E.J. Graff

E.J. Graff writes on social-justice and human-rights issues, particularly discrimination and violence against women and children; marriage and family policy; and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender lives. She is a resident scholar at the Brandeis Women's Studies Research Center and the author of What Is Marriage For? The Strange Social History of Our Most Intimate Institution (Beacon Press, 1999, 2004).

Recent Articles

Will Blackness Be the Thing that Gets You?

Have you ever heard the name "Danroy Henry?" I didn't think so—at least, not if you're white. A year ago, a Pace University quarterback was shot by a white police officer—either when he started pulling his car away from a bar instead of stopping as he'd been instructed, or when, with no warning, he was shot through his car's windshield. As The New York Times reported , "Mr. Henry, known as D. J., was a football player ... with no record of trouble, whose arms, which held the car's steering wheel, were tattooed with the words "Family First."" The Pleasantville, New York police officer had never shot anyone before. The football player is dead. The officer got an award as officer of the year. A week after that award , the young man's parents brought a lawsuit against the Pleasantville police . Did D.J. Henry die because he was black? This one haunts me. I am a white woman raising an African-American child. Less than a mile from where we live, a white cop arrested professor Henry Louis...

Must-See OWS Clip

This you gotta see. Really. ... in which Alec Baldwin very nicely talks with an Occupy Wall Street whacko and explains that what we really need is an active SEC, not one that's in the pocket of the banks.

Masculinity Patrol Strikes Again

Oh lordy no, not another gay teen suicide . Have you noticed that these are almost always boys? I believe it's because of the masculinity patrol , which can be, quite literally, deadly.

Blame the Supreme Court

Dahlia Lithwick explains that "Blaming Congress for the corporate takeover of American democracy is only half the fun; blaming the Supreme Court is almost better ." But Occupy Wall Street is lacking in ambition, she suggests, if it only focuses on Citizens United, she explains: Of course, if you want to focus the blame somewhere for big business growing ever richer at your expense, by all means start with Citizens United. But trust me, that's not even the interesting part of the story . The paradox is that the little cases we've all missed will hurt the little guy far more. And there are more to come, she says, from a Roberts Court that has been radically siding with the one percent and signing away the rights of the 99 percent.

Comings & Goings

The New York Times has posted a riveting graphic representation showing where Americans are moving to and from, by race. I noodled around this spot for awhile, finding out some surprising things, but you could find more. Manhattan has become 22 percent more white--okay, housing prices have pushed out most people, and whites are richer than everyone else, while the Bronx has become eight percent less so, and has gotten much more Latin. My own county of Middlesex, Massachusetts has become -- at long last -- six percent less white, gaining both blacks and Hispanics. That wouldn't take much; one of my friends says that her friends from back home ask her how she's doing up here in "The Big White." But I think that's right; the Boston area is, slowly but steadily, shedding its image as impossibly racist. We'll never be New York, but we're getting a little more mixed, with the neighborhood lines far less fixed than when I first moved here in the late 18th century. (Okay, I exaggerate a...