Also.Also.Also: Obama Stands By Chuck Hagel and Other Stories We Missed This Week

Hello, homo snowflakes! Happy 2013! I spent New Year’s Eve sweating / sleeping off a fever so I could go out at app. 11:30 PM. Can someone please remind me whether you feed a cold, starve a fever or vice versa? Can someone please come make me chicken soup?

Here’s the stories we missed this week while I was boiling another bowl of Ramen.

When Can We Stop Talking About Chuck Hagel

+ On Meet the Press, Obama defended his nominee for Defense Secretary, Chuck Hagel, against yet another vicious appearance from the Ghosts of Politics Past: that time he was a huge homophobe. Spoiler alert: Obama says it’s pretty much NBD.


+ The Log Cabin Republicans hate Chuck Hagel, but whatever.

The Log Cabin Republicans have taken out an ad in the New York Times, in opposition to a potential Chuck Hagel nomination to Defense Secretary, over anti-gay comments Hagel made 14 years ago. […]

“Chuck Hagel: Wrong on gay rights. Wrong on Iran. Wrong on Israel,” the Log Cabin Republican ad says. “Tell President Obama that Chuck Hagel is wrong for Defense Secretary.”

The ad also reflects criticism that Hagel is not a big enough supporter of Israel, and is not tough enough on Iran.

Just Like Us

Look, a Disney spot specifically focused around a dude who also incidentally has two moms! This is a first for a network with no out gay characters; the video is part of the “Make Your Mark” campaign encouraging kids to “make a difference in the world.”


If a video about a 14-year-old boy with a guitar isn’t quite the spice of your own life, you might be more interested in the new lesbian plot on UK soap “Coronation Street,” which Riese raved about last time they had a lesbian plot.


Homos In Paris (Or I Guess Just The Continent of Europe)

In the Netherlands, religion is getting even more complicated – because Dutch Catholics are leaving the church in thousands. And all in the name of love! After the Pope’s continued homophobia over the holidays (how rude), a website allowing downloads of the documents needed to leave the church began to reach over 10,0000 visits a day.


In the UK, the Guardian’s Marielle Forstrup considers “heteroflexibility” the new normal:

My two closest gay friends enhance my life in many ways, but can always be relied upon to make me look shabby with their perfectly pressed shirts and suits as tight as sausage skins – and that’s when they pop over for a curry. By comparison, my husband looks like I’ve dragged him out of a skip. I can’t imagine any gay man would sink so low on the grooming stakes, but as a blonde I’ve also learned not to be seduced by stereotypes. Nowadays it seems as if we’re all open to persuasion. Sexual predilections have gained an increasing fluidity, and if that’s a sign of evolution or just further proof that we’re out for whatever we can grasp I’m not sure.

Holding firm beliefs, whether religious, political or sexual, is so last century. Personally, I think ambiguity is better in a lover.

(Hopefully this is a sign that the Parliament Act Loophole Plan to get same-sex marriage legislation on the books there will be met with warm regards.)

tumblr_lx4wi10i1b1qk6ktto1_500In Germany, Peer Streibrueck – rival candidate for chancellor – actually had the audacity to say that being a woman makes things easy for Angela Merkel:

Angela Merkel is popular because she gets a bonus from women. A large proportion of female voters appreciates how she has for a long time asserted herself in her party but also, beyond that, in Europe. That is not a disadvantage for me, but an advantage for her.

Further Proof That Privileged Women Are Lucky Women

Women, you too can find happiness at work – as long as you’ve got thousands of bucks to spend for school first!


Female satisfaction levels hit the top percentile in high-energy professions that require a major investment of education and time: female lawyers, judges, top-level managers and executives. The percentage of women who follow these career paths has shot up since 1963 (all from the single-digits to just over about 40%).

But the very highest-ranked profession in terms of satisfaction for women was found to be that of a medical doctor (physicians, dentists and optometrists), which found 60% of women reporting very high satisfaction levels, not to mention a median salary of $121,000. Close behind were health professionals (including registered nurses, pharmacists and dieticians), non-practicing medical scientists and psychologists.

Aside from the intellectual satisfaction that one of these careers in the health industry provides, Shatkin also hypothesizes that the autonomy involved (“on-the-job decision-making latitude, control over your work schedule or the freedom to elect how and where to work”) also contributed to the overall positivity of women in these positions.

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Carmen spent six years at Autostraddle, ultimately serving as Straddleverse Director, Feminism Editor and Social Media Co-Director. She is now the Consulting Digital Editor at Ms. and writes regularly for DAME, the Women’s Media Center, the National Women’s History Museum and other prominent feminist platforms; her work has also been published in print and online by outlets like BuzzFeed, Bitch, Bust, CityLab, ElixHER, Feministing, Feminist Formations, GirlBoss, GrokNation, MEL, Mic and SIGNS, and she is a co-founder of Argot Magazine. You can find Carmen on Twitter, Instagram and Tumblr or in the drive-thru line at the nearest In-N-Out.

Carmen has written 919 articles for us.


  1. I’ll make you chicken soup if you fix the spelling of Peer Steinbrück (Steinbrueck is also ok w/ the lack of Ü on your keyboard i guess)
    also I can’t even say anything smart or interesting about his statement so I’m just gonna call BULLSHIT. it’s quite upsetting because other than that I kinda liked him (more than Merkel anyway)

  2. “over 10,0000 visits a day”

    1. 4 for you Dutch Catholics
    2. 10,0000 is the technical definition of “over 9000”

  3. If I remember correctly, Disney owns ABC and ABCFamily meaning that though their inclusion of something gay on their own Disney-branded channel is new, it isn’t actually new for the larger company.

  4. Hagel’s troglodyte record on gay rights is still an issue even though President Obama finds it very inconvenient as he would like to nominate Hagel tomorrow.

    I hope the President will not risk the political cost of loosing the confirmation battle on this terrible choice.

    It’s not only about what he said many years ago, but that he has not come out for any specific or general commitment to equality for gay military families.

    In general for gays to accept Hagel, he must say that he would like to see DOMA overturned at the Supreme Court.

    But there are many ways a Secretary of Defense could help gay military families no matter how DOMA is decided and Hagel has not come out in favor of any of these.

    Reports to the contrary, LGBT equality is not yet a done deal in the military. There is still the matter of partner benefits. There still remain a handful of regulations that could be revised independent of the Defense of Marriage act that could bring some equity of compensation and benefits to gay and lesbian service members. but remain denied due only to Department of Defense foot-dragging:

    Included in the discretionary benefits currently denied are spousal identication cards, cited in the Pentagon’s own Working Group study as not requiring DOMA repeal to deliver, and shopping at the PX.

  5. The sad thing about the Peer Steinbrück incident is, that he is a Socialdemocrat. Angela Merkel is a Conservative (not Republican conservative, but still a pretty conservative party). So Steinbrücks party supports gay marriage, Merkels doesn’t. His party supports a Gender Quota, Merkel isn’t strongly opposed, but not a supporter of it either. And then he says things like this.

    He won’t have a chance in the upcoming election because of things like this. Since he’s been nominated he said this and he said that the Chancellor should have a higher income (which might even be true, but come on Peer, you’re a Socialdemocrat and you’re in the race for Chancellor, not a smart moment to discuss this issue)

    Get your sh*t together Peer or we won’t have gay marriage for another 4 years. Come on.

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