Dispatch from Kim Davis Country

In the wake of the 2018 midterm elections, political pundits noted that the so-called “blue wave” turned out to be more of a rainbow. With over 150 LGBTQ candidates winning races across the country, Tuesday was a night of many firsts: a gay governor in Colorado, lesbian congresswomen in Kansas and Minnesota, two trans women in the New Hampshire state legislature, and the list goes on.

However, it was one Republican incumbent’s loss in a closely-watched race in Kentucky that set the Internet ablaze. I’m talking, of course, about Kim Davis, who came up about 700 votes shy of her Democratic opponent, Elwood Caudill, Jr., in her re-election bid for the Rowan County Clerk’s Office. Continue reading “Dispatch from Kim Davis Country”

DC is Burning

Thoughts on the exhibit “No Spectators: The Art of Burning Man” in the Smithsonian’s Renwick Gallery, Washington, DC. Open until January 2019. 


A single stream of sweat trickled down the side of my forehead as I turned the corner of 17th and G Street. Even though it was the beginning of May, the temperature soared into the 90s and the humidity clung tight to the pavement all over Washington, DC that weekend.

“Look how they’re painting over the walls,” my friend had pointed out earlier in the metro station. “So much for preserving brutalist architecture.”

I followed suspiciously behind him as we entered the Renwick Gallery, sulking about how I would rather grab a cold drink and nap until the afternoon sun disappeared west into Virginia.

“Come on, it’s a really cool exhibit about Burning Man,” he encouraged. “Haven’t you always wanted to experience what it would be like at a festival in the desert for at least a day?”

Continue reading “DC is Burning”

Independence Day

Every year on the Fourth of July I remember a song from my childhood that exists in my mind as the ultimate emblem of campy Americana patriotism. I’m talking, of course, about Martina McBride’s “Independence Day.”

Released in 1993, the song was an instant hit peaking at the number 12 spot on the US Billboards Hot Country Songs. It went on to nab two Grammy nominations and win two CMA Awards for Song and Video of the Year. Continue reading “Independence Day”

Before Pose, there was Saturday Church

By now many of you have probably seen or at least heard of Ryan Murphy’s newest FX series Pose. The show–which premiered on June 3rd–is a musical drama set in the ’80s ballroom underground subculture of Harlem. It’s also notable in that it stars a cast of trans women of color–faces rarely seen on television. In fact, the show boasts the largest cast of transgender actors in television history.

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Flyer from recent screening of Saturday Church at the LGBT Center.

Before Pose, many of the actors’ first exposure to the camera came from Saturday Church, a film written and directed by Damon Cardasis in 2017. Continue reading “Before Pose, there was Saturday Church”

Let Them Eat Cake

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Jack Phillips poses in front of Masterpiece Cakeshop – “Serving Colorado Since 1993”

The Supreme Court’s decision on June 4th in favor of Jack Phillips, a Colorado baker who refused to sell a wedding cake to a gay couple, was undoubtedly a setback for many LGBTQ advocates. In an overwhelming 7-2 majority, the Court demonstrated they value one man’s religious entitlement to discriminate more than the dignity of gay couples seeking services from a business otherwise open to the public. Continue reading “Let Them Eat Cake”

Film Review: First Reformed

In First Reformed–the newest film from cerebral director, screenwriter, and film critic Paul Schrader–Ethan Hawke plays Reverend Ernst Toller, an alcoholic Protestant minister experiencing a crisis of faith. After losing his only son to the war in Iraq and then his marriage in the aftermath, he wanders through the bleak wintry countryside of upstate New York as he waxes philosophically in lengthy voice-over narrations about the meaninglessness of life.  Continue reading “Film Review: First Reformed”

Not getting lucky in Kentucky…

This morning I woke up to some disheartening news about a political race I’ve been following closely from back in my home state of Kentucky.

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David Ermold has lost the Democratic Party nomination for Rowan County Clerk and will not face off against Republican incumbent Kim Davis this fall. The AP called the race for Elwood Caudill shortly after polls closed yesterday.  Continue reading “Not getting lucky in Kentucky…”

On the New Roseanne and Queer Spectatorship

The Roseanne reboot–which aired on ABC on March 27th to a whopping 18.2 million viewers–has been met with critical acclaim and a flurry of opinion pieces. The crux of the controversy lies in Roseanne Barr’s politics–both from her character and in real life.

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The Connor family reunites after 20 years in the Roseanne reboot.

Continue reading “On the New Roseanne and Queer Spectatorship”

Feeling Blue in the Brooklyn Museum

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276 (On Color Blue), Joseph Kosuth (1990). Now on display at the Brooklyn Museum.

I first encountered Maggie Nelson’s The Argonauts because of the #MeToo movement.

Bored one afternoon at work, I found myself wandering down a Google rabbit hole that led me to a young woman named Moira Donegan. In January of this year, as many of you may remember, something of a scandal was made of a phantom spreadsheet floating around the internet detailing a number of sexual misconduct allegations against “Shitty Media Men.” Within hours the spreadsheet went viral and caused a heated debate over the limits of female accusers’ credibility and spawned a number of think pieces from all sides. Continue reading “Feeling Blue in the Brooklyn Museum”

Film Review: Keep the Change

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Keep the Change (released March 16, 2018, in the US and now playing in select theaters) has the same look and feel as any number of mainstream romcoms. A man from the Hamptons meets a quirky girl in the city, and after some initial setbacks, they eventually give into the transformative power of love and start falling for each other. As you watch them walk hand-in-hand on the boardwalk of Coney Island and face disapproving glares from their parents over dinner, you think: Haven’t I seen this already? You haven’t.

Continue reading “Film Review: Keep the Change”