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The War Against Women, worldwide
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 15, 2015 12:01 am    Post subject: The War Against Women, worldwide Reply with quote

Lawmakers Nationwide Launch Concerted Assault on Women's Rights

Since the start of the year, anti-choice bills have been introduced in state legislatures across the country.


Common Dreams
February 20, 2015
By Deirdre Fulton, staff writer

An array of anti-choice legislation is being rolled out in state houses
around the country, putting women's health at risk and illustrating how
Republican gains in the 2014 elections have exacerbated the fight over
reproductive rights.

Already, 57 percent of American women of reproductive age live in states
that are considered 'hostile' or 'extremely hostile' to abortion rights,
according to the Guttmacher Institute, which studies sexual and
reproductive health and rights around the world.

That percentage could go up if recent proposals are enacted into law.

In Ohio, for example, lawmakers this week introduced a bill that would ban
abortions once a fetal heartbeat can be detected—as early as six weeks
into a woman's pregnancy.

In Arkansas on Tuesday, the state Senate approved legislation that would
require a physician to be in the room during a chemical abortion and bans
telemedicine abortion—a procedure already unavailable in Arkansas.

Just this month, Minnesota legislators have put forth five anti-choice
bills, "each designed to make safe abortion less accessible in the state,"
writes Nina Liss-Schultz, reporting fellow at RH Reality Check. She

Two identical bills, SF 800 and HF 607, would bar Medicaid and other
public health programs in the state from covering abortion
services—policies that would have an outsized impact on low-income

... Two other bills, SF 794 and HF 606, also identical, would require
free-standing reproductive health facilities that perform ten or more
abortions each month to be licensed in the same way as outpatient surgical
centers, and would allow the state to inspect those facilities with no

... A fifth bill, HF 734, would require a prescribing physician be
physically present when abortion drugs are administered.

The Senate Health Committee in Arizona recently passed legislation barring
women from buying optional abortion coverage on insurance policies
purchased through the federal marketplace.

Of such restrictions, Janet Reitman wrote for Rolling Stone earlier this
year: "While cutting insurance coverage of abortion in disparate states
might seem to be a separate issue from the larger assault on reproductive
rights, it is in fact part of a highly coordinated and so far chillingly
successful nationwide campaign, often funded by the same people who fund
the Tea Party, to make it harder and harder for women to terminate
unwanted pregnancies, and also to limit their access to many forms of

In South Dakota, a conservative lawmaker is pushing graphically worded
legislation targeting dilation and evacuation (D and E) procedures, which
may be used in a second-trimester abortion. On Tuesday, the state’s
Health and Human Services committee voted 11 to 2 along party lines to
approve the bill; now it awaits debate and vote by the full South Dakota
house, in which Republicans hold a wide majority.

"If D and E were to be banned, women would have only labor induction or
hysterotomy (a mini-cesarean section) as options for second-trimester
abortions," David Grimes, former chief of the Abortion Surveillance Branch
at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and Carole Joffe,
professor at the Bixby Center for Global Reproductive Health at the
University of California, San Francisco, wrote in an op-ed published
Thursday. "These archaic methods were largely abandoned decades ago in the
United States."

They continued:

The specifics of abortion methods can be unpleasant to the lay public.
However, this is true of most operations that remove tissue from the body.
Surgeons choose operations based on what is safest and most appropriate
for the patient, not on what is pleasant for the surgeon. The same
professional standard applies to abortion.

Even if it is an effective strategy for anti-choice activists, considering
these methods separately from the women who need abortion care is wrong. D
and E abortion should not become a political football. D and E abortion is
not a problem, any more than a mastectomy is a problem. Both are solutions
to a problem.

It's not just Republicans who are to blame for the latest wave of attacks
on women's rights.

In the West Virginia state House, a bipartisan majority, including a
majority of Democrats, passed a bill Wednesday that would ban abortions
after 20 weeks of pregnancy—similar to extreme legislation withdrawn by
Republicans in the U.S. House earlier this year. A similar bill was
approved by the majority-Republican state House in South Carolina on the
very same day.

And in a separate piece for RH Reality Check, Liss-Schultz notes that as
of last week, "Maryland is the latest state dominated by Democratic
majorities to see a 20-week abortion ban proposed this year."

To be sure, such a coordinated assault on reproductive health was expected
when Republicans cemented their 'supermajority' in state legislatures
during the 2014 midterm elections.

"[B]race yourself for 2015," Molly Redden wrote at Mother Jones in
December 2014. "Next year, Republicans will control 11 more legislative
chambers than they did in 2014. Lawmakers in Texas and North Dakota are
back in session, and there are no major elections to take up lawmakers'
time or cause them worry about war-on-women attacks."

The anti-choice approach could be even more convoluted than it appears on
the surface, ThinkProgress health editor Tara Culp-Ressler wrote on

In several states, such as Arkansas, lawmakers are introducing, debating,
and passing anti-abortion laws that have little practical impact on the
residents there, Culp-Ressler pointed out.

"There's...a clear political strategy at play here," she declared. "As an
increasing number of states pass the same type of restriction on abortion,
the anti-choice community is able to declare that the policy is gaining
momentum. More laws on the books represent an important symbolic victory.
And, within the context of that goal, ineffective laws are actually some
of the best tools available. They’re less likely to be overturned
because they’re harder to challenge in court."

She added: "Anti-abortion lawmakers are effectively creating a patchwork
of laws that ensures U.S. women’s constitutional rights differ depending
on where they live."
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 15, 2015 12:05 am    Post subject: Algerian Imam: We Have No Need for Women's Rights Reply with quote


In a Friday sermon in Algiers, Sheik Kamel Nour says there is can be no equality between men and women and there is no need for human rights.

Short video:
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 15, 2015 12:09 am    Post subject: UN Finds "Alarmingly High" Levels of Violence Agai Reply with quote


The New York Times
U.N. Finds ‘Alarmingly High’ Levels of Violence Against Women
MARCH 9, 2015

Afghan women who cannot return to their homes live in a shelter run by Women for Afghan Women in Kabul.
Credit Lynsey Addario for The New York Times

UNITED NATIONS — The evidence is ubiquitous. The gang rape of a young
woman on a bus in New Delhi sets off an unusual burst of national outrage
in India. In South Sudan, women are assaulted by both sides in the civil
war. In Iraq, jihadists enslave women for sex. And American colleges face
mounting scrutiny about campus rape.

Despite the many gains women have made in education, health and even
political power in the course of a generation, violence against women and
girls worldwide “persists at alarmingly high levels,” according to a
United Nations analysis that the Secretary General Ban Ki-moon is
scheduled to present to the General Assembly on Monday.

About 35 percent of women worldwide — more than one in three — said
they had experienced physical violence in their lifetime, the report
finds. One in 10 girls under the age of 18 was forced to have sex, it

The subject is under sharp focus as delegates from around the world gather
here starting on Monday to assess how well governments have done since
they promised to ensure women’s equality at a landmark conference in
Beijing 20 years ago — and what to do next.

Hillary Rodham Clinton, who attended ​the Beijing conference in 1995, is
scheduled to speak on Tuesday.

Since the Beijing conference, there has been measurable, though mixed,
progress on many fronts, according to the United Nations analysis.

As many girls as boys are now enrolled in primary school, a sharp advance
since 1995. Maternal mortality rates have fallen by half. And women are
more likely to be in the labor force, though the pay gap is closing so
slowly that it will take another 75 years before women and men are paid
equally for equal work.

The share of women serving in legislatures has nearly doubled, too, though
women still account for only one in five legislators. All but 32 countries
have adopted laws that guarantee gender equality in their constitutions.

But violence against women — including rape, murder and sexual
harassment — remains stubbornly high in countries rich and poor, at war
and at peace. The United Nations’ main health agency, the World Health
Organization, found that 38 percent of women who are murdered are killed
by their partners.

Even as women’s groups continue to push for laws that criminalize
violence — marital rape is still permitted in many countries — new
types of attacks have emerged, some of them online, including rape threats
on Twitter.

Where there are laws on the books, like ones that criminalize domestic
violence, for instance, they are not reliably enforced.

The economic impact is huge. One recent study found that domestic violence
against women and children alone costs the global economy $4 trillion.

“Over all, as you look at the world, there have been no large victories
in eradicating violence against women,” said Valerie M. Hudson, a
professor of politics at Texas A & M University who has developed world
maps that chart the status of women. The vast majority of countries, by
her metrics, do not have laws that protect women’s physical safety.

In some cases, the laws on the books are the problem, women’s rights
advocates say. In some countries, like Nigeria, the law permits a man to
beat his wife under certain circumstances. But even when laws are
technically adequate, victims often do not feel comfortable going to law
enforcement, or they are unable to pay the bribes required to file a
police report.

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, the executive director of the United Nations
agency for gender equity and women’s empowerment — known as UN Women
— said that for the laws to mean anything, governments around the world
have to persuade their police officers, judges and medical personnel to
take violence against women seriously.

“I am disappointed, I have to be honest,” she said about the stubborn
hold of violence against women. “More than asking for more laws to be
passed, I’m asking for implementation.”

According to Equality Now, an advocacy group that tracks laws pertaining
to women, 125 countries specifically criminalize domestic violence. But
so-called wife-obedience laws still remain in some places. In some others,
rapists can get off the hook by marrying those they assault.

Yasmeen Hassan, the group’s executive director, said that governments
need to be reminded that they committed to making their laws fair for
women. Cultural differences cannot be an excuse, she said. “It’s
always a cop-out for governments to not do what they signed up to do,”
she said.

The new round of global development targets that governments around the
world will have to agree to later this year, known as Sustainable
Development Goals, includes a separate requirement for women’s equal
rights, including how they protect their female citizens from violence.

The latest United Nations report draws attention to the rise of
“extremism and conservatism,” and without naming any countries or
groups, it argues that what they share is a “resistance to women’s
human rights.” The assaults and abductions by the Islamic State have
brought new urgency to the issue. ​

Ms. Hudson, the academic, said the persistence of violence in so many
forms is in part because it can establish domination against women of all
kinds, for a broad range of personal and political purposes. A husband can
just as easily beat his wife if she is a high school dropout or a college
graduate. An entire territory can be claimed if fighters rape the local
women — or take them as sex slaves, as is the case of the Islamic State.

“I think violence against women is so darn useful,” she said.
“That’s why it’ll be so hard to eradicate.”

Violence can start before birth. Sex-selective abortions, have been
reduced in some countries, as in South Korea, but are higher than ever in
other places, like India, and are going up sharply in places like Armenia.

Harassment is commonplace. In the United States, 83 percent of girls aged
12 to 16 said they had experienced some form of harassment in public
schools. In New Delhi, a 2010 study found that two out of three women said
they were harassed more than twice in the last year alone.

Violence against women is often unreported. For instance, a study
conducted in the 28 countries of the European Union found that only 14
percent of women reported their most serious episode of domestic violence
to the police.

​ ”​Violence against women has epidemic proportions, and is present
in every single country around the world,” said Lydia Alpizar, executive
director of the Association for Women’s Rights in Development, a global
feminist group. “​Yet it is still not a real priority for most
governments.” ​

Perhaps the biggest change in 20 years, say those who attended the 1995
Beijing conference, is that the subject is now front and center in public

“There is actually a great deal more attention being paid today to
violence against women,” said Charlotte Bunch, a feminist scholar who
attended the Beijing conference. “The truth is, it’s a complex issue
that isn’t solved easily.”
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 15, 2015 12:12 am    Post subject: Gang-raped Saudi woman sentenced to 200 lashes,6-months jail Reply with quote

The sentence was appealed by the victim's lawyer. Yet instead of mitigating her sentence, the courts worsened it whilst banning her lawyer from the case and stripping him of his license under the claims that the woman committed the offense of speaking to media in addition to the indecency she was originally sentenced for, PressTV reported.


Gang-raped Saudi woman sentenced to 200 lashes, 6-months in jail

Woman's sentence more than doubles after appeal; lawyer stripped of license.

A 28 year old Saudi woman has been sentenced to 200 lashes and six months in jail for indecency and speaking out to media about her subjection to a gang rape in 2006, Iranian PressTV reported Saturday.

The woman was, back in 2006, driven to a secluded area after entering the car of a student friend when she was 19 years old. There, she was raped by seven men, according to the report.

According to Saudi legislation, women must at all times be accompanied by a male family member in public. The victim was initially sentenced in court to 90 lashes for not adhering to this law; Her rapists were sentenced to five years in prison.

The sentence was appealed by the victim's lawyer. Yet instead of mitigating her sentence, the courts worsened it whilst banning her lawyer from the case and stripping him of his license under the claims that the woman committed the offense of speaking to media in addition to the indecency she was originally sentenced for, PressTV reported.

The harsh verdict has been condemned by politicians and human rights organizations.

Human Rights Watch said, according to PressTV, that the ruling both "sends victims of sexual violence the message that they should not press charges... and offers protection and impunity to perpetrators."
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 15, 2015 12:17 am    Post subject: Teacher bias may help discourage girls from math Reply with quote

Less disturbing than violence but this is still discrimination against women and girls.


TODAY Parents
Teacher bias may help discourage girls from math, study finds
Linda Carroll
March 8, 2015

Despite all the talk about encouraging girls in math and science, many
teachers still harbor unconscious biases that dissuade girls from going
into these fields, a new study suggests.

Israeli researchers found a gender bias in math grades given to girls and
boys at the elementary school level, according to the report published by
the National Bureau of Economic Research in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

“Our results suggest that teachers themselves are part of the
problem,” said the study’s lead author, Edith Sand, an economist at
the Bank of Israel and an instructor at the Tel-Aviv University’s
Berglas School of Economics. “They are discouraging girls and
encouraging boys to get to a higher level of math and science. So
there’s a gender gap in the teachers’ perceptions of their

Sand discovered the gender bias by comparing the results of tests scored
by teachers who knew the children and their names, to those graded by
outside scorers who weren’t told anything about the identity of the test

What she saw was striking. When teachers knew the children's names and
identities, they graded the girls lower in math than the outside grader,
while scoring the boys higher. As a test, the researchers checked to see
if the same kind of bias was occurring in other school subjects—it

To see if there was any long term fallout from the biased grading, the
researchers followed the children all the way through high school. They
found that girls who had been downgraded in elementary school were less
likely to sign up for advanced math and science courses in high school.

The researchers suspect that the bias is unconscious. “I am sure they
are completely unaware of it,” Sand said.

This isn’t the first study to show that girls’ interest in math tends
to drop off as they get older, but it may well be the first showing that
teacher bias could be part of the problem, said Patrick Tolan, a professor
at the Curry School of Education at the University of Virginia and
director of Youth-Nex, the UVA Center to Promote Effective Youth

“Early experience imprints on girls,” Tolan said. “They tend to
follow the initial reactions from their teachers: what they are good at,
what is appropriate for a girl or a boy to do.”

While the study was performed in Israel, experts say the findings are just
as applicable to the U.S.

“It is a very pervasive and deeply held idea that math and math-related
fields are not good for girls because they are not going to be good at
it,” said Marianne LaFrance, a professor of psychology and women, gender
and sexuality studies at Yale University. “So there’s no point in
educating them in it because they won’t thrive.”

LaFrance says she encounters female college students every year who have
been discouraged from taking courses in math and science simply because of
their gender.

What’s changed over the years is that the discrimination against girls
has gone “underground,” LaFrance says, adding “it’s more subtle

Unfortunately, LaFrance says, the message doesn’t have to be overt to
get through to girls.

You’re fighting against the popular image of a scientist as a white male
in a lab coat with a pocket protector, says Carolyn Parker, an assistant
professor of STEM education at the Johns Hopkins School of Education.
Parker believes the solution is to educate teachers about their
unconscious biases against girls.

In lieu of that, parents can be sure to boost their little girls’
self-confidence, making sure they understand that are capable of
succeeding at any subject, LaFrance says.

Tolan suggests parents be proactive if they think their girls are being
discouraged from pursuing math and science. “I think parents should
advocate in a respectful and diplomatic way when they think their child is
not getting the opportunities they should because of gender,” he says
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 15, 2015 2:43 am    Post subject: Depressing Reply with quote

I was feeling a little down today but after reading those articles and remembering all the injustices against women I feel rather more depressed....
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 15, 2015 5:03 pm    Post subject: Re: Depressing Reply with quote

inkling7 wrote:
I was feeling a little down today but after reading those articles and remembering all the injustices against women I feel rather more depressed....

You'd probably be even more depressed if you were one of those women!! Very Sad

So sad, isn't it... Sad
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 15, 2015 5:07 pm    Post subject: Re: Gang-raped Saudi woman sentenced to 200 lashes,6-months Reply with quote

vu wrote:
The sentence was appealed by the victim's lawyer. Yet instead of mitigating her sentence, the courts worsened it whilst banning her lawyer from the case and stripping him of his license under the claims that the woman committed the offense of speaking to media in addition to the indecency she was originally sentenced for, PressTV reported.

We in the West think it bad enough that rape victims are being blamed for the horror that happened to them. These Arabs do worse, they not only blame the victim, they punish her in a horrendously barbaric way. Very Mad
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 15, 2015 10:20 pm    Post subject: Women's rights Reply with quote

"Violence (against women) can start before birth."

Well, yeah. It is a women's right to abort an unwanted girl. The UN's article is complaining that this is so, but why complain? Women have been granted that right and it should not be taken away.

The level of violence against women is spectacularly high world wide. I don't know quite what to do about it, but violence in the USA has dropped dramatically. As an example, murders in NYC are down 80%. Many fewer women are being killed here. Rapes are down also. Still there is too much violence.

One advantage of being an old F is getting a perspective of long term changes. Girlie pictures went from bikinis to doctor's office viewing angles. For a while, holding or opening doors for women was out of style, but that is back. Dating seems to have disappeared, at least as I knew it. Do young folks 'go steady' anymore? hug
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 15, 2015 10:23 pm    Post subject: Hillary Reply with quote

Oh, Hillary Clinton has accepted millions of $$$$$ from the Arab countries that whip, beat and stone their women. Did I leave out Honor Killings? My bad. Embarassed
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