Monday This & That: Open Thread

Posted on 23 Aug 2010 at 8:44pm

It’s an open thread! Pleeeeease feel free to chat, blogwhore, and link-share in the comment thread… Emoticon: Autumn Sandeen, snarkily shifting her eyes right-to-left-to-right

Image: Bookworm Bob, the cartoon 'sockpuppet' of Autumn Sandeen'sSo, this is what my cartoon sockpuppet Bookworm Bob have been looking at since our last This & That post.

EdgeBOSTON‘s The Last Bias: How & Why We Tolerate Gay Anti-Asian Prejudice — & Its Pernicious Effect on Our Community :

In the first part of this multi-part story, EDGE examines the experience of one of the most common scapegoats of the gay male dating and socializing scene: gay Asian men. I’ve tried to reach beyond the various stereotypes and phrases sometimes applied to men of this ethnicity (e.g., “rice queen”).

Anti-Asian remains one of the last prejudices tacitly if not overtly condoned in the gay community. Even more than anti-fat, anti-aging or the other “anti’s” (racism, sexism, anti-Semitism, even geographic snobbery), prejudice against Asians seems to be endemic in the wider community, especially American gay urban affluent men.

…Odds are, if you’ve been both gay and awake in the last decade, you’ve heard something like this quote somewhere before: “I know what they’re thinking [when they see us at the club]. They think that I’m a potato queen,” Jimmy Chen, a gay Asian man in a relationship with a white man explained to Tyra Banks on an episode of her talk show devoted to interracial dating back in 2006.

A potato queen is,” Chen explained, “somebody who is like a gold digger who hates themselves and who, you know, is Asian,” Chen explained. “And they see him [his partner] as a rice queen … An older gay white man who is ugly and fat and they are attracted to, like, people like me and objectify me.”

The name-calling Chen described is a common experience for queer API men. For Anglos, such terminology is seen not as hateful, but as playful — as seemingly guileless terms like “panda hugger” would suggest. According to a 2007 study commissioned by the National Gay & Lesbian Task Force, however, the result is anything but harmless: 78 percent of API LGBT people experience racism within the predominately white LGBT community…

Wow…78%. Emoticon: Blank Face Ugh.

Los Angeles TimesN.Y. mosque uproar worries Muslims around the world; Some can’t understand the fuss over a house of worship and how a democracy promoting religious freedom could even be having such a debate. Others are offended at the conflation of the 9/11 attacks with all Muslims:

The heated debate across America over construction of the so-called ground zero mosque is reverberating across the globe, with the potential of creating a worldwide black eye for the United States.

Many Muslims abroad are miffed by the stateside debate, largely conducted by non-Muslims, that has grown so loud as to become a topic of discussion on talk shows and newspapers from Bali to Bahrain, from Baghdad to Berlin. The proposed Cordoba House has become a symbol of America’s fraught relations with the world’s 1.5 billion Muslims.

“Rejecting this has become like rejecting Islam itself,” said Ahmad Moussalli, a professor of Islamic Studies at the American University of Beirut. “The United States has historically been distinguished by its tolerance, whereas Europe, France, Belgium and Holland have been among those who have rejected the symbolism of Islam. Embracing it will be positively viewed in the Islamic world.”

*Sigh.*

• An Op-Ed from the Salt Lake Tribune Employment Non-Discrimination Act Long Overdue:

My name is John Wells Bennett, and I was born and raised in Salt Lake City. My grandfather Wallace F. Bennett and my uncle Robert F. Bennett are both U.S. senators from Utah, past and present. My great-grandfather was Mormon Church President Heber J. Grant, and my great-great-grandfathers Jedediah Morgan Grant and Daniel H. Wells were the first and third mayors of Salt Lake City, respectively.

The purpose of divulging this family pedigree is to underscore that it doesn’t matter what your family name is or whom you’re related to, you can still be fired from your job simply for being gay, as I was in 1986 while working for the Utah Department of Community and Economic Development.

Now nearly 25 years later it is still legal in 29 states to fire someone based solely on their sexual orientation, and it is still legal in 38 states to fire someone based solely on their gender identity. Furthermore, if I were still working for the state of Utah, I could still be fired for being gay, as the Salt Lake City and Salt Lake County LGBT employment ordinances do not extend to state employees.

…The LDS Church has taken a courageous stand in support of an employment ordinance in Salt Lake City that closely mirrors the federal Employment Non-Discrimination Act or “ENDA,” which has been introduced in Congress. The church should consider making a similar endorsement of ENDA in light of the controversy surrounding the movie “8, The Mormon Proposition.” …

Emoticon: Reading Article On A Computer Screen The whole op-ed is a really interesting read.

Los Angeles Chronicle‘s EPA Takes Action on Gender-Bending Chemical:

The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has announced that it will begin creating clean water protections from nonylphenol ethoxylates (NPEs), a highly toxic, gender-bending chemical widely used in industrial laundry detergents. Exposure to low levels of NPE has been shown to create “intersex” fish, male fish that produce female egg proteins. Cases of such “intersexed” fish have been documented from the Potomac River to the Pacific coast.

Sierra Club, Environmental Law and Policy Center and Workers United/SEIU joined today in praising EPA’s action. The plan announced by EPA includes further health and safety studies of the effects of NPEs on people and the environment, while beginning the process to regulate the chemical under the Toxic Substances Control Act. Future actions would add NPEs to the Toxics Release Inventory and encourage the use of safer substitutes.

“Union members have been demanding government and industry action on toxic detergents for over half a decade. The detergents have been banned in Europe and Canada for almost a decade,” said Eric Frumin, Health and Safety Director for Workers United/SEIU. “We commend Administrator Jackson for acting swiftly on these hazards, and call upon the laundry industry to get rid of these chemicals immediately, as they have already done Canada and in Connecticut.” …

Good to know. Emoticon: Fish

New York Post‘s Gator crawls out of Queens drain:

At least one alligator really does live in New York City’s sewers.

Cops apprehended an 18-inch gator that crawled out of an overflowing Astoria storm drain and hunkered down beneath a parked car this afternoon, delighting onlookers and giving fresh meat to the urban myth that the carnivorous critters are living below the Big Apple.

The scaly spectacle began just after 3 p.m., when a passersby spotted the reptile on Newtown Avenue near 29th Street and yelled “Crocodile!”

“That’s the craziest thing I’ve ever seen,” marvelled Elizabeth Ferguson, 25, who has lived on the block for three years. “He was really small, but mean looking.”

Okay then!

• Our Wiener Story Of The Day: ‘s Return Of The Wieners; Dog Races Kick Off Ellis Park Weekend:

For very different reasons, Ellis Park will have extra fans in the stands today (Saturday, August 22, 2010) and Sunday.

Image: Wiener World, a restaurant in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania; Link To Pam's House Blend Tag 'Wieners'Today marks the return of the popular wiener dog races, conducted before the horses hit the track in Henderson’s river bottoms.

…”We’ve had pretty good success of everyone staying around after the wiener dog races the last couple of years,” said Geary. “It’s very successful when we have a large percentage of the people to stay around.

“But beyond that, it’s all about fun. We get some folks out here who are new to horse racing, they learn a little about the sport, and everyone loves watching the little dogs race.”

As always, “The weenie tempts you!”

So anywho…It’s an open thread! What are you thinking about today, or what books or articles have you been reading the past few days? Wanna share?

And again, please feel free to chat, blogwhore, and link-share in the comment thread because…it’s an open thread! Woo-hoo! Emoticon: Dancing happy face character  
Pam’s House Blend – Front Page

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