The Fifth World Congress on Women

Today is International Women’s Day.  While there is some progress to celebrate, women keep losing rights at an exponential rate in this country. Despite the fact that women comprise 51% of the world’s population, women remain one of the most systematically exploited, discriminated against, and abused groups.  It is high time that we called for the Fifth World Congress on Women.

If one doubts that there is a full-scale War on Women, just consider these recent news stories:

http://www.salon.com/2014/03/22/a_terrifying_precedent_woman_to_be_tried_for_murder_for_giving_birth_to_stillborn/

http://www.salon.com/2014/03/06/judge_overturns_rape_verdict_because_the_victim_didnt_behave_like_a_victim/

http://www.salon.com/2013/08/07/louisiana_parish_claims_incarcerated_14_year_old_consented_to_be_raped_by_her_corrections_officer/

http://rhrealitycheck.org/article/2014/03/06/montana-abortion-provider-severely-vandalized-closed-indefinitely/?&utm_medium=email&utm_source=reality&utm_content=5+-+Montana+Abortion+Provider+Severely+Vanda&utm_campaign=rhrc&source=rhrc

Women bear brunt of Iranian crackdown on civil liberties

It is important to note that the metastasizing assault on women’s human rights and liberties has everything to do with the takeover of our government by religious zealots who would turn our country into a theocracy. Christian fundamentalism with its long list of hated freedoms and its misogyny has been spreading virulently like a pestilence and has infiltrated all levels of our government, at the local and state level, in the courts, the legislature, and even the White House for 8 years under George W. Bush, and women are far the worse for it. This is reflected in places like Iran with the resurgence of fundamentalist Islam.

If we want to preserve what is left of our democracy and regain the ground we have lost, we must excise the cancerous religious tyranny that has been allowed to grow that continues to eat away at women’s basic human rights, liberties, autonomy, and agency by confronting and condemning all forms of domination of and violence towards women and girls everywhere and affirm women’s and girls’ right to live in a world free from misogyny and male supremacy. A woman’s sovereign right over her life and her body MUST BE RESPECTED!!!

We will work for gender parity in the form of fair and equal representation in government, an immediate end to the War on Women and ALL wars, ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment and Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), and we MUST have a 5th World Congress on Women.  Please sign the petition at:  Support a UN 5th World Conference on Women (5WCW).

No Forced Pregnancy! In Defense of Choice

The War on Women being waged in Washington and in the States is an attack on women‘s lives, bodily sovereignty, autonomy, and agency.  This year marks the 41st anniversary of Roe v. Wade and we will NOT GO BACK to the days of illegal abortions!  Women are not brood mares, incubators, or chattel and abortion is a woman’s choice, and hers alone.  We vehemently reject the incursions of the radical religious right into our bedrooms and the legislation of our bodies to fit the fundamentalist Christian worldview and we will not sit by and see our basic human rights eroded by those who would coerce us into unwanted childbearing.

“Motherhood by Choice, Not Chance,” directed by Oscar-nominated, Emmy-winning filmmaker Dorothy Fadiman, is a new film celebrating the freedom of choice ushered in by the cherished 1973 Roe v. Wade decision.  To watch this quality film, and the abortion rights trilogy, “FROM the BACK-ALLEYS to the SUPREME COURT & BEYOND” go to:

The Power of Choice Project

“Progressive Evangelical Fundamentalists?”

Read another article on the Alternet at http://www.alternet.org/belief/if-only-right-wing-christian-evangelicals-knew-where-their-ideas-came, arguing that evangelical fundamentalists have a progressive history in the 19th century and suggesting that perhaps when the GOP/TeaParty crumbles, progressives should consider aligning themselves with them.  The author offhandedly remarks that progressives may have to think “strategically” about possibly teaming up with them for equal pay, for example, even though it might mean compromising on abortion or gay rights, surmising from his comment that there may be “good arguments on both sides.” My answer to that is, “Are you crazy?!”

What kind of “progressive” movement are you left with when you’re willing to trade away women’s or LGBT human rights for equal pay?!  Any movement that coerces women into unwanted childbearing would properly be called an authoritarian, ultra-right, fascist patriarchy, not a “progressive evangelical movement,” an oxymoron if there ever was one. And what would the “good arguments on both sides” be, pray tell, that male supremacism is blessed by God and that abortion is “murder”? Why should anyone “compromise” with extremist fanaticism?

These are people to challenge, not embrace, and indeed the radical religious right have been the lunatic fringe and undoing of both the GOP and the tea party and would stop at nothing until they establish an horrifically oppressive theocracy, regardless of any progressive history or association with populism. They are the core of the sanctimonious, hypocritical, meanspirited GOP, and a bigger threat to human rights and social justice than either the establishment Republicans or the tea party are without them and who both factions should unceremoniously dump if they hope to have a prayer of surviving politically. But more importantly, because the 20th century GOP have virtually nothing to offer anyone (other than the corporate elite) and the Tea Party has nothing to offer that true progressives (I’m not talking the mediocre, cave-in-to-the-right spineless Democrats here) do much better, like peace and civil liberties, I would be among those who would welcome their all going the way of the dinosaurs.

5 Election Day lessons for the GOP – The Week

The editorial staff at the Week’s examination of the GOP’s poor showing in the 2012 elections is rather superficial because the Republicans don’t need a face lift, they need a heart transplant. Their bone-deep misogyny and pandering to the radical religious right needs to to be excised and exorcised if they want to have any hope of appealing to anyone other than the lunatic fundamentalist fringe. Their “woman problem” (more accurately woman-hating problem) is their worst failing and should have been first on this writer’s list.

Romney signed his own political death warrant when he named blatant misogynist Paul Ryan as his running mate and continued to support Todd Akin and Richard Mourdock and didn’t denounce them and Joe Walsh for the  idiots they are when they made their ill-informed and outrageous remarks about rape, rape-induced pregnancy, and abortion.

The article in Reuters outlines the real reason Obama and so many other pro-choice Democrats, especially women, won:  women voters refusal to accept the war on women unleashed by the Tea Party Republicans.  The defeat of Romney/Ryan, Todd Akin, Richard Mourdock, Joe Walsh, and the rabid Allen West and the election of pro-choice women like Elizabeth Warren, Tammy Baldwin, Heidi Heitkamp, Kirsten Gillibrand, Maria Cantwell, Tammy Duckworth, Dianne Feinstein, Carol Shea-Porter, Mazie Hirono, and Annie Kuster to the Senate for the first-time ever total of 19 pro-choice women (!) is abundant proof of this.

With the help of women, Obama wins a second term | Reuters

5 Election Day lessons for the GOP – The Week

Patriarchal Dominionism: The Core of Tyranny

It is no accident that today we are seeing the confluence of the corporate state, the seizure of political power by the church, and an escalating war on women.  Like the corporation, the church was an instrument of the king, and we are coming full circle again, witnessing the blurring of the line between church and state, the ascendancy of corporate fascism, and mounting scapegoating of women.

Some of you may wonder why the GOP has slipped a cog and gone completely off the rails with regard to women’s basic human rights.  The answer is this:  the GOP has been taken over by corporate interests and the right-wing authoritarian fundamentalist church, both of whom have always been exceedingly hostile to women’s autonomy, psychosocial independence, power, financial freedom, and self-determination.  The Republican Party started its slide into fascist theocracy when it put the church’s opposition to abortion into its platform in 1976, and plummeted into full-blown misogyny in 2012 with its rape comments and inclusion of a call for a “fetal personhood” amendment to the Constitution.

In the beginnings of this country, the colonies were ruled by governors who were appointed by the king and who were also church leaders; they also were beholden to and exploited by the corporate arm of the monarchy in the form of the British East India Company.  It was tyranny on the part of both the church and the corporation that led to the series of revolts, such as the Boston Tea Party, that culminated in the American Revolution. The Revolution also coincided with the most outrageous abuse of power by the church:  the witch hunts. This tyranny has a long history, going back to the beginnings of patriarchy.

In antiquity, there was goddess-worship for 25,000 years prior to the advent of patriarchal religions which took over by force.  The goddess-worshipping matrilineal culture of Minoa, an egalitarian and peaceful, prosperous, highly-developed culture that honored and respected the earth and life-giving nature and revered the sacred feminine, was destroyed by an invading patriarchal group who worshipped a male war god who ruled by fear and domination and who brought violence, death and destruction, gender inequality, and the abuse of power with it.

The patriarchal religions of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, which appeared much more recently and currently dominate, are all Middle-Eastern in origin, and despite all the concern about Sharia Law, there is very little difference between the Al Qaida and Christian fundamentalist dominionists in their zeal to oppress women.  There is likewise little difference between the last two U. S. administrations’ use of torture, labeling people “terrorists”, and use of psychological manipulation and wars to pursue domination of the earth and every creature on it, and the Inquisitions’ and Puritans’ use of torture and labeling women as “witches” and the use of Christian dogma to silence, control, and intimidate.

Though the Christian dominionist reconstructionists would like us to believe that the country was founded as a “Christian nation” and should be ruled by rigid Christian orthodoxy, the fact is they are talking about puritanical colonial America, not the post-revolutionary, independent United States of America, which was founded on the principles of the Enlightenment—rationalism, universalism, empiricism, and most importantly, secularism.  Unless we put a stop to the takeover of our government by both the corporation and the church, we are going to be living in a fascist, authoritarian, Calvinist, corporate theocracy where individual freedoms, especially for women, are a thing of the past.  We must WAKE UP and kick the corporation, and the church, out of government once and for all and pass the Equal Rights Amendment and an amendment to abolish corporate personhood before women once again are chattel and patriarchal corporate and ecclesiastical tyranny totally obliterate the rights of human beings.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dominionism

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Witch_hunts

http://www.salon.com/2012/10/26/gops_insane_rape_remarks_arent_outliers/

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/oct/25/real-republican-party-rape-platform

http://www.politicususa.com/gop-attempts-drag-america-imaginary-conservative-utopia.html

http://voices.yahoo.com/witch-hunts-as-form-anti-female-discrimination-379982.html?cat=37

http://one-evil.org/content/people_15c_Innocent_VIII.html

http://www.themystica.com/mystica/articles/m/malleus_maleficarum.htm

http://sfr-21.org/women.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/European_witch-hunts

http://voices.yahoo.com/how-martin-luther-john-calvin-conducted-witch-379935.html?cat=37

Eisler, Riane, “The Chalice and the Blade,” Harper & Collins, 1988.

Daly, Mary, “The Church and the Second Sex,” Harper & Row, 1975.

Occupy Patriarchy—End the War on Women!

The attempts to roll back the gains of the women’s movement have been going on for a long time now, almost immediately after Roe v. Wade was passed, but it has become increasingly escalated lately with attacks now being leveled against not only reproductive rights (including contraception) but women’s health care, and even programs for victims of violence and rape being dismantled. It is time for us to stand up and take action to help raise the awareness that this onslaught is about patriarchal dominance and religious tyranny, not “religious freedom”.

Women are steadily making gains in other parts of the world, one of the most heartening examples being the women of the Congo, who have risen up in the face of wartime torture against the violence that has been directed at them, demanding an end to rape.[1]  We see women making strides towards freedom in the Middle East with Tunisia granting equal rights to men and women, and in India, despite much discrimination, women currently holding all three of the high offices of President, Speaker of the Lok Sabha, and Leader of the Opposition, ]while here in the U. S. women are seeing our rights and gains erode and to this day are the most under-represented group in government and the poorest members of society.

Today, in America, we are contending with escalated attacks on women’s human rights like never before, whether it be by redefining rape, slashing funding for planned parenthood, eliminating crucial health screening and services for women, attempting to restrict and even criminalize abortion, denying access to contraception, or doing away with programs to help victims of domestic violence and rape.

The long list of assaults on women’s basic human rights includes the Blunt Amendment, which would have allowed any employer to refuse to cover any kind of health care service by citing “moral reasons”; fetal “personhood” bills; bills requiring ultrasound, including invasive vaginal probes, prior to allowing abortions; bills outlawing abortions after 20 weeks; bills allowing health care providers to refuse to perform abortions[2] and hospitals to refuse to perform emergency abortions, even in the case of the mother’s life being at stake in the “Let Women Die Bill” that passed in the U. S. House of Representatives; the defunding of Planned Parenthood, including the Susan V. Komen Foundation dropping planned parenthood funding for cancer screenings; the continuing harassment, arson attacks, bombings and shootings of family planning staff and doctors, four of whom have been murdered between 1993 and 2009.[3]

In view of such attacks, one might think we lived in a country ruled by an Ayatollah rather than in the United States where there is supposed to be a government of, for, and by the people with the separation of church and state.  But, as it turns out, the Christian fundamentalists who have made inroads into our government have been steadily blurring this line and are little different from their Muslim counterparts in their determination to restrict the freedoms of their respective female citizens.  Patriarchal religion has historically often been friendly to fascism and feudalism and hostile to the values of freedom and enlightenment, particularly of course with regard to women. See article [4] below for a horrific example of this.

Patriarchy is about domination and the abuse of power and we wish to raise the awareness of the public that the war on women is about the attempt to control women’s lives, whether it be by redefining rape, slashing funding for planned parenthood, eliminating crucial health screening and services for women, attempting to restrict and even criminalize abortion, denying access to contraception, or doing away with programs to help victims of domestic violence and rape.  We will not sit by and allow women’s human rights to be treated as if they are expendable or ignore the sexist mentality that fuels these attacks.  It is time for us to Occupy Patriarchy and end the War on Women!

[1] http://drc.vday.org/why-congo

A Letter From Joe to His Friend Paul | Care2 Causes

Biden’s smiles were dazzling both in their tooth and truth! They were honest reactions to the ridiculous assertions by this meanspirited little liar who would throw the elderly, the poor, and women under the bus to serve his 1% paymasters. I keep wondering why no one has commented on Ryan’s smirks, ugly both in intent and presentation.

Another huge difference between these two other than their grins and ability to see/speak the truth is the fact that Biden actually respects the separation of church and state even though he is a Catholic whereas Ryan thinks he and the POPE have the right to make women’s most personal decisions for them, arrogant twerp that he is.
Read more: http://www.care2.com/causes/a-letter-from-joe-to-his-friend-paul.html#ixzz29DRyxx4x

A Letter From Joe to His Friend Paul | Care2 Causes#comment-4269608#comment-4269608

Sarah Buttenwieser: We Are In Texas Now

This article examines the importance of respecting the need for reproductive rights, regardless of the woman’s circumstances of whether her story is more or less sympathetic to someone else, and that changing small details of punitive laws like Texas’ coerced sonogram law is no solution, that they need to be abolished altogether.  I would like to point out that this is for the simple reason that it is no one else’s business.  The concept of choice refers to the woman herself, not the church, the state, her insurance company, her physician, her hospital, pharmacist, ad nauseum.  It is HER choice and her choice alone.

The writer points out that many people have been ignoring the unabated attempts to block access to abortion (focusing more on choice) resulting in our being in the situation in which we now find ourselves, where bills proposing this type of invasiveness are proliferating.  I would add that it is also why we are now seeing the escalation of attempts to control access to birth control as well.  Both choice and access are under attack, with fetal personhood bills and laws criminalizing abortion spreading, and this is why we must pass the Equal Rights Amendment so that we don’t have to fight each and every one of these assaults on women’s reproductive rights as a separate event, can challenge them on Constitutional grounds, and can finally have equal standing before the law!

Sarah Buttenwieser: We Are In Texas Now

The Negro Project and Margaret Sanger

It is very telling that this webpage starts out with a Biblical quote about “choosing life so both you and your descendants may live”, which  says it all regarding their motives, in my opinion, and confirmed my suspicion that this is a smear job. Missing from this treatise is any statement about the background of the writer or the “say so” marchers other than that they were “ministers”, which again exposes their true motives.  These are ministers, you can be sure, of patriarchal Christian  fundamentalist sects, most likely ultra-conservative Baptists who, like their fundamentalist papist and Islamic counterparts,  take a particular dislike to any freedom on the part of women, especially sexual freedom, while taking great umbrage to what they perceive as racial prejudice.  It is amazing how hypocritical this is, though it is par for the course.  While it is undeniable that there was racism inherent in eugenicism, sexism is inherent in patriarchal religion.

The “immigrants” who were flooding the country at the time Margaret Sanger was campaigning for birth control were overwhelmingly Irish, so if anyone should be so offended by her work, I suppose it should be someone like me with my Irish heritage. Instead, I am very thankful that Irish women were able to not be powerless over their lives and not live in squalor, and it seems to me no one ought to be offended about a movement if it helped their ancestors gain some control over endless childbearing and resulting poverty through birth control, which is voluntary.  Forced sterilization is a different situation; however, why anyone would think forced childbearing is preferable escapes me. The issue is CHOICE!

Nobody forces anyone to go to Planned Parenthood, use birth control, or submit to any procedure, nor do  certain groups get targeted for services over others, regardless of any attitudes anyone might have had who started the birth control movement a century ago, when ideas about so-called racial superiority were widely held. The use of current attitudes to judge people in the past and apply that to the present as if everyone who promotes birth control now is a eugenicist is  faulty reasoning—not to mention we have to judge people by the standard of their times, and Margaret Sanger is a hero to anyone who is sane, regardless of any such attitudes.

The other glaring issue I want to point out is the flip side of this argument.  Do people have a right to dominate others because they choose to overpopulate and have endless children? It’s no accident that the Catholic church and the Mormon church promote unbridled childbearing because they not only want to repress women’s right to self- determination, but they crave huge numbers of followers over whom they have dominion and whom they can control.  Children born into Catholicism, Mormonism, Islam,  and fundamentalist Protestant sects such as the Baptists, are conscripted into these patriarchal belief systems involuntarily in order to swell the influence of these churches over their followers and society at large, which we have witnessed increasingly because of their extreme fanatical views on abortion and birth control and resultant overpopulating. I believe the rest of us have some say in being taken over by sheer numbers and about having the earth destroyed because people are so hellbent on procreating in such outrageous numbers, hiding behind their religious justifications. The people having huge numbers of children affect all of us on this planet and threaten  all of our survival and if they think it is ok to force women into childbearing, perhaps it is time for them to be forced to stop overpopulating us into extinction and spreading their oppression!

The Negro Project and Margaret Sanger

Occupy Patriarchy—End the War on Women!

The attempts to roll back the gains of the women’s movement have been going on for a long time now, almost immediately after Roe v. Wade was passed, but it has become increasingly escalated lately with attacks now being leveled against not only reproductive rights (including contraception) but women’s health care, and even programs for victims of violence and rape being dismantled. It is time for us to stand up.  Today is International Women’s Day, this is Women’s History month, and we are speaking up, taking to the airways, and taking action to help raise the awareness that this onslaught is about patriarchal dominance, not “religious freedom”.

 Women are steadily making gains in other parts of the world, one of the most heartening examples being the women of the Congo, who have risen up in the face of wartime torture against the violence that has been directed at them, demanding an end to rape.[1]  We see women making strides towards freedom in the Middle East with Tunisia granting equal rights to men and women, and in India, despite much discrimination, women currently holding all three of the high offices of President, Speaker of the Lok Sabha, and Leader of the Opposition, while here in the U. S. women are seeing our rights and gains erode and to this day are the most under-represented group in government and the poorest members of society.

Today, in America, we are contending with attacks on women’s human rights such as the Blunt Amendment, which would have allowed any employer to refuse to cover any kind of health care service by citing “moral reasons”; fetal “personhood” bills; bills requiring ultrasound, including invasive vaginal probes, prior to allowing abortions; bills outlawing abortions after 20 weeks; bills allowing health care providers to refuse to perform abortions[2] and hospitals to refuse to perform emergency abortions, even in the case of the mother’s life being at stake in the “Let Women Die Bill” that passed in the U. S. House of Representatives; the defunding of Planned Parenthood, including the Susan V. Komen Foundation dropping planned parenthood funding for cancer screenings; the continuing harassment, arson attacks, bombings and shootings of family planning staff and doctors, four of whom have been murdered between 1993 and 2009.[3]

In view of such attacks, one might think we lived in a country ruled by an Ayatollah rather than in the United States where there is supposed to be a government of, for, and by the people with the separation of church and state.  But, as it turns out, the Christian fundamentalists who have made inroads into our government have been steadily blurring this line and are little different from their Muslim counterparts in their determination to restrict the freedoms of their respective female citizens.  Patriarchal religion has historically often been friendly to fascism and feudalism and hostile to the values of freedom and enlightenment, particularly of course with regard to women.

Patriarchy is about domination and the abuse of power and we wish to raise the awareness of the public that the war on women is about the attempt to control women’s lives, whether it be by redefining rape, slashing funding for planned parenthood, eliminating crucial health screening and services for women, attempting to restrict and even criminalize abortion, denying access to contraception, or doing away with programs to help victims of domestic violence and rape.  We will not sit by and allow women’s human rights to be treated as if they are expendable or ignore the sexist mentality that fuels these attacks.  It is time for us to Occupy Patriarchy and end the War on Women.