Women Running for Office: By The Numbers

Women senators of the 113th Congress, 2013 (ABC News)

Women senators of the 113th Congress, 2013 (ABC News)

Do you pay attention to midterm elections? Well, you should this year! This year’s races should be really fascinating to watch because there are a record number of women registered to run for a seat in the House of Representatives.

Let’s take a look at some other numbers surrounding women running for public office:

526 women running for public office in 2018

  • 395 women running for a seat in the House of Representatives in 2018
  • 50 women running for Senate seats in 2018
  • 79 women up for governors’ seats

Here’s what not-so-distant past trends looked like:

  • 20 women sworn in as senators in 2013 (the largest class of women Senators ever!)
  • 298 women ran for public office in 2012 (Side note: this was the previous record.)
  • 34 women ran for governors’ seats in 1994

Let’s hope this year brings a record-breaking number of women elected!!

 

500+ Women Are Running for Office in 2018

US Capitol Building (City Segway Tours)

Are you a woman running for office this year? If so, you’re in good and widespread company. Initial estimates made by the Associated Press indicate that that a record number of women are running for a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives during this year’s midterm elections.

Overall, 526 women have been counted as running. As of last week, 309 women from both parties had registered to run. The previous record was set in 2012, when 298 women registered to run for office.

Drinking (Moderately) Helps Mens’ Sexual Performance

Beer (Preuss Podcast)

Beer (Preuss Podcast)

To a certain extent, we’ve been conditioned by the media to think that having sex after drinking might not be the best thing for me (see: whiskey dick). And that’s true. But moderately imbibing might actually help a man’s sexual performance.

The Keogh Institute for Medical Research at the University of Western Australia in Nedlands surveyed 1.5K+-1.7K+ men (for some reason, I couldn’t find an exact number) about their sexual performance, specifically with respect to sexual dysfunction. The moderate drinkers reported 25%-30% fewer problems than men who didn’t drink at all. This percentage took into account age, smoking habits, and heart disease, all of which affect penile function.

But there is one issue with this study’s results: nobody asked the subjects’ partners if they were satisfied!

 

Viola Davis is the First African-American Woman to Win the Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actress

Emmy-winning actress Viola Davis (NY Daily News)

Emmy-winning actress Viola Davis (NY Daily News)

Acclaimed actress Viola Davis made history last night when she became the first African-American actress to win the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series. Davis plays lawyer and law professor Annalise Keating in ABC’s “How to Get Away with Murder,” now in its second season.

The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences is finally beginning to recognize more diverse talent. Davis was up against Taraji P. Henson for “Empire,” which was the first time two Black women were nominated in the same category. Davis acknowledged Henson and 2013 and 2014 nominee Kerry Washington in her acceptance speech.

Some context for this win and occasion: The category has been awarded since 1953. Debbie Allen was the first Black woman nominated in the category in 1982. It begs the question: what took so long?!

How Many Media Company Employees Had Ashley Madison Accounts?

Ashley Madison homepage (Ashley Madison)

Ashley Madison homepage (Ashley Madison)

Happy Friday! Ashley Madison: It’s the hack that keeps on giving. Every day brings a new joy. And here’s this one: The good people at “Gawker” (who’ve been doing a great job covering this whole thing) took a deep-dive into the data, all 9.7 GBs of it. Why? Well, to see how was dumb enough to use a work email as their AM registration email. (Personally, I’m surprised that nobody got called on the carpet after their network got wind of that verification email in their inbox.)

Now, you’d think that most people would know to use a throwaway email for this kind of thing, right? You’d think that, and you’d be wrong. At the time of the data dump, “Wired” reported that 15K+ domains belonging to the government and military were found, comprising .04% of the total emails found.

Here’s what Sam Biddle at “Gawker” found. (Incidentally, no emails registered to the Gawker domain were found).

'Gawker' Ashley Madison Email Data Analysis (Gawker)

‘Gawker’ Ashley Madison Email Data Analysis (Gawker)

So yeah, have some common sense as to when to use your work email. Have a great holiday weekend!

 

Rachel Dolezal: How Many White People Have Passed As Black?

Rachel Dolezal (Young Cons)

Rachel Dolezal (Young Cons)

This is pretty insane: It came out last week that Rachel Dolezal, the president of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) chapter in Spokane, Washington, isn’t black at all. Not one drop.

She’s actually white.

Her story came out after a reporter asked her point-blank if she was black. Dolezal dodged the question. Since then, other aspects of Dolezal’s life have come to light: attending Howard University, telling people her adopted black brother (who lived with her) was really her son, and teaching classes on African-American culture at Eastern Washington University. Dolezal also claimed to have received hate mail.

Dolezal began identifying as black in 2007, after years of identifying with the culture.

I wanted to see if there were any stats on white people passing as black in the larger culture. I don’t mean in terms of appropriating dress or mannerisms, but actually altering one’s physical appearance and living an elaborate lie.

And I couldn’t find anything. Shocker (but not really). This is such a strange situation that I’m not surprised there haven’t been enough subjects to be studied.

The only white person who’s done anything remotely similar was John Howard Griffin, author of “Black Like Me.” Griffin underwent physical changes, including darkening his skin under heat lamps, to pass for a black man and report on racial injustices in the South firsthand. But obviously, his motives were very different than Dolezal’s.

It’ll be interesting to see how Dolezal’s case plays out, and if she’ll drop her black identity now that she’s been exposed.

#ThrowbackThursday: “Playboy,” 1953

Marilyn Monroe cover for 'Playboy,' Dec. 1953 (NY Daily News)

Marilyn Monroe cover for ‘Playboy,’ Dec. 1953 (NY Daily News)

“Playboy” creator Hugh Hefner put out the first issue of his influential magazine in December 1953. It featured actress Marilyn Monroe on the cover and centerfold. Hef knew exactly what his mag (originally titled “Stag Party”) was all about: The introduction to Volume 1, Number 1 clearly states that the periodical isn’t a “family magazine.”

Today, this legendary first issue that spawned an empire is up for auction. Put up by Nate D. Sanders in Los Angeles, it’s expected to go for $2.7K. This first issue is very rare, as only around 54K copies were printed since Hefner wasn’t sure if it would be successful. Luckily for him, it took off immediately, and American culture was never the same.

 

Brazil Will Pass Out Free Condoms During Carnival

Mardi Gras mask and beads (123 RF)

Mardi Gras mask and beads (123 RF)

Happy Mardi Gras! Known in English as Fat Tuesday (and just in time for National Condom Week), today celebrates casting off repression, upending social norms and indulging in vices before the Christian season of Lent begins (when enjoying all earthly pleasures ceases for 40 days). Much like Halloween, masks and costumes, dancing and lust in the air figure prominently.

Brazil has made Carnival an international destination, and it’s legendary for a reason. Several cities throw parades, led by various samba schools. Many foreigners fly in for the multi-day party (spanning the Friday before to Ash Wednesday at noon), making Carnival the country’s biggest tourism booster.

Naturally, when the shackles of convention are thrown aside, a lot more spontaneous sex occurs (because when in Rio…). But the Brazilian government is always prepared for this: they give out free condoms.

This year, they’ll hand out 70M condoms throughout the country. They’ve done this for years, handing out 65M in 2009, 55M in 2010, 89M in 2011, 3M in 2012, 73M in 2013 and 104M in 2014.

For visual learners, here’s a decade-long progression in line-graph form:

Brazil's Condom Distribution during Carnival, 2005-2015

Brazil’s Condom Distribution during Carnival, 2005-2015

As you can see, the number of condoms distributed during Carnival has tended to baseline around 70-75M in recent years (aside from 2012, whose 3M looks incorrect, to say the least).

Last year, the Brazilian government estimated that 2M+ people were on the streets at any given time during Carnival. Surely attendees can find at least one person to hook up with during the popular “blocos” (street-wide parties).

 

Why is Argentina Battling a Tampon Shortage?

o.b. Tampons (Jezebel)

o.b. Tampons (Jezebel)

“The Cut” recently reported that Argentina is currently experiencing a woman’s worst nightmare: a tampon shortage.

According to the Associated Press, the shortage has been going on for over two weeks. The problem stems from an impasse between importers and the government. Businesses think the Argentinean government has been slow in issuing permits for imports (Argentina imports most of its tampons from nearby Brazil), while the government feels that businesses are driving up the prices to increase profits.

A spokesman for Johnson & Johnson claims that only the most popular tampon brands and quantities are affected by the shortage.

The situation isn’t uncommon for the country. Argentina periodically has experienced shortages of medical supplies such as needles and latex gloves.

The U.S. experienced a similar situation form 2009 to 2011. Johnson & Johnson took o.b. tampons off shelves in 2009, citing a “temporary supply interruption.”  The tampons are beloved for not having an applicator and for being environmentally-friendly. The supply shortage emptied drugstore shelves and drove demand up to $99 a box on eBay. The o.b. black market ended when stores began to restock the popular tampon.

No explanation was ever given for the shortage.