Before Stonewall…early fights for LGBTQ rights

  This month is the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots, considered the beginning of the modern LGBTQ rights movement. I didn’t hear about the Stonewall riots until years after it happened. But my partner, who was in the military at that time, was subscribing to...

Overpopulation and the LGBTQ Community

  With the UN report on the danger of losing one million species to extinction within our lifetime and continued reports on the growing perils of systemic global climate disruption, we must confront the fact of human overpopulation. The World Population Prospects: The...

Werewolf Politics from Paris to Portland

book cover: The Werewolf of Paris by Guy Endore, 1933, mixes politics and horror.   My friend J D Chandler is writing a serialized werewolf story inspired by The Werewolf of Paris (by Guy Endore, 1933) but Chandler’s is set in Portland and titled, appropriately,...

From Gillette & #MeToo…to Empathetic Listening

  Originally, I imagined writing this blog about the flap over Gillette’s controversial #MeToo commercial alongside a discussion of beauty standards and what’s being called “beauty-standard denialism.” First, the Gillette ad has been both praised and damned. From the...

Black, Lesbian, Visionary: Ernestine Eckstein

That’s Ernestine in the white-framed sunglasses. Her sign reads: “Denial of Equality of Opportunity is Immoral.” Photo from the Making Gay History website, referenced below. I recently discovered the Making Gay History podcast, now in its fourth season, and I can’t...

Queers, Cold War, McCarthy, & now Cutler!

  photo from The Guardian article of 30 Dec. 2018   Medical historian Merilee D Karr alerted me to a recent Guardian article about a new book: Ike’s Mystery Man, Peter Shinkle’s biography of Robert Cutler. “…the big headline is about Cutler’s shepherding of a...

Collision of Cultures > Cultural Richness

I recently spent a large part of an afternoon at the Department of Motor Vehicles waiting to renew my driver’s license. While waiting, I was reading about the collision of cultures of three peoples on three continents—Europeans, Africans, and indigenous...

Shadows of History

On November 13th, 2018, the Urban League of Portland commemorated the 1988 murder of Mulugeta Seraw with a multi-hour conference addressing racial- and religious-based hate. Seraw was bludgeoned to death on the street in Southeast Portland by white supremacist...

Kavanaugh & Chaos

My partner Ken and I are downsizing and slowly moving to a smaller house, so my life has become chaotic. My eReader got lost in the shuffle. Did I leave my hat at the new house or the old one? Is that book I need packed away for the movers, or is it at the other...