We need to talk about Stephen

Good morning gorgeous, thank you for joining me on this slowly thawing spring morning. Grab a mug of coffee or chai if ya nasty and let's catch up for a hot sec, shall we? I'd like to start today by talking a bit about people pleasing.

If you asked most of the women in my life how they are the answer would be “fine” or “great!”, not because that’s the honest truth, but because that answer makes people around them the most comfortable.

We’re really good at that shit; making other people comfortable. Even when they really shouldn’t be comfortable. Even when they’re being kinda terrible and deserve to sit in their discomfort. Instead of letting anyone feel even a little bit bad, we grit our teeth through our forced smiles. We were brought up to prioritize the comfort and ego of everyone in the room before our own, so that's what we do.

We add smiley faces to emails to our direct reports because we don’t want to come off as “bitchy” when we ask Karen to simply do her job.

We say sorry constantly, as though we’re not just apologizing for bumping into you, but for having the audacity to take up space at all.

We temper our language, making our assertions sound like questions, and our knowledge sound negotiable.

No, honey, this all is not fine.

Here’s the truth:

You don’t have to negotiate your knowledge. You are smart, and capable, and your contributions are worthy.
You don’t have to apologize for the space you take up in this world. You deserve to be here.
You don’t have to debate your experiences. You lived them, they are yours.
You don’t have to make him comfortable. You deserve to feel comfortable.
You don’t have to people please your way into a life you don’t love.

You, my dear, have nothing to be sorry for. It’s a word we need less of. Scan your emails for it, and delete it. Do something awful? Say sorry. Have an idea? Say you have an idea, don’t apologize for having a brain that works. This week we're scrubbing our apologies, and people pleasing our damn selves.


We need to talk about Stephen

Trump has found his new "lock her up" and it combines his favourite things: simplifying complex issues beyond recognition, and racism. This week he's been reiterating that the US is "full". This, of course, is a lie. Declining birth rates and an aging population mean the US economy actually needs immigration to thrive— but, like most things, it's hard to explain that to a racist.

To prove he's serious, Trump, what happens when white privilege mates with Cheeto dust, fired Kirstjen Nielsen. Remember her? She puts Js into the English language wherever she damn well pleases. Also, as Secretary of Homeland Security, she orchestrated the child separation policy that is still traumatizing migrants seeking asylum to the US. Alt-right Martha Stewart will not bake you a cake. Trump fired Kirstjen because she's not racist enough because taking kids away from their families isn't enough? Seriously, Trump doesn't think she's extreme enough to run Homeland Security because she won't break enough laws to do her job. Don't get me wrong though, she'll break a lot. The good news? It'll be hard for her to get a job.

Anyway, this tells us something about what Trump has planned, and because Trump isn't really a "planner" who is doing the planning behind the scenes?

Enter Stephen Miller, who was probably lurking just behind you the whole time anyway. Holy shit! Don't do that Stephen! Stephen Miller, White House Advisor, and receding hairline of the alt-right is ascending in power. That should scare you as much as the idea of someone dating him. *shudder* Miller architected the Muslim Ban, Family Separation, and shutting down the US/Mexico border. He's an immigration hardliner and seems to hate pretty much all forms of immigration— even though, and this is a fun fact, he's the descendant of refugees.

Miller is a white nationalist, as Ilhan Omar pointed out, and will do anything legal or not to make his Breitbart fever dreams a reality. More firings are in the future, as he recreates the Department of Homeland Security in his own image. And no one wants anything in his image.

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Thank you, friend.

The Dame is back, and it's her birthday.
The Dame Tips are a monthly guest series by wntta's resident Don Draper: an elegant hedonist who suffers no fools, The Dame herself, writer Ali Schofield.

I’m not too concerned about getting older because I have a pact with my Dearest Companion. He’s a friend so divine that if we were living in 1930’s New York, he and I would have a celebrated marriage of convenience, and owned a penthouse notorious for being frequented by gorgeous young men. Social acceptance of homosexuality and fiercely independent women have progressed to a point where we don’t need to wed to maintain our freedom. We still talk of growing old together in a beautiful mansion with sprawling grounds. Oh, and with a… “pool boy internship program”...

Read the Dame's Tips for Fabulous Living on the blog...

Something to make you think
The problem with (literally) dining in a bubble

Something to make you think (and laugh)
The Lucas Brothers spend a night at the white museum. It’s almost like these white supremacists aren’t superior at all? Yep, that checks out.

Something to make you laugh
Aparna Nancherla’s therapist raised her rates.

Something for a soulful jam
Rachel Horter is going to be huge, give her a hot sec.

Something to bow down to
Beychella is coming to Netflix, plan that party now.

Something to get you through
I saw that my life was a vast glowing empty page and I could do anything I wanted.
- Jack Kerouac

Thank you for coming to the campfire today, I hope to see you again next week for our little chat. Maybe bring some new friends by, I'd love to meet them. I'll keep writing this little letter as long as you wonderful people keep showing up. Have a beautiful day.