whenever I could follow in their footsteps. Until recently, that is, when I learned that taking after the women in my family or emulating the things my mom did during a happy time in our lives (and then having the gall to put photos of these activities on the internet) makes me a hipster. A hipster who also happens to be setting the feminist movement back fifty years."

Let the Record Reflect

The Rewm, June 2014

"Every time someone goes on a shooting spree, we ask why. And then this guy did us a favor and told us why! And the thing about the manifesto is that it is so. Damn. Articulate. Even though you might think someone so concerned with being an alpha male would attempt to come across as one in what is essentially his memoir, it actually reads as remarkably honest. He talks about his pain, his humiliation, and how he’d go home and cry out of frustration after seeing couples out together in public. He seems to own the fact that he wasn’t what he so desperately wanted to be (powerful) because he’s writing with the guns in his possession and his 'Day of Retribution' planned. He’s comfortable talking about his own weaknesses, and his motivation is unbelievably clear. It’s also exactly what you’d think his motivation would be if you’ve ever witnessed a misogynist in action, or spent any time on an anti-PUA forum (something I do not recommend if you want to be able to get out of bed ever). So we don’t need to ask why because he told us why.

And yet. Even with the manifesto in front of us, there are still choruses of 'This wasn’t about women!' and 'But mental illness!' and 'Neither guns nor misogyny kill people; people kill people!' and 'Not all men are like that!' and 'We’ll never really know why he did it' and 'But…but…maybe he was gay?' YOU GUYS. DID YOU DO THE READING?"

The Good Fight

The Rewm, June 2013

"Around 11:40, after being ignored by Lt. Governor Dewhurst even though she had the right to speak, Senator Leticia Van de Putte (who left her father’s funeral on Monday for this train wreck) stepped to the mic, said a very calm and polite 'Parliamentary Inquiry' (like ya do), and then delivered the most ladylike '“fuck you' I think I’ve ever heard: 'At what point must a female Senator raise her hand or her voice to be recognized over the male colleagues in the room?'

I wish she’d dropped the mic at that point, but she didn’t need to. The protesters in the gallery, who had been silent up until this point (lest they get arrested) burst into cheers and applause. And, with that, the Capitol (and Twitter) kind of burst into flames."

Buying A Guy An Engagement Ring

A Practical Wedding, March 2013

"About a week before our engagement party, I came across a great ring on Etsy that we both really liked. Loved, actually. I contacted the seller and asked if he could do a 'shotgun engagement,' and he could. I wasn’t expecting that I would feel so excited when I hit the button to actually buy the ring, but I got a huge rush. As soon as I got my confirmation email, I had to email all my friends to tell them (in all caps, no less). I couldn’t wait to see it in person and to put it on his finger. Yes, I love buying gifts for people, but this was better than any gift I’d ever bought before. You think ripping a $5 DVD player from the hands of a rabid soccer mom at 5 AM at Target on Black Friday is the best feeling in the world until you buy someone an engagement ring."

An Open Letter to Hillary Clinton

Michigan State University, Spring 2008

"I’ve realized it’s an election in which we must vote based on our chromosomes’ similarities to the candidates’. But I share two X chromosomes with you and a few black chromosomes with Barack Obama (just a few—I’m only half-black). Chromosomes are the most important factor in how I vote, but mine are at war. The primaries are upon us and my double Helix has about unzipped itself in the frenzy!

It wasn’t always like this. The media approached the fact a woman and a black man were running timidly, like Americans choose minority leaders all the time. 'Obama is black? You don’t say! Hillary is a woman? We’re so objective, we hadn’t noticed.'

Unfortunately for you, Hillary, they noticed."

Chore Monsters, Feminism, and Zombies

A Practical Wedding, January 2013

"So I engage in regular battles with the little chore monsters in our house. First, I stare them down, trying to intimidate them so they will stop haunting me.

'I see you, stack of dirty cereal bowls on the nightstand,' I tell them. 'But you’re Eric’s problem, not mine.'

'Take us downstaiiiiirs,' they whine pitifully. 'We’re so diiiiirty.'

Oh gosh, the old neglected waifs routine. Be strong, I think. Don’t look at the little spoons!

'It’s not my job to take care of you, and if I do, Eric will never get in the habit of doing it himself,' I say.

'But you’re already going to the kitchen,' they cry. 'Take us with you!'

'I just…can’t,' I tell them. 'It wouldn’t be right. He needs to learn to do his own chores and do them well!'

They start to sob. 'You only expect me to do it because I’m a WOMAN!' I shout in exasperation."