We need to talk about Susan
Good morning gorgeous! I'm so happy to see you this morning. Grab a cozy spot and a coffee, it's time for us to catch up. Heads up, I'm in Portugal hopefully eating cured meats and chilling tf out as you're receiving this so it's a foregone conclusion that I've missed some newsworthy nonsense. We'll play a game of Trump's America Mad Libs later.
Also, a heads up, next week wntta is taking a proper break so in the time you use to read this note have yourself a shower dance party with Jagged Little Pill. But first, we need to talk about Susan.
“I’m sorry, but I wholeheartedly disagree with you.”
It was early on Monday morning and I was speaking on a panel for my alumni association on elevating women leaders. I was telling my story, as a woman in tech pretending to be "one of the guys". Knocking hard on the door of the boys club and truly believing that if I just worked hard enough and folded myself into the right box, I’d be granted an invitation. We all know that’s bull hockey. I learned the hard way what many women and marginalized people learn over time: that club was not built for us.
I believe we have to let go of trying to fit into spaces not made to accommodate us and work together to change them instead. That you have to commit to your own identity and authenticity and do your best to change the path women and marginalized people coming after us will have. So, that's what I was saying.
A blonde woman in her 70s, dripping in Prada disagreed. Loudly.
“You have to learn what the men like, and talk about that.” She declared in an I’d like to speak with your manager tone. “That’s how I got ahead. You're giving bad advice.”
My inner voice yelled: Oh hell no. I’m done learning to golf for this shit.That’s some 1960s ass advice and I’m not about it, Susan.
My outer voice said, “I’m so glad that was your experience, it was not mine”.
My soul felt tired for her. That was the path she’d had to take to get where she wanted to go. She had internalized being 'one of the boys' so deeply that she had to shout out in their defense. The world she knew was that trying to be a man was the only way to make it as a woman. I still feel sad for her, I’m sure she didn’t have many options.
She comes from a generation of “adapt to survive”. We now have the opportunity to build a new one— one that says: “tear this shit down so we can all thrive.”
The new version will only work if we decide to stop competing for a single seat at a very white, very straight, very male table. Let’s commit to making our own damn table. One that welcomes and celebrates everyone. Let's keep creating our own clubs, hiring people who are different than us, and amplifying each other's voices.
You're welcome at my table anytime, friend. I'll never ask you to fucking golf.
Did a friend forward you this note? Cool beans, welcome. You can join here.
We need to talk about LGBTQ rights
This week we have yet another beef with the Supreme Court that, numbers-wise, is less Supreme, and more an aging frat house. We all wish it was just Ginsburg, Kagan, and Sotomayor. RGB, if you need a kidney, you just call OK?
Last week the Supreme Court agreed to hear three cases about LGBTQ discrimination in the workplace. No, LGBTQ rights aren't "done" Chad, so put your hand down. Reminder: same-sex marriage has only been legal in all 52 states for 4 years, which was a 5-4 Supreme Court decision when Anthony Kennedy was on the court. Kennedy was a known LGBTQ rights defender who retired in 2018 to be replaced by Head Boy of Slytherin House, Brett Kavanaugh. *rain starts*
The court cases making their way to the Supremes are focused on the issue of workplace discrimination— and specifically, on whether existing laws protect LGBTQ people from being fired for who they are. The cases are being argued about Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prevents discrimination on the basis of sex, race, religion, national origin, and color.
Two cases, one in New York and one in Chicago recently argued that LGBTQ people should be protected under the sex discrimination part of the law. That makes sense because you can't discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation without accounting for, you guessed it, sex. Sex discrimination is even more obvious when you consider the Trans community, so protecting LGBTQ people under this law makes clear sense.
Just because something is right, doesn't mean that will be the outcome. There is a chance that this ruling by a largely conservative, fratastic court could lead to an exclusion of LGBTQ people from Title VII protections, which would be devastating for the human rights of LGBTQ people in the US. It's all boat shoes and bigots in there now, eh?
All we can do now is wait, and vote. We have to vote so damn hard to protect everyone we love. The people we vote in determine the courts, and we need judges who will protect all vulnerable people from discrimination.
Also, send RGB some antioxidants and a spa day damnit.
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Had I not created my whole world,
I would certainly have died in other people's.
- Anaïs Nin
Thanks for popping by this morning friend, and just another reminder that wntta is taking a week off next week to bathe in sunlight in Portugal while ignoring Twitter, as we all should. If you enjoy reading this love note, please send it to some friends or tell the Instagram ether or Twitterverse. Whatever floats your boat. I'll keep writing if y'all keep showing up every week. Thank you.
P.s Come by Instagram to hang out, likes or no likes, I like you a lot.