What the Science Says About ‘Don’t Say Gay’ and Young People

April 20, 2023

New York Times | Apr. 20, 2023 | Florida Republicans on Wednesday expanded a state law that prohibits classroom instruction on L.G.B.T.Q. subjects through third grade. Now the “Don’t Say Gay” law will also apply to students in grades four to 12. Though the legislation might appear to be just about allowing parents a say in their children’s education — up to high school graduation — its breadth and vagueness creates a chilling effect on what students and teachers think they can say about sexual orientation and gender identity.

Boston Strangler Truth Is Even More Disturbing Than Fiction

March 18, 2023

Daily Beast | Mar. 18, 2023 | For 18 months in the waning days of the idealistic early 1960s, thirteen Boston-area women were strangled and sexually assaulted. The elusive killer left behind a grotesque, ritualized crime scene, as if taunting the people who would come upon it. Bodies were left in suggestive positions. Nylon stockings or other of their personal apparel had been knotted around their necks. Some had bottles, broomsticks or other foreign objects jutting out of their bodies. Propped up against the foot of the final victim, strangled on January 4th, 1964, stood a cheery greeting card that read, “Happy New Year!”

Chronic pain is surprisingly treatable — when patients focus on the brain

October 15, 2021

Washington Post | Oct. 15, 2021 | One-fifth of American adults — 50 million people — suffer from chronic pain, defined as pain experienced most days or every day during the past six months. Conditions include migraines, sciatica and gastrointestinal disorders, as well as shoulder, knee and elbow pain. Back and neck pain, too, affect up to 85 percent of adults at some point in their lives and are among the most common reasons for doctor and hospital visits. Chronic pain results in more than $500 billion each year in direct health-care and disability costs and lost productivity. Roughly half a million Americans have died over the past two decades after overdosing on opioids, commonly taken in a desperate quest for pain relief.

Listening to Trump Supporters: A Liberal’s Guide

December 8, 2020

MEDIUM | Dec. 8, 2020 | Shortly after the November election, I wrote in a newsletter to (mostly) fellow liberals that we must “stop disdaining our political opponents,” understand what makes them tick, and seek common ground. I was referring not to GOP leaders, who should be held accountable for their odious complicity with Trump, but to the 74 million Trump voters who have a wide range of reasons for their votes.

Pete Buttigieg’s coded language shows the limits and promise of LGBTQ progress

March 16, 2020

The Conversation | March 16, 2020 | According to family lore, my father suspected I was gay when I was six because I liked cars with windshield wipers in the rear. (As a shrink, he’s always had a penchant for looking under the hood, so to speak.) There were other clues too. I used to prance around the yard flitting my wrists and waving my arms, chirping in a high-pitched, affected manner: “I’m a boy!” My father would gently take me aside, crinkle his nose and shake his head, saying, “Try not to do that thing with your wrists.” At other times he asked if my flamboyant declarations that I was a boy reflected some worry that I actually wasn’t.

Anti-LGBT discrimination has a huge human toll. Research proves it.

January 1, 2020

Washington Post | Dec. 19, 2019 | In a trio of cases heard in October, the Supreme Court weighed whether discrimination against LGBT people should be legal. Over the course of those and related cases, a handful of scholars who oppose legal protections for LGBT Americans claimed in a legal brief that “research about discrimination and its effects” on LGBT people is “deficient and the claims based on it unsupported.” This claim rings false to many researchers who study this issue, as well it should, because the evidence of a link between anti-LGBT discrimination and health harms is both robust and well-supported.

Do Polls Exaggerate the Challenges for a Gay Presidential Candidate?

December 4, 2019

New York Times | Dec. 4, 2019 | As Pete Buttigieg, the openly gay mayor of South Bend, Ind., has surged to a top position in Iowa polls in the Democratic presidential primary, media reports have emerged warnings that his sexuality may yet derail his White House bid. A recent national Politico/Morning Consult poll found that a plurality of voters, 45 percent, think the country is not ready for an openly gay president, with only 40 percent saying it’s ready. Consultants have chimed into say the mayor may be less electable than coastal elites realize because he’s gay.

The Stunning Hypocrisy Of General Mattis

November 22, 2019

BuzzFeed News | Nov. 22, 2019 | America is in crisis, a decorated former government official recently warned. “Virulent, take-no-prisoners attacks on the media, the judiciary, labor unions, universities, teachers, scientists, civil servants — pick your target — [are threatening to] tear down the scaffolding on which society is built,” he wrote. “We talk about what divides us and seldom acknowledge what unites us.”

Democrats Spent Years Fleeing LGBTQ Rights; Elizabeth Warren’s Promise is to Finally Deliver Us From Fear

October 22, 2019

Medium | Oct. 22, 2019 | Elizabeth Warren delighted fans at CNN’s LGBTQ candidate forum earlier this month when explaining how she’d respond to someone who believes marriage is between one man and one woman: “Then just marry one woman…,” she said she’d tell him, “assuming you can find one.” But after her appearance, Warren faced pushback not only from conservatives and Republicans, who activated a predictable outrage machine, but also from some Democrats who dragged out their own familiar but increasingly tired trope: that calling out those who trample our values by opposing equal treatment will drive away those elusive moderates who might otherwise deliver us elections.

Stonewall’s Gift: 50 Years Ago Queer Fury Erupted and Changed the World

June 25, 2019

Rolling Stone | Jun. 25, 2019 | In the spring of 1968, weeks before the start of her final year of life, Judy Garland met with a biographer to discuss collaborating on her memoir. The author, Gerold Frank, was a journalist well-known for ghostwriting the life stories of celebrity women, including Zsa Zsa Gabor. The meeting, arranged through Sid Luft, Judy’s manager and third ex-husband, was set for 10 p.m. at New York’s St. Moritz Hotel. But at the appointed hour, Frank and Luft, who were dining at the Plaza nearby, got word that the superstar needed more time.

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