Empowering the World’s Women
In connection with the release of Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn’s Half the Sky, this week’s New York Times magazine is a special issue devoted to "Saving the World’s Women"
(as any reader of this site knows, a more apt headline may have been,
"Getting Out of the Way So Women Can Save the World"), featuring an interview with our Secretary of State
and a collection of other articles arguing that the promotion of
women’s right is key to social and economic development. Kristof
narrates a particularly moving audio slideshow.
What’s slightly disturbing is Kristof’s repeated insistence that "women
are not the problem" — while that’s undoubtedly true, it’s distressing
that his readership needs to be reminded that those who are the
survivors (of discrimination, gender-based violence, sexual assault,
etc.) aren’t the ones at fault for the rampant gender-based inequality
throughout much of the world.
The interview with Hillary Clinton is well worth reading. Here’s a choice excerpt:
In your confirmation hearing, you said you would
put women’s issues at the core of American foreign policy. But as you
know, in much of the world, gender equality is not accepted as a
universal human right. How do you overcome that deep-seated cultural
You have to recognize how deep-seated it is, but also reach an
understanding of how without providing more rights and responsibilities
for women, many of the goals we claim to pursue in our foreign policy
are either unachievable or much harder to achieve.
Democracy means nothing if half the people can’t vote, or if
their vote doesn’t count, or if their literacy rate is so low that the
exercise of their vote is in question. Which is why when I travel, I do
events with women, I talk about women’s rights, I meet with women
activists, I raise women’s concerns with the leaders I’m talking to.
happen to believe that the transformation of women’s roles is the last
great impediment to universal progress – that we have made progress on
many other aspects of human nature that used to be discriminatory bars
to people’s full participation. But in too many places and too many
ways, the oppression of women stands as a stark reminder of how
difficult it is to realize people’s full human potential.
Michele Bachman: Keep Your Laws Off My Body
Via Joe at Feministe (via TPM): Anti-choice blowhard Rep. Michele Bachman (R-MN) weighs in on health care reform:
"That’s why people need to continue to go to the town halls, continue
to melt the phone lines of their liberal members of Congress, and let
them know, under no certain circumstances will I give the government control over my body and my health care decisions."
Operation Rescue Lodges Complaint Over Carhart’s Clinic
Via the Daily Women’s Health Policy Report: Operation Rescue has lodged a complaint about conditions at Dr. LeRoy Carhart’s Nebraska clinic, the Sioux City Journal reports.
The Wichita, Kan.-based group complained to
Nebraska officials about possible unsafe conditions at Dr. LeRoy
Carhart’s clinic in Bellevue, Neb.
A letter from the state
Attorney General’s office says Operation Rescue’s concerns were
forwarded to the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services,
which licenses medical facilities.
Operation Rescue will protest at Carhart’s clinic on August 28-29.
Other News to Note
August 21: The Australian: Bligh to rewrite law to abortion to protect doctors
August 19: Politics Daily: Obama’s Altar Call for Health Care Reform: Conscience Protections and No Federally Funded Abortion
August 20: Fired Up! Missouri: Ed Martin Joins In On Euthanasia and Abortion Misinformation
August 20: Beliefnet: Defusing abortion in health care debate
August 20: Associated Baptist Press: Obama appeals to faith groups on reform; abortion questions remain
August 21: Boston Globe: Latest myth on health reform
August 21: ABC News Australia: Underage sex law changes ‘disturbing’
August 21: The News International: Whose choice is it anyway?
August 20: LifeNews: New Planned Parenthood Ad Doesn’t Deny Abortion Funding in Health Care Bills
August 20: Feministing: Why Pro-Choice?
August 20: U.S. News and World Report: Judge backs S.D. law stating abortion kills fetus
August 19: CBS 4: New Birth Control Helping More Women
August 20: CNN Political Ticker: Religious leaders agree on abortion in health care reform debate
August 20: CNN Money: FDA: Benefits Of Merck’s Gardasil Continue To Outweigh Risks
August 20: Examiner: NJ to crisis pregnancy centers: "No ultrasound for you!"
August 20: Feministing: Inside the Censored Family Guy Abortion Episode
August 20: CBN: Pro-Life Response to President’s Faith Call
August 21: Politics Daily: Abortion Cuts Both Ways in Battles for Health Reform, Virginia Governor
August 20: Georgia Bulletin: Abortion has no place in health care bill, bishops’ spokeswoman says
August 20: Just Out: OHSU Studies Explore Contraception and More