Any social media posts even hinting at affirming trans people get bombarded and brigaded by a frothing mass of Brits and MAGA types

One of the earliest developments within the modern gender critical movement, which I classify as post-2016, was it’s close relation to the cancel culture grievance scene. It’s easy to see why.

Back then, trans people were seemingly emerging from the shadows publicly for the first time, though evidence of what we’d now call trans people have existed for millennia. To understand the landscape for trans rights back then, you have to realize that there have been several high profile British columnists who’d been poking at trans issues here and there for a long time already at that point.

But the…


Somehow I don’t think “Vermonter to Springfield” has the same ring to it

Photo by Bruce Tuten, Flickr

I love trains. Sometimes I sit on my couch and watch mass transit videos on YouTube for hours on end. Not many people know this about me.

Funnily enough, I usually don’t like movies or TV shows about trains. I think the last train-related movie I saw was “Unstoppable,” starring Denzel Washington. But alas, I’ve never seen “Snowpiercer” or a host of other train movies.

That includes “Train to Busan,” a Korean zombie horror flick set on a high speed train. Essentially, the film portrays a zombie outbreak on a train from Seoul to Busan, South Korea.

The film scores…


Turning political journalism into sports reporting was the industry’s gravest mistake and we will all pay for it in the end

Press Gaggle on End of Session. by Jay Baker at Annapolis,MD. Maryland GovPics. License.

Modern Beltway reporters often see themselves as non-partisan observers of the political process. In a recent Washington Post profile, New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman stressed this point, going to great lengths to say that it’s not her job to stand up in a press conference and say “how dare you, sir!”

I actually agree with that Haberman quote, but not in the same way she meant it. Political journalists these days style themselves as sports beat reporters. They…


Biden did what previous presidents were too scared to do, but it comes at a cost for the Afghan people

Image: GettyImages, guvendemir

Last week was perhaps the most difficult of President Joe Biden’s presidency to date. The president stood by his decision to honor a previous agreement to permanently withdraw US troops from Afghanistan, a country the US has occupied for nearly 20 years.

The troop withdrawal left the country with little defense against the extremist Taliban warriors who controlled Afghanistan before the US declared war in 2001.

As disturbing images of desperate Afghans clinging for dear life to US warplanes came through the wires, Biden has been pilloried by a DC political press that have always been the forever war’s biggest…


As a child, the majesty of the games captivated me, I don’t feel that anymore

Photo by Dave Kim on Unsplash

My earliest memory of the Olympics was watching the 1988 Olympics in South Korea on our grainy TV at home I was 6 years old. I only remember glimpses, the cauldron being lit, some people running track and field. My dad was a physical education teacher and coached soccer and track for 30 years, so sports were ubiquitous in my home growing up.

As time went on, I became captivated with the Olympics. I remember the shock of the 1996 Olympic Park bombing, but I also remember Michael Johnson demolishing the 200m dash world record in those same games. My…


The Marvel show played with gender dynamics much more than is typical from Disney

(L-R): Hunter B-15 (Wumi Mosaku) and Loki (Tom Hiddleston) in Marvel Studios’ Loki, exclusively on Disney+. Photo courtesy of Marvel Studios. Copyright: Marvel Studios 2021. All rights reserved.

(Writer’s note: SPOILERS, obviously. Also please don’t send me death threats, this is just how I experienced the show, it’s fine to disagree.)

Towards the end of the season finale of Marvel Studios’ Loki, a hugely popular TV show on Disney+, the two main characters, Loki and Sylvie share a kiss. Moments later, the Marvel universe literally exploded, forever changed.

At first blush, it’s just another kiss between a man and a woman on screen. But Sylvie is actually a “variant” of Loki. Without explaining the whole premise of the show, which revolves around the antics of the two Lokis…


The current model encourages corruption and leaves cities to construct massive sites for an extremely short term pay off

Abandoned 2004 Olympic baseball park, Athens, Greece. Photo/Map: Arne Müseler / arne-mueseler.com / CC-BY-SA-3.0

Perhaps the most depressing thing about this year’s edition of the Summer Olympic Games is the empty stadiums. Normally, the host city enjoys a massive, if temporary, influx of international tourists eager to take in the games and spend cash locally.

But because of the Covid-19 pandemic, Tokyo will not be enjoying those tourist dollars this year. Not even parents of the athletes will be able to be on hand to watch their kids compete. …


For organizers, the games are an unrepentant cash grab

Photo by Bryan Turner on Unsplash

The modern Olympics were the brainchild of a 19th century French aristocrat, Pierre de Coubertin, who believed that participating in sport should be a universal human right. “For every man, woman and child, it offers an opportunity for self-improvement,” he is remembered as saying.

Initially, the games were envisioned as a place for the world to gather and share culture through sport. “[The Games] are global,” said Coubertin. “All people must be allowed in, without debate.”

But de Coubertin was far from a visionary progressive. Despite his platitudes, he opposed the participation of women in his games, even though their…


The bathroom bill movement spawned in 2015 is officially dead after the Supreme Court declined to take up Gavin Grimm’s lawsuit earlier this week

Two students in a gender neutral bathroom. Zackery Drucker/The Gender Spectrum Collection

When he was 15 years old, Gavin Grimm asked to use the boy’s room at his school after coming out as transgender. At first, the school allowed it, but not long after the school board for Gloucester County school district in Virginia reversed course, responding to public outcry.

The school adopted a policy applying to boys and girls “with gender issues” that essentially treated trans adolescents like Grimm as a third, deviant gender category. …


Love is not possible when a spouse controls the life and body of their partner

Photo: Masako Ishida / Getty Images

Earlier today, British conservative publication The Telegraph highlighted the next group in the anti-trans media carousel: trans widows. The article claimed that passing Gender Recognition Act reform in the country would “trap” spouses of trans people in “loveless marriages.”

Some context is needed here. Currently, trans people in the U.K. can medically transition and even change their name without their spouse’s permission. But in order for a married trans person to change their legal sex on their birth certificate, they must get express written consent from their spouse.

It’s an archaic holdover from the days before marriage equality, when a…

Katelyn Burns

Political journalist. The first openly trans Capitol Hill reporter in US history. Writing about more than just trans issues. Follow her on Twitter @transscribe

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