OUTrage: Lesbian Teachers, Superheroes, and Agitators Make the News That Had Us Fuming Last Week

Welcome to SheWired's weekly round-up of the most infuriating bits of news from the past seven days
By: Sunnivie Brydum
September 16 2013 6:00 AM

Welcome to SheWired's weekly round-up of the most infuriating bits of news from the past seven days. Each Monday, we'll be providing a retrospective on the most heinous, crazy-making bits of anti-LGBT news that came across our radar last week. Our hope in doing this isn't only to darken the skies, but also to sound the alarm about the kind of idiocy that passes for "legitimate commentary" these days. Expect a healthy dose of snark in the following paragraphs — sometimes it's the only way we can get through the day. 

Lesbian Teacher Follows Catholic Lesson in Honesty and Comes Out — Then is Promptly Fired

A lesbian teacher in Fridley, Minn. had been teaching English and religion courses at Totino-Grace High School for a solid 18 years, all the while hiding her orientation from her students. Kristen Ostendorf knew about the Catholic school's policy on speaking out against the Church's teachings, and she knew it extended to her ability to be honest with her students. But she says several of her colleagues knew she was gay… Which is why it was surprising that the administration acted so swiftly after Ostendorf came out to her colleagues at a staff retreat before the school year started. By daring to say the words "I'm gay, I'm in a relationship with a woman, and I'm happy," Ostendorf effectively ended her career as a beloved teacher at Totino-Grace. The administration asked her to resign the day after she came out, and when she refused, they fired her. As a parochial school not subject to the same legal regulations imposed on public schools, Totino-Grace is sadly within its right to terminate this long-serving teacher for following the message she and fellow educators had been preaching to kids for decades: Be true to yourself, live honestly and with integrity, and God will love you. But here's the real kicker — Ostendorf is the second teacher to be ousted from Totino-Grace after coming out. The school's former president was forced out earlier this summer after anonymous sources revealed he was in a committed relationship with another man. How's that for Christian love? Read the whole story here

Batwoman Can't Get Gay-Married, But Can Be Written By a Gay Man

The only out lesbian superhero with her own title got engaged to her detective lady-love earlier this year, but now DC Comics executives have put the kibosh on the happy couple's nuptials. But despite both head writers quitting the title in protest of the censure and other editorial interference, DC maintains the move wasn't rooted in homophobia. At Baltimore's Comic Con, DC copublisher Dan DiDio said members of the Bat family simply aren't allowed to have happy personal lives. "That is our mandate," he said. "That is our edict and that is our stand." After the original authors told DC where to stick it, the comic tapped out author Marc Andreyko to scribe Batwoman's future. Andreyko expressed high praise for the outgoing authors, but it remains unseen whether this gay man will be able to help Batwoman find her way to a happily ever after. Get up to speed on the latest with Gotham's lesbian caped crusader here

Texas Newspaper Won't Publish Lesbian Wedding Announcement, Because It Wants to Preserve The State's Bigotry

We imagine it's tough enough to be an out lesbian couple living in Texas, let alone a beautiful biracial couple living in what is apparently a terrifying hybrid of Texas and Arkansas, known as Texarkana. But Michelle Cooks and Patricia Wrightner have found love in each other, and were eager to share the happy occasion of their upcoming wedding with their friends, neighbors, and community members. But the Texarkana Gazette wasn't going to let its pages get all gayed up by these loving ladies. The paper refused to publish the couple's wedding announcement and wedding photo, claiming they were totally allowed to do so because neither Texas nor Arkansas recognizes marriages between same-sex couples. Somehow, we're suspicious that the paper really enforces this policy across the board — does it check into how closely related every one of the couples are whose wedding announcement it does publish? Because, you know, marrying one's cousin is a criminal offense in Texas. And Arkansas. But we'd bet closely-related couples don't get a formal rejection from the newspaper's editor. They'd rather save that for those dangerous homos, trying to muddy Texas' squeaky-clean history with their lady-love. How dare they. Meet the lovely lesbian couple here

More Than 100 Women Arrested in D.C. Demanding Fair Immigration Reform, Leading Lesbians Among Them

Admittedly, this story is less about outrage and more about giving kudos to the brave women — some of whom are undocumented immigrants — who shut down traffic outside the U.S. Capitol in D.C. to demand the House of Representatives take action on the comprehensive immigration reform bill they're currently sitting on, after it was passed by a bipartisan majority in the Senate. Roughly 105 women, all wearing red shirts that read "Women for Fair Immigration Reform" on the front and "House United Now!" on the back, linked arms and sat down in a giant circle in the middle of a street outside the U.S. Capitol. Police let them peacefully demonstrate for about 10 minutes before they began arresting every participant, among them out lesbian and executive director of the Gay and Lesbian National Task Force, Rea Carey. SheWired's sources on the ground confirm there were at least a few other queer women who were carted away after taking a seat for equality. Get the full story here

Bonus Outrage: Vladmir Putin Thinks God Made Everyone Equal

Unless you're LGBT. Then you're a danger to children and undeserving of basic human rights. Thanks, Comrade KGB

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