Wednesday, 4 February 2009

Where are the women....... (2)

Thanks to one of my American internet friends who alerted me to Obama's reversal of the so-called Mexico City Policy - or the Global Gag Rule. This, for anyone who didn't know (like me), was a particularly insidious piece of legislation first introduced in 1984 by Ronald Reagan, repealed by Bill Clinton in 1993, and re-instated by George Bush in 2001. So what is this hot potato? Abortion of course. The one where men get to say what women can do with their bodies. The policy banned non-governmental organisations (NGOs) from performing abortions or providing abortion counselling if they wanted to receive American state funds. So - good that Obama has reversed this misogynistic policy? Yes. And in Obama's words; " is right for us to rescind this policy and restore critical efforts to protect and empower women and promote global economic development." Just a minute. Promote economic development?? In the words of my internet friend: "Instead of 'It is right for us to rescind this policy because women are human beings who are entitled to personal sovereignty.' "And, it can't just be for women, nooo. It has to have global economic benefits too I suppose. "Not impressed." Thanks Ph, for alerting me to it and for your comments. I'm not impressed either. I'm losing track of the number of women in Obama's cabinet - and other high level positions. Every time I look it seems to be a different number, someone has dropped out or hasn't been confirmed. There still aren't enough though. But on my travels I found this: "Hilda Solis Labor secretary This 51-year-old former California congresswoman, who is Hispanic, is comfortable with car issues -- her husband owns an auto repair center. " - Courtesy of The Detroit News - Now, in case anyone wonders why I do not like this comment - it is patronising, patriarchal, and quite frankly, vomit-inducing. I am not interested in what Ms Solis' husband does. It is of no relevance whatsoever to her political skills, ability and intelligence. Even though I am not American, I do understand there is a connection between Detroit and cars. And as a journalist I also understand the need to add some local relevance. But that is just tosh. However it seems Ms Solis has managed to achieve something in her own right: "In the California Assembly, she fought to raise the state's minimum wage in 1996 and focused attention on sweatshops." Great. So why not put that first? Who. Gives. A. Fuck. about what her husband does? Deb Price - either your reporting sucks, or your sub-editors suck. Someone does. And as a minor point, either give the ages for everyone - or not at all. How inconsistent. Anyway, I am just looking forward to reading about how all the really important men in the world are capable of doing their job because of their wife's career. Ha!

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