Abortion stigma is a form of gender discrimination and punishment, and it represents social control of both women who need abortions and providers who provide them.
Across the globe, men are making key decisions about women’s most basic human rights. Women’s, feminist, queer and LGBT groups, however, have claimed a space that cannot be denied and are standing up for our rights. One poignant example of these efforts culminates today, November 9.
I rarely use the word evil. But when I read that the Taliban had gunned down 14 year old Malala Yousafzai, and two other girls in Karachi, Pakistan I could not find another word.
Weekly global roundup: Who will be 2012′s 100 most powerful Arab women? Slut-shaming and victim-blaming persist in India; Liberia is slow to reconcile decades of sexual violence; the UN Commission on the Status of Women is happening now; Female Pakistand director wins country’s first Academy Award.
Gang Rape in Pakistan
The Pakistan floods have reminded us that the needs of women and girls must not be forgotten. A statement, just released by the Reproductive Health Response in Crisis (RHRC) Consortium, underscores what should be done in Pakistan to provide the minimum services until the situation stabilizes.
Iran slowly reduces its maternal mortality rate, Pakistan tries to provide access to RU 486 to a firestorm of protest, teens in Wales have problems accessing abortion, and Australia has an unprecedented abortion trial.
Indifference to maternal mortality is closely related to indifference to women’s reproductive rights.
31 people have died from swine flu-multiply that
by 17,290 and you come close to the 536,000 pregnant women who die every year
from largely preventable causes.
It is not surprising that the countries with the
highest maternal mortality are war-torn.
Perhaps best said by a woman in Eastern Congo,
"We are victims of war. We don’t take up
arms, but we, the women suffer the most."
On April 14, 2009 on Frontline World at PBS a young man in the Swat
valley of Pakistan was interviewed. He compared women to plastic bags,
either to throw away or to be kept in the home. Wonderful!