Every Silver Lining Has a Touch of Gay


The man. Duh. This week’s Ethicist column at The New York Times features a gay advice-seeker who’s married to her partner, but whose marriage isn’t recognized by their state or the US federal government.

My same-sex partner and I are legally married in another country, a marriage not recognized by our state or (obviously) federal government, with significant negative consequences to our modest financial situation. My partner would be eligi

ble for some government aid if she applied as a single person, but it feels disingenuous to do so, because as a family, we make well above the poverty line. In some sense, however, the government owes us this money since it unjustly disregards our marriage. Should she apply?


The Ethicist’s answer: Yeah, duh. It’s not your fault the government has created discriminatory and misleading standards, or that it’s fucking itself over by not recognizing your family as a family. Or, as he put it: “…you have no duty to set stricter standards for such programs than the law itself.” And as you may have noticed, as far as the law and queer people go, STANDARDS ARE PRETTY LOW. So, it got us thinking: what are your favorite fringe benefits of long-term disenfranchisement by the country we profess our loyalty to and the culture we grew up in? Just off the top of my head, here are the top five:

1. SLEEPOVERS. If all teenage girls are boy-crazy, then they are definitely up in that bedroom calling boys on the phone all night, not making out and unhooking bras effortlessly because it’s just like yours but in reverse.
2. “Allowed me to rationalize essentially stealing from the government by getting Medicaid.*” — Riese
3. Saves you from having to sit through all those weddings and family holidays held at the houses of your religious fundamentalist cousins (timely, amirite?)
4. Lots of privacy in the locker room?
5. I haven’t tried this but I imagine that when filling out financial information for your children’s colleges it is very beneficial to look like you have one income and have two. Can someone testify w/r/t this.

*Howerver, Riese legitimately qualifies for Medicaid at the present time.

Feel free to share your favorite silver linings in the comments. Or just have a sleepover. Do what you need to do.


Our favorite former West Point cadet, out lesbian Katie Miller, isn’t giving up on the army. “I’m trying to get back into the military,” Miller tells the Associated Press. “I’m not trying to make that difficult when that occurs.” Aside from being totally Managing Editor Sarah P*lmer’s type, Katie Miller makes me feel very safe and secure and I am looking forward to the day when she is able to return to her true calling. (@advocate)


Someone on ONTD made a list of top 15 GLEE guest stars. How many guest stars have there been? More than 15? Anyhow, it seemed relevant to your interests. Kristen Chenoweth! (@ontd)


Are you obsessed with Privilege Denying Dude? Yes, I know, because so is everyone else on the internet. As you are probably aware, the popular meme was pulled off the internet for violating the intent of the original creator of the stock image somehow. The day was saved, however, by a guy named Edman. He’s offered his own image as the new Privilege Denying Dude, with the acknowledgement than in real life he is “one of the most privileged members of society” and that in the past he’s totally “been that dude.” Thanks, Edman! Thanks for being a good guy and lending your image to something dickish in the interests of ending dickishness! (@jezebel)


Sophie Aslawhere and her partner of 15 years are challenging France’s ban on gay marriage in court. “Our children are fed up of being treated as though they are on the margins of society. For example a few years ago when they held elections at our children’s school for a new parents’ organization, they didn’t accept my partner’s vote. That marginalizes our children and that shouldn’t happen.” It’s nice to see a “for the children’s sake” argument utilized where it actually makes sense! France, we are crossing our fingers for you. (@queerty)


A Twitter account that I’ve never heard of but is probably someone important has reported that Lady Gaga’s new album, Born This Way, will have 20 new tracks on it. I know, I know. I was really overwhelmed too. It’s ok. (@ontd)


A landmark study has shown that a new antiretroviral drug taken orally reduced the number of HIV infections among gay men by 44%. While the article says “a measure of caution remains,” Obama said that: “I am encouraged by this announcement of groundbreaking research on HIV prevention… While more work is needed, these kinds of studies could mark the beginning of a new era in HIV prevention. As this research continues, the importance of using proven HIV prevention methods cannot be overstated.” (@healthasiaone)

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Originally from Boston, MA, Rachel now lives in the Midwest. Topics dear to her heart include bisexuality, The X-Files and tacos. Her favorite Ciara video is probably "Ride," but if you're only going to watch one, she recommends "Like A Boy." You can follow her on twitter and instagram.

Rachel has written 1142 articles for us.


  1. Can y’all convince Katie Miller she needs to be a contributing writer/vlogger/calendar girl? I would officially never need to leave autostraddle even for food, sleep or to socialize.

  2. Did anyone else know that “Kurts Love Interest on Glee” played Harry in Harry Potter the Musical? Yeah me neither now off to watch!!

  3. hye woke up this morning, reading the local paper from kenya and found out that our PM and most probably next president thinks that all gay couples should be arrested. He furthur went on to say that there are more women than men in kenya, men should not feel the need to choose other men.
    I am honestly at a loss for words and frankly i want to hurt someone.

  4. I feel like I’m reading that HIV study from the future!! This is the kind of thing I keep hoping I’m going to wake up and read. (I’m not even going to let myself think about the impossibility of people paying for these preventative drugs because that will make me sad and I want to be happy right now.) It is way more exciting than GaGa and Glee and maybe even sleepovers combined because these are actual lives of actual people and the idea of someday potentially slowing down the global AIDS epidemic is a big thing to celebrate. Progress is happening! Right now!

  5. Wow, I’m impressed the Ethicist letter-writer thought that much about accepting money from the government. My lady gets a ton of student aid and grants because her “single” status puts her below the poverty line. If we were (legally) married, I doubt our combined incomes would allow her to receive nearly as much, if any. This caused us to pause and ponder the ethical implications for about, oh, nine seconds. Then we thought, Oh well. Suck it, Uncle Sam.

  6. I can confirm the whole college financial aid thing. My girlfriend filled out the FAFSA forms using just her own financial information. Both girls got tons more help then they would have if both our incomes had been used – haha!

  7. Fact check –> truvada isn’t a “new” antiretroviral. it’s been on the market in the US since 2004 (goo.gl/NsuVf)… just sayin’

    • thank you Dina I was proud of myself this morning when I thought of this title because Rachel’s title was “[needs a title]” and felt my day was off to a good start, and i was more or less correct about that

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