Episode 71: Katie and Barclays Give Unsolicited Advice, And An Update To A Story About A Story About Identifying As An Attack Helicopter
After Katie and Jesse discuss their July 4th plans, the hosts talk about Nikole Hannah-Jones winning her tenure battle, Barclays' cringeworthy contribution to Pride discourse, and the complicated tale of the publishing and unpublishing and re-publishing of "I Sexually Identify as an Attack Helicopter," aka "Helicopter Story."
Nikole Hannah-Jones stuff:
Slate advice columns:
-Racist white son wants to learn Spanish: https://slate.com/human-interest/2021/06/maximizing-sleep-with-infants-parenting-advice-from-care-and-feeding.html
Straight woman in a Classic Millennial Sex Pickle: https://slate.com/human-interest/2020/01/straight-woman-dating-on-grindr.html
Note back to Katie: “Hey! I'm the odious Slate letter writer you covered in this piece - https://www.thestranger.com/slog/2020/01/30/42716089/do-straight-women-belong-on-gay-datings-apps-no. Just wanted to say that your take was 100% accurate--I was being very shitty and very dumb. Should have accepted being straight and worked on my own gender-role-angst instead of trying to drag queer people into my bullshit a LOT earlier in my life, good lord. Anyway! Belated thanks for the wakeup call, and sorry I'm opting for the anonymous-reddit means of contacting you, like a coward - just going this route because I am, in fact, a coward.”
More classic Slate advice columns:
“We live in a very multicultural and socioeconomically diverse area in South Florida. We are white, and both my husband and I are well-off professionals. Our 4½-year-old daughter has grown up socializing with all types of children and has a close friend who is black and one who is Brazilian. …”
My family is white, and we live in a predominately white neighborhood. However, our kids (twin boys) went to a local public charter elementary and middle school that was very diverse. When it was time for high school, our twins were lucky enough to have their closest friends from elementary and middle school attend the same school. Each of the boys had a diverse group of friends, and they were taken aback, as freshmen in high school, by the way other kids sat at tables in same-race clusters. The kids who’d gone to our (small) middle school, where tables were assigned by grade, continued to hang out at lunch together as a mixed group.
“My lovely, outgoing son is 5 years old. For the past year or so, he has been absolutely obsessed with police officers. He loves their uniforms, cars, and dogs. He tells everyone he wants to be a policeman when he grows up, and whenever he sees a police officer, he runs up to them and says hi. In our overwhelmingly white suburb, this is always well received; cops are usually idle and don’t mind letting him touch their cars or look at their outfits…”
Q. My brother, a police officer, is getting blacklisted by my friends: My brother (he’s older by two years) is a police officer. This was his childhood dream, and he’s dedicated his entire life to making it happen. Prudie, he’s wonderful. He leads his department’s restorative justice seminars, he was fighting for anti-bias training three years ago before it was widespread, and he spends much of his free time at the local rec center mentoring at-risk youth.
“My husband’s closest friend from childhood is Japanese American, and although he moved back to Japan after college, they are still very close. He’s our daughters’ godfather, and they think of him and his wife as another uncle and aunt (we’re also called “Uncle” and “Auntie” by his kids). For our daughter’s fifth birthday, they sent her a sweet gift of a box full of Japanese candies, a stuffed toy, and a kimono in her size. It’s absolutely gorgeous, but I’m hesitant to let her wear it, as much as she’s begged us to let her dress up and show it to her friends. I know how big of an issue cultural appropriation is, and I don’t want to let her think that somebody else’s culture is a costume. She has a lot of anti-racist children’s books, and books about kids from other cultures celebrating holidays and traditions, and this could be a great way for us to talk about the problem of white people appropriating other cultures and using them as costumes—but also, our friends have been asking us if she liked her kimono, and I don’t know what to tell them! I will confess: I don’t want to be thought of as another insensitive white lady who lets her kids “dress up” as stereotypes of other cultures, and that may be part of what’s holding me back from letting her wear it, so I think an outside perspective might help. What should I do—let her wear it, or talk to her about why she can’t?”
My son is 14, and he’s coping with identity issues that I could really use some advice about. Last night, he was complaining about English class. “All we talk about is stuff like, I dunno. How women are so great and can defend themselves and shit.” Alarm bells, right? I probed a little, and he started getting upset. He talked about the girls in his class being aggressive towards the boys, accusing them of … he wasn’t sure what. Mumbled a few things about sexism, the patriarchy. “You know, this whole ‘kill all men’ thing.’” And with that, he burst into tears. “I’m white—I’m male—and I’m probably straight!” he sobbed (at 14, he maintains that the jury is still out on that last one). “It’s like, I can’t say anything! And the girls, they can say anything they like!” Of course, we talked about those girls being out of line, but also about how real sexism is—that he can be proud of who he is and support feminism (and Black Lives Matter, and LGBTQ rights, etc.) at the same time. And ignore purposefully provocative stuff like #killallmen.
Still, I’m concerned. My feeling is that he’s pretty well inoculated against racist and homophobic propaganda. But clearly, he’s struggling with his masculinity. I really worry that he might stumble across a few clever Jordan Peterson videos and end up falling down some nasty male-power incel rabbit hole … Do you have any advice as to how to deal with this? In particular, do you know of any good age-appropriate books or podcasts or shows or whatever that deal with these topics—especially the “crisis of masculinity”—in a sensitive way? A way that’s in sync with feminist values?”
When Savage love and Dear Prudie got the same question and gave opposite advice:
Back when Prudie was good:
-“Barclays agreed Thursday to pay the United States $2 billion for allegedly deceiving investors about the quality of mortgage deals that fueled the 2008 financial crisis.”: https://money.cnn.com/2018/03/29/investing/barclays-mortgage-settlement/index.html
-A thread from the BARPod subreddit supporting Katie's Lesbian Extinction Theory (LET): https://np.reddit.com/r/BlockedAndReported/comments/ob7ckj/im_a_lesbian_and_just_found_out_yet_another_one
Isabel Fall / “I Sexually Identify As An Attack Helicopter”:
-The story itself: https://archive.is/oXDEt#selection-483.0-483.43
-Jesse's rundown: https://jessesingal.substack.com/p/the-deeply-depressing-unpublishing
-N.K. Jemison was glad that the harmful story she didn't read was taken down: https://twitter.com/jessesingal/status/1410589280033021956
-Contrapoints: “Just because you were hurt by content I made doesn't mean that that content is bad, or that I’m victimizing you in some way.”