#nowwhat, Culture, Dennis Daugaard, discrimination, Oscars, South Dakota, South Dakota Governor, Tom Hardy -

The Oscars Finally Get Something Right: #NowWhat

The Oscars Finally Get Something Right: #NowWhat

ColumnBreaking news: This week’s post isn’t depressing, or infuriating. In fact, it’s downright positive.

We all know the 2016 Oscars were a bit… white. And thanks to Chris Rock’s monologue, anyone who was within earshot of a television or radio in the past week knows just how white Oscar was in 2016.

Well, in addition to being diverse-phobic, the Oscars also, at first glance, seemed to be clueless about women’s needs. According to Refinery29, the Oscars seemingly didn’t provide a place — other than restrooms — for women to comfortably breastfeed. The news that turned out to be false, thankfully, was made public when a Los Angeles Times reporter saw actor Tom Hardy in the lobby during the award show. When asked what he was up to, Hardy said, “I’m just waiting for my wife to finish breast-pumping in the bathroom. She has to do it every hour.”

Well, it turns out that Oscar did have a few places for breastfeeding women to feed or pump comfortably and discreetly other than the bathrooms. According to an Academy letter that was sent to Refinery29, the Oscars ceremony had “a nurse on site and a private area set aside for this purpose. Discretion does not permit us to elaborate further other than to say that our talent department goes to great lengths to tailor each mom’s experience to fit her specific needs.”

While we were initially going to write about this bit of news to shame the Oscars, we’re happy that we didn’t have to. However, we know that there are still plenty of restaurants, establishments, stores, and public places that don’t go out of their way to accommodate breastfeeding women. So, we’re saying something we thought we’d never say before: We want more institutions to be like Oscar–at least about this one thing.

And the good news just keeps on coming.

It looks like South Dakota’s governor is one of the few progressive and caring politicians in the United States.

According to CNN, Dennis Daugaard, the state’s republican governor, vetoed a bill earlier this week that would have required transgender students who attend the state’s public schools “to use bathrooms and locker rooms that matched their sex birth.”

The South Dakota governor chose to veto the bill, HB 1008, because it “does not address any pressing issue concerning the school districts of South Dakota. As policymakers in South Dakota, we often recite that the best government is the government closest to the people. Local school districts can, and have, made necessary restroom and locker room accommodations that serve the best interests of all students, regardless of biological sex or gender identity.”

We’re incredibly happy this bill is dead as a door nail because it’s hard enough to be a transgender student in school — no one needs an extra helping of state-mandated discrimination to make life more difficult.

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Red carpet image via Shutterstock

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