“What she said was offensive,” said Rep. Mike Callton, R-Nashville. “It was so offensive, I don’t even want to say it in front of women. I would not say that in mixed company.” – regarding Michigan Rep. Lisa Brown’s use of the word “vagina.”

"What she said was offensive," said Rep. Mike Callton, R-Nashville. "It was so offensive, I don't even want to say it in front of women. I would not say that in mixed company." - regarding Michigan Rep. Lisa Brown's use of the word "vagina" while arguing against the state's extreme abortion regulations bill. 

http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2012/06/14/155059849/michigan-state-rep-barred-from-speaking-after-vagina-comments Continue reading

Amnesty International Applauds Re-Introduction of International Violence Against Women Act

Amnesty International

(Amnesty USA, Washington, D.C.) Cristina Finch, policy director for women’s human rights at Amnesty International USA, made the following comments today in response to the re-introduction in the U.S. House of the International Violence Against Women Act:

“Women and girls around the world deserve to live free from fear and harm. This legislation is key to achieving that goal. The International Violence Against Women Act would coordinate and improve the U.S. government’s efforts to stop this global scourge by making it a priority in diplomatic and foreign assistance initiatives. This will help to ensure that the United States lives up to its international responsibility to end violence against women and girls. We applaud reintroduction of the legislation and urge Congress to show its commitment to the human rights of women and girls by passing the bill.”

IVAWA would create a comprehensive, integrated approach to protect and support survivors of violence, hold perpetrators accountable, and support efforts to change public attitudes that condone violence. The bill would create a five-year strategy and fund programs to prevent and combat violence and incorporate new ways to combat violence in programs that currently exist. The bill would enable the U.S. government to develop a faster and more efficient response to violence against women in humanitarian emergencies and conflict-related situations.

Living free from violence is a human right, yet millions of women and girls suffer disproportionately from violence, both in times of peace and in times of war, at the hands of the state and in their communities and homes. Around the world at least one woman in every three has been beaten, coerced into sex, or otherwise abused in her lifetime; often with impunity. States have the obligation to prevent, protect against and punish violence against women. Yet such violence is often ignored and rarely punished. Too often no one is held accountable for these crimes.

Whether combating sexual violence against Indigenous women in the United States or supporting the right of girls in Afghanistan to be educated free from violence, Amnesty International works to hold all states and perpetrators accountable and put an end to violence against women.

Amnesty International is a Nobel Peace Prize-winning grassroots activist organization with more than 3 million supporters, activists and volunteers in more than 150 countries campaigning for human rights worldwide. The organization investigates and exposes abuses, educates and mobilizes the public, and works to protect people wherever justice, freedom, truth and dignity are denied. Continue reading

Third Annual Women in the World Summit

Women in the World describes itself as being “centered on first-person storytelling by trailblazing women from a broad spectrum of cultures. Over the course of three days, we showcase these fearless pioneers, inspire you to become involved, and encourage creative solutions to all the challenges that women face across the globe.”

The summit is taking place March 8-10 2012 at the David H. Koch Theater (Lincoln Center), Broadway and 63rd Street, New York. Continue reading

President Obama’s Proclamation on 2012 Women’s History Month

WOMEN’S HISTORY MONTH, 2012

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BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

A PROCLAMATION

As Americans, ours is a legacy of bold independence and passionate belief in fairness and justice for all. For generations, this intrepid spirit has driven women pioneers to challenge injustices and shatter ceilings in pursuit of full and enduring equality. During Women’s History Month, we commemorate their struggles, celebrate centuries of progress, and reaffirm our steadfast commitment to the rights, security, and dignity of women in America and around the world.

We see the arc of the American story in the dynamic women who shaped our present and the groundbreaking girls who will steer our future. Forty-one years ago, when former First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt confronted President John F. Kennedy about the lack of women in government, he appointed her the head of a commission to address the status of women in America and the discrimination they routinely faced. Though the former First Lady passed away before the commission finished its work, its report would spur action across our country and galvanize a movement toward true gender parity. Our Nation stands stronger for that righteous struggle, and last March my Administration was proud to release the first comprehensive Federal report on the status of American women since President Kennedy’s commission in 1963. Today, women serve as leaders throughout industry, civil society, and government, and their outstanding achievements affirm to our daughters and sons that no dream is beyond their reach.

While we have made great strides toward equality, we cannot rest until our mothers, sisters, and daughters assume their rightful place as full participants in a secure, prosperous, and just society. With the leadership of the White House Council on Women and Girls, my Administration is advancing gender equality by promoting workplace flexibility, striving to bring more women into math and science professions, and fighting for equal pay for equal work. We are combating violence against women by revising an antiquated definition of rape and harnessing the latest technology to prevent dating violence, domestic violence, and sexual assault. From securing women’s health and safety to leveling the playing field and ensuring women have full and fair access to opportunity in the 21st century, we are making deep and lasting investments in the future of all Americans.

Because the peace and security of nations around the globe depend upon the education and advancement of women and girls, my Administration has placed their perspectives and needs at the heart of our foreign policy. Last December, I released the first United States National Action Plan on Women, Peace, and Security to help ensure women play an equal role in peace-building worldwide. By fully integrating women’s voices into peace processes and our work to prevent conflict, protect civilians, and deliver humanitarian assistance, the United States is bringing effective support to women in areas of conflict and improving the chances for lasting peace. In the months ahead, my Administration will continue to collaborate with domestic and international partners on new initiatives to bring economic and political opportunity to women at home and abroad.

During Women’s History Month, we recall that the pioneering legacy of our grandmothers and great-grandmothers is revealed not only in our museums and history books, but also in the fierce determination and limitless potential of our daughters and granddaughters. As we make headway on the crucial issues of our time, let the courageous vision championed by women of past generations inspire us to defend the dreams and opportunities of those to come.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim March 2012 as Women’s History Month. I call upon all Americans to observe this month and to celebrate International Women’s Day on March 8, 2012, with appropriate programs, ceremonies, and activities that honor the history, accomplishments, and contributions of American women. I also invite all Americans to visit www.WomensHistoryMonth.gov to learn more about the generations of women who have shaped our history.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this first day of March, in the year of our Lord two thousand twelve, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-sixth.

BARACK OBAMA

English: Barack Obama, President of the United...

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