I was going to get a bunch of schoolwork done today.
I was going to vacuum a couple rooms today.
I was going to write a nice, thoughtful blog post today.
Then I got caught up on Twitter with this whole mess about an editor of an online blog calling a respected blogger who declined to provide free content a whore. That’s right, he called her a WHORE. He didn’t use some cute other term that might be washed under the mat. He said, “Are your an urban scientist or an urban whore.”
Then to top it off, this respected blogger put the story up on her own blog, which is hosted by Scientific American, and in short order, the post was removed. (You can read it all here, though.) They offered only this response, “Re blog inquiry: @sciam is a publication for discovering science. The post was not appropriate for this area & was therefore removed.” Turns out that this rude fellow’s site is a member of Scientific American Partnership Network. They have a business relationship? No, no that’s not fishy at all SciAm. Just remove that content without any communication with the writer at all. Don’t worry, no one will think a thing of it. It won’t matter at all that some guy no one can identify just called a black woman who wouldn’t work for free a WHORE! I’m sure no one will be offended in the least.
So, that’s been trending all day. Want to catch up, try #standingwithDNLee. There’s some really wonderful responses.
Mostly, I just want you to watch Dr. Danielle Lee’s response for yourself. She is fabulous. She could have blown up on this moron. She would have been justified in just screeching at this twit. But I wouldn’t have watched it all. I would have supported her right to hoop and holler, to freak out, but I wouldn’t have listened myself. Why would I? I would never, ever behave like the now infamous ofek. I’m so glad I didn’t turn her off, though. She had things to say to me, as a woman, and as a non-minority woman, and even as a person who wants to re-enter the workforce. She had such grace and poise in her response! I want that kind of grace and poise for my daughter. I want to know all the stuff we’re teaching girls now about how she can be or do anything, STEM is for girls, too. But I also want her to know that she can speak up for herself without being a shrill caricature. Not only MUST she speak up for herself with the ofeks of the world lose their minds, but she can’t let them steal her class. Dr. Lee did NOT let anyone steal her class.
When BuzzFeed got hold of this story today, the Scientific American editor only had this to say: “I’d like to elaborate on the original brief statement on Twitter that this blog fell outside Scientific American’s mission to communicate science. While we interpret that mission with a lot of latitude, Dr. Lee’s post went beyond and verged into the personal, and that’s why it was taken down. Dr. Lee’s post is out extensively in the blogosphere, which is appropriate. Dr. Lee is a valued member of the Scientific American blog network. In a related matter, Biology Online has an ad network relationship, and not an editorial one. Obviously, Scientific American does not want to be associated with activities that are detrimental to the productive communication of science. We are pursuing next steps.” Well that cleared up absolutely nothing, so thanks for that.
Even more to Dr. Lee’s credit, she responded to BuzzFeed with this: “If that many people were going to come out in support of me, I’d rather it be in support of one of the missions that’s going to make me redundant. I am trying to make myself redundant, truth be told. It is a lonely place to constantly be the only one like you in science.”
So, what I learned today is that there is this biologist out there named Dr. Danielle Lee who has views about things that are wildly interesting and varied. I probably don’t agree with all of them, but I wish I knew her. She’s a solid good person with amazingly admirable core values, and I will follow her around the internet now trying to pick up on some of her grace and poise, both for myself and for my daughter. Thank you, Dr. Lee.