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The current issue of Foreign Policy is devoted to sex. That would be females. No, no. Foreign Policy hasn’t gone the way of Playboy. Instead the April issue is dedicated to the consideration of how and why sex — in all our understandings of the meaning of the word — is so relevant in global politics.
Women missing from peace talks and parliaments, sexual abuse and exploitation institutionalized and legalized in too many places on the planet, and a U.S. policy that, whether intentionally or not, all too frequently works to shore up the abusers and perpetuate the marginalization of half of humanity. Women’s bodies are the world’s battleground, the contested terrain on which politics is played out. We can keep ignoring it. For this one issue, we decided not to.
Why Women Are a Foreign Policy Issue by Melanne Verneer
Why To They Hate Us? by Mona Eltahawy
The Ayatollah Under the Bed(sheets) by Karim Sadjadpour
The Startling Plight of China’s Leftover Ladies by Christina Larson
Men rule the political world: Women make up just 20 percent of the world’s parliaments and constitute about 17 percent of cabinet positions. Foreign Policy asks: “Why aren’t there more women leaders, and is there any hope of change?” The magazine interviewed top female leaders around the world about the biggest obstacles for aspiring female politicians, and how they can be brought to the negotiating table. Presidents and vice presidents, cabinet secretaries and members of Congress all participated. Question: if 95 countries in the world have instituted quotas for women in governing, is it time America installs quotas, too?
Seattle’s Our Lady of the Lake Catholic Church saluted the Rev. Tim Clark with a standing ovation on Sunday when he announced that the parish would not gather signatures to support a referendum to repeal same-sex marriage. The parish is the sixth in Seattle to opt out of the petition drive instigated by Archbishop J Peter Sartain. Six parishes in the Seattle have joined the refusal. Unlike other bishops, Sartain left the decision of whether or not to support the gathering of signatures against gay marriage to individual pastors.
In St. Paul-Minneapolis, Archbishop John Nienstedt is pressing an amendment to the state constitution saying that marriage is only between a man and a woman.
In a fiery letter to priests that also condemned no-fault divorce and cohabitation outside of marriage, Archbishop Nienstedt said he would brook no public dissent from any priest in the archdiocese, writes the Seattle PI.
Archbishop Nienstedt has sent 400,000 anti-gay DVDs to Catholics in his diocese. Students wearing rainbows at a diocesan mass are refused communion.
Women Directors| No movies by women will compete at the Cannes Film Festival this year, writes Melissa Silverstein at Women and Hollywood. Last year there were four.
HBO Girls| Alison Willmore asks what are we mad at Lena Dunham and HBO’s Girls over today. Her list includes the show’s name; not representing the sisterhood; racist; and nepotism. Jezebel’s Dodai Stewart agrees, writing that the show reminds her of what her ’60s hippie parents have always told her: “If you’re not part of the solution you’re part of the problem.”
Wisc. Dems on Walker| Former Dane County Executive Kathleen Falk was joined last week by state Reps. Christine Sinicki of Milwaukee and Chris Taylor of Madison in sending a letter to Repubican governor Walker asking for an explanation of why he repealed the state’s equal pay law. Falk, who is running against Walker in the recall, cited a lack of any lawsuits filed against the bill as Republicans have claimed.
Republican OB-GYNS in Congress| “We’re all Southern, conservative, and pro-life,” said Phil Roe of the four OB-GYN members of the House. “Loudmouthed and red-necked is also a good way to describe us.” Read on at Politico.
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