The panic over gender-neutral reproductive health language has another eye-rolling favorite phrase

Photo: Getty Images / Robin Mehdee

On Mother’s Day this past Sunday, conservatives on Twitter rallied around their new favorite joke — which is really just a variation on their one joke.

“Happy Birthing Person’s Day,” they all tweeted, rolling in retweets and the shared laughter of a bunch of usernames consisting of a first name followed by a bunch of numbers.

Ben Shapiro, the Babylon Bee, and countless other right-wingers all parroted the same punch line without a hint of originality. …


I returned to the game just in time to save my sanity.

Credit: playoverwatch.com

I discovered Overwatch in the most cringe, egirl cliché way possible: through a boyfriend.

In the fall of 2016, I was in the midst of my first relationship after transitioning. We had our first kiss after attending the New England Revolution Fourth of July game, under the stadium’s fireworks. It was magical.

Besides our shared love of soccer, my new boyfriend was really into gaming. Without giving away too many details, his career was creating games and his latest obsession was Overwatch. A first person shooter game featuring a colorful cast of unique heroes. …


We’re in the middle of a pandemic and everyone refuses to log off.

A transfeminine non-binary person and transmasculine gender-nonconforming person reading a magazine together. (Zackery Drucker, The Gender Spectrum Collection)

(This post was originally published on Katelyn’s Substack on 7/11/2020 and has been moved here because her Substack no longer exists)

My house growing up was about midway up a small mountain, or maybe a very large hill. Our property abutted with a state park and on the other side of the mountain-hill was Massachusetts. The terrain was utterly rural, and too remote even for cable television. Satellite television was out of the question as well, we were told. Apparently trees blocked our line of sight to the right portion of orbit to catch the satellite.

My family got the…


Trans people have known what we’ve needed for 90 years. For just as long, cis people have told us they know better.

Photo Credit: Zackary Drucker, The Gender Spectrum Collection

(This post originally appeared on Katelyn’s Substack on 5/20/2020 and has been moved here because her Substack no longer exists)

It’s difficult to establish where exactly my sense of self and my gender part ways within my self conception. To me, my being as a woman is as intertwined with my self conception as anything else; being tall, the scar on my left wrist that still aches, the freckles that dot my face and arms.

If that self conception were changed, either by choice or by force, would I even still exist as myself, or would I then be someone…


“I was the best because the crowd loved me. Win the crowd, and you will win your freedom.” -Proximo (Gladiator, 2000)

(This post was originally published on Katelyn’s Substack on 11/6/2019 and has been moved here as her Substack no longer exists)

There’s something uniquely American about booing people we don’t like at sporting events. In most of Europe, for example, people tend to hiss instead of boo, a fact which confused me when I first watched a World Cup held outside the United States. My dad couldn’t explain why at the time, finally responding to my badgering with, “some cultures are different.”

In the US, booing is the great equalizer of the masses. The asshole owner of your employer is…


“So do all who live to see such times, but that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us.” -Gandalf

(This post was originally posted to Katelyn’s Substack on 11/19/2019 and has been moved here as her Substack no longer exists)

There’s something vaguely ritualistic and comforting to cooking a frozen pizza. Opening the box and unwrapping the plastic surrounding the plastic-y looking pie. It always seems like such a good idea in the moment, especially when you’re hungry after a long day and you’re too tired to cook anything more complex…

Ever since I was a child, I would eat when I’m upset. Eating was how I dealt with my dysphoria or family distress for decades. …


Thursday’s moral panic stemmed from a poorly worded AP report and ended with conservatives punching trans people again

(Credit: JB Lacroix/Getty)

Another week, another viral thread panicking over another issue related to trans people. It’s become a sick pastime for some of Twitter’s most annoying assholes to flip their shit over some gender-related bullshit they’ve invented on their own.

This time, it was Mr. Potato Head, a literal plastic spud toy that’s been around for decades. An Associated Press wire story Thursday kicked off the ridiculousness, misleadingly claiming that Mr. Potato Head would be going “gender neutral” and be known going forward simply as “Potato Head.”

Of course, this was too much for many on the right and those in the…


Both Senate committees handling Neera Tanden’s confirmation postponed key votes and meetings Wednesday

Neera Tanden, nominee for Director of the Office of Management and Budget, testifies at her confirmation hearing. Photo: Leigh Vogel/Pool/Getty Images

I have one lasting memory of Neera Tanden’s campaign season tweets and it’s not a good one, unfortunately. A Twitter mutual of mine, a young person with some political experience, lightly mocked Tanden in a reply on the social media platform. In return, Tanden, who runs perhaps the largest progressive policy firm in the U.S., tagged the young person’s employer, at the time a progressive Senate campaign, in a reply.

The message was clear: Tanden didn’t think this young person should be working on a Senate campaign because they made a joke at her expense.

Is this something that happens…


The ultra-viral story is an outright fabrication made by the institutionally transphobic British press. It worked.

(Credit: JGI/Tom Grill)

A story originating from the Times of London claims that a UK hospital, the Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust, has banned the use of words like “breastfeeding,” instead using gender-neutral terms like “chest feeding.” Additionally, the Times reports the hospital has allegedly banned the use of gendered terms throughout its maternity ward.

The story quickly went viral, hitting the American conservative press. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) tweeted his own outrage. A wave of transphobia poured over social media, even among some liberals who thought the hospital “went too far” in supporting trans people.

But the story is a…


A major political party decided they’re done with democracy. We can’t forgive and move on.

Photo: John Moore/Getty Images

Just two days after Republican insurrectionists took over the U.S. Capitol and numerous state capitols, and 147 Republican members of Congress voted against the official Electoral College vote certification shortly afterward, those same lawmakers are now begging the country to forgive and forget.

Respectfully, fuck that.

Sen. Lindsay Graham, R-SC, a stalwart ally of insurrectionist president Donald Trump, insisted on Friday morning that impeaching Trump now, with just two weeks left in his term, would only sow further division. (This comes from the same man who was caught on tape in mid-November asking the Georgia secretary of state to overturn…

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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