Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Muslim Model in N.Y.C. Says Gig Is Freeing

Perfect timing after my blog post yesterday.

Read today's story at

Muslim Model in N.Y.C. Says Gig Is Freeing

By Hajer Naili
WeNews correspondent
Wednesday, January 30, 2013
Belonging to a breakthrough Muslim fashion agency doesn't require me to display my skin or be a certain size or shape. For many reasons--political as well as personal--that's a really good fit for me.

NOW News: VAWA, One Billion Rising, Roe at 40, 2013 Conference, ERA

Tuesday, January 29, 2013


This post happened because I met Eve Ensler at the National NOW conference in 2012, when I expressed my concern about the Islamophobia among certain feminists. She asked me to write this post. It took me a long time because of the hesitations I described in the article, but glad Eve Ensler agrees with me.

Florida man accused of fraud for changing his last name to his wife's

I have friends who did shared last names, but haven't met any husband who changed his last name to his wife's. Although, my husband and I considered changing each of our last names to the other's. Do any of you know other husbands who changed their last name to their wives? This story is double-standards at its worst, just another example of how patriarchy punishes people for not following its rules.

Pro-choice on Amtrak: The time I told a group of anti-choice teenagers about my abortion

Written by young feminist Michelle Kinsey Bruns, whom I am honored to call a friend. Next time someone asks where are the young women in the pro-choice fight, please refer them to her or me. I can name countless young feminists in the cause, including every YFTF member.

Senate VAWA S.47 could be on the floor for a vote in a matter of days

From Pat Reuss of National Organization for Women:

We're getting close to passing the Senate VAWA – maybe as soon as this Thursday - and many of you have helped get your Senators on board as sponsors so hooray for you.  Please thank, publicly if possible, the sponsors listed below and please ask the Senators who are NOT sponsors to get on board.  We need 60 or more sponsors to fight off weakening, harmful or non-germane amendments.  Please act on this and also forward to your coalition partners.  And be sure and post and forward NOW's great alert on VAWA

ACTION ALERT: VAWA Rises Again – Call Congress to Urge Swift Action

VAWA Rises Again – Call Congress to Urge Swift Action
After taking action,
please support our work!

January 28, 2013
TAKE ACTION NOW – Please call or meet with your senators and representative to urge swift action on reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act in the 113th Congress (S. 47/H.R. 11). We need both Democrats and Republicans to get this legislation passed. Use our formatted message or write one of your own.
If you can make a phone call or visit with your representative, that's even better! The House has recessed until Feb. 4 and members are back in their districts. But be sure to take action – we must see that VAWA programs continue providing shelter and saving lives.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Mon, Feb 4: BALI young women's professional fundraiser

I hope you will join me and other NOW – NYS Young Feminist Task Force members, including my husband Micah, at the following event. I am honored to be on the board of BALI - Bella Abzug Leadership Institute BALI trains young middle-school, high school and college-aged women to debate and become leaders. We like to focus on under-served communities. The founder and President of BALI, Liz Abzug, practices true and inclusive feminism, which is reflected in BALI's work. I hope you will please help me support an organization that understands and practices intersectionality.

We are having a BALI young women's professional fundraiser at a cool jewelry store on: 

Monday, February 4th, 7pm-9pm
Alex and Ani Soho
425 West Broadway 
(Between Spring Street & Prince Streets)

ACTION ALERT: Ask Sen Schumer to sponsor new Violence Against Women Act bill

Ask Senator Charles Schumer to sponsor the senate Violence Against Women Act bill, s.47.  Call 202-224-6542 or 212-486-4430, tweet @ChuckSchumer or email through

ARTICLE: Atheist, Secular, and Pro-Life

This is another example of why feminists from both sides of the isle - religious/spiritual or secular, must work together to overcome patriarchy. When secular feminists alienate feminists of faith by accusing us of not being true feminists by having faith, it only strengthens the enemies of the feminist movement.

ARTICLE: Catholic Hospital Kills Wrongful Death Lawsuit Arguing Fetus is Not a Person

ACT: Sign On to Statement of Principles on Women and Immigration Reform COB FRI Jan 25


Dear Colleagues,


Attached please find the National Coalition for Immigrant Women's Rights (NCIWR) Statement of Principles on Women and Immigration Reform. As you may be aware, there are 5 million undocumented women presently living in the United States, and women now comprise the majority of the immigrant population. Yet past efforts at immigration reform would have excluded many women from a pathway to citizenship, and failed to provide women with the critical protection, services, and opportunities they deserve.  


This Statement of Principles calls on policymakers to ensure that immigration reform is inclusive of and responsive to the unique needs and concerns of women. We hope that it will open the space for greater consideration - and participation - of women in the immigration conversation.  We invite your organizational sign by COB Friday, January 25.


To sign-on, please complete this online Google Form. Please include your name and email address on the form so we can follow-up with you. Please note that your organization does not need to be a member of NCIWR to sign-on.


Please share! We hope to get broad support on this letter, both from within and outside of the immigrant rights community, so please circulate and share with your networks.


Join NCIWR! To see a list of current members, please click here. To join, simply review NCIWR's Guiding Principles and email


Questions? Please contact Natalie D. Camastra of NLIRH at or Emily Butera of Women's Refugee Commission at




Natalie D. Camastra

Policy Analyst

National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health

TEL: 202.621.1434 | MOBILE: 626.379.3436 | FAX: 202.621.1427 |



1901 L ST. NW, SUITE 300, WASHINGTON, D.C. 20036


50 BROAD ST., SUITE 1937, NEW YORK, NY 10004


Salud, Dignidad y Justicia!

Sign up to receive our monthly e-newsletter Instantes, action alerts and get involved in the fight for reproductive justice!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

TONIGHT: Join the New York Abortion Access Fund as we Celebrate Abortion Access For All!

As many of you know I am proud to be a board member of the New York
Abortion Access Fund (NYAAF).

NYAAF supports anyone who is unable to pay fully for an abortion and
is living in or traveling to New York State by providing financial
assistance and connections to other resources.

This evening is our 2nd Annual Celebrate Access Awards where we will
honor local champions of abortion access.

Tonight we are honoring the fabulous Irin Carmon for journalism
shedding light on attacks on abortion access; Council Member Jessica
Lappin for introducing legislation to protect abortion access and
abortion providers in New York City and Jasmine Burnett for her
leadership in reproductive justice activism.

Author and activist Jennifer Baumgardner will MC the evening.

There will be a live silent auction at the event with prizes including
a private yoga session, lunch with Katha Pollitt, a weekend at a
Montreal vacation home and a portrait session with a professional

Delicious food from Sahadi's will be served. Delicious dessert from a
local bakery will also be served, and delicious wine will be served!

Last year's party was incredibly moving, uplifting and fun and this
years party I believe will be even better!

You can purchase tickets here:
Or at the door this evening!

Should you have any questions or need any further information please
don't hesitate to contact me!
Have a wonderful day!

-Alison Turkos
NYAAF Board Member
NOW – NYS Young Feminist Task Force member

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Mon, Jan 28: Hear Medea from CODE PINK speak about Drone Warfare

You're invited to hear Medea Benjamin speak about drones and her recent trip to Pakistan in New York next week! Culture Project in partnership with CODEPINK presents...

Blueprint for Accountability: Drone Warfare

Monday, January 28
Culture Project (45 Bleecker Street, New York City)

$15 for regular admission ticket, $10 for student or senior admission.

Find tickets online here, or call 866-811-4111. Act fast, tickets are almost sold out!

Join activist, journalist, and co-founder of CODEPINK Medea Benjamin for an in-depth conversation and Q&A about her latest book, Drone Warfare: Killing by Remote Control, as well as information on her trip to Pakistan to meet with victims of drone attacks. The presentation will begin with Things We Make, a powerful theatrical exploration of drone warfare directed by Shana Solomon. The evening will conclude with a signing of Medea's book.

Background: Medea Benjamin visited Afghanistan just weeks after the 2002 American invasion.  There, on the ground, talking with victims of the strikes, she learned the reality behind the "precision bombs" on which U.S. forces were becoming increasingly reliant. Drone Warfare is a comprehensive look at the growing menace of robotic warfare, with an extensive analysis of who is producing the drones, where they are being used, who "pilots" these unmanned planes, who are the victims and what  are the legal and moral implications.

For more information about the event, click here.

Please forward this to friends and lists and help spread the word!

Onwards toward a drone-free world,




January 23, 2013


Please forward to everyone you know who cares about ending domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking! 


Breaking News Alert: VAWA Reintroduced Yesterday- Take Action Today by Contacting Your Senators!


Yesterday, Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and Senator Michael Crapo (R-ID) introduced S. 47, a strong, bipartisan bill that would reauthorize the landmark Violence Against Women Act (VAWA)! This bill closely mirrors the bipartisan legislation introduced by Senators Leahy and Crapo last Congress and would improve VAWA programs and strengthen protections for all victims of violence (see description of legislation below).


In order to continue our incredible momentum from last Congress, we need you to take action TODAY by contacting your Senators to co-sponsor S. 47. Our goal is to get 60 co-sponsors by January 31st  so that VAWA can get to the Senate floor for a bipartisan victory. We need to keep the phones ringing starting right now!

So far, the bill has the following co-sponsors in addition to its chief sponsor, Senator Leahy (D-VT): Senators Ayotte (R-NH),  Bennet (D-CO), Cantwell (D-WA), Casey (D-PA), Collins (R-ME), Coons (D-DE), Crapo (R-ID), Durbin (D-IL), Hagan (D-NC), Kirk (R-IL), Klobuchar (D-MN), McCaskill (D-MO), Mikulski (D-MD), Murkowski (R-AK), Murray (D-WA), Shaheen (D-NH), Tester (D-MT), Udall (D-CO), and Whitehouse (D-RI).


Also yesterday, Representatives Gwen Moore (D-WI) and John Conyers (D-MI) introduced H.R. 11, a House companion identical to the bipartisan Senate bill. The National Task Force calls on the House of Representatives to work together in a bipartisan effort to build on the momentum from the last Congress in order to reauthorize VAWA as a matter of priority.


Action Item:

Call the Capitol switchboard at (202) 224-3121 and ask the operator to connect you to your Senators. If you don't know who your Senators are, you can look them up here. When you're connected to their offices, tell the person who answers the phone:

1)            I am a constituent from (city and state) and my name is _________.

2)            I urge Senator____ to co-sponsor the S. 47, a strong, bipartisan bill that would reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act.

3)            Thank you and I look forward to hearing that the Senator is a co-sponsor.




Description of legislation: In addition to many important improvements throughout the bill that received bipartisan support last year, this bill also contains enhanced protections for tribal, LGBT and immigrant victims, which were identified as critical priorities by advocates across the country and also received bipartisan support last year. Last year's bill, however, also included a modest increase in the number of U visas (created by Congress in VAWA 2000) available to immigrant victims of domestic violence, sexual assault and certain other violent crimes who assist law enforcement in the investigation or prosecution of the crime. Increasing the number of U visas helps both victims and  law enforcement.  Unfortunately, that provision led to a technical objection from House Republican leaders. In the interest of obtaining the swift reauthorization of VAWA, the Senate introduced the new VAWA bill without that provision in order to avoid any initial technical obstacles.  However, this new VAWA bill does recommit Congress to important immigration provisions so that all victims are protected. Senator Leahy will be working hard to include the U visa increase in the comprehensive immigration reform legislation that will soon be considered by Congress. The members of the National Task Force likewise commit to support that effort.




For more information, fact sheets, press coverage, support letters and updates:


Follow us on Twitter at @NTFVAWA and "like" our Facebook page.  Don't forget to tweet about VAWA using the hashtags #ReauthorizeVAWA, #RealVAWA and #VAWA. 


If you aren't on one of the VAWA email lists or want to add members of your staff or state/community leaders to our grassroots alerts e-mailing list, send names and contact information including email to  For more info, go to

Action Alert: Senate Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) (S. 47) sponsors as of tonite

From Pat Reuss of National Organization for Women (NOW)

VAWA was introduced today in the Senate with 5 Republican sponsors – If we get all the Dems and 2 I's, we can get 60 sponsors by January 31.  Please contact your Dem Senators asap.  it's the same bill as last year (without the u-visa expansion, which is going into the comprehensive immigration reform bill).  Go team.  


Senate VAWA (S. 47) sponsors:















Udall (CO)

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Forty Years After Ruling, Support for Roe v. Wade Grows in Face of Ongoing Attacks

For Immediate Release
Contact: Press Office 202-628-8669, ext. 123

Forty Years After Ruling, Support for
Roe v. Wade Grows in Face of Ongoing Attacks

Statement of NOW President Terry O'Neill

January 22, 2013

Today marks the 40th anniversary of the Supreme Court's landmark Roe v. Wade decision that affirmed a woman's right to abortion. On this day we remember the countless women who died from unsafe abortions prior to Roe. Those brave women were the senseless victims of a society that historically has treated women like second-class citizens, tossed their rights around like a political football and patrolled their bodies as if they belonged to the state.

We are at a critical turning point in this country. A recent poll shows that public support for Roe v. Wade is even stronger right now than it was just two years ago. The right wing's escalated attacks on women's access to reproductive health care have backfired, causing people to pay attention, speak out and mobilize to vote. These attacks -- and the often outrageous rhetoric that has accompanied them -- have clarified for many people precisely why the government should not be making reproductive decisions for women.

But the restrictions that conservative legislators have enacted at the state level -- 92 anti-abortion provisions in 2011 and 43 in 2012 -- result in very real consequences for women. Unnecessary procedures, like vaginal ultrasounds, literally punish women for seeking to control their reproductive lives. At the same time, defunding and excessive regulations serve to put reproductive health clinics out of business.

We must be clear: The right-wing lawmakers pushing these laws are out of step with public sentiment. GOP leaders like Bobby Jindal know this -- that's why he has suggested that his party soften its message, but not its mission. They still intend to do everything in their power to restrict women's access to abortion care and birth control, and they don't care if other reproductive health services -- like mammograms, STD/HIV screening, prenatal and postpartum care -- are lost in the process.

On this solemn occasion we should remember the good that Roe v. Wade has brought us. Sandra Day O'Connor once noted that women's ability to "organize intimate relationships and make choices that define their views of themselves and their place in society" was directly attributable to Roe. She confirmed what every women's rights activist knows: "The ability of women to participate equally in the economic and social life of the nation has been facilitated by their ability to control their reproductive lives."

We must continue the momentum we displayed at the polls in November, the passion we have shown on social media and the fervor we have demonstrated in communities across this country. The struggle for reproductive justice for all women -- for poor women, young women, immigrant women, Native American women, women with disabilities -- will take all of our energy, commitment and smarts. But I am confident that we will prevail because we have true moral authority and the people behind us.

ARTICLE: clinic terrorists sing "happy birthday dead baby" to fetus who died in utero

In case any of you missed this. A young clinic escort friend of mine alerted me to it.

Join the Trust Women Week National Online March (Jan. 22-28)

January 22, 2013


On this 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, NOW is proud to partner with the Trust Women/Silver Ribbon Campaign and women's health and rights advocates around the country in supporting the Trust Women Week National Online March.

Together with our allies we will continue to build solidarity and momentum for reproductive health, rights and justice. Click on the link below to sign the petition. You'll see your message on an online map along with others who are marching virtually, both nearby and nationwide. Join us! Our goal is to send the strongest possible message championing reproductive justice online.

Join the Trust Women Week National Online March »


A solid majority in this country believes that decisions about reproductive health care, including family planning and abortion, should be left to each individual. Yet extremist politicians are trying to deny women this fundamental right. Their actions have been called a "war on women" for good reason.

Although we had major victories in November, the battle is far from over. The House of Representatives and state legislatures have focused on eliminating access to basic reproductive health care services and contraception as well as abortion care, with severe consequences for women. We must get the word out to policymakers -- and each other -- that we are many, powerful and committed.

NOW, in partnership with the Trust Women/Silver Ribbon Campaign and more than 50 organizations nationwide, is taking a stand through an exciting National Online March. Together we'll send messages to policymakers. Those messages will appear on a common online map, and we'll see our numbers grow in real time. Our goal is to send the strongest possible message for reproductive justice during Trust Women Week (Jan. 22-28).

Join the Trust Women Week National Online March »

Thanks for all you do for women's rights!

Update on Violence Against Women Act (VAWA)

From Pat Reuss of The National Organization for Women (NOW)

I put this together for the NOW folks and thought I'd share it with everyone else as well.  

House is introducing VAWA today with a closed press conf at 12:30 in press studio A.  It will be the duplicate of the Senate bill.  No Republicans have signed on as yet.  We should have a bill number by the end of the day or tomorrow.  Contacts are Conyers - and Moore
House Republican targets (some are pretty wild but worth a try) attached.  (Feel free to call any and all House R's who should be supporting VAWA and send your suggestions for additional targets.)

Senate bill will be introduced today or tomorrow.  Press event Weds at 2:30 in the Senate Dirksen Judiciary Committee room.  Everyone is welcome to fill the room and organizational representatives are invited to stand behind the speakers.  Contacts are and (temporarily working on vawa introduction while on maternity leave).  We'll know the bill number Weds afternoon, hopefully.

There will be anywhere from 1 to 4 Senate Republicans as original co sponsors.  Our job after the bill is introduced will be to get 60 sponsors asap.  list of Senate Dems/Inds at and list of Senate R's who sponsored and voted for VAWA below.

Friday, January 18, 2013

NOW to Honor 40th Anniversary of Roe v. Wade with Vigil at Supreme Court

For Immediate Release
Contact: Press Office 202-628-8669, ext. 123

NOW to Honor 40th Anniversary of
Roe v. Wade with Vigil at Supreme Court

January 17, 2013

NOW President Terry O'Neill will lead a candlelight vigil on Tuesday, Jan. 22, to commemorate the 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the landmark Supreme Court decision that recognized women's fundamental right to abortion.

"NOW affirms that women's access to the full range of reproductive health services -- including safe, legal and affordable abortion care and birth control -- is integral to women's ability to participate equally in our society," said O'Neill. "Roe v. Wade has helped improve women's status in the U.S. and saved countless women's lives."

What:40th Anniversary Roe v. Wade Candlelight Vigil
Who:Terry O'Neill, president, National Organization for Women
Ellie Smeal, president, Feminist Majority Foundation
Kimberly Inez McGurie, senior policy analyst, National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health
Allison Stouffer, vice president, DC NOW
When:Tuesday, Jan. 22, 5:00 - 6:00 p.m.
Where:U.S. Supreme Court, Washington, D.C.
First Street NE, between East Capitol St. & Maryland Ave.

"For the last two years, abortion and birth control have been under increased attack at both the state and federal level," said O'Neill. "In the face of these attacks, U.S. voters re-elected President Obama, who has worked to defend and advance women's access to reproductive health care services. Coming one day after the president's inauguration, I predict a high level of energy and optimism outside the Supreme Court on Jan. 22."

Thursday, January 17, 2013

ARTICLE: Complaint filed against my alma mater CUNY for violating Title IX

I am so disappointed that CUNY, where I worked to propose and help create the sexual-assault policy, is implicated below.

NOW Supports President Obama's Goal of Reducing Gun Violence in U.S.

For Immediate Release
Contact: Press Office 202-628-8669, ext. 116

NOW Supports President Obama's
Goal of Reducing Gun Violence in U.S.
Statement of NOW President Terry O'Neill

January 16, 2013

The National Organization for Women applauds President Obama and Vice President Biden for taking swift action after last month's devastating shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut. We strongly support the administration's admirable goal of reducing gun violence in the United States.

This issue is particularly relevant to women. More than three women are killed every day by an intimate partner, and access to firearms greatly increases that risk. African American women are at even greater risk, as they are three times more likely than white women to be killed by a partner or family member.

All of the available findings on the correlation between violence against women and the ready availability of firearms in the U.S. point to the fact that guns are used to take women's lives, not to save them. Based on this research, the NOW Foundation submitted a report to the U.N. Human Rights Council in 2010 arguing for stricter regulation of gun ownership.

NOW is pleased to see the leaders of this country taking on this important issue in the face of a well-funded opposition. We stand behind their effort and look forward to positive results.

Read NOW Foundation's report:

Monday, January 14, 2013

Join the National Day of Service to get the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) passed!


January 14, 2013

Please forward widely


Invite Congress to Participate in the National Day of Service

Speak Out about VAWA and the Value of Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Services


As part of Inauguration Week, the President and First Lady have called on Americans across the country to participate in the National Day of Service honoring Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on Saturday, January 19th.  In the spirit of service and citizenship, we're asking you to invite your Members of Congress to give back to the domestic violence and rape crisis programs in their communities and to recognize the value of VAWA-funded programs. Call or write your Members of Congress, and ask them to honor VAWA through the National Day of Service by volunteering their time at and/or making a donation to programs that truly make a difference in the lives of survivors and in their communities!     


As people around the country volunteer in their communities on this National Day of Service, we also have an opportunity to speak out about the importance of the services that local domestic violence and rape crisis programs provide to victims every single day and how critical the swift passage of VAWA is to be able to serve all victims. 


Programs supported by VAWA provide lifesaving services to millions of victims of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault and stalking. Yet despite VAWA's proven ability to substantially improve lives, it has not reached all victims. VAWA reauthorization provides an opportunity to build upon the successes of the current law by including key improvements, and ensuring that all victims will have access to much-needed services.  Also, federal funding is now more essential than ever to ensure that programs across the country can keep the lights on, answer crisis calls, and provide vital services for victims fleeing violence.


Call, write, or tweet your Member of Congress with this message:

On January 19th, join me in the National Day of Service to recognize the critical support that VAWA provides to survivors of sexual and domestic violence. Volunteer your time at and/or make a donation to [NAME OF LOCAL DOMESTIC VIOLENCE/RAPE CRISIS PROGRAM], and support the difference these programs make in the lives of survivors and in [NAME OF YOUR COMMUNITY]. Your work on January 19th – and in Congress – is necessary to pass VAWA and fund VAWA programs immediately so that all victims can get the support they need and deserve!


Sample Tweet:

@YourRep Honor the National Day of Service: Volunteer time or make a donation to [NAME OF LOCAL RAPE CRISIS OR DV PROGRAM] and pass #VAWA now! 


Tell them how important VAWA reauthorization and funding is to sustaining and improving services for victims in your community! You can also include stories or pictures that communicate the value of the services you provide every day.


Find your Senators and Representatives contact info here:


Action Items Recap – What You Can Do:

1)    Ask your Members of Congress to do service at a domestic violence program or rape crisis center

2)    Call/write/tweet about the need to reauthorize VAWA and fund VAWA programs



Check our website for fact sheets, press coverage, support letters and updates:


Follow us on twitter at @NTFVAWA and "like" our Facebook page  Don't forget to tweet about VAWA using the hashtags #ReauthorizeVAWA, #RealVAWA

and #VAWA. 


If you aren't on one of the VAWA email lists or want to add members of your staff or state/community leaders to our grassroots alerts e-mailing list, send names and contact information including email to  For more info, go to 

Friday, January 11, 2013

President Obama: Where are the Women?

January 10, 2013

President Obama has made a number of high-profile appointments recently -- four at last count, and they are all white men. Susan Rice, U.S. ambassador to the U.N., was in line to follow Hillary Clinton as secretary of state. The right wing unjustly smeared Rice, and despite the efforts of NOW and allied women's organizations, she was pushed aside and replaced with a white male nominee. And now we hear that Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis is leaving her post. Who will be her replacement?

Write to President Obama today and urge him to appoint more women to his cabinet and other top posts. We need women, particularly women of color, in high-level positions in our federal government. A great place to start is the chair of the Federal Communications Commission -- a position that will be open soon and has never been held by a woman.

Women have made great strides in government, but we need a critical mass to really make a difference. Now is not the time to go back.

Write to the president today!

National Organization for Women-NYS Applauds Governor Cuomo

News from NOW-NYS
For more information contact: Zenaida Mendez 1-646-320-0476

National Organization for Women-NYS Applauds Governor Cuomo

A Message from President Zenaida Mendez

ALBANY, NY (01/09/2013)(readMedia)-- Today, the National Organization for Women-New York State (NYS-NOW) applauds Governor Cuomo for stating bolding and loudly that his commitment to women's equality is on the forefront of his agenda. The Women's Equality Act was one of the centerpieces of the Governor's speech as he delivered the State of the State address in the Empire State Plaza.
Although New York State has been in the forefront for reproductive rights, for too long women in New York State have been fighting for true equality in all aspects of life.
New Yorkers, more than ever, are now ready to endorse full equality for women who make up 51% of the population. This was apparent by the rousing standing ovation that Governor Cuomo received when he laid out his plan for the Women's Equality Act.
The Governor admitted that New York State has fallen behind in its rightful place as a leader on women's equality.

 He proposed a 10 point Women's Equality Act as follows:

*Shatter the Glass Ceiling: Achieve Pay Equity
*Stop Sexual Harassment in All Workplaces
*Allow for the Recovery of Attorneys' Fees in Employment and Credit and Lending Cases
*Strengthen Human Trafficking Laws
*End Family Status Discrimination
*Stop Source of Income Discrimination
*Stop Housing Discrimination for Victims of Domestic Violence
*Stop Pregnancy Discrimination Once and For All
*Protect Victims of Domestic Violence by Strengthening Order of Protection Laws
*Protect a Woman's Freedom of Choice: Enact the Reproductive Health Act
The National Organization for Women-New York State looks forward to working with Governor Cuomo to achieve full equality for all women and girls in New York State.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Beware of racist, propaganda film "Zero Dark Thirty"

From NOW National Board member Kathy Sloan:

I just saw the CIA propaganda film "Zero Dark Thirty" that's on every award buzz list.  As a passionate feminist, it pains me that the only woman ever to have won an Academy Award for Best Director could be the new Leni Riefenstahl.  Glenn Greenwald articulates just what a piece of jingoism this is, demonizing every Muslim/Arab in the film, far better than I ever could.

As informed political activists, I hope that everyone will take the time to read Glenn Greenwald's impeccable, thorough, articulate commentary on the film.  As he points out, this is a dangerous film in that in reinforces ingrained prejudices about American "exceptionalism," and glorifies U.S. institutions of imperialism, colonialism, war and a purely one-sided view of the world.  Bigelow and her screenwriter Mark Boal were completely in bed with the CIA in the making of this film.  In my opinion, reprehensible.  

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Once Upon a Time: Racism and Sexism shouldn't be part of fairy tales on TV show

I enjoy the premise of the show, especially the main characters being female. What I don't enjoy are the blatant racist and sexist aspects. Why is almost every character white - especially in 2013? Hiring Mulan was great, but that's just tokenism. Since the creators of the show have taken so much liberty with the fairy tales, the least they can do is make it a more diverse cast. 

The domestic-violence-friendly story lines are disturbing, considering that 1 in 3 American woman will experience intimate-partner violence at least once in her lifetime. One of the main character, Regina's boyfriend tries to strangle her, and then stops when she says she loves him. Seriously?  They are telling domestic violence (DV) victims - at least 3 American women who are killed by DV each day - that they can stop their attackers if they just tell them they love them. Considering how many young kids watch the show, they really need to do a better job.

Friday, January 4, 2013

All The Dead Are Girls

Still applicable:

Saturday, March 28, 1998 State President 

All The Dead Are Girls 

The headline some newspapers referred to the killers in Jonesboro as boys and the dead as students and a teacher. Four girls and a woman are dead. Nine girls and a second woman were wounded. Even in death women are denied their identity. They were trapped, targeted and gunned down by experienced hunters, boys, with an arsenal of guns, "who had a whole lot of killing to do" because one of them was "jilted" by a girl. 

In case, there is anyone who doesn't understand what a gender based, hate crime is...this is it. According to Peggy Harris of the Associated Press, "The Arkansas shooting was at least the third fatal shooting in a school in the past five months. As in the Jonesboro case, all the dead were girls. 

Exhibit A in How an Islamophobic Meme Can Spread Like Wildfire Across the Internet
The apparently fabricated story of a Saudi cleric issuing a fatwa condoning gang rapes in Syria is an object lesson in the pitfalls of breakneck online journalism.
January 2, 2013 |