1. This issue of The Stranger features the annual "Queer Issue," which focuses nearly exclusively on trans rights. Sound familiar? Recently, a Time magazine cover called trans equality the "next civil rights frontier." Orange Is the New Black proudly features a transgender character. President Obama is campaigning to expand transgender rights. In your opinion, why does The Stranger take its cues from straight magazine editors, TV producers, and politicians?
2. BRENDAN KILEY, who is known for walking out of plays that bore him, reviews a five-hour staging of the Michael Chabon novel The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay. Bearing in mind his track record of abandonment, does Kiley deserve credit for sitting through a play long enough to require a dinner break? Or does this instead prove that Kiley could have sat through the other plays he skipped out on? Which, in your opinion, is the most morally repugnant of those two choices?
3. In the music section, EMILY NOKES, who generally has nothing of importance to contribute to any conversation about music, interviews the lead singer of a gay country band that performed at the first Seattle Pride in 1974. In your opinion, does this excellent piece demonstrate Nokes's evolution as a writer, or does it instead demonstrate that an interesting-enough subject can transform a total hack into a passable journalist?
4. In the news section, DOMINIC HOLDEN's screed about the state of public transportation in Seattle and the traffic jams the city has been experiencing lately is, truly, nothing more than a hissy fit. To respond to Holden's whining: If traffic is out of control in Seattle, wouldn't the solution be more and better roads? Does he have any evidence that the people crammed onto the highways would willingly set foot onto a light-rail train if they didn't have a gun aimed at them? Does Holden's vaunted, imaginary public transit system have a way to bridge the leap in logic that he's taken in this essay?
5. PAUL CONSTANT whines about having to read a political memoir. Given that Constant is the book critic for The Stranger, and given that Constant also covered the 2012 presidential election for The Stranger, what does his refusal to take Hillary Clinton's Hard Choices seriously say about The Stranger's books and politics coverage? Why does he still have his job? Is Constant engaging in some kind of blackmail—with, say, photographs of Dan Savage engaging in heterosexual sex? If he hates his job so much, why is he still here?