We have seen a lot of Muhammad cartoons. But I think burqa cartoons are funnier.
“I’m quite pleased with your new appearance. Now you are finally behaving like a proper woman!”
Once upon a time widows were burned alive on their dead husband’s funeral pyres. It was believed that if a widow burn herself to death soon after her husband died, her husband would go to heaven and all his sins would be gone with the wind. Suttee or sati (“good woman” or “chaste wife”) was the Indian tradition of a widow burning herself. The practice of Sutee was banned in 1829.
‘Suttee was sometimes committed voluntarily, but cases of compulsion, escape, and rescue are known. Scattered instances of it continue to occur, most notoriously in the case of Roop Kanwar, an 18-year-old widow who committed suttee in 1987. The incident was highly controversial, as groups throughout India either publicly defended Kanwar’s actions or declared that she had been murdered.’
Religion supports widow burning.
‘The most sacred of Hindu scriptures are the Vedas, and the Rig Veda, the oldest Veda, explicitly sanctions the custom of Sati. The following famous `Sati Hymn’ of the Rig Veda has been recited during the actual immolation of the widow . Rig Veda 10.18.7 : ” Let these women, whose husbands are worthy and are living, enter the house with ghee (applied) as corrylium ( to their eyes). Let these wives first step into the pyre, tearless without any affliction and well adorned.’
Rise, come unto the world of life, O woman — come, he is lifeless by whose side thou liest. Wifehood with this thy husband was thy portion, who took thy hand and wooed thee as a lover. (RV 10.18.8)
The Garudapurana favourably mentions the immolation of a widow on the funeral pyre, and states that women of all castes, even the Candalla woman, must perform Sati. The only exceptions allowed by this benevolent author is for pregnant women or those who have young children. If women do not perform sati, then they will be reborn into the lowly body of a woman again and again till they perform Sati. [ Garuda.Purana. II.4.91-100 ]
* A sati who dies on the funeral pyre of her husband enjoys an eternal bliss in heaven [ Daksa Smrti IV.18-19 ] [ Sm.Samu p.30 ] [ 1200, p.65 ]
* According to Vasishta’s Padma-Purana, a woman must, on the death of her husband, allow herself to be burnt alive on the same funeral pyre
* Yajnavalkya, the most important law-giver after Manu, states that sati is the only way for a chaste widow [ Apastamba.I.87 ] [ 1200, p.65 ]
* The Yogini Tantra enjoins upon Brahmana widows to burn themselves on the funeral pyre of their husbands [ Yog.T. II.303-308 ]. Vaisya and Sudra widows were also allowed to do it. It was prohibited to unchaste women and those having many children. [ 1200, p.67 ]
* The Vyasa Smrti gives one of the two alternatives for a Brahmana widow, ie. either to become a sati or to take up ascetism after her tonsure [ Vyasa Sm. II.53 ] [ Sm.S. p.362 ]
Further, the Vishnusmirti gives only two choices for the widow:
Vishnu Smirti.XXV.14 : “If a woman’s husband dies, let her lead a life of chastity, or else mount his pyre”
— [ Vis.Sm. xxv.14 ] [ Clay.13 ]
Brahma is one of the main Aryan gods, being the creator of the world ( later he was identified as an incarnation of Vishnu ). One of the Puranas is named after him, the Brahma Purana. Like other Puranas, it was composed after the Vedas ( Pandits hold 4000 B.C., Indologists 700 B.C.) This scripture also sanctions sati:
Brahma Purana.80.75 : ” It is the highest duty of the woman to immolate herself after her husband “.
Long life is promised to the sati:
Brahma Purana.80.76, 80.77 : ” She [ the sati ] lives with her husband in heaven for as many years as there are pores in the human body, ie. for 35 million years.”
— [ Br.P. 80.76, 80.77 ] [ Sheth 103 ]
Vishnu Dharmasutra XXV.14 contains the statement: ” On her husband’s death, the widow should observe celibacy or should ascend the funeral pyre after him.”
Remember Rudyard Kipling’s poem The Last Suttee?
Widows are excluded from society.
There is a ceremony during the funeral of husband. Widows smash their bangles, remove their vermilion, colorful clothes and all jewelries they have been wearing. Widows have to wear simple white clothes. They are forced to shave their heads. They are not allowed to eat fish, meat, eggs, milk, onions, garlic and many different kinds of vegetable, animal products and spices. They have to fast many times a month. Widows are not thrown on the funeral pyres these days, but they are thrown on some other kinds of pyres. That is not any less traumatic.
There are more than 40 million widows in India. Most of them are ‘living dead’.
A widow’s family members would be excluded from the society if they didn’t respect to the restrictions society impose on widows. A widow is considered a bad omen, she is excluded from all auspicious events. In some cases even her shadow is considered polluting or offensive to society.
‘In India, widows are an invisible community. Although many widows are treated less harshly nowadays, they still face discrimination and neglect. People treat widowhood not as a natural stage in the life cycle of a woman, they treat it as some kind of an aberration. People accept death but do not accept widowhood. “Because somewhere in the Indian psyche, the woman’s identity is with the man and the minute he’s not there, it’s something that cannot be accepted.” Women are not considered as separate human beings. Your husband is dead, you are dead. The suffering of widows is one of the brutal consequences of patriarchy.
Shunned from society, widows flock to Vrindaban and Varanasi, pilgrimage towns to die. Young widows are often sexually exploited. Older women beg at temple gates. Some go to Ashrams where they chant prayers. For a four hour chant they can earn a cup of rice and 7 rupees( 12 cents).’
‘Hindu widows are not supposed to remarry. With little social or economic status, many become destitute. The truth is, women do not lose their dignity and basic rights when they lose their husbands. But our anti-women society do not like to think about women’s basic human rights.
What happens when a man’s wife dies? Is he treated as a bad omen? Is he excluded from all auspicious events? Does he stop eating certain food and stop wearing colorful clothes? Is he sent to a lonely place where he has nothing to do but to wait for his death? No. Men don’t get abandoned, they remarry young women and start a new life.
You can always watch Water, a great movie. The story of an eight-year-old widow.
”Even though they make up half the population, women and girls have endured discrimination in most societies for thousands of years. In the past, women were treated as property of their husbands or fathers – they couldn’t own land, they couldn’t vote or go to school, and were subject to beatings and abuse and could do nothing about it. Over the last hundred years, much progress has been made to gain equal rights for women around the world, but many still live without the rights to which all people are entitled.”–Robert Alan Silverstein
‘‘We’ll never solve the feminization of power until we solve the masculinity of wealth.’ – Gloria Steinem
‘Feminization of poverty is a phenomenon in which women represent disproportionate percentages of the world’s poor. It as “the burden of poverty borne by women, especially in developing countries”. This concept is not only a consequence of lack of income, but is also the result of the deprivation of capabilities and gender biases present in both societies and governments.This includes the poverty of choices and opportunities, such as the ability to lead a long, healthy, and creative life, and enjoy basic rights like freedom, respect and dignity. In many countries, the feminization of poverty and the masculinization of wealth is still the status quo.’
*Women are poor. Women lack control over their income. Women lack power and voice. Women are missing out because they are undercounted, undervalued, underserved, and underrepresented.
*Women bear a disproportionate burden of the world’s poverty. Statistics indicate that women are more likely than men to be poor and at risk of hunger because of the systematic discrimination they face in education, health care, employment and control of assets.
*It is estimated that if women’s paid employment rates were raised to the same level as men’s, America’s GDP would be 9 percent higher; the euro-zone’s would be 13 percent higher, and Japan’s would be boosted by 16 percent.
*Poverty implications are widespread for women, leaving many without even basic rights such as access to clean drinking water, sanitation, medical care and decent employment. Being poor can also mean they have little protection from violence and have no role in decision making.
*Women’s nominal wages are 17 percent lower than men’s.
*More than 1.2 billion still subsist on less than $1 per day. women make up the majority of the world’s poor — owing to unequal access to resources and opportunities, discriminatory land and inheritance laws, and unequal distribution of household resources.
*7 out of 10 of the world’s hungry are women and girls.
*Of the 37 million people living below the poverty line in the US, 21 million are women, according to US Census Bureau figures from 2006
*More than two-thirds of the world’s unpaid work is done by women — the equivalent of $11 trillion, according to a global UNDP study from 1995. “women do two-thirds of the world’s work, receive 10% of the world’s income and own 1% of the means of production.”
*If the average distance to the moon is 394,400km, South African women walk the equivalent of a trip to the moon and back 16 times a day to supply their households with water,according to a 2006 UNDP report.
*Women are missing from poverty statistics that measure poverty by household, rather than individual: systems of national accounts do not include unpaid domestic work as “productive.”
*Women make up some 60% of the world’s working poor, people who work but do not earn enough to lift themselves above the $1 per day poverty line, According to a 2004 report by ILO (reaffirmed in 2006)
*Women in the US earned only 77 cents for every $1 earned by a man in 2005, according to the Institute for Women’s Policy Research. In the developing world, the ratio is just 73 cents, according to World Bank estimates. For women of colour, the gap is even worse — African American women earn 63 cents and Latinas 53 cents (IWPR 2004).
*At the rate the wage gap is closing, women in the US will not see equal earnings until 2050. Women account for 64% of minimum-wage workers in the US, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2007.
*Elderly women are 70% more likely to be poor than elderly men.
*In some regions, especially Sub-Saharan Africa, women provide 70% of agricultural labour, produce over 90% of food, and yet are nowhere represented in budget deliberations, noted the World Economic Forum in 2005.
*Two-thirds of children denied primary education are girls and 75% of the world’s 876 million illiterate adults are women, reports the Millennium Campaign in 2007.
*Gender inequality in education and employment in Sub-Saharan African has reduced per capita growth by 0.8% per annum, according to recent Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development estimates.
*The global average proportion of women in Parliament in 2007 is just 17.3%, according to the Inter Parliamentary Union; the US ranks 67th with a mere 16%.
*In Mexico, women in paid employment devote an additional 33 hours to domestic chores per week, while men’s weekly contribution six hours.
*In Arab states, only 28 percent of women participate in the workforce.
*Women are concentrated in insecure jobs in the informal sector with low income and few rights; they tend to have few skills and only basic education. They are the first to be fired.
*80 percent of women workers are considered to be in vulnerable employment in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia.
*In many countries around the world, women’s property rights are limited by social norms, customs and at times legislation, hampering their economic status and opportunities to overcome poverty. Even in countries where women constitute the majority of small farmers and do more than 75 percent of the agricultural work, they are routinely denied the right to own the land they cultivate and on which they are dependent to raise their families.
It seems women are forced to be poor, illiterate and unemployed because they are women. Whether women are black, white, yellow or brown, they are poor. They have black eyes or blue eyes or brown eyes or green eyes, they are poor. There are women who are made poor only because they do not have dicks!
Poor and dependent women are depressed, afraid, anxious, fearful, vulnerable, weak. They are having low self esteem and lack of self confidence. Women must not be poor. They must not be shy and silent. They must have a loud voice. They must refuse to be shackled, chained, threatened and beaten. Women must have money. They must have their own houses. Women must be independent and must be powerful.
Men hate woman’s body. Women learn from men to hate their own bodies. Men and media have been busy for centuries advising women what they should look like.
Men hate women’s hair if they are not silky and long. Most women keep their hair long even though many of them feel comfortable having short hair. They use different chemicals to make their hair silky.
Men do not like the color of our skin. So we bleach our skin or get our skin tanned. We spend almost all our money to buy cosmetics so that we can decorate ourselves and become someone men want us to become. We want to make men feel satisfied.
Men do not like us when our hair turns grey. So we dye our hair.
Men hate women’s eyes, eyebrows, noses, lips, cheeks, necks, ears. Women paint their eyes, eyebrows, cheeks, lips. We wear jewelries around our necks, we pierce our noses and ears to wear ornaments.
Men hate us if our hymens are broken. We need to repair our hymens.
Men hate our vagina if the passage is not very narrow or not very tight. We go for surgery under anesthesia to tighten vagina.
Men hate our legs. So we wear high-heeled shoes to make us look taller. Our toes get bruised, our bones get broken, we suffer from sprained ankles and dislocations. We can not walk comfortably, we can not run when needed. But we continue wearing high heels to give men pleasure.
Men hate our wrinkled skin. So we use all kinds of chemicals or all kinds of anti-wrinkle or anti-aging creams on our faces. I wonder whether people really believe chemicals or creams can stop natural aging process!
We tell men that we like them for who they are. They do not destroy their natural body to make us feel happy. They do not implant or reduce anything to please us. There are evolutionary reasons for men to get attracted to women and for women to get attracted to men. But patriarchy, a system artificially imposed on society, causes all the injustices and inequalities against women. Patriarchy is a system in which men dominate, oppress, suppress and exploit women. This system prevents women from being who they really are.
Millions of men are crazy to sleep with virgins. They marry children because children are most likely to be virgins. Men go to brothels and pay a lot of money only to fuck 5 to 10-year-old children. Men love hymen that surrounds or partially covers the external vaginal opening.
The man who created Islam knew about the desire of men to have sex with virgins. He tempted men whoever convert to Islam with seventy two virgins.
In some parts of the world a white bed sheet is put on the bed to see virgin’s blood on the first night of wedding. Women are forced to give proof of their chastity. Female ‘purity’ is an asset for patriarchy.Unfortunately their Purity, chastity, virginity, morality all are made available nowhere but in vagina. Women get divorced or tortured or even murdered if their hymens are not intact on wedding night.
They do not wear chastity belts made of Iron anymore. Today’s chastity belts are made of different or they are just invisible. There is no change in the mindset of controlling women. Male domination or patriarchy has reduced women the half of the world’s human population to mere sex objects.
Hymens can be broken because of physical exercises, tampons, traumas etc. But men are not ready to accept any torn hymen. Women have to give their husbands or masters or lords the proof of their virginity. Before wedding, out of fear women rush to doctors for having hymenoplasty or hymenorrhaphy. Women’s dignity and honor are based on whether or not their hymens are intact.
Women’s sexuality has never been a private thing. It has always been the property of men and society. They throws stones towards women if their hymens are broken.
Women are also forced to have a hymenoplasty to tighten vagina so that men can feel that they are having sex with teens or children. Doctors are now becoming expert in tightening vagina or restoring virginity. Women have been taught for centuries not to have respect for themselves. They are taught to hate their own bodies. They are taught to live for men and men only.
What if women did not have but men had hymens covering their penises! Men would face no problems if men’s hymens were broken because of horse back riding or masturbation or sex or something else. Would women ever ask men to give proof of their virginity? No. Rupturing hymens would be a man’s proof of masculinity. Men would be treated as uncouth and retard if their hymens remained intact after puberty.
“Woman is not born: she is made. In the making, her humanity is destroyed. She becomes symbol of this, symbol of that: mother of the earth, slut of the universe; but she never becomes herself because it is forbidden for her to do so.”
― Andrea Dworkin
“Femininity is wearing shoes that make it difficult to run, skirts that inhibit movement, and underclothes that interfere with blood circulation. It can hardly be coincidental that the clothes men find most flattering on a woman are precisely those that make it most difficult for her to defend herself against aggression.”
― Suzanne Brøgger
“The “feminine” woman is forever static and childlike. She is like the ballerina in an old-fashioned music box, her unchanging features tiny and girlish, her voice tinkly, her body stuck on a pin, rotating in a spiral that will never grow.”
― Susan Faludi
We know about sexist advertisements of the past. Happy housewives could not drive cars but could push vacuum cleaners.Time has changed, women are not anymore forced to be slaves of men in many societies. They are allowed to be educated and become independent. Most countries in the world adopted United Nation’s The Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW). But sexism still exists.
The vintage sexist advertisements in the 50’s and ’60s were demeaning but the modern sexist advertisements are not any less demeaning.
Should men and women let sexism continue to exist?
We all know Mother’s Day is a big buck business. It is still a good day. Children think of their mothers for at least one day a year!
When my mother was alive, I didn’t have time to think of her. She died. Now I think of her everyday. I repent everyday.
Today, I was asked a direct question and gave a direct answer:
I believe that same-sex couples should be allowed to marry.
I hope you’ll take a moment to watch the conversation, consider it, and weigh in yourself on behalf of marriage equality.
I’ve always believed that gay and lesbian Americans should be treated fairly and equally. I was reluctant to use the term marriage because of the very powerful traditions it evokes. And I thought civil union laws that conferred legal rights upon gay and lesbian couples were a solution.
But over the course of several years I’ve talked to friends and family about this. I’ve thought about members of my staff in long-term, committed, same-sex relationships who are raising kids together. Through our efforts to end the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy, I’ve gotten to know some of the gay and lesbian troops who are serving our country with honor and distinction.
What I’ve come to realize is that for loving, same-sex couples, the denial of marriage equality means that, in their eyes and the eyes of their children, they are still considered less than full citizens.
Even at my own dinner table, when I look at Sasha and Malia, who have friends whose parents are same-sex couples, I know it wouldn’t dawn on them that their friends’ parents should be treated differently.
So I decided it was time to affirm my personal belief that same-sex couples should be allowed to marry.
I respect the beliefs of others, and the right of religious institutions to act in accordance with their own doctrines. But I believe that in the eyes of the law, all Americans should be treated equally. And where states enact same-sex marriage, no federal act should invalidate them.
“Pornography is the theory, and rape is the practice.” — Robin Morgan
I am against pornography because it has many harmful effects: encouragement of sex trafficking, desensitization, pedophilia, dehumanization, sexual exploitation, sexual dysfunction, inability to maintain healthy sexual relationships. Pornography is exclusively for men’s pleasure. Women are used as sex objects. I know some women will say, ‘we love to be sex objects’. Millions of misogynists are out there to support the idea of the objectification of women. I do not have to support this.
I am against pornography, because I am against abuse or degradation. But I am not against erotica. The definitions of pornography and erotica come from Diana Russell.
Pornography: Material that combines sex and/or the exposure of genitals with abuse or degradation in a manner that appears to endorse, condone, or encourage such behavior.
Erotica: Sexually suggestive or arousing material that is free of sexism, racism, and homophobia, and respectful of all human beings and animals portrayed.
I like what Gloria Steinem says, “Pornography is directly linked to sex trafficking. It normalizes degradation and violence as acceptable and even inevitable parts of sex, and it uses the bodies of real women and children as its raw material. The difference between pornography and erotica is clear in the words themselves — porne means female slaves, eros means love — and we can see that pornography, like rape, is about violence and domination, not sex. Millions of lives depend on our ability to untangle pornography from erotica, violence from sexuality.”
Researchers say, “Most female performers are coerced into pornography, either by somebody else, or by an unfortunate set of circumstances. Pornography leads to an increase in sexual violence against women through fostering rape myths. Such rape myths include the belief that women really want to be raped and that they mean yes when they say no. Pornography desensitizes viewers to violence against women, and this leads to a progressive need to see more violence in order to become sexually aroused.”
“The pornography industry is a lot bigger, more powerful, more legitimate, more in everyone’s face today than it was a quarter of a century ago. To the degree that it cannot exist without doing real damage, it could still be stopped in its tracks anywhere by this law. Sexual objectification and violation does not happen all by itself. Real social institutions drive it.”
“Pornography, an industry of woman-hating dehumanization, is implicated in violence against women, both in its production through the abuse of the women used to star in it , and in the social consequences of its consumption by encouraging men to eroticize the domination, humiliation, coercion and abuse of women.”
We should rather Eroticize Equality!
Survey says, “porn does not stimulate men’s appetites–it turns them off the real thing. ‘Not tonight, honey, I am logging on’. Internet porn is everywhere, even ‘nice’ guys are hooked.”