Posts Tagged women
On this Easter, as you address the world and the people
sheep who have flocked around you to listen to your hopeful phony messages about love, peace and understanding – concepts you merely like to talk about it seems in lofty attire while releasing doves into the sky but which, given your Church’s track record even as we speak, you have no intention of actually ever backing with real, meaningful actions, let me, as an atheist whom you graciously say is not a monster after all, tell you a few things.
Now, I am not inclined at this moment to go into a whole discussion about the absurdity of religion and, in particular, of your particular brand of faith that prompts you to “pray” for peace every year and every year we don’t get this peace you, as a especially pious man, have been lobbying for, but I will tell you that Easter is a Pagan tradition that has hardly anything to do with Jesus.
Easter eggs and bunnies and the Spring equinox have as much to do with Christ as Christmas trees, mistletoe and the fall equinox and winter solstice. In fact, there is really nothing Christian or Biblical about forty days of Lent, decorated trees in your homes, engraved images and symbols of Ba’al and Ishtar, the sun Gods, the use of Evergreen and mistletoe, the latter of which Pagan priests (Druids) used to conjure black magic in love potions, “sunrise services”, Santa Clause, decorated eggs, rabbits, hot cross buns and the Easter ham symbolizing and worshiping the Goddess Ēostre.
These things, however, have everything to do with the ancient pagan traditions of Babylon and Mesopotamia. Engaging in such activities makes professing Christians nothing but idolaters, but I guess you know that being the head of the Church. Woops.
Secondly, since you are talking about peace and its importance and how to achieve it, let this lowly atheist enlighten you on the fact that you do not achieve peace by talking about it, but by identifying what the impediments to it are and addressing the challenges that stand in the way of peace, accordingly.
In the larger sense, you achieve peace by recognizing the inherent dignity in all of us; by creating bonds of friendship and bridges of cooperation among people regardless of their identities and inherent attributes.
You achieve peace by respecting and acknowledging an individual’s personhood and inherent value as a rights-bearing, autonomous human being whose agency as a human being should be respected and upheld.
You achieve peace by inspiring those who follow you to respect and acknowledge an individual’s personhood and inherent value as a rights-bearing, autonomous human being deserving of the same rights as everyone else.
You achieve peace by empowering women – which entails recognizing them as fully equal human beings who have the right to maintain control over their bodies and reproduction; as people with their own agency and a right to self-governance because viewing and treating women as second class human beings who ought to have no control and agency over their own bodies according to the finest tradition of your oppressive , bigoted, misogynistic Church and its practices for hundreds of years, is precisely the reason why women are not empowered.
And make no mistake about it: empowerment of women has everything to do with both peace and economic stability and is, in fact, an integral part of it. By taking a profoundly anti-choice stance, you marginalize women and disempower them, which leads to the very poverty you want to see end.
You create peace by spending some of your tax exempt riches on the under-privileged and poor in society; on educating the ignorant; on giving opportunities to those less fortunate; on giving a voice to the weak, defenseless and exploited by creating communities of support, trust and tolerance where each individual’s autonomy and agency are respected and upheld, instead of spending that money on hate campaigns to insure that gays and lesbians do not get to marry or on political campaigns aimed at controlling what women can do with their bodies.
Sadly, none of that is happening in the Catholic church which still argues that women should not have employment equality; that they should not have access to contraception and abortion; that gay/bi people should not be allowed to marry (which, in the US, denies lots of same-sex partnered people crucial access to partners’ employee-sponsored healthcare, which is a major financial issue); etc.
Colluding with the police to cover up the sex crimes of your priests and blaming allegedly gay priests for the massive cases of pedophilia in your church – thus equating homosexuality with pedophilia – does not constitute having done the most you can for victims of childhood abuse as you claim, nor does it constitute “transparency and responsibility” on your part as you also like to claim.
condescend to touch a man disfigured by facial tumors as a result of his neurofibromatosis, the church crafts your image as the benevolent leader and compassionate man who does not shy away from touching a man afflicted with a disfiguring disease, even though not treating someone with a disease or disfigurement like a monster is the most basic sort of human decency, not particularly warranting special accolades, especially not for a man of the cloth who claims to be all about love, acceptance and divine compassion.
Calling transgendered people demonic – is cruel, harmful, dangerous and indecent, not to mention explicitly dehumanizing. It is, per the Church’s own position on demons, eliminationist. It is not a recipe for peace.
As long as you marginalize members of the queer community, as long as you uphold discrimination against women, as long as you value fetuses more than the people carrying them by ordering Catholic hospitals to refuse to give life-saving abortions, or refuse to dispense emergency contraception to rape victims; as long as you refuse to allow unmarried same-sex partners to visit one another in the hospital, and as long as you spend millions of your organization’s tax exempt money on hate, then you are, frankly, nothing but a dirtbag – no matter how many speeches you hold fellating the idea of peace in velvet tones neatly wrapped in false humility and empathy.
When you manifestly refuse to advance a complex deconstruction of the reasons for poverty, such as empowering women, it is mendacious to argue that you are saying bold and challenging things and are a purveyor of peace.
Peace is not achieved by treating some people in society – such as women, gays, lesbians and transgendered individuals – as less than, ultimately dehumanizing them in the process and depriving them of their rights and privileges – as if they were yours to give in the first place. Helping these individuals to be given the same kind of access, rights and opportunities as everyone else, however, are the things that will empower people and promote peace.
Peace is not achieved through heart-warming speeches, lofty metaphors and, most of all, prayer. Peace requires a lot of hard work and hard decisions, including the elimination of bigotry and “othering” and all the other myriad of things the Chruch does that are diametrically opposed to the concept of peace and are right-out harmful.
Peace requires humility and thus examining and then eliminating the very things that stand in its way.
That Progressives remain fascinated with you is mystifying as it is beyond the soft bigotry of low expectations. It is an epic failure on their part to truly recognize the evil behind your organization’s seemingly loving, all-inclusive facade.
Nothing gets a Conservative’s juices flowing harder than government regulation and a social safety net. The anti-Christ himself could not have been a worse nemesis than regulation. Not being able to subjugate, abuse, pollute, steal or else abuse people and the environment at will cuts into profits, so naturally greedy, church-going, amoral Conservatives cannot have that.
But a woman’s uterus? Yes, that needs to be regulated. Regulate it long, regulate it hard, regulate it deep. In fact, for Conservatives, the words “regulate” and “women” go together like a wink and a smile. Or maybe like an ultrasound and a vagina?
Do you have binders full of women that need regulating? Then you will be hard pressed to not find a Conservative who is more than willing to step in and regulate them for you. Conservatives will not vote for such things as, oh I don’t know, free daycare offered by the government so that mothers can work and pull themselves up by their bootstraps, but they will vote for the government forcing women to have as many children as possible.
They will not vote for stricter regulation of air and water pollutants but they will make sure that a lot of children are born to parents who live in areas with some of the nation;’s worst air and water pollution.
See how being pro-life works?
Yeah, duplicity is a highly traded Conservative value with institutions couched in colorful myths and ardent sentiment to conceal bigotry, intolerance, greed and misogyny.
Religion is harmful. I cannot repeat this enough and I am going to continue repeating it a hundred million more times: religion is harmful.
Religious people, especially in this country, always piss and moan about how unfair everyone is to them. That their god, and Jesus, and Bible and Cross and Guns and Christmas and overall “right” to shit on people as they feel they are entitled to, are all under so much assault by them evil, gawd-less atheists, homosexuals and Liberals.
The hatred and vile diatribes lodged against women, homosexuals, transgendered people, atheists, liberals and evolutionists is mortifying but religious people continue playing the victim card, branding critics as intolerant, militant and haters.
Criticizing religion and speaking up against the religious powers (and lobbyists) that be is often futile and is generally considered bad form. “Ohhh, don’t criticize the religious person and their faith, you hurt their feelings“. “Oh no, you cannot say that to them, it is rude.” “Just be careful to not hurt their feelings – oh no.”
“You should respect people’s beliefs“, I am always told. “It is not polite to criticize someone’s faith“, a guest once said to Bill Maher, trying to shame Maher who was, rightfully so, speaking out against the massive amount of ignorance and hatred religion spreads and purports, into not “criticizing” people for their faith. Often you are dismissed as being miserable, unhappy, bitter, picky…you name it.
My own co-worker who considers himself a man of god has an irrational disdain for gay people and has, on many occasions, referred to them as “faggots”. Yet when I even make the mention of religion, I am admonished and asked to “not start again.” He can go on and on about how terrible atheists and gays are trying to “impose” their lack of religiosity and homosexuality, respectively, onto others, and he makes sure anyone who may be interested finds out just how critical he is of atheists because they are “so extreme” but if anyone mentions the widely-spread religious bigotry in this country, including his homophobia, he feels offended and under attack, playing the wrongfully vilified victim.
Then there is the often-used bad-apple analogy: “I am religious but my group/church/denomination is totally not like that. The problem is not religion, it is just those religious extremists that are the exception/a small minority“. You will be hard pressed to find a religious person who does not employ the “oh yeah them, not me” trope. Only that even so-called moderates subscribe to unfounded and harmful beliefs that they then want to impose on others in the form of legislation.
Case in point, the theocratic government of Arizona, a state whose legislature is infested by religion and religious ideology to such a degree that the long list of measures and laws the state has enacted resemble more something the Ayatollahs in Iran might agree with than legislation one would expect to find in the constitution of a state of the United States.
The Center for Arizona Policy (CAP), a conservative Christian advocacy organization, is responsible for having backed and co-drafted 123 laws and measures since the group’s 1995 establishment, including the state’s 2008 constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage. That effort was spearheaded by the group’s president, Cathi Herrod.
Just this month, measure SB 1062 was signed into law — a measure that would have allowed business owners to reject services to any individual on religious grounds, effectively discriminating against the LGBT community. While that measure was vetoed by Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer (R), on Thursday, the state House passed another controversial measure: the “Women’s Health Protection Act,” (I love it how they try to drown the harmful legislation they just drafted in euphemisms) or HB 2884 which seeks to permit surprise inspections of abortion clinics without a warrant.
Despite the national outcry and bipartisan opposition to the group’s most recent legislative affront on LGBT rights, a number of CAP’s controversial bills continue to make their way through the Republican-controlled Arizona legislature. Here are four more such similar legislation pushed entirlye by the state’s religious activist groups, seriously bringing into question religious peoples’ claims that their beliefs are “merely private” and do not hurt anyone:
HB 2565: Criminalizing assisted suicide
Passed the House, referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee.
Although Arizona already has a law banning assisted suicide, HB 2565 seeks to expand the definition of manslaughter to include “offering or providing the physical means that another person uses to commit suicide, with the knowledge” that the individual intends to end his or her life.
House Bill 2284 would allow unannounced government inspections of abortion clinics without a warrant. The legislation also seeks to make it a class 1 misdemeanor to help “a minor avoid Arizona’s parental consent requirements” to obtain an abortion. Furthermore, the bill would require abortion clinics to submit an extensive report of each abortion performed at the facility, including “what steps are taken to save that child’s life.”
SB 1048: Corporate scholarship tax credit
Passed the Senate, passed the House Ways & Means Committee. Referred to the House Rules Committee.
By expanding Arizona’s Empowerment Scholarship Account program, SB 1048 would permit small businesses organized as S corporations to claim tax credits for contributions to “school tuition organizations” — tax-exempt 501(c)(3) organizations that allocate the majority of their annual revenue to scholarships or grants for private schools. Opponents of the bill argue that it would divert funding from public school districts.
House Bill 2281 would exempt nonprofit religious assemblies, as well as institutions leasing “property, buildings and fixtures,” from paying property taxes. A similar CAP-backed effort was vetoed by Brewer in 2013.
Here are 13 of the 123 CAP-supported bills that have been signed into Arizona law:
- Prohibiting abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy, strengthening informed consent requirements and requiring FDA compliance for medication abortions (2012). The 20-week ban was later ruled unconstitutional.
- Exempting religiously-affiliated employers from being forced to provide insurance coverage for abortion-inducing drugs or contraception (2012). Viagra is ok, though.
- Ensuring that arts funding is not spent on obscenity or material that disgraces the flags of Arizona or the United States (2012).
- Ending taxpayer-funded insurance coverage for government employees’ abortions (2010).
- Banning partial-birth abortion (2009).
- The Abortion Consent Act: requiring informed consent, enhancing parental consent and expanding rights of conscience protections for healthcare workers (2009). Also known as shaming and manipulating a woman into carrying to term a pregnancy she does not want and overall making access to abortion as hard as possible for women.
- Defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman in the Arizona Constitution (2008). This bill was advanced through a ballot initiative.
- Funding community-based marriage classes (2007).
- Banning taxpayer funding of human cloning (2005).
Religion a private matter?
Religion does not hurt anyone?
One should not criticize religion?
I beg to differ and the facts about the harm of religion stand for themselves.
Religious people have set into motion a plan and worldview which is a slap in the face to the enlightened and reason and they keep getting away with it by pulling the “right to religion” card not realizing that their “right” to religion ends when someone else’s rights are being trampled upon by that religion.
The First Amendment separates church from state, explicitly saying that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion.”
Religious people are, per the First Amendment, free to exercise their faith without government persecution but they are not free to make laws or establish policy that incorporates and respects their faith.
Why do religious and non-religious people alike not understand that and call demands for them to stop infesting public policy and government as infringing upon their freedom to religion?
It is like the King of France saying that the demands of his subjects for equity constitute an infringement upon his rights to oppress them. It is utterly absurd.
For far too long, religious people have put intellectuals and rational people on the defense forcing them to, time and again, guard against and explain themselves to these delusional fools.
It was about time, however, that religious people started defending their unfounded stance, their delusions, their fairy tales, their bigotry, their hatred, their ignorance. No one should have to politely nod when religious people and their actions hurt people in a very real way while taking humanity down a dangerous path.
Religion is harmful.
The NRA’s response to the school shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary – and any other mass shooting in the country for that matter – has been one of massive scapegoating: women, teachers, video games, the entertainment industry, hurricanes, terrorists, the doorman at the school, and the mentally ill. Everyone and everything but guns, gun owners and gun lobbyists who have spent years easing gun regulationsmor across the country making it possible to obtain guns easier than a car — were responsible.
More specifically, The National Rifle Association, which is the nation’s largest gun advocates lobby, attributed the shooting in Newtown, Connecticut, to “school free zones,” arguing that “genuine monsters” (other than the proponents of gun ownership galore that is) are attracted to schools because its administrators and teachers are not armed.
“The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun,” NRA low life and Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre said. He urged Congress to “act immediately to appropriate whatever is necessary to put armed police officers in every single school in this nation.” La Pierre shoveled out blame far and wide, going after reporters for glorifying killers like Adam Lanza, violent movies, video games, and music videos. He tore into gun safety advocates for exploiting the tragedy for “political gain,” targeted President Obama for underfunding police initiatives in schools, and said that the media demonized “local gun owners” and spread “misinformation and dishonest thinking that only delay meaningful action and all but guarantee that the next violence is a new cycle away.” “Add another hurricane, terrorist attack, or some other natural of man-made disaster, and you’ve got a recipe for a national nightmare of violence and victimization,” he said.
Now it is the fault of law abiding citizens who don’t sleep with assault rifles under their pillows that this happened? Clearly, according to the NRA, they asked for it since not owning a gun is an invitation to being gunned down and shot in places you ought to feel safe. This is the same garbage rhetoric used in rape culture where the victims become the accused and are told that having behaved or dressed in certain ways provoked and justified, or at the least made it “understandable”, why they were assaulted and raped. That is a very disconcerting position to take as it is incredibly manipulative, twisting the victim/perpetrator position around, thus indirectly assign blame to victims for the atrocities committed against them rather than trying to find ways to minimize such atrocities and violence and thus really change anything about the status quo.
Scapegoat and Round up the Mentally Ill While We’re At It
La Pierre also called for the nation to create an “active national database of the mentally ill”, a brilliant idea that not only will not violate any privacy laws (HIPAA), it will also most definitely not lead to further stigmatization and marginalization of people with psychological disabilities – whom he apparently lumps in together with violent criminals – and discourage care-seeking, diagnosis, and treatment.
I don’t even know where to begin. Twenty families are burying their children in this holiday season, children who will never experience life and all its wonders, not to mention the psychological trauma the parents and families of those children will experience for the rest of their lives because of the actions of a criminal with easy access to weapons of mass murder, and all the NRA can come up with is basically blaming the victims and their parents for the outcome? Citing hurricanes and the media and Hollywood and the lack of tools of murder?
La Pierre and his supporters are nothing but disgusting, contemptible, frightened, small-minded fear mongers who are placing the alleged rights of a bunch of people to own tools of murder and mass murder above the life and safety of people.
There is just something indescribably vile about a proponent of unregulated access to guns. This was an opportunity for the NRA to grow, to advocate responsbile gun ownership and regulations like, for example, creating a national database of gun owners and requiring gun registration and other institutional controls similar to car ownership and operation. Instead, all they could come up with was shameless scapegoating, deflecting of responsibility and advocating the discrimination of vulnerable populations, such as the mentally ill, who are, frankly, more likely to be victimized by violence than to perpetrate it.
Mental Illness Does NOT Equal Violent Behavior
The final straw, of course, was calling for a national database of the mentally ill. Not a national database of gun owners, but of the mentally ill.
Ok Heinrich Himmler.
What will be next? Round them all up into so called sanctuary districts, for their own protection of course, or make them wear some kind of a plaque on their garments so they can be easily identified?
What is outrageous is that not only mental illness is being equated with violent, criminal behavior but that all people with mental illnesses – which covers a broad spectrum of disabilities, most of which are not violent – are being lumped together as this one entity society must be aware and scared of. The reality is that there are millions of people suffering from mental illness who would never engage in such a vile, inhumane act of mass murdering children.
Someone who suffers from post traumatic stress disorder, after, hmmm.., let’s say having been a victim of violence with guns, or a school shooting, is technically considered as suffering from a mental illness. Someone suffering from depression and anxiety taking medication is considered an individual suffering from a mental disability; a person suffering from severe anxiety is considered mentally ill. To lump these people together with violent criminals – who may or may not be mentally ill, – becasue remember, not all people with mental illness are dangerous, and not all killers are mentally ill, meeting standards of psychiatric diagnosis – is as low as it can get and the height of irresponsibility and inhumanity.
La Pierre played quite expertedly into the irrational fears and scapegoating mentality of the minuscule minded gun wielding, Jesus and cross hugging citizens of this nation by making references to those evil “killers, robbers, rapists, gang members” who have “spread like cancer in every community across our nation” and from whom we need to protect ourselves by owning an arsenal of assault weapons and other tools for mass murder.
The truth, of course, is that the only cancer having spread through society is the policies the likes of La Pierre and his organization of unregulated gun ownership advocates and the mindless tools that follow them advocate, believing that the answer to the problems of crime – or any problem for that matter in society – is arming every man, woman and child with all sorts of weaponry and sending them off into the world, as if guns – instruments aimed to kill – make us safer.
Imagine the principal of Sandy Hook had been armed with an assault rifle and after the first shot was fired and people were running around in panic she had jetted out of her office with an AR 15 shooting into a crowd of children running in panic. According to the NRA, that would have been the solution, which, of course, is another comforting lie.
Living in a society with ordinary citizens armed to the teeth like guerrilla fighters, taking justice into their own hands, like George Zimmerman, and shooting into a crowd with moving targets, does not make us safer. This Dirty Harry and John Wayne mentality is only good for when the zombie apocalypse or another end-of-world scenario – mostly to be found in science fiction – is upon us. It is not the route rational people in a civilized society held together by the rule of law and the Constitution they allegedly trust in, ought to embark on. We do not want to send our kids to school with the likes of George Zimmerman prowling the halls.
NRA’s Response to the Carnage at Sandy Hook At a Glance:
1) Create a police state – TSA style security at every corner. A George Zimmerman in every neighborhood. I mean, we are all totally grateful that he protected us from the evils of a 17 year old child holding candy and we clearly need more of that.
2) Arm every man, woman and child with assault rifles like they were Snake Plissken. The more guns and tools of mass murder lie around, the safer we all will be since human beings are totally not prone to irrationality and rage over something like someone cutting them off on the freeway or giving them the wrong look at the grocery store etc.
3) Scapegoat everyone and everything for this: Women, pacifists, the mentally ill, video games and movies, entertainment industry, the doorman at the school…everyone but gun owners and the gun – a tool solely designed to take lives, nothing else. Apparently the gun is a very misunderstood tool for murder.
Great America. Moving towards a plutocratic police state one gun wielding, Jesus chest-thumping, fear mongering, bigoted patriot at a time.
This is just beyond sad. Being a woman has never sucked more.
Pakistani acid attack victim Fakhra Younus, who was attacked by her husband, an ex-lawmaker and son of a political powerhouse, and permanently disfigured undergoing more than three dozen surgeries over a decade, finally decided that she no longer had anything to live for and committed suicide on March 17. She reportedly jumped from the sixth floor of a building in Rome, where she had been living and receiving treatment.
As is to be expected, her ex husband Bilal Khar was acquitted on all charges.
Pakistan, a male dominated society in which women are apparently less than second class citizens and human beings, is notorious for such atrocities against women. According to the The Aurat Foundation, a women’s rights organization, more than 8,500 acid attacks, forced marriages and other forms of violence against women were reported in Pakistan in 2011 and these numbers are suspected to be an undercount because the group relies mostly on media reports.
Fakhra Younus was only 22 when her husband of three years, Bilal Khar, a member of Pakistan’s politically elite Khar family, threw acid on her face when she was sleeping in her own home. Younus was a teenage dancing girl working in the red light district of the southern city of Karachi when she met Khar. The unusual pairing was the younger Khar’s third marriage. He was in his mid-30s at the time.
The couple was married for three years, but Younus eventually left him because he allegedly physically and verbally abused her. She claimed that he came to her mother’s house while she was sleeping in May 2000 and poured acid all over her in the presence of her 5-year-old son from a different man.
Tehmina Durrani, Ghulam Mustafa Khar’s ex-wife and his son’s stepmother, became an advocate for Younus after the attack, drawing international attention to the case. She said that Younus’ injuries were the worst she had ever seen on an acid attack victim.
“So many times we thought she would die in the night because her nose was melted and she couldn’t breathe,” said Durrani, who wrote a book about her own allegedly abusive relationship with the elder Khar. “We used to put a straw in the little bit of her mouth that was left because the rest was all melted together.”
She said Younus, whose life had always been hard, became a liability to her family, for whom she was once a source of income.
“Her life was a parched stretch of hard rock on which nothing bloomed,” Durrani wrote in a column in The News after Younus’ suicide.
The Washington Post noted that Yunus became the face of violence against women in the country after Pakistani activist Tehmina Durrani, author of “My Feudal Lord,” helped Yunus escape to Rome and get treatment for her disfigurement. Durrani is known to speak out against the injustices women face in Muslim society. Over the years, Yunus underwent 38 facial reconstructive and plastic surgeries after the attack.
Durrani wrote of Yunus in The News Daily, “I have met many acid victims. Never have I seen one as completely disfigured as Fakhra. She had not just become faceless; her body had also melted to the bone. Despite her stark and hopeless condition, the government of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan was not in the least God-fearing. She was provided nothing…but disdain…and trashed.”
Acid attacks are prevalent in certain parts of Asia. According to the New York Times’ Nicholas D. Kristof, who reported in 2008 that attacks were then at an all-time high in Pakistan, they are often the work of husbands who attack their wives as a form of revenge for refusing sexual advances or other proposals.
Yunus’ body was buried Sunday, according to News Daily, which also reported that she left a written message saying that she was committing suicide because of the silence and atrocities committed by Pakistani leaders.
Women Under Assault
It is one thing to be oppressed something like 500 years ago but to still endure such things in 2012 is beyond comprehension and worse actually than what happened 500 or 200 or 100 years ago, because back then we as human kind didn’t know better, but now we do.
Yet women are still treated like second class citizens and human beings. Pakistan is one extreme of the spectrum, where women are regularly physically assaulted and disfigured and spit on, with no rights whatsoever, but make no mistake about it that woman are under attack, physically or emotionally, directly or indirectly, even in so-called enlightened western cultures and countires. The Planned Parenthood debates of late, as well as the issues surrounding women’s reproductive rights, including legislated vaginal ultrasound probing of women who want to get an abortion, are just a few examples to the point. Violence and injustice come in man y forms. Don’t think for one second that simply because you are spared from acid attacks, you – as a woman – are not under attack in the U.S.
I do not, by any means, want to trivialize Fakhra’s horrible situation. Getting vaginally probed, paid less salary and just generally treated like a liability is nothing, and I mean nothing, compared to what she had to endure. The point I am trying to make, however, is that all womanhood in general has become a liability and is under attack. This is all part of the same problem.
I was just reading an article in the Marie Claire that women, over the course of their lifetime, pay more than a man for everything from dry cleaning to deodorant, mortgage rates and cars. Even health insurance premiums. A 25 year old women who doesn’t smoke pays more than a 25 year old male who does smoke. And this is in our own country. As the article states, despite the civil rights laws prohibiting job and housing discrimination on the basis of race, gender, or sexual orientation, there’s no federal law banning discrimination in the sale of goods and services, so women – naturally – get the shit end of the stick.
California, which in 1996 became the first state to ban gender pricing, found that women paid about $1,351 annually in extra costs and fees. Apply that figure to the rest of the women in the country and the total burden is staggering — roughly $151 billion in markups, more than what the federal government spent on education last year and greater than the budgets of 43 states.
Discrimination is actually costing us money. The startling thing is – as professor John Banzhaf of the George Washington University Law School pointed out – that “Even though it’s well recognized, people sit back and go, ‘Well, that’s just the way it is.’ Gender pricing is standard industry practice and they get away with it, because no one says anything. Men sure are not going to object and as long as woman adhere to the doormat “well it is just how it is” mentality, nothing will change.
The far reaching, long term consequences of such forms of discrimination that have been firmly institutionalized and engraved in our society, its practices and even our minds, is the general undermining of women in all aspects of life and society, not to mention that such practices become a habit so ingrained that no one even stops to think to question them. We only go after the low hanging fruit, the truly blatant and obvious forms of discrimination, such as sexual harassment at the work place or getting fired for being pregnant. But we are not going after the not-so obvious ones. Gender pricing is just the beginning – the seedling. You leave it untouched, that seedling will grow into the most atrocious monster Miss Fakhra Younus had the misfortune of meeting.
Yeah, being a woman never sucked more and it doesn’t look like it is going to change anytime soon.
Human kind is a failed experiment, that’s for sure