After the first post for WAM, I got responses that were, to say the least, unsettling. So many young women in America do not realize what has happened to the rights of the female gender. They were not around or to young during the 1970’s and 80’s to understand what the movement was all about, equality and inclusion.
Being young is a good thing; you have a lifetime to look forward to. You are bright, articulate and know where you are headed. But what happens if life circumstances change for you? The death of your spouse can send you below the poverty level because you will only make 63% of the wage your male counterpart earns. That figure is not much higher than it was when we “burned our bras.”
I want it to be known that I am not anti-gay, nor am I a religious fanatic. I go to church twice a year and support Gay Rights. It is that I am pro woman and anti woman bashing, which is where our country is headed right now.
Housing--We are still discriminated against in housing. “You got the kids in the divorce, your husband died, any number of unforeseen circumstances, but I can only rent to a person with one child.”
Credit—“Your credit rating was based on the fact that you were married, now you are single, sorry.”
Health care--Women produce different symptoms in a heart attack. My sister-in-law died 2 days ago from one. The medical community gave up on her. A friend has had bloody stool for over a year, and they still have not run tests for colon cancer, which is what I suspect it is, because men get it more often than women.
Professional Assistance—“Leave it all to me. Don't worry your little (they take us for a bunch of nitwits) head about it.”
Courts--Since the 1990's women are loosing in any court when they charge abuse or violence of any kind. Children are being taken away because the other gender can pay more for lawyers and even witnesses. 95% of violence against women goes unreported because women who have called for help know that the police, medical professionals and judges will not do anything to stop it.
We need change. We need a voice. We need to come together to effect change and gather our voices as one.
Friday, December 26, 2008
Thursday, December 25, 2008
Somewhere along the line, NOW allowed itself to become distracted from the core issues of equality for all women to the issue of equality for the few. Maybe the wind just left their sails, but the net result is the alienation of many of us who are considered mainstream. And I am left wondering what happened to the bright future we were all promised.
We are still discriminated against in our daily lives. We earn less money than men, we have substandard health care and we are discriminated against in the courts, housing and just about everything that touches our lives. Sure, a few women have "broken the glass ceiling", but few are still around to talk about it. They fell back through long ago. We are still patted on the head by doctors and told to take two aspirin, although we die from the same aliments as men. And, in the courts, our lawyers treat us much the same way. "Let me handle it" is all we hear, with nary the chance for our own input with the net result of lose.
We are seen as emotional, weak and not able to stand up to crisis. We are drained emotionally, physically and financially by the men we are supposed to stand one pace behind. We are still seen as the 1950's ideal. The little woman in pearls, apron and high heels, greeting our man at the door with a pot-roast in one hand and a negligee in the other. The only difference is today, we are expected to augment that picture with a paycheck as well.
Men are pack animals and hunters. Women are singular and the gatherers. We prefer the environment of our homes and the security of our families. We have never learned to hunt as men have, and maybe this isn't such a bad thing, for hunting means aggression. And women, though most of us possess it, seldom use aggression as a weapon. We do not band together and fling arrows. We would rather talk about it than actually do something drastic.
With the majority of the population being women, I have decided that the reason NOW is not more successful in it's efforts is due to it's own membership. With the focus on Gay and Lesbian Rights, it has left many of us scratching our heads. Many of us lead faith based lives and would never be involved in such a radical agenda. Many of us believe in the traditional family, which cuts the grain of NOW. And many of us are just too tired from our daily responsibilities of work, family and chores to care about supporting a whole different set of values.
What is called for in this type of situation is a completely new beginning for us all A new national organization to represent our daily interests and us. For this reason, we are proposing that we do just that. We form a national organization appealing to the majority of our gender, The Woman's Alliance Movement or WAM.
The objective would be true equality for all women, not just a few. Equal pay, equal access to medical care, equality in the courts and equality in our family structures.
We need strong national and local leaders working together to support such an endeavor. We need to come together and start to fling the arrows, aprons, pearls and a few high heels in the name of equality and equity.
What we do not need is a pat on the head and told to go home and play nice.
Are you with us or again' us on this? If you are with us, leave a comment and contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We are in need of all types of expertise from bakers to bankers, from laundry workers to lawyers. Most of all, from woman to woman.
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