Happy International Women’s Day 2014! http://www.internationalwomensday.com If I were sitting at a cafe on my favorite island in the French West Indies, I would have been handed a rose already. Instead I’m watching the snow melt this morning from my aviary and reflecting on that Virginia Slims ad; we have come a long way baby and we’ve got a long way to go.
“The story of women’s struggle for equality belongs to no single feminist nor to any one organization but to the collective efforts of all who care about human rights” Gloria Steinem
We Americans can feel smug when we read about countries where women cannot drive a car, or a woman cannot feel safe on a public bus from being gang raped. But if we truly pay attention, our sisters are under assault in a myriad of ways. A recent, hideous example is a misogynistic and homophobic judge in Arkansas – “Sluts are just whores in training.” Did I mention this is a family court judge? http://thinkprogress.org/justice/2014/03/07/3376181/sluts-are-just-whores-in-training-and-other-wisdom-offered-by-a-sitting-arkansas-judge/#
And then there’s the Army’s top sexual assault prosecutor being charged with…sexual assault. http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/mar/06/us-army-prosecutor-suspended-assault-claims
One of my favorite comedians, Sarah Silverman, schooled me on my retro-feminist views. In a YouTube sketch, she asks us to stop telling our girls they can be anything they want to be. I was guilty of this. I wanted the Bride to know she could be President if she wanted – thank God she didn’t. But why, why stop saying this to our daughters? Silverman said:
“Because it would never occur to them that they couldn’t.”
Over the years, I’ve written about and marched for reproductive freedom, because without that essential human right, women worldwide have shortened expectations and shortened lives. Pro Choice women are Pro Life women, we just continue to care about the lives of mothers and children.
Like the first woman rabbi, Sally Priesand, once said, I too look forward to the day we can stop making a news headline out of the “First Woman” anything.