Also.Also.Also: Cameron Esposito Talks to Samantha Bee and Other Stories for Your Monday

feature image via Cameron Esposito on Instagram

Hi good morning, I’ve been thinking about the idea of loving your enemies. We watched Passion of the Christ Saturday night (we’re a riot at parties), because Megan’s Catholic and I always want to know what it’s like to believe in Christianity. She kept having to pause it to answer my super basic questions and I had tons of them. At one point in the film — and I’m assuming in the Bible — Jesus talks about loving your enemies, because there’s no reward in only loving those who love you back. I thought I understood and agreed with the basic tenets of most religions when it came to why and how best to love other beings, but that line threw me. I can’t stop thinking about it! I don’t want to love someone who doesn’t love me back — unless they’re my own children maybe? I can’t imagine wanting to. I can’t imagine that loving them would be rewarding, either. And I wonder if this is a flaw or a coping mechanism or an unrealized truth I haven’t found yet, or nothing at all and I should just microwave some lasagna and go watch Buffy.

But mostly! I’m wondering whether or not you’d like to know that I found a solution to the Easter dress/armpit beard conundrum from Friday’s comments! Well, let me tell you. I solved that conundrum by wearing a flowy cardigan situation that covered my beards! Cool. And I accidentally bought a 10lb block of ice instead of a regular bag of crushed ice to make ice cream with on Sunday morning. I just panicked inside the Fry’s and was like IDK LANEIA JUST GRAB THE BLOCK OF ICE I GUESS YOU CAN HAMMER IT APART LATER. It’s because I was wearing heels. I can’t make sense of the world in those heels.

mistakes were made ?

A photo posted by @laneia on

Hope you had a glorious and restorative and hilarious weekend! I hope your Monday is like that .25 second right when a confetti popper is popped, but all day long. [Had to stop myself from typing Love ya! at the end of this intro because this isn’t a blog and we’re all dignified adults here. But it’s true, so.]

You Should Go or Do or Give

+ Support Kazoo! A new kind of magazine for girls!

Queer as in F*ck You

+ Equality Groups Filing Suit Against North Carolina’s Anti-LGBT Law.


+ Play Looks at the Lives and Experiences of Local LGBT Youth. There’s a video!

+ Should Schools Ask Students About Their Sexual Orientation to Protect LGBT Rights? Hm.

+ Some thoughts on Pee-Wee Herman.

+ Deaf Lesbian Couple Who Were Attacked with a Bat Were Scared to Walk the Streets.

+ Well this is amazing: Feds Spend $6K Studying History of French Lesbian Activism.

+ 5 Things to Know About LGBT Issues in Indonesia.

+ Feelings: Lesbian Couple Say Fostering Has Changed Their Lives.

+ Study Reveals That Schools Need More Data on LGBT Students. ?

+ Samantha Bee Talked to Cameron Esposito and it’s been transcribed so you can read it, so you should do that today right now.

Doll Parts

+ A profile on Charlene Carruthers: The Leader of Unapologetically Black Activism.

+ Yaybortion talk! Roe v. Wade Was Lost in 1992.

+ Nine-Year-Old Girl Completes Course Designed for Navy Seals.

+ Braiding Hair Is No Longer a State Crime in Nebraska.

+ Photos of the Inner Lives of Women.

Saw This, Thought of You

+ {{whispers}} excuse me {{sprays hairspray on bangs}}

+ Why So Many 20-Somethings Want to Stream Friends.

+ Never not obsessed with this. Death and Emojis: How Grief Manifests on Social Media.

+ Why Was 1976 Such an Amazing Year for Horror Movies?

+ Thundercats.

And Finally

Mallory though you deserved this last Friday and she was right, so just in case you missed it then: Happy Loretta Lynn and Willie Nelson Friday!

Laneia is the Executive Editor and founding member of Autostraddle, and you're the reason she's here.

Laneia has written 924 articles for us.


  1. “Should Schools Ask Students About Their Sexual Orientation to Protect LGBT Rights? Hm.”

    I work for a company that makes student information systems and we’ve recently begun reporting transgender status to various state/federal governing bodies. As a trans woman, I have so many different personal opinions on the subject and I worry that I might be involved in making the lives of trans and other LGBT students harder by participating in this type of reporting. At the same time, I feel like some of this information reporting could be beneficial by making it easier for teachers to identify their students by their preferred names/gender, etc. I’m not sure what to think of it, but being in this position makes me feel rather uncomfortable.

    I suppose for me the issue is that giving reporting tools like these to educators depends entirely on how they use the tools. Given the latest news such as places in NC, I can only imagine these tools being used for more harm than good – but that doesn’t consider the potential paper trail that can follow these students from Kindergarden to 12th grade and beyond either. Yet at the same time, we report other OCR information such as ethnicity and homeless status to governing bodies all the time without issues (that I know of). While acceptance of LGBT individuals is at large on the rise, I feel like without universal support of LGBT rights and civil protections, that it isn’t safe to rely on the educators that have these tools to use them appropriately.

    I’d really like to hear some other opinions on the subject. I want to be able to present an opinion to my management at some point on the subject that doesn’t sound like I have a personal bias on the topic (even though that might be hard to do). There are kids at stake after all.

    • This here seems to be the crux of the linked article: But the authors argue that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students would, on balance, benefit from more comprehensive data about how they are faring in the nation’s schools. It’s just that kind of information, they argue, that has undergirded battles to protect the civil rights of other minorities during the past half-century.

      That kind of information could theoretically be collected without violating privacy (and potentially endangering) students. When I was in high school, one day a year we took a survey in gym class that asked us questions like “Do you drink?”, “How often? (Circle one: never, 1 drink a month…)”, and “Have you ever smoked weed?”. (I think the survey we took asked about sex and self-esteem too but I only clearly remember the drinking ones.) I think it was the town that collected the data but it may have been part of a larger initiative. All of the surveys were 100% anonymous. It seems like a similar thing could be easily done, asking questions about sexuality, how often you’ve been suspended, do you feel safe in school, do you consider yourself a good student, do you get good grades, etc.

      Something like that would probably be beneficial, especially if the data were being analyzed by a third party rather than the school district itself.

      I hadn’t thought about student information systems with regard to transgender status before. My gut reaction is that that’s dangerous information to require, especially if all school staff would have access to that information. But it would be a good idea to have a “preferred name/nickname” option in any student information system, available to anyone who would print out a class roster. There are many people who go by nicknames that are not their “legal” name. It would streamline the roll call on the first day of class and any day there’s a sub. (And might cut down on the number of teachers who just go with whatever the sheet says rather than listening to what their students say their names are.) And then this would also give a tool for trans students who did want to be called by a name that isn’t their legal name without having to be outed by roll call.

  2. Rather than viewing that 10 lb block of ice as a mistake I think you should rent a cold storage unit, buy about 500 more, build an igloo, and play Polar Explorers for the rest of the week.

  3. Laneia, I’m going off in response to your opening. Your thoughts on love are so interesting! Like Megan, I was raised Catholic. There was this cultural Catholic idea (vs. an actual Church teaching) that “Love is an action, not a feeling” basically meaning that love isn’t about how you feel; love means treating people with dignity and respect. You don’t love people because they could love you back, but because it’s the right thing to do and because you can see the image of God in everyone. But then because of the whole reward thing, there is more incentive than loving others just because it’s the right thing to do. A lot of what Jesus says about rewards isn’t our current use of the word as in “rewarding”, but referring to reward in Heaven. It’s also really interesting that the bible was originally translated from Greek, which has many words for love. So parent-child love, romantic love, etc. are different words entirely. That opens up another area of interpretations. (But Jesus didn’t even speak Greek, that’s just the language the New Testament was written in, so who knows what Jesus meant.)

    My best guess (+help from Google) is that what you’re referencing is the Gospel of Luke: “But to you who are listening I say: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. If someone slaps you on one cheek, turn to them the other also. If someone takes your coat, do not withhold your shirt from them. Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. Do to others as you would have them do to you. If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners love those who love them. And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners do that. And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, expecting to be repaid in full. But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.”

    And for me that raises a lot of questions. Is that really a healthy model for interpersonal relationships? It sounds like a model of love that has no personal boundaries.

    • Thank you for this perspective Ali! I don’t feel like that’s a healthy relationship model either! I don’t think ‘sinners’ do love people who love them. Man, I really don’t agree with this sentiment at all, but I feel much better about disagreeing with it, now that I’ve seen this excerpt.

    • I was raised catholic but turned away from religion when I grew older. Thus, my definition of love is disconnected from any religious idea. For the record, I do not rebut faith in general, I just don’t like the institutionalization of it.

      This might be a very simplistic viewpoint, but to me love is a feeling which can manifest itself in a number of different ways, be it romantic, platonic, etc.

      Therefore, I reject the notion that love is an action within an incentivized system. First off, I don’t want to treat people differently based on my feelings for them. Whether it is my enemy or my friend, ideally I want everyone to treat with respect and dignity. Also, what constitutes an enemy in this context? An enemy might be someone that I disagree in core values with, but that doesn’t mean that they deserve to be treated less. And secondly, the idea of being rewarded for loving someone seems very problematic to me. There is this notion of unconditional love that I also don’t support as in my book love is an irrepressible feeling existing independent of any external factors and therefore is unconditional by nature.

      Maybe that’s just me, but I cannot control my feelings, whether it’s love, rage or any other. Of course, how I act on those feelings is within my power but for that the feelings need to exist in the first place. And I am not saying that those feelings can not be influenced and shaped by the way my counterpart behaves towards me, but that comes after the fact.

  4. Hi I’m so late to this comment thread party but re: WEEKENDS

    So on Saturday I was going to go DANCING, like at a CLUB, because I’ve been unemployed in Portland for a whole month and have done literally nothing but walk a dog and read the whole time

    And on my way out Dog Family was like “lol go to this bar to eat first! It’s VEGAN”

    And so I did, and it started raining on the way there, and it got really dark and the street had no streetlights and I tripped in front of a bunch of people, and then when I got to the bar I immediately had a panic attack and walked out

    SO! SO. I got vegan pizza, took up an entire booth on a busy night so that I wouldn’t have to talk to anyone, and started weeping.

    But I Couldn’t Go Home, because Dog Family thought I’d be out until at least midnight and it was only 9:45. They never get time alone because they TRAVEL.

    So I wandered around Portland while weeping openly until 11:30. You know as one does.

    I SAID “FUCK THIS” and immediately started working on a comic about it, but with a few surrealist / magical realism type twists because why make a comic if everyone is human, honestly.

    And I’m SO PLEASED with how it’s shaping up and also: sakura brush pens are everything. Seriously everyone who is too lazy to use actual brushes or too afraid of spilling permanent ink in someone else’s house while using brushes (me) should get some brush pens.

    I was so iffy on them and damn they really came through.

    OK sorry that was really unrelated to this article? I’m just so Psyched about these pens and my current creative Wave Of Energy And Follow Thru.

    • Also re: wave of energy

      For those artists who, like me, have criminally low self esteem and don’t Believe In Themselves

      Doing ur rough pencils in a composition note book really like

      Takes the pressure off??

      It’s just like youre (failing) high-school again! This is just Doodling in the Margins. Stress Free Scribbling.

  5. I didn’t know Megan’s Catholic! Me too! I used to always use that passage about loving your enemies when people at my church would talk about being pro war and pro death penalty and how much they hated muslims and pretty much all conservative points of view.

  6. As a side note re: Catholicism

    For reasons that are still mostly unclear, I converted to Catholicism Easter of 2011.

    Converting to Catholicism is, by the way, a total pain and involves a lot of classes and also a stranger who has volunteered to be your Godmother.

    (At this point I would like to note that, in the spring of 2011, I hadn’t for a second considered that I might not be straight. Also I was wearing a lot of my cousins Abercrombie hand me downs, which feels related.)

    So anyway, I don’t go to church anymore, but I’m still Catholic in the sense that I will always feel weird about it and also enjoy all the knick-knacky Shit that comes with that particular brand of Jesus, and I never took the whole “love thine enemy” thing very literally.

    I always interpreted it as “please don’t waste energy actively hating your enemy”

    Because that’s exhausting and poisons your soul like in that poem, that William Blake poem, which was in my English textbook my freshman year of high school. I used to read the stuff in the textbook instead of doing the work assigned in class, which gave me the odd distinction of being a teachers pet with straight C grades.

    But I Digress :

    “I was angry with my friend;
    I told my wrath, my wrath did end.
    I was angry with my foe:
    I told it not, my wrath did grow.

    And I waterd it in fears,
    Night & morning with my tears:
    And I sunned it with smiles,
    And with soft deceitful wiles.

    And it grew both day and night,
    Till it bore an apple bright.
    And my foe beheld it shine,
    And he knew that it was mine.

    And into my garden stole.
    When the night had veiled the pole;
    In the morning glad I see,
    My foe outstretchd beneath the tree.”

    • My parents, both of whom are atheists, on having to come to an Easter Vigil Service to see me get what Father Mossiman called the Sacramental Grand Slam (baptism, first communion, confirmation)

      (Easter Vigil is Christian Code for “church at midnight”, btw) :

      “we knew we were in for a long haul when the first reading came from Genesis”

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