Another Open Letter to Ron Ramsey

Dear Ron Ramsey,

I’m probably not going to write you every day, though clearly you could use being written to every day, because I lack ambition and stick-to-it-iveness. But I will say that whoever writes your press releases is practically poetic.

However, this General Assembly will not be intimidated by nomadic bands of professional agitators on spring break bent on disruption. We talk through our differences here.

“Nomadic bands of professional agitators on spring break bent on disruption?!” Sweet Jesus, if that doesn’t become a t-shirt, there is no justice in the world.

I’m interested in knowing what it takes to become a professional agitator and whether one has to apply for the job or if your press secretary assigns people.

And, really, who can remember the last time being a lefty in Tennessee was so much fun?


Aunt B.

The Penis Problem

One thing I want to suss out in this whole “But what if our women have to use the bathroom with someone who  had a penis?!” hysteria (ha!) is that there are a couple of underlying assumptions we should really ask ourselves if we are okay with. One is pretty basic–do we want a small, secretive group of men meeting outside of the purview of the media and then attempting to enact their agenda on the city using the excuse “But what about the women?!”

I, for one, am not that excite about a secretive group of men plotting behind my back, without my input, and deciding for me and all the rest of the women in Nashville policy that directly affects the women of Nashville. Could the Southern Baptist leaders not appeal to even one of their wives to put their names on that piece of shit editorial to make it look like they had even one woman who was directly concerned about this, instead of continuing to give the impression that they, secretive group of religious men, had decided it would be a problem for women?

And then, what, exactly, is the nature of the problem we cis women would face?

And that leads me in to the second point I have. These religious leaders believe that anyone born with a penis is a man and that men, when given unmediated access to women, will be a danger to those women. Like I said, I often have used the same restrooms as men –cis men, transgender men–and women these leaders would like to classify as men. And I have never once felt in danger from the close proximity of those penises.

And I’m supposed to be the man-hating feminist!

Why do we have to act like it’s a given that anyone with a penis is a danger at all times to anyone who doesn’t have a penis? Why do we have to accept the cultural narrative that all men (meaning in this case “people born with penises”) are monsters? Especially when we all know many, many decent people born with penises?

Why do we continue to let men in power lie to us (they can lie to themselves all they want, I guess) about how vile men are and how the mere possession, therefore, of a penis would taint a woman so irrevocably that she would be a danger to other women?

I think it’s sad that they understand themselves and other bepenised people to be monsters, but I think it’s a tragedy if we just accept that as the truth, unquestioning.

This Cold is Somewhat Annoying

I had lunch with Smiley and his friend yesterday over at Blackstone, which is a two and a half block downhill walk from my office. And I was feeling good for the first block, like “Woo hoo, outside, fresh air, moving!” and by the time I got to the restaurant, I felt like I had been hit in the chest with a truck. It’s all upper respiratory nonsense (because you know my fear of pneumonia) and I know it will clear itself up, but damn, I was having a good laugh at that. I mean, I literally could have rolled to the restaurant, just laid down on the ground and let gravity take its course, and it still wiped me out to walk over there.

And then this morning, I sprung up from my bed feeling like “Okay, yeah, let’s walk the dog. Even if it’s slow, I’ll feel good moving,” only to discover I had slept way, way, way through my alarm. I need a way to just send my legs out for the walk they so desperately want while everything above the boobs stays home and sleeps.

I didn’t watch Haslam’s State of the State, but the transcript seemed better than expected. I guess I’m keeping my eye on two things–one, I feel like he has this ‘Let’s just turn this over to a knowledgeable person’ attitude about certain issues, which is a fine impulse in a businessman, but not how a representative democracy works. (Michigan!) We don’t appoint quasi-dictators to lord over us. And two, what Haslam will do when the nonsense starts to get passed. Will he be willing to veto obviously stupid legislation destined to tie us up on court or is he counting on Republican leadership in the Legislature to keep him from being in that position? I’m curious to see.