Archive | November, 2012

Judge: Hobby Lobby Must Offer the Morning After Pill

20 Nov

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A judge has decreed that Hobby Lobby must provide the morning after pill as a part of its employee insurance plan. In this article provided by abcnews.go,com it is stated that Hobby Lobby is not a religious organization, so it must provide the morning after pill to it’s employees. The owners are religious and are fighting the new health care law. Where do you think the line should be drawn? Should employers have the right to pick and choose what insurance should be covered?

Do women want to be objectified?

20 Nov

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While I was taking a homework break, I stumbled on an interview with Cameron Diaz. She was saying how she believes stripping down is empowering, and how all women secretly want to be objectified.

“I think every woman does want to be objectified,” the 40-year-old Diaz said. “There’s a little part of you at all times that hopes to be somewhat objectified, and I think it’s healthy.”

Diaz related it to being comfortable stripping down for the camera.  “I’m not some young girl with the photographer going, ‘Will you take your clothes off?’ I’m like [mimes stripping], ‘How does this look?’ They’re like, ‘Today we’re not going to put anything other than bras and heels on you,’ and I’m like, ‘These heels are not high enough.'”

She argued that as long as she’s in control of it, she’s happy being objectified because its apart of her femininity.

Do women want to be desired? Of course, men do too. It’s a natural human longing to be wanted based on your sexual appeal. But objectified?… Being stripped of your human traits to some sex object in the eyes of a man is exactly why sexual assault and rape happens… Denying seeing a sexy woman as a human being is what leads to the pervasiveness of sexism in society.

Women shouldn’t like being objectified, they should like being seen as a woman: sexy, smart, strong, someone with a personality…not an object. So when Cameron Diaz says all women want to be objects, she’s not talking about me.

What do you guys think?

Marriage as a game?

19 Nov

On pinterest today I saw a shirt that made me wonder and I was a little offended. It made me think about the idea of marriage and what is means to get married today. The shirt below portrays a groom as an object out for catching and I couldn’t help but wonder if that is what marriage has become. Are we so obsessed with getting married and finding our prince charming that it’s considered a game?

There is also a shirt for men (usually) that has a bride and groom with GAME OVER under it. Even for men, marriage is considered a game and something they should attempt to get or avoid. Where has the idea of marriage gone out the window to the point where we consider it game?

A Human Right

18 Nov

The UN recently declared that birth control is now a universal human right. Women deciding when they have children and how many directly effects their quality of life.  The UN study reports:

“Studies have shown that investing in family planning helps reduce poverty, improve health, promote gender equality, enable adolescents to finish their schooling, and increase labourforce participation.

When a woman is able to exercise her reproductive rights, she is more able to benefit from her other rights, such as the right to education. The results are higher incomes, better health for her and her children and greater decision-making power for her, both in the household and the community.”

I’m very happy that the UN has acknowledged the importance of birth control access, but real change can’t come until society changes. One example the report cited is that the Catholic churches influence in the Phillapines has completely prevented poor women from getting birth control. Lower income countries also suffer access problems. Hopefully, family planning will be more affordable and accessible as time passes.

Thankful at Thanksgiving

17 Nov

Today, in about 30 minutes, I am setting off for my Thanksgiving holiday. I will not be home until late Sunday night, but when I arrive, I will be in the presence of two incredible individuals: my parents.

Mom and Dad (left) on a company golf outing.

First, conveniently in the picture as well, is Dad. What a man! And, honestly, I do not think I have ever thought of this until this morning, but he is amazingly supportive of my mother, and of me. Approximately 4 years ago, my mom decided she no longer wanted to sell radio. Instead, she wanted to own her own advertising agency, be her own boss. My dad, who was then waking up every morning at 2am for his extremely popular radio show, said ABSOLUTELY.

It never seemed like it, but my family went on a major budget so my mom could pursue her ambition, but my dad never said a word, despite how desperately tired he was, always. He continued to be the main breadwinner, but he always focused on Mom and her efforts. He reminded her of why she was trying and why struggling would be worth it.

Today, my parents work together at ICR— My mom’s advertising agency. Still, he is in awe of her efforts and accomplishments, and he is no longer exhausted.

Mom is spectacular. She is all-enduring and lovely. Honestly, she is also hard as nails. But, I know there is no step too steep for her. She is such an inspiration. And, her company is such a success.

What made me think of this? This Thursday, Thanksgiving, my father will be the person standing at the stove. He has always seemed like the “mother” to me.

But, he’s not feminine… He’s just an incredible man who loves his wife, and supports the women in his life.

That is what I am thankful for. That is what I am celebrating this Thanksgiving.

Condescending World

14 Nov

We discussed THIS in class today and I said I would post it because it was something that hit close to home in a way. I feel like I’m always getting talked down to or having something explained to me in a different “dumbed down” version. I constantly feel like I am sticking up for myself and my ability to have an intellectual conversation without things having to be explained to me.

I was happy to see Tammy Baldwin stand up for herself. When Senator Ron Johnson tried to demean Baldwin, she shot back, “I was a double major in college in mathematics and political science, and I served for six years on the House Budget Committee in my first six years in the House.”

Judged on Character

14 Nov

In the 21st century, your life is under a microscope. Your deepest thoughts are posted on Twitter. An iPhone can pin point your direct location. Your face is splashed on the largest social network, Facebook, for the world to see. So I was not surprised that a political figure’s scandal was exposed this weekend.

David H. Petraeus is a well-respected military figure and never fell short when it came to his job, yet his marriage was another story. Petraeus was a four-star general and a heavily involved leader in both Iraq and Afghanistan. He was also appointed by President Obama to be the director of Central Intelligence Agency. Regardless of his career once his affair was revealed he resigned.

There has been a stir of conversation to whether a public figure’s personal life should affect their job. Personally, if you become a public figure whether you are a general or a talk show host, you are a role model. Your actions regardless if they are in front of a camera or in a closed off room should be ethical. I think resigning was the best action because your character should be reflected in both your public and personal life.

“The Kiss”

13 Nov

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It is often called the picture that ended World War II.  It is arguably one of the most recognizable images within American culture.  It is the picture of a sailor dipping a nurse, and simultaneously kissing her in Times Square, New York City.  The streets are bustling with smiling faces of soldiers and passers-by.  Recently, new information has surfaced in regards to the people in this picture, and this information has sparked much controversy in the blogosphere.  In this post, I examined, “The Kissing Sailor, or “The Selective Blindness of Rape Culture” and I reflect on what it says about our culture, and why it matters.

The original blog post that sparked the controversy was written by the blogger, Leopard on her blog, Crates and Ribbons.  Leopard is a feminist from London who frequently discusses issues involving women in today’s society.   In this post she writes about how iconic and embedded in our culture this photo is.  She cites three separate new sources (Huffington Post, Daily Mail, and CBS News) who discuss the recent revelations of who this sailor and nurse are.  According to her and the articles she examined,  the sailor in this picture, George Mendonsa, and the nurse, Greta Zimmer Friedman, were perfect strangers.  According to the blog, George was drunk and Greta has no idea he was going to kiss her.  She was quoted in the article saying, “It wasn’t my choice to be kissed.  The guy just came over and grabbed!”

Leopard continues to break down her argument that the picture is a glorification of rape culture by saying that by standards today, this was sexual assault.  It is not socially acceptable today to just grab any woman off of the street and kiss her.  She calls to attention the way that our culture glorifies this picture, and how we talk about it in such a romantic context, when this in actuality is not a depiction of romance at all.  She acknowledges that yes, it was the end of a terrible war, and yes, he had every right to be exuberant about its end, but she says that it doesn’t mean that we should ignore the fact that he is still in the wrong.  She says she is not surprised by people’s willingness to overlook these facts because of “the rape culture we live in.”  She says that if we want to change this rape culture, we must assert that it is not okay to kiss someone without consent, no matter the circumstance.

My first reaction was a bit of shock and there might have been traces of disbelief.  As I read further into the article, there were so many light bulbs that clicked in my head.  After I read the article, I searched for more information on this “kiss”.  A blogger (Lori) on the website Feministing.com, made reference to the body language displayed in the picture.  She talks about the way her fist is clenched, and how her body is limp.  I would also like to add that something I noticed was the slight double chin she has, which to me signifies that she was pulling her face away from his.

I do happen to agree with these articles that this is not a picture that represents love and romance, but rather, a kiss that was forced upon a woman.  I also agree that we as a society need to stop glorifying this photograph for being something that it is not.  Yes, it was another time, and yes, things were different during that era, but that does not mean that we can ignore the issues presented by Leopard.  The only way to continue to fight against street assault and the rape culture that exists within our society is to start to recognize this picture for what it really is.  We have come a long way, and embracing this picture time and time again, takes us as a society a little step backwards.

 

Positive business role model: Pamela Love

13 Nov

I found this article on Time that followed the story of jewelry designer Pamela Love. In middle school she used to make bracelets out of toothbrushes (which I really want to see) and turned that into a business raking in over a million dollars a year. She learned how to make jewelry on her own reading books and basically figuring it out. Love lives a frugal life and doesn’t worry about anything except the jewelry itself. She’s been featured in many magazines including Vogue and Elle. Despite entering an industry that was shrinking, Love has done everything to make a name for herself. I think she is a wonderful role model of young girls. She broke into a tough industry and did what she had to in order to make it. Plus, her jewelry is amazing.

Not Nearly Enough

13 Nov

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I was thrilled watching so many women get elected on Election Night. A historic amount of women were elected: 20 senators and 81 representatives. After all the sexism in the campaign, these women have shown that women’s voices are heard and respected by constituents.

I found an article that argued that even though women have made gains, they still haven’t made enough. According to their research, female politicians are more effective when the amount of females match that of men. If that’s true, women have a long way to go before garnering significant political influence…. It’s a little depressing.

Women make up about 20% of lawmakers in the United States even though half of the US population is women. Apparently, when women only make up 20% of a lawmaking body, female lawmakers speak only 60% of the time a man may speak on the floor. They are more likely to be rudely interrupted, less likely to take an aggressive stance on their beliefs. 

Studies have shown women speak less when they’re outnumbered. It’s depressing, but the article argues that women will only have full influence when there are more female lawmakers. Otherwise, female politicians are less effective than their male colleagues.

I have trouble accepting this research, because it essentially disregards any potential influence elected female officials have…. The article supports a more balanced legislature, I just wish it was in support in matching the gender makeup of America, not giving our current politicians more emotional support.