- The Washington Times - Friday, January 29, 2010

V-Diversity

“The popular eHarmony online dating service will have to do more to welcome gays and lesbians to its site under a proposed settlement of a class-action lawsuit announced Tuesday. …

“We dont want to sound like were on the other team, but like, is Curve Personals required to accept straight people? Will Manhunt open up its services to ladies. … Cant you guys meet each other RIGHT HERE? Tegan and Sara dot CA? SheDate? OK Cupid? What else?

“Cant we just use a different website? Nerve Personals still exists, right, and theyve been accepting bisexuals and gays from the get-go. Right this moment on craigslist there is a 32-year-old pregnant women … [and] a lovely 26-year-old. … What do you need e-harmony for? … But shouldnt we pick or battles wisely? Is this really the right place to fight?”

- “Laura,” writing on “If eHarmony Embraces the Gays, Should Manhunt Straddle the Straights?” on Jan. 27 at Autostraddle.com

He’s white?

“I think it’s worth noting that Chris Matthews wasn’t trying to take a shot at anybody. I also think it’s worth noting that he was attempting to compliment [President] Obama and say something positive about what he’s done for race relations. … But I think it’s most worth noting that ‘I forgot Obama was black’ - in all its iterations - is something that white people should stop saying, if only because it’s really dishonest.

“One way to think about this is to flip the frame. Around these parts, we’ve been known, from time to time, to chat about the NFL. We’ve also been known to chat about the intricacies of beer. If you hang around you’ll notice that there are no shortage of women in these discussions. Having read a particularly smart take on Brett Favre, or having received a good recommendations on a particular IPA, it would not be a compliment for me to say, ‘Wow, I forgot you were a woman.’ Indeed, it would be pretty offensive.

“The problem is three-fold. First, it takes my necessarily limited, and necessarily blinkered, experience with the fairer sex and builds it into a shibboleth of invented truth. Then it takes that invented truth as a fair standard by which I can measure one’s ‘woman-ness.’ So if football and beer don’t fit into my standard, I stop seeing the person as a woman. Finally instead of admitting that my invented truth is the problem, I put the onus on the woman. Hence the claim ‘I forgot you were a woman,’ as opposed to ‘I just realized my invented truth was wrong.’

“Ditto for Chris Matthews. The ‘I forgot Obama was black’ sentiment allows the speaker the comfort of accepting, even lauding, a black person without interrogating their invented truth. It allows the speaker a luxurious ignorance - you get to name people (this is what black is) even when you don’t know people. In fact, Chris Matthews didn’t forget Barack Obama was black. Chris Matthews forgot that Chris Matthews was white.”

- Ta-Nehisi Coates, writing on “I Just Remembered Chris Matthews Was White,” on Jan. 28 at his Atlantic blog

Stone redux

“Twenty-three years have passed since the first ‘Wall Street’ and a decade since news of an upcoming Oliver Stone movie elicited anything above the level of an eye roll. A director who once captured and even created a zeitgeist is now pathetically chasing after it like a dollar bill tied to a string.

“After the disastrous ‘Alexander,’ both ‘World Trade Center’ and ‘W.’ were essentially television-level productions self-consciously obvious in their desperation to feel relevant. … And now comes a sequel nobody wanted with a truly terrible title: ‘Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps,’ which hits theatres April 23rd. …

“Go back and watch the original ‘Wall Street.’ Its a terrific film with some great acting courtesy of Martin Sheen and Michael Douglas and a compelling story that immediately grabs you as you’re taken on a tour of how things work in the fascinating world of the stock market at the very top level. …

Story Continues →