Progressive French Women
French women are notably more empowered than American women, according to the World Economic Forum’s Gender Equality Index. French women outrank American women 18 to 31.
Better yet for French women, they’re making rapid forward progress, while the American women are sliding backwards. France has moved from a rank of 70 in 2006 to 18 in 2009. America was 22 in 2006 and is 31 in 2009.
When French women fix their score of 62 in Economic Participation vs the American women’s 17, they’ll move into the top 10. American women will be in the back of the first world bus, actually in the middle I’m quite sure.
French Women & Health Care
In health care, France received a score of 1 vs America’s score of 40 from the World’s Economic Forum. No international studies rate America’s current health care system as highly as Republicans do.
Sorry, I digress in this news about the challenges of French motherhood.
The situation for mothers in France seems not as bad as in America. Women aren’t called ‘babykillers’ and forced to run a gauntlet, for exercising their legal right to an abortion. France was the first country to legalize the use of RU-486.
For reasons not clear to me, 85-90% of French call themselves Catholic, vs 24% in America. So why don’t Catholic bishops run France and force women to go through the same torture of choosing motherhood?
No French Catholic Cowboys
Perhaps French men lack that bossy, testosterone, Wild West Texas machismo like American guys. Maybe American bishops have more testosterone than the French ones.
Whatever the differences for women living in France vs America, at least one French woman is pushing back on the holiest topic of all: motherhood.
French philosopher Simone de Beauvoir wrote “The Second Sex”, a galvanizing treatise for women around the world.
The question is, will French philosopher Elisabeth Badinter get kicked out of the French feminism (yes, there is an active movement) vanguard for writing Le Conflit, La Femme et La Mère (The Conflict, The Woman and The Mother), which is topping the bestseller lists in France amid intense debate, maintains that women have thrown off the shackles of male domination only to impose a far more pernicious tyranny on themselves — that of their own children? via London Times
Badinter says forget being the perfect, breastfeeding, eco-nappy washing, purée-making, sexually-exhausted, libido-dead woman. This French feminist says forget all that Conservative humdrum about female self-sacrifice — within reason, of course.
In spite of the claims of their therapy-ridden children who will never forgive seventies moms for having the audacity to utter the words “I am a person, not just a ‘womb for future occupants’” — as Rep Stupak called women in yesterday’s health care hearings — maybe the divinely-devoted, heaven-sent, totally selfless mom isn’t actually best for her children or the world’s social institutions, or governments or business.
Perhaps the 21st century needs less perfect mothers because it needs WOMEN. I can’t speak to the conversation, not having children. I will share my beliefs that I’m tired of having full-grown, talented women with IQs and MBAs contrasted with unfertilized eggs called ‘occupants of the womb’ and ‘people’.
There’s no doubt that Elisabeth Badinter is causing a firestorm in France. She would be shot as dead as an abortion doctor in America, but France has far fewer guns per person than America. We’re reading as much as possible on Badinter. You continue on at the London Times: Is motherhood a form of oppression?
Speaking of being shot, our international audience should take the notion seriously here in America. We’re returning to the Wild West. Rush Limbaugh annnounced today: “We need to defeat these bastards. We need to wipe them out, every last one of them that voted for this bill … “
Could everyone kindly lock up your rifles. Anne
Ah yes, here’s also Texas Rep Randy Neugebauer calling Rep Stupak a ‘baby killer’, when the announcement was made that pro-life Dems were accepting the Executive order. Here’s those details from Huff Po.