What Waking Up Transgender in America Feels Like


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I’m going to be entirely honest. I’m so damn tired. I have been sitting here, staring at a blank computer screen trying my best to muster up the energy to write. I want so badly to explain to you the anger, sadness, pain, and fear that I feel as a transgender person after the news that the Trump administration will likely release a memo later this year effectively denying the existence of trans people.

I know I need to write. I need to have my voice heard. I need to speak out, to yell, to demand action, to ask for your support. I don’t really have any choice not to. To remain silent on the cusp of my civil rights being taken away feels tantamount to giving up. But honestly, it took me four hours to find the mental wherewithal just to write that paragraph.

Perhaps it’s best for me explain how I got here. Let me give a glimpse of the emotional cycle a transgender person goes through in this country today.

Saturday was perfect. Braving the scorching LA heat, I was privileged to be able to moderate a panel for GLSEN at “Models of Pride,” the world’s largest LGBTQ youth conference. That evening, I got to play the proud girlfriend for my partner, a board member for GLSEN’s LA chapter, at a professional mixer. As our hectic day wound down, we went home, cooked some pizza, changed into pajamas, and turned on the latest season of Daredevil. I fell asleep curled up next to the love of my life, content at all that I had accomplished.

After such a long and exhausting day, preceded by an even longer work week, I was ready to use my Sunday to finally relax. I would spend a couple hours cuddling in bed, catch up on some video games, and watch even more of Vincent D’Onofrio’s amazing performance as the Kingpin.

I didn’t get to have any of that.

Instead, I woke to my girlfriend telling me to look at the news. Popping online, I learned that the Trump administration will soon enact a policy defining away the existence of transgender people. I read that the most powerful man in the world believed that I had been, as The New York Times put it, “wrongfully extend[ed] civil rights protections.” Thus began my Sunday.

At first, I was curious. What would this policy actually entail? When would it be implemented? As someone who is post-gender confirmation surgery and has changed all her gender documentation, would this affect me? What does this mean for intersex people? What would the ramifications for my daily life be?  Which of my rights would be affected? As my brain swirled with questions, my girlfriend and I sat on opposite sides of the bed, lost in our own worlds of worry.

Then, I was angry. How can Trump’s administration say I don’t exist!? I’m right here! I just want to live my life in peace! They can’t take away my rights, my gender identity, everything that I have spent so hard fighting for these past few years! I spent my morning shower and breakfast in a sea of red.

Then, I was vocal. I posted on all my social media feeds. I Instagrammed, I tweeted, I shared articles. I wrote a short video for my YouTube channel describing my feelings about the news. I filmed, edited, and posted it up online. A few hours of my “lazy” Sunday lost to work.

Then, I was defensive. Scrolling through all the comments on my video and social media, I passed by all the support and love, because all I could see today was the negativity. I locked onto all the posts saying “transgender people just want special treatment” or “trans people are already given protections because they’re mentally ill” or the always eloquent “THEIR R ONLY TOO GENDRS” comment. I clapped back, writing away as I pointed out all their ill-conceived arguments and thinly-veiled transphobia, all as my Sunday afternoon slipped away.

Then, I was worried. I met some friends at a local street fair but found myself ignoring the group’s conversation. Instead, I watched the people walking by, wondering if any of them shared my online harasser’s transphobia. Did my obviously transgender appearance make me an “other”? Was I out of place here? Was I just being tolerated as I walked down the street? I could feel their eyes staring at me as I walked by, taking an extra minute to try to figure me out. This was by no means new. I deal with that every day of my life as someone visibly transgender. Yet today, it felt more hostile and otherizing that usual. I left the fair early because I suddenly didn’t feel comfortable in such a public space.

Then, I was scared. As I drove home, I began to think… is this really my country? How can there be this many people who believe that I shouldn’t have the right to live the life that I choose? I have the right to narrate the story of my own body, but will I legally have that right? What if I got into a car accident right now? Would some doctor deny me care because I’m transgender? What if I tried to take a vacation in another country? Would my gender marker prevent me from coming back home? What about my future? Will I be legally allowed to become a parent, like I so desperately want one day? That last question hit me hard, and I began to cry as I drove down the freeway, the sun setting in the distance.

Then, I was heartbroken. I got home, fed my cat, warmed up leftover pizza, and turned on the next episode of Daredevil. Despite being in the same place as I had been just 24 hours earlier, everything felt completely different. I just want to live my life. I just want to know that my future is mine to define. Yet, I don’t know if that will ever be the case again. And I don’t know if I can stop that. Suddenly, my best friend, who also happens to be trans, texted me. They were scared for their future, just as I was. I couldn’t respond. I had no comfort to give. Instead, I turned off the light and climbed into bed.

In just 24 hours, I had run the emotional gamut. I felt exhausted, desperate to recharge. Yet, lying in the dark, I couldn’t sleep. My fear kept me awake, hours after I normally would have fallen asleep.

Those were all the emotions I went through upon hearing the news Sunday morning. And I’m an upper-middle-class white person living in Los Angeles, an area filled with supportive friends and communities. Imagine hearing that news while being the only trans person living in your rural community. Imagine hearing that news as a trans woman of color, who are consistently the most at-risk minority in the United States. Imagine being a young, scared teenager who just wishes to share their deepest secret with someone, anyone, and then hearing that the government meant to protect you is actively trying to deny you rights if you came out.

This isn’t the first time I’ve had to go through this entire cycle. I went through it after the 2016 election. I went through it after the transgender military ban announcement. I went through it after Betsy DeVos pulled Obama-era guidances that protected trans students. I went through it after being told I would die from AIDS by a woman in the grocery store. I went through it after being chased around the mall by a man yelling, “It’s a man. It’s a man.” I went through it when my gender non-conforming sister attempted suicide. I’ve been here numerous times before. And heaven knows, I’ll probably be here again. I’ll go through this whole damn cycle at some point in the future.

Don’t worry. I’ll find myself again. I promise. I will continue fighting the fight for the brighter future I know will come. But today, I honestly just can’t.

Today, I’m numb. I can’t feel anything. I just want to sit here, and do nothing. Yet, I can’t. I have to write this for you. I have to make you understand.

Today, more than any other, I need you. I need you to feel everything that I can’t. I need you to feel my anger. I need you to feel my sadness. My worries. My fear. I’m asking you to have what appears to be in short supply these days in America. Empathy.

Then, I’m asking that you fight for transgender people, just as we have tried our best to be there for you. I’m asking you to be my ally.

I’m asking you to feel what I feel. So that I don’t have to feel it all alone anymore.

JESSIE EARL is a video producer for The Advocate.

If you are a trans or gender-nonconforming person considering suicide Trans Lifeline can be reached at (877) 565-8860. LGBTQ youth (ages 24 and younger) can reach the Trevor Project Lifeline at (866) 488-7386. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at (800) 273-8255 can also be reached 24 hours a day by people of all ages and identities.

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NAACP: Georgia votes for Democrat Stacey Abrams are being changed to Republican Brian Kemp


 

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Georgia’s NAACP claims that votes intended for Democrat Stacey Abrams are being changed to Republican Brian Kemp

By Matthew Rozsa/Salon Com

The Georgia NAACP is filing a complaint claiming that votes for Democratic candidate Stacey Abrams in that state’s race for governor have been changed to Republican candidate Brian Kemp.

The NAACP’s state conference electronically filed complaints with the Georgia Secretary of State’s office (which is held by Kemp himself) claiming that votes cast for Abrams in Bartow and Dodge counties were initially registered to Kemp, according to USA Today. As of Tuesday, the Georgia NAACP also had plans to file additional complaints in Henry and Cobb counties, likewise claiming that votes intended for Abrams had initially been changed to Kemp. Eight voters in total are alleging that they noticed their votes had been changed.

“We’ve experienced this before. They ended up taking these old dilapidated machines out of service. The ones giving the problems. They should have been replaced about 10 years ago,” Phyllis Blake, president of the Georgia NAACP, told USA Today. The paper included this troubling story from a Georgia voter named Pamela Grimes:

Grimes said she went to a polling site in Bartow County Thursday and tried to select Abrams, but the machine marked the box for Kemp. Grimes said she tried several times to clear the selection before it allowed her to vote for Abrams.

“I was not going to leave until everything was the way I wanted it,’’ recalled Grimes, adding she also paid close attention to other selections. “If I had not been focused, my vote would have went for him.”

Grimes said she has since warned other voters. “I’ve been telling people when you vote to pay attention,’’ she said.

As Salon reported earlier this month, Georgia has experienced considerable controversy for purging voters from its rolls. Journalist Greg Palast learned that 1 in 10 Georgia voters were removed from the rolls at some point in 2017, telling Salon that “I started this investigation for Al Jazeera and Rolling Stone in 2014. And Kemp has been stonewalling my requests for his purge lists and the reasons for them. And I finally got the list — not all the material we’ve asked for, and I should say that we sent a 90-day notice of a federal lawsuit if he didn’t provide these — and within hours of the deadline we got the list of the purged voters.”

He added that under Kemp the Georgia State Department “has identified people as having moved out of state, moved out of the congressional district, they should either be removed or forced to reregister. In fact, they haven’t the state, they haven’t left the congressional district. We found one woman who moved from one side of her building to the other.”

Abrams drew attention to accusations that Kemp has made it more difficult for nonwhites to vote during her debate with Kemp on Tuesday night, according to The New York Times. “Under Secretary Kemp, more people have lost the right to vote in the state of Georgia. They’ve been purged, they’ve been suppressed and they’ve been scared,” Abrams said during the debate.

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MATTHEW ROZSA

Matthew Rozsa is a breaking news writer for Salon. He holds an MA in History from Rutgers University-Newark and is ABD in his PhD program in History at Lehigh University. His work has appeared in Mic, Quartz and MSNBC.

Denmark:Photo of Danish policewoman and Muslim hugging at demonstration goes viral


Photo of Danish policewoman and Muslim hugging at demonstration goes viral
Ayah, a wearer of the niqab, weeps as she is embraced by a police officer during a demonstration against the Danish face veil ban in Copenhagen. Photo: Andrew Kelly/Reuters/Ritzau Scanpix
A photo of a police officer hugging an emotional niqab-wearing woman at a demonstration in Denmark on Wednesday has become one of the country’s most widely-shared images this week.

 

The demonstration in Copenhagen’s Nørrebro neighbourhood on Wednesday took place as a new law banning public wearing of face-covering garments including Islamic veils came into effect.

During the demonstration, a 37-year-old woman named Ayah became emotional and was consoled by a police officer.

The embrace was captured by Reuters photographer Andrew Kelly and the story has since become the most viewed article on newspaper Politiken’s website, the newspaper wrote on Thursday.

Social media users also shared the moment widely.

“This picture tells you everything about the fantastic land we want to protect together. These two women are everything I believe in. Not the niqab or the uniform. But love for each other when others want to turn us against each other,” Niddal El-Jabri wrote on Twitter.

The woman in the photograph told Reuters prior to the demonstration that the law would limit her personal freedom.

“This is not the Denmark that we know. I can’t go out when I want to…I have kids, how do I pick them up from the bus and the school and the train?”, Ayah, who is reported to have requested her full name not be published due to threats, said.

“It’s just absurd. I can’t do the things I love to do any more. I can’t go to the museum and the beach, can’t go out and take photos. I’m just going to be a prisoner in my home. But I prefer to be a prisoner in my home to taking off my niqab,” she added.

The 37-year-old also spoke to Politiken after the photo was published.

“It was a very difficult day. We were very insecure, and we didn’t know what to expect. It was overwhelming. And then this dialogue police officer, as I call her, approached us to ask if we were okay and to offer us a drink of water,” she told the Danish newspaper, which took the unusual step of reporting the story in English.

“I told her that everything was fine. And I thought it was great that 3,000 people could march together peacefully,” she added.

She also said the policewoman told her she was personally against the law banning face-covering garments.

“To be honest, I can’t remember the exact sequence of events. But I recall that I was talking to her. And then suddenly I was crying. It was weird, because she was just being nice and friendly. She told me that she was personally against this law, even though she is a police officer,” the 37-year-old said.

“I had mixed emotions. On the one hand, this woman is being really friendly, but she is also a person who is entitled to fine me tomorrow when I leave my house,” she continued.

Similarly to niqabi women interviewed by The Local at Wednesday’s demonstration, Ayah said she would continue to wear the niqab despite the ban.

“I’m not bothering anyone, and I wasn’t a criminal yesterday. I will continue to wear my niqab as I always have. And then I guess I will have to isolate myself even more in my apartment. I’m not a millionaire, you know, so I can’t afford to pay the fines,” she told Politiken.

How white women use strategic tears to silence women of color


‘Often, when I have attempted to speak to or confront a white woman about something she has said or done that has impacted me adversely, I am met with tearful denials and indignant accusations that I am hurting her’
 ‘Often, when I have attempted to speak to or confront a white woman about something she has said or done that has impacted me adversely, I am met with tearful denials and indignant accusations that I am hurting her’ Photograph: Caro/Alamy

The legitimate grievances of brown and black women are no match for the accusations of a white damsel in distress

 

By: Ruby Hamad: The Guardian Uk

That the voices of “women of color” are getting louder and more influential is a testament less to the accommodations made by the dominant white culture and more to their own grit in a society that implicitly – and sometimes explicitly – wants them to fail.

At the Sydney writers’ festival on Sunday, editor of Djed Press, Hella Ibrahim, relayed the final minutes of a panel on diversity featuring writers from the western Sydney Sweatshop collective. One of the panelists, Winnie Dunn, in answering a question about the harm caused by good intentions, had used the words “white people” and “shit” in the same sentence. This raised the ire of a self-identified white woman in the audience who interrogated the panelists as to “what they think they have to gain” by insulting people who “want to read their stories.”

In other words, the woman saw a personal attack where there wasn’t one and decided to remind the panellists that as a member of the white majority she ultimately has their fate in her hands.

“I walked out of that panel frustrated,” Ibrahim wrote. “Because yet again, a good convo was derailed, white people centred themselves, and a POC panel was told to police it’s [sic] tone to make their message palatable to a white audience.”

Trauma assails brown and black women from all directions. There is the initial pain of being subjected to gendered racism and discrimination, there is the additional distress of not being believed or supported, and of having your words and your bravery seemingly credited to others.

And then there is a type of trauma inflicted on women of color that many of us find among the hardest to disclose, the one that few seem willing to admit really happens because it is so thoroughly normalized most people refuse to see it.

It is what that writers’ festival audience member was demonstrating, and what blogger and author Luvvie Ajayi called the “weary weaponising of white women’s tears”.

To put it less poetically, it is the trauma caused by the tactic many white women employ to muster sympathy and avoid accountability, by turning the tables and accusing their accuser.

Almost every BW (black woman) I know has a story about a time in a professional setting in which she attempted to have a talk with a WW about her behavior & it has ended with the WW (white woman) crying,” one black woman wrote on Twitter. “The WW wasn’t crying because she felt sorry and was deeply remorseful. The WW was crying because she felt “bullied” and/or that the BW was being too harsh with her.”

When I shared these tweets on my Facebook page asking brown and black women if this had ever happened to them, I was taken by how deeply this resonated, prompting one Arab woman to share this story:

A WW kept touching my hair. Pulling my curls to watch them bounce back. Rubbing the top. Smelling it. So when I told her to stop and complained to HR and my supervisor, she complained that I wasn’t a people person or team member and I had to leave that position for being ‘threatening’ to a coworker.”

For the doubters, here is a mild version of this sleight-of-hand in action:

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Jully Black and Jeanne Beker

Notice it is the white woman – Jeanne Beker – who first interrupts the black woman – Jully Black – who takes the interruption in her stride. Black continues to speak passionately and confidently, which Beker interprets as a personal attack on her even though Black is clearly talking in general terms (just as Winnie Dunn was). Beker then attempts to shut Black down by essentially branding her a bully.

Had Jully Black not stopped and repeated Jeanne Beker’s words back at her – “Why are you attacking me?” – they would have passed largely unnoticed, just another woman of colour smeared as an aggressor for daring to continue speaking when a white woman wanted her to stop.

It doesn’t usually end this way. “White women tears are especially potent … because they are attached to the symbol of femininity,” Ajayi explains. “These tears are pouring out from the eyes of the one chosen to be the prototype of womanhood; the woman who has been painted as helpless against the whims of the world. The one who gets the most protection in a world that does a shitty job overall of cherishing women.”

As I look back over my adult life a pattern emerges. Often, when I have attempted to speak to or confront a white woman about something she has said or done that has impacted me adversely, I am met with tearful denials and indignant accusations that I am hurting her. My confidence diminished and second-guessing myself, I either flare up in frustration at not being heard (which only seems to prove her point) or I back down immediately, apologizing and consoling the very person causing me harm.

It is not weakness or guilt that compels me to capitulate. Rather, as I recently wrote, it is the manufactured reputation Arabs have for being threatening and aggressive that follows us everywhere. In a society that routinely places imaginary “wide-eyed, angry and Middle Eastern” people at the scenes of violent crimes they did not commit, having a legitimate grievance is no match for the strategic tears of a white damsel in distress whose innocence is taken for granted.

“We talk about toxic masculinity,” Ajayi warns, “but there is (also) toxicity in wielding femininity in this way.” Brown and black women know we are, as musician Miss Blanks writes, “imperfect victims”. That doesn’t mean we are always in the right but it does mean we know that against a white woman’s accusations, our perspectives will almost always go unheard either way.

Whether angry or calm, shouting or pleading, we are still perceived as the aggressors.

Likewise, white women are equally aware their race privileges them as surely as ours condemns us. In this context, their tearful displays are a form of emotional and psychological violence that reinforce the very system of white dominance that many white women claim to oppose.

Ruby Hamad is a journalist and PhD candidate at the University of New South Wales, Australia.

July, Straight Pride Month?


He said his column “That’s Life” in the Dixon Independent Voice on friday was “tongue in cheek.   Ted Hickman, the vice mayor of Dixon, California (23 miles southwest of Sacramento), Declared July 1, was the start of  Straight Pride Month.

In his column he writes “ We are different from them.  We work, have families, (and babes we make)  enjoy the love the company (and marriage) of the opposite sex and don’t flaunt our differences  dressing up like faries and prancing by the thousands in a parade” 

The Vice Mayor defended his column after several readers in this small city of twenty thousand. called the piece homophobic.  He said his piece had nothing to do with his position and thin skinned people took offence to his column.

His position they. (LGBTQ) have their pride month why can’t we have ours?

This is not really legally anti anything; instead its a pro family ; and proud to be a straight American, and me expressing a private opinion, so there!

Last month, he wrote.  ” I’m proud to be a heterosexual, monogamous, married to the opposite sex, straight individual that knows what  goes where and why.   AND that he has lesbian tendencies.

CityFella

 

 

A champion of women’s rights who slapped women “A lot of women like it. They don’t always think they like it, but then they do, and they ask for more.”


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Eric Schneiderman, the Attorney General of the State of New York resigned today.

Schneiderman well known in the state, as a champion of women’s rights.  The man who legal action against filmmaker Harvey Weinstein and one of the male faces of the #MeToo movement against sexual harassment.

Four women, strangers, spoke to the The New Yorker Magazine.   What they have in common is violence at the hand of Schneiderman.  The Democrat was a strong critic of President Trump.

The allegations are shocking, and the Attorney General resigned three hours after the story was released.

Click on the Link Below for the Full Story

https://www.newyorker.com/news/news-desk/four-women-accuse-new-yorks-attorney-general-of-physical-abuse

 

 

 

Pay Her “SHE’S THE QUEEN


Claire Foy and Matt Smith in “The Crown”(Credit: Netflix/Robert Viglasky)

Netflix’s ‘THE CROWN’ literally revolves around Claire Foy and she was paid less than Matt Smith, who played her husband

By: Erin Keane/Salon.com

 

I don’t know if you’ve heard, but women are angry. We are fed up; we have declared #TimesUp on the grabbing and the assaults and the demeaning comments and the gendered expectations in our workplaces. We are tired of being told we are worth less than our male co-workers, both explicitly and implicitly, and when we fail to rectify that through sheer will alone we are tired of being told we must not have wanted it badly enough. And when you’re already angry and fed up with pushing this boulder up a mountain every day with no summit in sight, one small bit of news can feel like enough to make you want to turn around and hurl the rock as hard as you can down the mountain, devastation in your wake be damned.

According to Variety, the producers of “The Crown,” speaking on a panel in Jerusalem earlier this week, admitted that Claire Foy, star of two seasons of the Netflix historic drama and winner of a Golden Globe for her spot-on and humanizing portrayal of Queen Elizabeth II, was paid less than her co-star Matt Smith, who plays Prince Philip.

Foy plays the title role — the Queen is both a person and the office, which hits at the heart of her character’s conflicts — and yet Smith, because he came into negotiations with a higher profile as a former “Doctor Who” star, pulled in the higher salary.

Asked whether Foy was paid the same as Smith, the producers acknowledged that he did make more due to his “Doctor Who” fame, but that they would rectify that for the future.  “Going forward, no one gets paid more than the Queen,” said Mackie.

Oh, good — except Foy and Smith won’t be around to enjoy their equal financial footing in the workplace. The series is jumping ahead in time for season three, replacing the principal cast members with older versions of the royals. Never mind that Netflix wouldn’t have a successful show to time-hop ahead in without Foy’s cutting precision and her brilliant command of her character, which manages to evoke Elizabeth’s stiff persona without ever veering into cheap parody, and while adding layers of subtle emotional texture and intellectual dimension. Smith did fine work as Prince Philip, but the show isn’t called “The Consort Crown,” nor should it have been. Smith’s role was always secondary to Foy’s, and even in his most brilliant scenes, she remains at the center — the very heart — of the production.

 

Haven’t webeen here already? How loudly do we have to ring the shame bell at producers before they stop underpaying their female talent?

The pushback I am seeing — even among men who agree that the gender pay gap is bad — is that of course Smith could command a higher salary. That’s just how it works! He did four years as the Doctor on “Doctor Who,” after all, between David Tennant and Peter Capaldi, which is a big deal to a certain slice of TV fandom. Foy’s been no slouch herself — before “The Crown” she played Anne Boleyn on the highly-acclaimed, and Golden Globe-winning, limited series adaptation of Hilary Mantel’s “Wolf Hall,” for one — but yes, if you want to pit two names against each other in the salary negotiation game, Smith came in with a bigger stick. Never mind that Foy herself had no shot at that coveted Doctor spot until now — Jodie Whittaker is the first female Doctor in “Who” history, and she had to fight to get paid the same as her male predecessors. Yes, they were going to pay a female Doctor less. Is anyone surprised?

Women also don’t advocate for themselves, or their agents don’t, is one lame excuse I am tired of hearing. When Jennifer Lawrence penned her blistering takedown of the gender pay gap in Hollywood two and a half years ago, she wrote about learning that her male co-stars made more than her through data revealed in the Sony hack, not through any kind of transparency in the workplace.

A major corporation has to be digitally infiltrated and have all of its sensitive information stolen and exposed to the world — that’s what it can take for women to even know they are being paid less in the first place.

When Lawrence wrote about confronting her gender pay gap, she blamed herself. “I didn’t want to seem ‘difficult’ or ‘spoiled,’” she wrote. Can you imagine a world in which women who insist on their own worth don’t have to overcome unspoken, often invisible sexist assumptions first? I’ll wait.Foy’s not the first woman who’s seen a show take off on the strength of her performance and underpay her for it.

“Grey’s Anatomy” star Ellen Pompeo explained in detail how hard she had to work to get paid what she is worth to the show that also bears her character’s name:

For me, Patrick [Dempsey] leaving the show [in 2015] was a defining moment, deal-wise. They could always use him as leverage against me — “We don’t need you; we have Patrick” — which they did for years. I don’t know if they also did that to him, because he and I never discussed our deals. There were many times where I reached out about joining together to negotiate, but he was never interested in that. At one point, I asked for $5,000 more than him just on principle, because the show is Grey’s Anatomy and I’m Meredith Grey. They wouldn’t give it to me. And I could have walked away, so why didn’t I? It’s my show; I’m the number one. I’m sure I felt what a lot of these other actresses feel: Why should I walk away from a great part because of a guy? You feel conflicted but then you figure, “I’m not going to let a guy drive me out of my own house.”

Pompeo is the highest-paid actress on TV now, but she had to fight for it, despite the fact that the show that actually does revolve around her is a long-running success. What would happen if producers set their salary baselines at what they were willing to pay the women at the top of the cast? Did Matt Smith’s “Doctor Who” fame make “The Crown” a success? No. What’s even more insulting is that “The Crown,” like “Grey’s Anatomy,” is a show that female fans have championed. Shouldn’t the women who make these shows come alive for us get the biggest reward? It’s too late for Foy on “The Crown,” which is a shame, though it sounds like the women coming after her will be treated fairly. Here’s hoping Foy’s next workplace won’t need to be shamed into compliance, too.

Solving the gender pay gap
How should a company address unequal pay? For former Netflix CTO and author Patty McCord the answer is easy: give women a raise. McCord joined Salon’s Alison Stewart on “Salon Talks” to discuss her new book “Powerful: Building a Culture of Freedom and Responsibility,” which highlights guiding principles for building a high-performing workplace culture. Distilling lessons from her 14 years as Netflix’s chief talent officer, McCord offers business advice, including how to level wage inequality and build a more inclusive company culture, especially amidst the #MeToo movement. “Write some checks,” McCord responded when asked about how to address the wage inequality. In the end, the numbers will balance out, she says. Many male leaders don’t want to have the conversation because that would mean admitting weakness. McCord shared this story. “I had one CEO tell me one time that ‘Oh I couldn’t do that my lawyers wouldn’t like it.’ And I’m like ‘why who’s gonna sue you because you gave them a raise?’ And he goes, ‘Well they’d know I was wrong.’” Watch the video above to hear McCord’s analysis on why the gender pay gay remains one of the biggest issues facing human resources departments.