Onscreen, young women of color with immigrant parents are often far from traditional. Consider All-American Girl's Margaret Kim (Margaret Cho), Grey's Anatomy's Callie Torres (Sara Ramirez), The Office's Kelly Kapoor (Mindy Kaling), and Elementary's Joan Watson (Lucy Liu). Though these characters' parents are from various socioeconomic backgrounds and countries of origin, these young women all strive to balance their parents' expectations with their own expectations against the backdrop of society's often sexist and racist assumptions. And though these are some of my favorite characters on television, their experiences often veer from those of real-life second-generation immigrant women.
On the New Girl episode "Table 34," Cece (Hannah Simone) attends an Indian marriage convention hoping to meet an Indian guy for a long-term relationship. She had been with lovable douchebag Schmidt (Max Greenfield) but wants to date someone whom her Indian-born parents will approve of. When her friends hear about the convention, they decide that they want to check it out, too—though only Schmidt dresses like, in Winston's words, "the fortune teller in Big." At the convention, she has to fill out an application including her resume. The event hostess seats her at Table 34, which is clearly the losers' table. Has there been some mistake? The event organizer says, "Over 30 [years old], no advanced degrees, part-time employment. Table 34." Cece replies that she's a professional model, "I was in Lil Wayne's last video. I was the girl he was throwing strawberries at in slow motion?" The woman says, "Definitely Table 34."
Fashion model Cece is downwardly mobile compared to her parents, but she hopes that landing an Indian man will help her gain their approval.
After a hate crime including arson, couple Carol Ann and Laura Stutte have gotten the runaround from their insurance. Join change.org in telling American National Property and Casualty to pay on the claim.
Iowa Rep. Steve King reportedly plans to reintroduce a bill that would make English the official language of the U.S. The bill would require those trying to become naturalized U.S. citizens to be tested on their ability to read, write and speak English. It would also require that those pursuing U.S. citizenship be tested on their comprehension of the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and related texts. Lastly, it would mandate that official functions of the U.S. government be carried out in English, which could mean that voting ballots would appear in no language besides English.
Given mainstream Hollywood's fondness for glamorous actors and happy endings, it is a wonder 2008's Frozen River's lead actress Melissa Leo got an Oscar nomination for Best Actress and first-time writer-director Courtney Hunt a nod for Best Original Screenplay. Surprising none of its fans, both women went home empty-handed.
This week's Douchebag Decree goes to a man who used his post at CNN as a platform to rage against "illegal aliens" to the American public. If that wasn't douche-y enough for you, it has now come out that this same man has been employing undocumented workers for years to tend to his prized horses and mansions. Who is this hypocritical douche, you ask? Lou Dobbs, come on down!
I am a major fangirl for Linda Ronstadt for many reasons. Great music? Check. Awesome style that I try to copy? Check. Songs available at Karaoke bars? Check. Political activist, feminist, and defender of civil liberties? Check and check.
Freedom and pretty hair for all!
To back me up on that last point, the Christian Science Monitor has this story to share today: "Linda Ronstadt joins group filing suit against Arizona law." Awww yeah. That's right, Ronstadt (and others, but I'm a fangirl, remember?) is suing Arizona for their new bullshit immigration law. She is so awesome. For more ass kicking, read on to see Ronstadt take on Robin Quivers in the name of Mexican-American women!
The recent Uganda death penalty bill for homosexuality has raised awareness of the inhumane treatment of LGBT people globally. The repercussions of rape, jail, and murder for expressing your sexuality are horrendous, but they sometimes make it easy to cast a blind eye to the way so-called first-world countries continue to foster homophobia, transphobia, and sexism. Gay women seeking asylum in the UK know all too well that homophobia does not stop at the border.
Through a new art project with Artangel, an organization that sponsors interactive art projects, some of these woman are able to express the dehumanizing and difficult process of gaining asylum.
Credited with inventing the family sitcom, a successful, decade-spanning career in television and radio, author of over 10,000 scripts, and a mother on-screen and off, Gertrude Berg is "the most famous woman in America you've never heard of."