Friday, December 05, 2008

Cover Stories

It's Friday evening, and my typist is hoping to get in a long overdue workout before settling in for drinks before a roaring fire at Ishmael's, the seedy yet cozy bar around the corner from the global headquarters of RW Enterprises, LLC, but we couldn't resist throwing up some provocative eye candy to get your weekend off to a pleasant start. As America's favorite dog blog devoted to politics, pop culture, and basketball, it is of course our solemn obligation to showcase the New Yorker cover that shows President-Elect Obama vetting candidates for the all-important position of First Dog. And, yes, this cover was done by the same artist, Barry Blitt, who did the infamous terrorist fist-bumping cover last summer.

You will no doubt have noticed that Roxie's World has kept silent on the sad news that the Obama administration clearly plans to continue the abominable War on Terriers. We are still trying to come to grips with the president-elect's unprovoked attack on Barbara Walters' cute little Havanese terrier, Cha Cha, whom Obama contemptuously dismissed as a "girly dog" when Walters proposed the hypoallergenic breed as a good candidate for the Obama family dog. We suspect the incoming president may harbor some kind of grudge against the terrier group because he is still bitter about not having earned the coveted endorsement of America's favorite dog blog devoted to politics, pop culture, and basketball, but we are sorry indeed that he feels a need to lash out in such a vindictive fashion. We plan to let the new secretary of state know that we hope she can prevail upon Obama to let bygones be bygones and, for dog's sake, end the War on Terriers!

Next up on the pile of magazines is this cover of the December 16 issue of The Advocate. We haven't gotten around to reading the story yet, but Melissa McEwan of Shakesville has, and she criticizes the framing of the piece (in a magazine catering to a disproportionately white audience) for seeming to appropriate the black civil rights movement while too breezily implying that the struggle for racial equality is finished. We think Liss is probably right, and we have noted before the problems of positing analogies between the struggles of different oppressed groups and of relying on a "march of progress" narrative to frame a history of civil rights. We want y'all to go read The Advocate story, though, as well as Liss's critique, and then come back here to talk about it. Does being careful about analogies mean we have to abandon them altogether? To avoid offending some African Americans, should queers (of every color, shape, and creed) never dare to invoke the legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr. -- even when his widow embraced the struggle for LGBT equality as a civil rights issue comparable to those for which her husband gave his life? These are complicated issues, we realize, and we have been relentless in our criticisms of LGBT advocacy groups for their failures to organize in communities of color and address the concerns of racial minorities, but we still feel the analogies can be strategically valuable and are not always unwarranted. What do you think?

Finally, because we think in threes, we offer up the cover of last week's New York Times Magazine. Again, we haven't read the article, because my typist has been trapped in the seasonal hell of post-Thanksgiving / pre-end of semester "good lord, what 17 things do I have to try to finish in the next 15 minutes?" Fortunately, Historiann read the story and blogged it with her usual mix of smarts and snark. Go read both of them, and come back here. The seminar on feminism, surrogacy, and the conundrums of privilege will convene as soon as the colloquium on history and the perils of analogy has concluded.

Drinks for everybody at Ishmael's as soon as the work -- and the workout -- are finished. Oh, who am I kidding? It's after 7 -- Belly up to the bar, kids. It's Friday night and high time we tied one on. Pour me a tall one, Peter Coffin, and bring a couple of orders of your delicious fried mozzarella sticks. My typist promises she'll go to the gym tomorrow, which is, as you well know, another day. Peace out.


  1. Anonymous8:11 AM EST

    Hi, Roxie! I wish I could have joined you at Ishmael's last night. Someday?

  2. Any day, Historiann. Just close your eyes, click your heels together three times, and say, "Bartender, I'll have a pisco sour." And, voila, you're there!


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