One of the best stories from the recent possibly tide-shifting elections across the U.S. was the victory of Danica Roem in the race for a Virginia House of Delegates seat. One of the first transgender candidates to win an election in the U.S., Roem’s victory was sweeter because she defeated proudly anti-LGBTQ incumbent Bob Marshall, the man behind Virginia's "bathroom bill" concerning which restroom transgendered people could use (he also declared himself the "chief homophobe" of Virginia). Roem is clearly a bad-ass, highly focused politician — her primary platform had nothing to do with gender identity (traffic problems were the top issue) and she masterfully both rubbed Marshall's nose in his defeat and took the high road when, on election night, she refused to shit-talk Marshall, saying she doesn't attack her constituents. Roem is a former award-winning journalist and the singer for Thrash Metal band Cab Ride Home, which released its first full-length album earlier this year (somewhat fittingly titled Crash The Gate). Bands like Pearl Jam and Lamb of God posted social-media congrats to Roem.
WARM: Questionable Concert Form Dropped
Just as it can be difficult or more expensive to obtain event liability insurance for concerts involving Hip Hop or EDM artists, the U.K. government has been accused of targeting specific genres of music for several years by forcing promoters and venues to fill out a form requiring details like the names and addresses of the performers. Many Grime and Garage artists said the form led to a disproportionate number of show cancellations and monitoring, with some flat-out deeming the practice racist (until 2009, the form reportedly included questions specifically about the racial makeup of the anticipated audience). London mayor Sadiq Khan seems to agree — he recently announced Form 696 would be eliminated after 12 years.
COLD: Twitter’s Bewildering Standards
Hip Hop icon Talib Kweli is a great follow on Twitter, particularly if you enjoy watching trolls get eviscerated. Kweli’s followers have gotten several people suspended or banned from Twitter for obvious threats and abusive epithets, but recently the MC had his own account suspended by the social media giant after a Texas lawyer, Jason Lee Van Dyke, with “alt-right” ties used a variety of epithets (racial and otherwise) and posted photos of guns and nooses with unveiled threats directed at Kweli and his followers. He ultimately was banned after being reported, but Twitter also locked Kweli’s account after he posted information about Van Dyke’s business office. While “doxing” is a Twitter no-no, Kweli posted publicly available business details, not personal, private information. Twitter eventually reinstated Kweli’s very popular account, after which he promptly posted the lawyer's Yelp page for those wishing to offer a review.