She read from notes, stumbling occasionally, and did not so much lean on her metaphors as wrestle them to the floor and grind them underfoot; but they loved it anyway - all 15 minutes of it. She attacked everyone from the president on down, demanded stricter standards for America's service personnel, espoused an aggressive red-meat constitutionalism, and proposed a new policy which she summed up as "if you don't like it - go home."
The 2,000-strong crowd cheered wildly as she literally howled her frustration before leading them, fists pumping, in an anti-incumbent chant of "Go home!" A strange mix of patriotism and petulance, it was a rough kind of stump speech that hadn't been tested in a focus group or tried out on a campaign aide, and which was delivered with complete disregard for how it might play in the media.
Witness the startling political debut
of Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta, American citizen.
posted by anigbrowl
on Sep 20, 2010 -
Though her nomination was a joke
, instigated by a group of men hoping to inhibit the local activities of the Women's Christian Temperance Union by embarrassing female voters, Susanna Madora "Dora" Kinsey Salter
surprised the pranksters by winning two-thirds of the vote in the mayoral election of 1887 in tiny Argonia, Kansas, becoming not only America's first female mayor, but also earning the distinction of being the first woman elected to any
political office in the United States. Her official notice of election read: Madam, You are hereby notified that at an election held in the city of Argonia on Monday April 4/87, for the purpose of electing city officers, you were duly elected to the office of Mayor of said city. You will take due notice thereof and govern yourself accordingly.
Though she only served one term and had no further political ambitions, she became a hero of the early women's suffrage movement. [more inside]
posted by amyms
on Sep 1, 2010 -
When a person graduates high school as one of the top students, all sorts of grand predictions are made for the person's future. But how many of them end up doing the things predicted of them?
The Buffalo News did a feature in 2007
on what the top students in the Buffalo area from 1987 ended up doing after high school. Some of them have done remarkable things, while others have made their mark in smaller ways, all are interesting in their own way.
posted by reenum
on Jul 4, 2010 -
"Sixteen-year-old Sabera, with a pretty yellow head scarf, frets that she is missing school. 'I was about to get engaged, and the boy came to ask me himself, before sending his parents. A lady in our neighbourhood saw us, and called the police,' she explains. She was sentenced to three years but, in an act of mercy, it was shortened to 18 months . . ." The BBC reports from an Afghan women's prison. [more inside]
posted by Jaltcoh
on Jun 30, 2010 -
Toothed female condom
unveiled in South Africa. South African Dr. Sonnet Ehlers was on call one night four decades ago when a devastated rape victim walked in. Her eyes were lifeless; she was like a breathing corpse.
"She looked at me and said, 'If only I had teeth down there,'" recalled Ehlers, who was a 20-year-old medical researcher at the time. "I promised her I'd do something to help people like her one day." [more inside]
posted by sio42
on Jun 24, 2010 -
The End of Men
, in The Atlantic. An article about the rise of women (now over 50% of the U.S. workforce), and implications of the attendant changes for both women and men. [more inside]
posted by marble
on Jun 10, 2010 -
“Let us acknowledge the measure of their sacrifice by honoring them as brave women, and by honoring them as women who served without thought of glory which we accord to heroes of battle. The service pilot faces the risk of death without the emotional inspiration of combat. Men who battle in the sky have the grim, triumphant knowledge that their bombs and bullets are destroying the enemy, and their courage is sustained by the emotions of conflict.
These women have given their lives in the performance of arduous and exacting duties without being able to see and feel the final results of their work under the quickening influence of aerial action. They have demonstrated a courage which is sustained not by the fevers of combat, but the steady heartbeat of faith—a faith in the rightness of our cause, and a faith in the importance of their work to the men who do go into combat.
Let us pay tribute to these women by honoring their memory . . . Let us treasure their memory as women whose sacrifice has brought honor not only to their country, but also to their organization.
We shall not forget the accomplishments of our women fliers and their contributions to the fulfillment of our mission. And we shall always keep and remember the brave heritage of the women who gave their lives. It is the heritage of faith in victory and faith in the ultimate freedom of humanity.” [more inside]
posted by caddis
on May 31, 2010 -
I'm just not sure that "happiness" is supposed to be the stable human condition, and I think it's punishing that we're constantly being pushed to achieve it. Screw Happiness
, an essay on the folly of using happiness as a measure to define women's lives.
posted by desjardins
on May 10, 2010 -
Is a Woman's MBA Worth Less? $4,600.
That's how much less women made than men in their first post-MBA jobs, according to research by Nancy Carter and Christine Silva of Catalyst. And it's not because women tend to start at lower positions than men — though they do start at lower positions than men, on average, that's a separate problem. The research controls for job level and industry. What's more, the salary lines aren't parallel; men's salaries start higher, then rise faster. The gap widens over time, even after controlling for factors like having children or differing aspiration levels.
The pay just isn't equal.
posted by infini
on May 8, 2010 -
The American Academy of Pediatrics
is proposing that doctors be authorized to perform a “ritual nick”
on the genitals of pre-pubescent girls in order to satisfy cultural requirements and hopefully stave off more invasive forms of Female Genital Cutting (FGC):
Most forms of FGC are decidedly harmful, and pediatricians should decline to perform them, even in the absence of any legal constraints. However, the ritual nick suggested by some pediatricians is not physically harmful and is much less extensive than routine newborn male genital cutting. There is reason to believe that offering such a compromise may build trust between hospitals and immigrant communities, save some girls from undergoing disﬁguring and life-threatening procedures in their native countries, and play a role in the eventual eradication of FGC. It might be more effective if federal and state laws enabled pediatricians to reach out to families by offering a ritual nick as a possible compromise to avoid greater harm. (source: PDF; not safe for work, contains line drawings of female genitalia.)
posted by Rumple
on May 7, 2010 -
In 2009, four Buddhist nuns (Bhikkunis) were secretly ordained
in Australia - the first ever ordination of Bhikkunis in Australia, and a first for the Thai Forest
tradition anywhere. London-born Ajahn Brahm
, a long-time supporter
of women's equality in Buddhism, facilitated the ordination. For this he was expelled
from his community, the Wat Pa Phong Sangha
, and his monastery's status was revoked
. This video
summarizes the conflict, and is possibly the first use of the Downfall meme related to Buddhism. This March, more nuns were ordained
in the UK for the first time since the Australia controversy, but they're still not equal
to male monks. This blog post
discusses sexism, fundamentalism, and the conflict between East and West. The modern opposition to bhikkhuni ordination is no ancient Buddhist tradition. It can be traced no earlier, so far as I am aware, than the abhorrent 1928 ruling against bhikkhuni in Thailand, made by monks who thought it reasonable to arrest nuns and throw them in jail for ordaining. [more inside]
posted by desjardins
on Apr 14, 2010 -