Sunday Funday Is Here, Queer, and Totally Blessed

It’s Sunday Funday! Around these parts, that can only mean one thing: a big ol’ batch of good news waiting for you when you wake up because that’s sometimes what you need to get out of bed, so. Let’s dig in!

Sandra Lawson is Pretty Badass


Sometime this summer, Sandra Lawson will marry her partner of three years and then become the first ever out, Black, lesbian rabbi. Which I mean, is pretty friggin’ cool. You can put some change in her donation jar here.

“If I was 20, or 25, or this was my first career, I probably would feel more pressure. But I’m now 45, and I feel very confident that when I finish rabbinical school, I will have all of the tools that I need, and the communities that I serve will want to have me as their rabbi.”

Marriage Equality Around the World

AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris

AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris

+ Greece’s parliament voted to legalize same-sex civil unions this week.

+ The city of Iga, in Japan, will begin recognizing same-sex unions in the new year.

+ Lawmakers in the Mexican city of Nayarit have approved a gay marriage bill.

The People Have Spoken and They Want Trans Rights

A new research study has found that over two-thirds of residents in every single state support employment protection laws that are inclusive of trans folks, among other things.

That Moment When Your Police Officer of the Year is a Total Queermo

Meet Monica Cordova, police officer of the year in Dallas and total lesbian.


That a lesbian would be recognized for her outstanding service on the Dallas Police force is somewhat amazing. In 1989, Mica England sued the DPD for the right to apply for a position. Gays and lesbians were excluded based on the so-called “homosexual conduct law” or 21.06, that is still on the books but unconstitutional. She won the lawsuit but was never hired. Not until Chief Ben Click arrived in Dallas in 1993 were gays and lesbians welcomed to the department and the DPD began actively working with the LGBT community.

In Case You’re Headed to Oklahoma

Norman, Oklahoma is the first city in the state to enshrine LGBT protections in employment and housing.


This Is An Otter Video

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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. Actually, that Wisconsin mayor was posted under a of picture of Michelle Obama, and he said that “Obama is a muslim who is destroying the moral fabric of this country”. Nothing to do with Hilary (probz bc she’s a white woman, honestly). Which is He’s the mayor of my hometown. Total racist asshole (who leads a town of racist assholes).

  2. I am literally so excited about Sandra Lawson’s existence and I can’t wait to tell my rabbi about her.

  3. Did anyone else cringe at seeing the words “queer police officer” strung together? Like has the word “queer” become that decontextualized and depoliticized? The cops are not friends of queers (or any other marginalized community) and not something celebrate. There’s nothing queer, liberatory or “progressive” about inclusion within one of the most violent institutions in history.

    • Regardless of that, the reality is that thousands of queer women are police officers and need inclusion and workplace protection and benefits.

      • That makes sense, but I guess I’d at least like to see some acknowledgement of the inherent violence of policing and the how cops and the prison industrial complex continue to target queer and trans people, people of color, and the poor (and especially people living at the intersections of these statuses)alongside coverage of things like this… and tbh, given that Autostraddle has published some really excellent and thoughtful articles about issues of police violence in the past, I would expect that from them. It’s really important to be critical of LGBTQ assimilation into oppressive institutions and not just herald every instance of it as advancement or something.

        • Ugh thank you for this. Took the words right out of my little gay mouth. Monica Cordova: not on my team.

    • i totally get what you’re saying here, but i also think that queer people, feminists, etc. who work in these fields make a big difference and help change the power dynamics that make those structures oppressive. and i think that a dallas police station recognizing a lesbian cop is a pretty cool thing for that reason as well as some others, including but not limited to: somewhere in texas being a place where a lesbian is being honored by her peers. so that’s why i included it! just wanted to throw in my two cents.

    • I think the thing that’s hard for me is this: yes, the term “queer” has been completely depoliticized. And everyone wants me to think that’s a good thing? Like, idk y’all, but that used to be a term for the anti-assimilationists and those that couldn’t assimilate even if they wanted to and those who thought that the productive, suburban nuclear family was the building block of capitalism. So, like, would I say there are queer cops? Nope. Are there trans, intersex, bisexual, lesbian, gay (+any I missed aside from queer) cops? You betcha, in spades.

      I have trouble dealing with the language of movements getting coopted into the mainstream. It feels an awful lot like the Roland Emmerich version of life

      • I feel like the word has a really split identity at this point, so much so that it embodies two totally different concepts — anti- (or just non-) assimilationism/rejecting the status quo, and having a sexual identity that falls outside of the binary/outside of what is assumed for us by our society. Obviously the concepts are connected, but they are not the same.

        So while I might say that it’s totally possible to be a queer cop (because were I a cop, I’d be a queer one, since I’m queer, that’s the only label I’ve found that defines me in any way, and it really only has to do with/defines my sexuality and to a lesser extent my feminism and politics but not in a way that any of the people I admire would call radical), and you might say that there can be no such thing as a queer cop because she’s working within or buying in to the establishment/systems etc.

        I wonder if there is space for both definitions/conceptions of the term in our community?

        • Right, I mean, yeah. Language evolves and I get that. At the same time, it’s hard to see language that was fought for so hard (taking back the word queer wasn’t easy) being used in ways that are so opposed to what our ancestors who shed blood and tears for it intended so flippantly, I guess. Our community has a shitty sense of history a lot of the time, it’s hard for me to watch. Simultaneously, I respect your right to use whatever label you feel fits you and queer is a gloriously ambiguous word. There’s room for both whether I like it or not I guess is what I’m saying

          • “Our community has a shitty sense of history a lot of the time”

            I agree, I was thinking a lot about this yesterday, but I wonder if that’s partially because the history is less accessible?

            We learn nothing about any of it in school, and while I know texts on queer or LGBTQ+ history are out there, they’re not exactly sitting front and center in the bookshop. In fact, most of the information I have comes from columns like Rebel Girls on this site, as well as older friends who were involved in activism and stuff back in the day.

            I would love to learn more about the history of the word and the LGBTQ+ community in general. Somehow I think the PBS documentaries the local university shows are pretty much just the tip of the iceberg. I wonder if anyone here has some recommendations on books or resources?

            And in the meantime, yeah, it is a gloriously ambiguous word, and I think or hope there is space for the conception of ‘queer’ you reclaimed and fought for in the broader world, as well as the ‘queer’ identity I fought for within my own head for so many years (and I mean, I know that mine wouldn’t exist without yours)…

          • Also just thinking on this more and I think that most of the world has a pretty shitty sense of history. As young people we all thing we’re making up the world anew and it’s only as we get older that we realize anyone was here before us doing anything important at all…

  4. Dear @carmenrios,

    I want to extend my thanks to you for making your links pop out as new tabs. This allows me to have open all the queer stuff, all the time. I love it.

    Thank you.

  5. Between Rabbi Raquel on Transparent and now Sandra Lawson…well. Now I’m kind of into rabbis. (And please know I say that as respectfully as possible because one of you is a real person :-)).

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