WBAI can be heard at 99.5 FM in the tri state area. It streams at WBAI.org
AS PART OF OUR FEBRUARY WINTER FUND DRIVE…:
Wednesday, February 12, 9-9:30 PM (EST), tune in to WBAI, 99.5 FM as Joy of Resistance: Multicultural Feminist Radio or stream live at wbai.org
Dylan Farrow‘s February 1st “Open Letter” in the New York Times, detailing her story of sexual abuse by her father Woody Allen, when she was seven, has become the center of enormous controversy over the last 10 days. Allen has responded to the letter by denying that any abuse took place and blaming the allegation on a “vengeful lover”–ex-partner Mia Farrow–whom, he says “implanted false memories” in the then-seven-year-old Dylan (who is now 28).
In this program we will will be looking at some common themes between this set of events and other custody cases where abuse is alleged. Fran Luck will be in discussion with our guest Attorney Lisa Wolovick, who has practiced family and matrimonial law for 25 years, specializing in representing battered women in custody cases. Wolovick is also a practicing Social Worker and teaches at the Fordham Graduate School of Social Work.
We’ll be looking at a number of questions raised by the Farrow/Allen controversy, including: traumatic memories and how they work; whether and when memories can be “implanted”; the history of the use of the stereotypic trope: “hell hath no fury like that of a woman scorned” to explain female motivation; the pseudo science of “Parental Alienation Syndrome” (P.A.S.)–a theory which assumes allegations of abuse to be attempts at “alienating the child from the other parent” and often results in the awarding of custody to abusers–and much more…
If time allows, we will be taking phone calls.
The show can also be streamed live at wbai.org (where it will also be archived for 90 days). Joy of Resistance will be airing every Wednesday in February, 9-9:30 PM.
In our next show on February 19, we will examine the leadership of the Civil Rights Movement by Black women, with Professor Carol Giardina, author of “Freedom for Women: Forging the Women’s Liberation Movement, 1953-1970.”
WBAI is a 54 year old alternative, non-commercial radio station, part of the Pacifica Network. We are in the midst of a critical fund drive and need your support to continue to bring you programs that are not dependent on–and therefore limited by–the dictates of corporate funding. So please give generously by going to give2wbai.org or calling (212) 209-2950, Thank you!
January 15: Supreme Court heard arguments on “buffer zones” around clinics
Today, the U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments on whether state and local governments can create safety buffer zones around reproductive health clinics to protect patients, doctors and healthcare workers from harassment, intimidation and violence.
Buffer zones currently protect more than 35 percent of clinics in the nation. Three states and dozens of municipalities protect their clinics with buffer zones. According to Feminist Majority Foundation’s Eleanor Smeal, if the Massachusetts buffer zone law is struck down, it will surely embolden violent, anti-abortion extremists.
Many clinics are still not protected by buffer zones and women who try to attempt to enter these clinics regularly experience harassment, threats and intimidation by self appointed “sidewalk couselors” who try to shame them about their decision to have an abortion.
The first lawsuit in the nation on buffer zones was brought to the U.S. Supreme Court in 1994. That case, Madsen v. Women’s Health Center, established the constitutionality of an injunction creating a clinic safety buffer zone for a Florida clinic.
Federal anti-abortion legislation makes its way through committee
On Jan. 9, the House Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee held a hearing on HR-7, the “No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act”The subcommttee, headed by Rep. Trent Franks, (R-AZ)s comprised of 12 male lawmakers is considering sweeping restrictions in abortion laws that would make the proceedure less affordable for women accross the country. HR-7 is not just about Federal spending but would actually reach into people’s private insurance plans by forcing small businesses to pay additional taxes if they offer employees health plans that include abortion. It would also eliminate medical expense deductions for abortion except in cases of rape, incest or life endangerment. NARAL Pro-Choice America points out that it would enable the IRS to make the final decision about what “counts” as rape, incest or life endangerment, in effect conducting an audit on rape victims to make sure they are not committing fraud. Without insurance coverage an abortion can cost between $300 and $10,000, endangering access to anyone who is low-income.
Latest update on this story: The Bill has been “marked up”, ie, is ready to go to the floor..
Guttmacher Report: More Attacks on Reproductive Rights in Past Three Years Than in Entirety of Previous Decade
A study published last week by the Guttmacher Institute reveals that the last three years have seen more legislative attacks on reproductive rights than the entire previous decade.
Since 2011, 205 new restrictions on abortion have cleared state legislatures, while only 189 were enacted from 2001-2010. The most were passed in 2011, with 83, and 2013 came in second with 70. Twenty-seven states are now considered to be hostile to abortion rights, up from just 13 in 2000. These hostile states that limit access and rights to abortion are home to 56 percent of US women.
Almost half of the abortion restrictions enacted since 2011 fall into one of four categories: targeted restrictions on abortion providers (TRAP), limitations on insurance coverage of abortion, 20 week abortion bans, and restrictions for medication abortion. States have also adopted restrictions involving parental notification, waiting periods, counseling and ultrasounds, among other issues. Pro-choice groups have been able to tie some of these measures up in court by filing lawsuits, but the outcomes for many are uncertain. The Supreme Court will soon take up an Oklahoma law that could outlaw all drug-induced abortions. Fortunately, some states, like California, have passed laws expanding abortion access and comprehensive sex education.
California Bill Would Change Reporting Requirements for Rapes on College Campuses
California Assemblyman Mike Gatto introduced a state bill this week that would change the rules for reporting rapes on college campuses in an effort to hold universities more accountable. AB 1433 would amend California’s Education Code to require hate crimes and violent crimes, including rape, that are received by a university’s campus law enforcement agency to be immediately reported to the police (the exception being if there is an objection from the victim of a rape)..
Gatto became interested in the subject after Occidental College in CA, failed to report dozens of sexual assault allegations in 2010 and 2011, which he suspects was to improve their image.
And for an overview of this subject, please access Joy of Resistance’ Dec. 4 Pacifica National Program: “Sprouts”, which was entitled Rape & Rape Culture on Campus and the Feminist fight-back”, and which you can find by going to pacificanetwork.org and clicking on the Sprouts box.
Extremist Opposition Groups in Syria imposing human rights violations on women in areas they control
Human Rights Watch is reporting that certain extremist armed opposition groups are imposing strict and discriminatory rules on women and girls in areas under their control–that have no basis in Syrian law.The harsh rules violate women’s and girls’ human rights and limit their ability to carry out essential daily activities.
Refugees interviewed said that the groups Jabhat al-Nusra and the Islamic State of Iraq and Sham (ISIS) have enforced their interpretation of Sharia, or Islamic law, by requiring women and girls to wear headscarves (hijabs) and full-length robes (abayas), in some areas the niqab, which covers a woman’s face except for her eyes–and that those who do not comply have been threatened with punishment. In some areas, the groups are imposing discriminatory measures prohibiting women and girls, particularly those who do not abide by the dress code, from moving freely in public, working, and attending school–in other areas women are being banned altogether from working outside or even leaving their homes without a male relative. One of the interviewees reported “”We could not go to the market. Freedom was gone for us [women]. It was like we were in jail.”
“Extremist groups like ISIS and Jabhat al-Nusra are undermining the freedoms that Syria’s women and girls enjoyed, which were a longtime strength of Syrian society,” said Liesl Gerntholtz, women’s rights director at Human Rights Watch.
Syria does not have a state-mandated religion and its constitution protects freedom of religion.
Expanded Childcare services on the horizon in New York City
And in NYC, with the election of a new Mayor (Bill De Blasio) who has promised to make the expansion of daycare/Pre-K/and After School Programs a top priority of his administration, women may be a step closer to meeting the overwhelming need for these services in NYC. Childcare was an early demand of the Women’s Liberation Movement, as without it, women cannot work or pursue other activities and at the same time raise children. We’ll be airing an interview with Neal Tepel, former organizer with DC 1707, who has been active on this issue for awhile. We’ll also hear, etc.
Joy of Resistance airs on the 1st and 3rd Wednesday of the month from 9-10 pm (EST) at 99.5 FM in the tri-state area & streams live at wbai.org. JOR tweets at @joyofresistance
We’ll start the show by touching on some of the major issues for women’s rights in 2013 and what we are facing in the new legislative session–as well as announcing events for the upcoming 41st Anniversary of Roe v.Wade on January 22.
There is new hope in New York City for progress on a longstanding feminist demand–affordable and accessible childcare (including Pre-K and After-school programs) for all–now that we have a new Mayor who has pledged to prioritize this issue.
Our first interview will be with Neal Tepel, who was an organizer with DC 1707 (the Union of daycare workers) which led the fight against former Mayor Bloomberg‘s decimation of the city’s daycare system. Neal will help us assess the state of these critical facilities today, catch us up on recent history and try to see the shape of daycare’s immediate future in NYC. We’ll also play a portion of our 2010 interview with Professor Rosalyn Baxandall, who was part of the original feminist direct action movement that won for New York City a daycare system that was a model for the rest of the country.
In the 2nd half of the show, we’ll speak with Jennifer Lee, director and creator of the new film Feminist Stories from Women’s Liberation–which just won the Los Angeles Women’s International Film Festival as “Best in the Festival for Documentary”–but which, more importantly, has the approval of many of the movement pioneers–approval difficult to come by, as this group was actually there and has had to see its history distorted many times over.The documentary chronicles the story of the women’s liberation movement from 1963 to 1970. Beginning in 2005, Lee traveled the country interviewing many of the women who created modern feminism.
Lee introduces the film by telling her audience that she was motivated to go on this quest because she couldn’t figure out why the word “feminist”, when it came up in the conversations of her generation, was whispered, as if it were a scary and somehow shameful word. She felt that being a feminist was a good thing–but didn’t have the information whe needed in order to convince the whisperers of why she felt that way. She wondered why her feminist history had been so hidden from her and became determined to go in search of it.
Lee interviewed, among others, Betty Friedan (Lee holds the rights to her last video interview before she passed), Aileen Hernandez (first head of the EEOC), Kathie Sarachild, (a member of Redstockings and a SNCC worker), Frances Beal (SNCC Women’s Liberation Committee and author of Triple Jeopardy), Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton–and many others.
Punctuated by an astonishing amount of period footage and an energetic sound-track; the film touches on women in the U.S. before the feminist movement (starting with their having been ousted from well paying jobs after WWll); Betty Friedan‘s publication of the The Feminine Mystique; the President’s Council on the Status of Women; the struggles within the movement over lesbianism as well as class and race; the influence of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) and the Civil Rights Movement; the fight to get women included in the Civil Rights Act of 1964, leading to the founding of the National Organization for Women (NOW); the Miss America Beauty Pageant Protest–and up to the Ladies Home Journal sit-in and the Women’s Strike for Equality. Many of the issues you see being raised in the film by are still being struggled for today–such as full access to reproductive rights and childcare–some 50 years later! Joy of Resistance hopes to offer DVD’s of this film as a premium during WBAI’s Winter Fund Drive in February.
On Wednesday, November 6, 9-10 pm, Joy of Resistance will present “Rape and Rape Culture on Campus—And the New Feminist Fight-Back” featuring interviews with student and faculty activists, as well as Soraya Chemaly and Gloria Allred.
Across the country colleges and universities are under investigation by the Federal government for their sexual assault policies because of complaints brought under Title IX—the part of the 1964 Civil Rights Act dealing with the right of women to equal educational opportunity. According to statistics, between 20 and 28% of female college students will experience rape by a male student while at college—making going to college a high risk activity for rape. All women (and all men) on campus will encounter some variant of campus culture that features the promotion of rape as a “sport” and “fun activity” for college men—also known as “campus rape culture.”
Last but not least is a widespread pattern of colleges and universities, in the interest of maintaining their schools’ reputations, enrollment and funding base—downplaying and covering up assaults of women students, discouraging women from filing complaints, blaming them for their attacks and allowing even admitted rapists back on campus—all activities and omissions that have fueled the newest wave of Title IX complaints. A partial list of colleges that have recently come under Federal investigation and/or have had private civil lawsuits filed against them, include: Yale University; University of Southern California; University of California at Berkeley; University of North Carolina; University of Massachusetts, Amherst; Dartmouth College; Swarthmore College; Occidental College and the University of Connecticut.
On Wednesday, November 6th at 9-10 pm, Joy of Resistance will present: Rape and Rape Culture on Campus—and the New Feminist Fightback. In this program we will examine these intertwining issues and the future of the fight-back.
Our guests will be: Dana Daniels, a New York University student whose recent article on rape culture at NYU sparked internet retaliation; Soraya Chemaly, activist-blogger on rape culture who will describe in detail its manifestations on a number of campuses; Mia Ferguson, student activist and a founder of End Rape on Campus, who will talk about the growing fightback movement by students; Gloria Allred, noted Civil Rights Attorney, who recently led a suit against Occidental College and has just announced another against the University of Connecticut; and outspoken faculty activists Professor Danielle Dirks and Professor Caroline Heldman, who were instrumental in organizing women students at Occidental College as well as the national movement.
This program will include worldwide feminist news headlines and information on legal resources for campus sexual assault survivors. It was produced by Executive Producer Fran Luck and Associate Producers Karen Anton and Lorena Ambrosio.
Joy of Resistance: Multicultural Feminist Radio @ WBAI airs on the 1st and 3rd Wednesdays of the month, at 9-10 PM. We cover the ongoing worldwide struggle of women for full equality and human rights. You can follow us at twitter.com/joyofresistance and follow/read our blog at joyofresistance.wordpress.com. Programs stream live at wbai.org, where they are also archived for 90 days.
WBAI NEEDS YOUR SUPPORT!!!
WBAI @ 99.5 FM broadcasts to New York, New Jersey and Connecticut and is part of the Pacifica Radio Network, one of the few alternatives to the corporate-controlled media that dominate the airwaves—the station has been facing extremely hard times since Hurricane Sandy and needs your financial support to continue broadcasting. We cannot afford to lose this legendary 53-year old non-commercial progressive radio station! Please consider going to http://www.wbai.org and contributing whatever amount you can to help keep alternative radio alive. If you join as a “WBAI Buddy” at $10 or more a month, you can help sustain the station permanently (and be entitled to a range of gifts).
Joining the WBAI “Buddy Program” in the name of Joy of Resistance will also be a vote for the continuation of feminist programming at WBAI and will entitle you to Joy of Resistance’ latest feminist premium “The Real History of the Feminist Movement.” You can click on this link to order it separately: The Real History of the Feminist Movement flash drive and and scroll further down on this blog for a complete description of what the premium contains. Thank you for your support!
From October 1-25, WBAI will be in fund-drive mode, in what is considered to be a make-or-break fund-raiser for the beloved 53 year old radio station that is responsible for the very political and cultural ground on which so many of us walk! A caller to a recent WBAI Report to the Listener, summarized WBAI when he described his travels across country this summer, while listening to his car radio: “BAI is so unique…there is nothing out there that compares with it.”
Reports of WBAI’s death “have been greatly exaggerated.” Despite a terrible year financially that saw us perilously close to losing our transmitter signal and included a move to a much smaller space–WBAI is beginning to recover. We have a new home in Brooklyn and are starting to catch up with bills. Yet the the future remains uncertain and there are some on the Pacifica National Board (Pacifica is WBAI’s parent network and owns its license) who want to take WBAI off the air (through “leasing it out”) in order to cover expenses. The best way to make sure this does not happen and that WBAI will not only survive but thrive, is for the October fund drive to be a success. So I am asking you to pledge as if the fate of the station depended on it–because it does.
I am also writing to you about the feminist program I have produced on WBAI for 11 years–the only “terrestrial radio” program devoted to feminist issues in the tri-state area: Joy of Resistance: Multicultural Feminist Radio at WBAI, which will be fund-raising between 9 and 11 pm this coming Wednesday night (Oct. 2). For 11 years we have brought you in-depth coverage of every feminist issue you can imagine–from the long and winding history of women slowly winning the right to control our reproduction, and the attacks against this basic freedom coming from the Right wing in so many forms–to the ongoing fights for equal pay, equal opportunity at work, affordable daycare–the right to walk freely in the world without fear of sexual assault… Joy of Resistance brings these issues and so many related ones and it gives you not only the immediacy of breaking stories, but the whole history of struggle behind those stories, the time-lines of emancipation, often speaking with the women who originally took the lead in these battles– as well as women on the front lines today.–and letting you know the ways that YOU can join the action and help create the tomorrows of our history.
Women need this kind of in-depth coverage–and men need to hear it also. Joy of Resistance covers the ongoing and worldwide struggle for full equality of women that is being waged in every country and culture on the planet. We need WBAI to survive and thrive–and we need Joy of Resistance to continue to bring you the highest and deepest level of feminist coverage.
But the Pacifica/WBAI management–in its effort to survive–is currently re-evaluating all of the station’s programming. Our program–as well as all others–will, no doubt be under scrutiny in this fund drive–and it is imperative that we show station management that there IS a feminist audience that will financially support Joy of Resistance! I am asking you to show that feminist support during this coming Wednesday between 9 and 11 pm.
If you pledge to WBAI this Wednesday, October 2, 9-11 pm, or on October 16, 9-11 pm (when we will again be doing a fund-raising show), you will make a very important contribution to keeping feminist radio on the air. The pledge number will be (516) 620-3602, You can hear the program in most of New York State, New Jersey & Connecticutt at 99.5 FM and you can stream it from anywhere in the world at wbai.org.
We are also offering those who pledge some great premiums–some of the best radio and the most in-depth feminism that you will ever hear:
THE MAIN WBAI PREMIUM:
WBAI is offering all listeners who pledge, a thumb-sized flash drive–black with a silver Pacifica/WBAI logo–that is loaded with amazing high quality recordings of The 100 best Speakers on Pacifica over the last 10 years. Speakers include: Alice Walker, Amy Goodman, Bill McKibben, Chris Hedges, Richard Wolff, Cornell West, Eduardo Galleano, Russell Simmons, Eve Ensler, Studs Terkes, Angela Davis, Rachel Maddow, Robert Reich, Edward Said and many many more. There will also be a flash-drive titled “Best of WBAI”–a 30-item collection of some of the highlights of this alternative non-commercial radio’s output.
…and a special JOY OF RESISTANCE’ PREMIUM…”THE REAL HISTORY OF THE FEMINIST MOVEMENT”
I have gone out on a limb to get permission from our new Program Director to offer a strong feminist premium. Joy of Resistance will be one of the few shows in the fund-drive to have its own premium–in addition to the station-wide ones. I need you to back me up by pledging your support for the fabulous and important collection I have assembled.
“THE REAL HISTORY OF THE FEMINIST MOVEMENT” is a collection on a flash drive (with the WBAI-Pacifica logo), containing some of the best work of Joy of Resistance over the past 11 years.You will not be able to get this kind of collection anywhere else. Below is a partial list of what will be included-
“THE REAL HISTORY OF THE FEMINIST MOVEMENT” contains:
**The Civil Rights Movement and the Roots of Women’s Liberation–A 70 minute classic in which seven women–Black and White–who worked within the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) tell the little known story of how the second wave of feminism was birthed from within SNCC! There is no other radio treatment of this material!
**Connections between the Civil Rights March of 1963–and the founding of the National Organization for Women. Another untold story! An investigation & conversation with Zoharah Simmons, Maretta Short and Fran Luck featuring readings from the works of Pauli Murray, Betty Friedan and William P. Jones.
**Promise and Betrayal: Voices from the Struggle for Women’s Emancipation, 1776-1920: A play by Carol Hanisch. The complete recording of the Joy or Resistance production, with original music by Carol Hanisch, arranged by Carol Hanish and Bev Grant; based on the actual speeches and writings of Frederick Douglass, Sojourner Truth, Elizabeth Cady Stanton and others active in the struggle for the vote.
**A Critique of “Makers”–Original Radical Feminists Kathie Sarachild, Carol Hanisch along with Kathy Scarbrough critique the PBS series that purports to be the last word on “the women’s movement.”
**The Real History of the Miss America Pageant Protest of 1968 The protest in Atlantic City that put the Women’s Liberation Movement on the map.
**Recordings from the first Abortion Speak Out–organized by Redstockings in 1969 Abortion was illegal in the U.S. when these women risked arrest to admit publicly that they’d had one.
**Abortion as a Human Right: An original production covering the history of reproductive rights. .
**Remembering Shulie–Two interviews with peers of movement pioneer Shulamith Firestone who died last August. Kathie Sarachild and Jo Freeman, who both worked with Firestone in the early days of the movement, contribute both moving tributes and stories of the real history of the birth of the movement–that you’ve never heard before!
**A Strange Stirring: The Feminine Mystique and American Women at the Dawn of the 1960s by Stephanie Coontz. An interview with the author examining the situation of women just before the beginning of the Second Wave–and what changed.
**The Feminist Music Extravaganza!: A feminist history trip through MUSIC. Folk, pop, rock, reggae, punk, rap (and more) feminist music hits over the decades!
**Occupy Wall Street and the fight against sexism A 10 minute feature, chosen to represent WBAI as part of the Pacifica National Broadcast of 2011: Women of OWS share their experiences.
**Feminist Comedy: Comics Wanda Sykes, Elaine Boosler and Lisa Koch make us laugh our butts off (I threw this in just for fun!)
SO NOW THAT YOU’VE SEEN WHAT WE’RE OFFERING–HERE’S HOW TO PLEDGE
The #1 priority of this drive is to gain 3000 sustaining members (“WBAI Buddies”) so that WBAI will have a secure source of income and will interrupt regular programming less often to raise funds.You can become a Buddy for as little as $10. a month–through an automatic, painless and totally secure monthly payment from your checking account or credit card. If you become a Buddy during a Joy of Resistance program (Oct. 2 & 16th) you will receive ALL of the Above premiums (The 100 Speakers Collection, The Best of WBAI PLUS The Real History of the Feminist Movement.) You will also receive a WBAI tote bag, a subscription to the Nation Magazine and discounts on local events.
These premiums can also be ordered separately at the following pledge levels:
$180. for the 100 Speakers Collection
$50. for Best of WBAI
$75. for the Real History of the Feminist Movement
But ANY amount you can contribute will be appreciated and is important!!
The Pledge Phone Number is (516) 620-3602
To contribute online, go to: give2wbai.org
And the best premium of all is keeping WBAI alive–and along with the Joy of Resistance! Thank you so much!
Joy of Resistance: Multicultural Feminist Radio @ WBAI,
99.5 FM, NYC, 1st and 3rd Wednesdays, 9-10 pm
(broadcasting to New York, New Jersey, Connecticut
& worldwide on the web)
And here are more details on the WBAI 100 SPEAKERS COLLECTION
We have assembled an incredible collection of the best speakers on Pacifica over the past 10 years – we call it The Pacifica Speaker Collection.
This is a collection of over 100 speeches, totaling over 200 hours of material – and it’s yours on one jump-drive the size of your thumb for a pledge of $180 or whatever you can afford.
The Pacifica Speaker Collection includes people like: Alice Walker, Amy Goodman, Bill McKibben, Chris Hedges, Richard Wolff, Cornell West, Eduardo Galeano, Russell Simmons. Paul Krugman, Eve Ensler, Studs Terkel. Van Jones with Angela Davis. Rachel Maddow, Robert Reich, Robert Scheer, Edward Said, and many many more.
Here’s how the jump drive works: you plug the drive into your computer, then you can move all those speeches wherever you want: put them on you phone or your iPod; listen over your computer at home or at work; feed them into your home stereo system; take them on the road; upload them into the cloud and give as a gift of course.
Normally, during fund drives, we ask you to pledge $60 per speech for a CD. Now, we’re offering you over 100 speeches. If you do the math, that’s $6,000 dollars worth of speeches. And you get them all on one compact hard drive the size of your thumb.
New Delhi Gang Rape perpetrators sentenced to death
Four men have been found guilty of the fatal gang rape of a 23-year-old physiotherapy student in New Delhi, India last December and have been sentenced to be hanged.
The victim and a friend were trying to taxi home after seeing a movie when the men lured them onto a private bus. They beat both of them and raped the woman. The victim died two weeks later of severe internal injuries. She was able to provide evidence against the attackers while on her hospital bed.
Another suspect, a man who was a juvenile when he committed the attack, was sentenced in August to three years in a reform facility.
The attack and death of the student led to huge protests across India about sexual violence and the status of women. It resulted in the introduction of tough new laws to punish sexual offenses, including allowing the death penalty to be used in serious cases of rape.
And our feature segment today will focus on the aftermath of that much publicized rape and its implications and underlying causes. We’ll be speaking with reknowned Indian feminist Rita Banerji So stay tuned
Meanwhile, an unprecedented UN study of 10,000 men in Asia and the Pacific, has found that, on average, half of those interviewed reported using physical and/or sexual violence against a female partner and that the major reason given by men for their actions was “male entitlement.” We will be discussing this study and other background conditions of global rape normalization with Huffington Post commentator Soraya Chemaly an activist and frequent blogger on these issues.
Guttmacher study on abortion and mental health
Abortion foes have claimed that abortion is bad for women’s mental health, but this claim has rarely been studied. The Guttmacher Institute has released a new study of 843 women who, between 2008 and 10, either obtained an abortion or were denied one because of applying after the time limit. The study focused on women’s emotions one week after they either did or did not recieve the abortions.
Compared with women who obtained a near-limit abortion, those denied the abortion felt more regret and anger and less relief and happiness. 95% of women who had obtained the abortion felt it was the right decision, as did 89% of even those who expressed regret.
For a complete report on this study, you can get a link on our blog, below–or go to Guttmacher.org.
U.N. Women issues progress report
The new head of the U.N. agency promoting women’s rights says there is “a definite backlash” against equality for women despite some significant progress, pointing to an upsurge in violence against women and the uphill fight to escape poverty and crack the glass ceiling.
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, who was South Africa’s first female deputy president, said that 18 years after world leaders adopted a blueprint to achieve equality for women at a U.N. conference in Beijing, there are still major economic and social barriers and new crimes to confront including trafficking of women and girls–and cyber bullying.
“All of those means that we do need to go back to the drawing boards and strengthen the mechanisms and options that we have and that the campaign for women’s equality needs to be broadened to include boys and men as well as the private sector.
UN Women was created three years ago by the General Assembly to combine four U.N. bodies dealing with the advancement of women under a single umbrella. Ending violence against women and girls s one of its top priorities.
You can get a link to this entire story on our blog at http://www.joyofresistance.com
Women arrested over immigration bill
On Thursday, Sept. 12, More than 100 women were arrested on Capitol Hill after they blocked a busy intersection to press the House of Representatives to move on immigration legislation in a protest that rallied national women’s groups to the cause.
Organizers said 25 immigrants who are in the country without legal papers were among those arrested.
Also arrested were Terry O’Neill, president of the National Organization for Women, and Linda Meric, executive director of 9to5.
Last week, House leaders said they would probably not take up contentious immigration legislation this fall.
Maria Hernandez, 37, an immigrant from Mexico who does not have legal status, said she participated in the protest even though she is raising three young daughters in San Francisco.
“Why not?” Ms. Hernandez said before her arrest. “I’m taking the same risk every time I go out of my house, every time I take my daughters to school.”
Leaders of the liberal women’s organizations said they were embracing immigration in a bid to expand their following among immigrant and Latina women, both fast-growing populations.
Wage Gap tool
The U.S. Census Bureau has released new data–which, unfortunately is not new–on the gender wage gap – In 2012, women still earned just 77 cents, on average, for every dollar earned by men, with African American women earning 70 cents and Latina women 64 cents on that average white male dollar. The numbers haven’t budged in the last decade.
According to the The American Association of University Women (AAUW), for two years, the U.S. Department of Labor has been saying it will develop a new tool to collect information on salaries, wages, and other benefits earned by employees of federal contractors. And since 2006, the federal government has had NO tool to effectively monitor wage discrimination based on race, national origin and gender by private employers – that means our tax dollars could be going to federal contractors who are not paying women fairly. Two months ago, the Department of Labor got a new leader, and this data collection tool should be one of the first items on Secretary Perez’s agenda.
The AAUW is urging people to go to their website: aauw.org and click Take Action tell the new Secretary of Labor to develop what they say is an essential tool in the fight for equal pay.
Australia “personhood” bill debated.
If a new proposal in the Australian state of South Wales becomes law, women who abort a fetus after 20 weeks could be charged with grievous bodily harm.
Australian women’s groups are calling this proposal to give a fetus personhood rights, the first step toward making abortion illegal in the state.
“This bill established personhood for a foetus and this is a very concerning precedent to be setting,” said Melanie Fernandez, chair of the Women’s Electoral Lobby Australia. “That kind of precedent has been used as a first starting point to roll back abortion right in other places, such as states in America.”
The bill is being called “Zoe’s law,” named for a 32-week-old unborn fetus that died when the mother was hit by a car in 2009. Because South Wales did not view the fetus as a person, the driver was not charged with its murder but rather with causing “grievous bodily harm.”
Obamacare and women
As Republicans threaten to shut down the government unless Obamacare is repealed, Planned Parenthood is publicizing that many provisions of the new law–which will go into effect on October 1st–will specifically benefit women. These include: 1) No more denial of insurance for “pre-existing conditions”, a practice that especially discriminates against women, as both pregnancy and being a survivor of domestic violence have been considered “pre-existing conditions”. Being a woman , itself. was treated as a “pre-existing condition” as women were routinely charged 135% more for insurance than men. 2) 20 million insured women have already received free preventive care for which they formerly would have had to pay, 3) Birth control will be available without a co-pay, saving women using it about $600. a year. 3) Tax credits will be available to low income pregnant women.
While still a subsidy to the private insurance system, Obamacare does curb a few of the worst abuses of healthcare-for-profit, which is why Republicans hate it so much. Most developed countries have some form of Single Payer healthcare which is publicly financed by taxes and not run for profit. President Obama did not put that option “on the table” when proposing his healthcare reform plan, although many continue to fight for it in this country.