'Honour your (radical) ancestors' and more...

by Jess McCabe // 17 September 2008, 16:42

Where would we be today without the radical activists who went before us? Teh Portly Dyke writes as eloquently as usual on this topic.

Here's a brief, tiny excerpt, but I recommend reading the whole post:

There was a time when shaving your legs or not shaving your legs, wearing a bra or not wearing a bra, wearing pants or not wearing pants, leaving your abusive spouse or not leaving your abusive spouse -- was not really a choice for any woman -- but some radicals made that choice anyway. They chose to do things that they knew might, and probably would, mean they would be judged and criticized and fired and expelled and divorced and disowned and beaten. Or worse.

Perhaps those radicals weren't thinking about you when they did these things -- maybe they were only thinking about themselves and what they could stand in that moment -- what they felt they must do for themselves in order to make life bearable (actually, in a way, I hope they were) -- but I know -- I absolutely know -- that I walked into a future where I was more free to choose because of what they chose.

They were my bridge to a more liberated future. They stretched the boundaries so that I had a larger place to live in.

Because of them, I had choices that they could barely conceive of -- without them, I would not live as I do.

Elsewhere:

Michelle Obama blogs (!) about the pay gap, at BlogHer:

Lilly is from Alabama. For nearly 20 years, she worked for a Goodyear tire plant. She was the only female supervisor—so you know this is a tough, hard-working woman. One day, someone sent her an anonymous letter with a list of salaries of her co-workers. That’s how she found out that she was making less than the men she worked with—even men who were less senior than she was. And we’re not talking about a few dollars. Some of her male counterparts were making 40 percent more than she was—for doing the same work.

As wonderful as the HPV vaccine is, there are limits. And in an example of how almost anything can be twisted around from 'generally a good thing' to 'fucking terrible', the US plans to make the vaccine mandatory for women wanting to move to the country, via Jill at Feministe. Of course, the vaccine is not required for US citizens and it's expensive to boot.

In Rage Against The Bridal Industry, Sudy at A Womyn's Ecdysis posts heartbreakingly about sizism and bridesmaid dresses:

The bridal industry makes billions for making everyday womyn feel less and too much and charges them to make them fit a "dress" or have the "dress" fit you. But it's much more than a dress. It's a costly uniformity to match other womyn who feel less then who they are because of a damn wring of cloth. The vultures in this industry don't care what it costs you or what it does to your insides. They care that you pay and will do all things possible to push you against a wall with an arbitrary chart nailed to said wall so they can measure you, coerce you, tsk tsk at your body.

Latest Carnival of Radical Feminists is out now, over at WitchyWoo's place. It's gigantic!

Via womensphere, Reuters reports on the progress in Spain on liberalising the abortion law:

“We can’t have a situation where a woman who needs to terminate a pregnancy can have legal problems,” [equality minister] Bibiana Aido said.

“That’s why we need a serious, calm and high-level debate which contributes to the drawing up of the best law possible.”

Finally, over at her own place Sokari links up an interview with Notisha Massaquoi. This is part of the series None on Record: Stories of Queer Africa, an oral history project started in response to the murder of FannyAnn Eddy n the offices of the Sierra Leone Lesbian and Gay Association.

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