This Week In Review
I meant to publish this on Friday, August 21. But on Thursday, August 20, I, along with Dan Solomon, published a piece at Texas Monthly on a sexual assault case at Baylor involving a football player and a lot of questions about how it was handled by the university, the Waco police, the local media, and the football team. And the story became A. Thing.
A lot has been said and written in reaction to our piece. My favorite is Spencer Hall’s “A Few Maybes About the Baylor Case” at SB Nation’s Every Day Should Be Saturday.
Rest in power and peace, Julian Bond.
19 Trans Women Report Murdered in the US this year by Jos Truitt at Feministing
So the fact that the number of reported murders has skyrocketed this year does not mean that more trans women have been murdered this year, or that we even know about all the trans women who have been killed. It does mean we have a little bit better picture of how bad the epidemic of violence against trans women of color is, though. It is my prayer that this knowledge can inspire some action that goes beyond the recent increase in celebrity “visibility” that clearly does nothing for the most vulnerable, and that could even be linked to an increase in violence.
16 Trans Women Have Been Murdered This Year. Here’s One Theory Why Cops Haven’t Caught the Killers by Samantha Michaels at Mother Jones
16 Trans People (That We Know Of) Have Been Murdered this Year by Terrell Jermaine Starr at AlterNet
From more, check out Monica Roberts’ blog TransGriot.
Here’s What’s Missing From Straight Outta Compton: Me and the Other Women Dr. Dre Beat Up by Dee Barnes at Gawker
When I get migraines, my head does ring and it hurts, exactly in the same spot every time where he smashed my head against the wall. People have accused me of holding onto the past; I’m not holding onto the past. I have a souvenir that I never wanted. The past holds onto me.
The Rebellious, Back-Flipping Black Figure Skater Who Changed the Sport Forever by Stacia Brown at The New Republic
Girl, interrupted: unsinkable Vicky Duval, 19 and cancer-free, begins road back by Bryan Armen Graham at the Guardian
Brewers minor-leaguer makes baseball history by coming out publicly as gay by Tom Haudricourt at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
“Talking with my teammates, they gave me the confidence I needed, coming out to them,” recalled Denson. “They said, ‘You’re still our teammate. You’re still our brother. We kind of had an idea, but your sexuality has nothing to do with your ability. You’re still a ballplayer at the end of the day. We don’t treat you any different. We’ve got your back.’
Keegan Hirst steps on to field as Britain’s first rugby league star to come out as gay by Josh Halliday at the Guardian
Note: I am friends with Ebony Stewart and so excited for her.
Watch Ebony Stewart Tackle Misogyny in Her Ode to Black Women at For Harriet’s Shine
A great post on the way media (regular and social) has cherry-picked and distorted some thoughtful quotes from RGIII.
Nick Kyrgios and Casual Sexism by Ana Mitric
Whether Kyrgios endorses or even understands all the connotations his comment carries doesn’t matter: his statement was intended and perceived as a slight because that’s how this stuff works.
Candid Coaches: Would you hire a woman to coach in the next 3 years? by Matt Norlander at CBS Sports (for an antidote to lots of terrible, anonymous quotes in this piece, read Glass ceiling: Why women aren’t coaching men’s D-I hoops by Nicole Auerbach from November 2013)
Sexual harassment toward female sports reporters is far too common by Richard Deitsch at Sports Illustrated
Then there’s the female sports reporter based in a major market who has been asked out repeatedly by coaches, agents and players of various sports. Once, an NFL player told her that it was cool she was married because so was he. There was also the time a source offered to let her sleep in his hotel room during a championship game. Then there was the time the Division I basketball coach hit on her.
A History of Volatility: Jose Mourinho Says He Wants to Stay at Chelsea, But He Says a Lot of Things by Mike L. Goodman at Grantland
Rather than focusing on any of that, someone at the club likely thought it made sense to shift the focus to “female doctor is a distraction.” And it’s something we’ve seen before: Carneiro is good at her job. She is also a woman. Therefore, her job is at risk. Wherever the blame should fall, the idea gets reinforced.
WNBA Players On Why Girls Should Be Able To Play On Boys Teams by Maxwell Strachan, Audrey Horowitz, and Sam Wilkes at Huffington Post
New York Liberty guard Candice Wiggins said after the game that it’s not just about girls like Kymora either. “More than just denying the girl that experience, you’re denying young boys that experience of respect,” Wiggins said.
I can no more safely forget racism than a sea captain can forget about waves and weather. It must be heeded and understood to be navigated, and if I refuse, I will drown. I may drown anyway, despite my best efforts. That is not in my hands, and in a strange way it is freeing to know that even perfection might not be enough.
from Slow Poison by Ezekiel Kweku at Pacific Standard
In Ferguson, Resistance Is Messy — And More Important Than Ever by Mychal Denzel Smith at Buzzfeed
How Black Reporters Report On Black Death by Gene Demby at NPR
Expecting Care by Alexa Garcia-Ditta at the Texas Observer
In Texas, 300 to 500 pregnant women are booked into county jails each month, and dozens gave birth while in custody last year. Women report not getting enough food. They say the notoriously uncomfortable sleeping mats cause back pain. And they feel mistreated and disrespected by guards. One woman in a Travis County lockup last year said she was shackled to her hospital bed while delivering her baby.
The problems are poorly documented, some jails are ill-equipped to handle pregnancy emergencies, and services for pregnant women vary wildly depending on a county jail’s budget and the availability of medical providers. The Texas Commission on Jail Standards, responsible for evaluating Texas’ 243 jails with just four full-time inspectors and an annual budget of $900,000, can barely keep up. Commission officials didn’t learn of Guerrero’s experience until two years after it happened, and only then because of the lawsuit. Similarly, the agency doesn’t find out if a pregnant woman is shackled during labor, delivery or recovery unless she files a formal complaint.
Health Inequities Dog Austin by Amy Kamp in the Austin Chronicle
The overall disparity in health outcomes between black ATC residents and those of other races is shameful. This is not to say that by every measure African-Americans have worse outcomes than everyone else, but that in general the divide is startling.
Northwestern Football’s Biggest Loss Ever by Kavitha Davidson at Bloomberg View
The policies denying athletes livable wages and adequate health care need to change, but so does the attitude that these athletes are “amateurs” playing sports as a means to an education — that they’re anything but low-cost minor leaguers getting primed for the pros.
Kain Colter’s Union Battle Cost Him More Than He Ever Expected by Rohan Nadkarni at Deadspin
“People took it so personally,” Colter said. “I was telling my story. This is how many hours we worked. These were the rules we had to follow. I wasn’t making up stuff to throw the program under the bus. It wasn’t about how Northwestern does things wrong, it was facts about every D-1 program. We work a lot of hours. It’s not a complaint, it’s recognizing it for what it is.”
Why former 49er Chris Borland is the most dangerous man in football Steve FainaruMark Fainaru-Wada at ESPN
Borland has consistently described his retirement as a pre-emptive strike to (hopefully) preserve his mental health. “If there were no possibility of brain damage, I’d still be playing,” he says. But buried deeper in his message are ideas perhaps even more threatening to the NFL and our embattled national sport. It’s not just that Borland won’t play football anymore. He’s reluctant to even watch it, he now says, so disturbed is he by its inherent violence, the extreme measures that are required to stay on the field at the highest levels and the physical destruction he has witnessed to people he loves and admires — especially to their brains.
The other thing I wrote this week:
When Going Topless on HBO Is a Radical Act at The New Republic, about comedian Tig Notaro