Sunday, March 27, 2011

The Politics of Rape

Where is Eman al-Obeidi and why should we care?

Here is a video of a woman that has caught the attention of quite a few people. She had the strength and determination to tell her story of rape and of the torture she suffered at the hands of the Gaddafi regime. As a result of breaking the silence of rape she was taken away to a location that nobody is sure of and in the meantime, her moral character and mental health is being attacked. While Facebook,Twitter and the media continue to try to get answers, here are a few resources you can use to make sure Eman al-Obeiddi is not forgotten.

There has been an email and phone campaign against the hotel and the staff members that were involved with her abduction:
Phone number of the manager at Rios Hotel #00218914501693
email: gem@rixo.com
Or a petition that can be signed: http://www.change.org/petitions/protect-eman-al-obaidi-from-gaddafi-regime#?opt_new=t&opt_fb=t



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Friday, March 25, 2011

WGS 310 - Week 10

Before exploring courses in Women’s and Gender Studies, I used to believe issues regarding race, gender, and socio-economic status where things that would go-away if they were just ignored. Sadly, my na├»ve opinion was that if we don’t make an issue out of these things, they will somehow just magically disappear.


In the meantime, I am currently involved within my own personal struggle to remove myself from a particular class or social standing; which involves being a white, single mother that has been homeless and on welfare. I am very fortunate and blessed be gaining knowledge regarding these issues through a formal education and to learn about the struggles that have impacted women (and men) throughout history. I am excited that I have this opportunity to study and read the works of Sojourner Truth, Margaret Fell, and Cheryl Glenn.

There is no denying that we live in a world that involves the classification of people and by doing so; we categorize the people that are “different” than us to a lower level and build ourselves up to smarter and somehow worldlier than those that do not fit into our category.
This little dynamic has occurred and continues to occur throughout women’s studies, activism, and education. There continues to be opportunities that occur a little more easily because somebody happens to be the “right” color, social class, or gender. Of course, there have been people throughout history and those whom continue to work against this system that we have built within our world – but, those people are far and few between.
 
One detail that I would like to point-out that will demonstrate how we still live within a segregated society involves the amount of media attention that someone like Elizabeth Smart (I am sorry for what happened to her and just using her name as an example) whom was kidnapped from her home in Utah received, while at the same time,  I know there are cases of black or poor families where the child is kidnapped and hardly a mention of it occurs in the news.  Isn't a kidnapped child something we should all be concerned about no matter what race or economic background the child is from?


 
I could go on...but, I need to get to class :)

Friday, March 4, 2011

WGS 310 Week 8

    I think reading an excerpt this week from Mary Wollstonecraft titled "A Vindication of the Rights of Woman" has been a very interesting experience.  It is very disheartning that these concerns Wollstonecraft had in 1792 are to some degree still an issue in 2011.

    How often do we still have to worry about education for the poor or opportunities for women?  These are people whom are often facing challenges of trying to get ahead - especially for single mothers that are left trying to academically get ahead or advance within thier careers.  Occasionally, I have been told as I was either working or going to school that my children are not welcome to be with me or that I cannot miss another day because my child is sick (or if not directly told these words - I can guarentee that this attitude has been reflected upon my next performance review).

    Are there any laws that protect mothers (father/parents) who are solely responsible for thier children and trying to finish a degree or keep thier job?  Are there sufficient programs or assistance to help parents of sick children?  I personally have had the blessing of knowing people in my life that would often take care of my sick child - so I could keep my job.  Since I've moved it's not that easy - but, luckily my church provides me with an incredible support network.