Today’s Lady News: U.S. House Could Not Pass Anti-Child Marriage Bill

  • A bill to further protect girls around the world from child marriage failed to pass the House of Representatives yesterday, despite unanimously passing in the Senate. According to The Washington Post, some members of Congress had circulated memos urging people not to support the bill because it would “overturn pro-life laws.” However, the words “abortion” and “family planning” were not mentioned anywhere within the bill. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL), who sponsored the bill, said: “The action on the House floor stopping the Child Marriage bill tonight will endanger the lives of millions of women and girls around the world. These young girls, enslaved in marriage, will be brutalized and many will die when their young bodies are torn apart while giving birth. Those who voted to continue this barbaric practice brought shame to Capitol Hill.” Frankly, I’m disgusted right now. [Washington Post]
  • Air New Zealand will be taking down a billboard which reads “Fares lower than your grandma’s boobs” after complaints that it is sexist and ageist. [Stuff NZ]

  • On a conservative radio show, Rep. Michelle Bachmann of Minnesota has once again called for the government to de-fund Planned Parenthood because it provides abortions — despite the fact Planned Parenthood also provides pelvic exams, birth control and consultations on various other reproductive health issues. [Minnesota Independent]
  • Jet magazine’s editor-in-chief, Mira Lowe, has resigned. Lowe was the first-ever female EIC of the African-American lifestyle mag. [Black Voices]
  • Playwright Young Jean Lee opened up to The Wall Street Journal about her piece of work, “Untitled Feminist Multimedia Show,” which is currently being performed this weekend in Brooklyn, New York. “The show is wrestling with what feminism is now perceived to be,” Lee said. “I am obviously [a feminist] in that I care about women’s rights. But in terms of how feminism is defined, culturally, I wouldn’t be able to say that I necessarily fit that. I don’t know feminist theory or history. I do a lot of stuff that is not very empowered.” Lee has been described by American Theater as one of the 25 artists who will change American theater over the next 25 years. [Wall Street Journal]


  • The Correctional Service of Canada has hired its first female Muslim prison officer, who will be placed in a men’s penitentiary when she is done with training. She will wear a specially designed hijab (head-covering Muslim veil) on the job. [Toronto Sun]
  • A French court has ruled against a Muslim woman who sued her former employer, a private daycare center, after it fired her for wearing a headscarf to work. The daycare center said wearing religious garments at work violated their internal policy. []
  • Oops! How could we have forgotten Pride and Prejudice author Jane Austen’s birthday yesterday? On December 16th, Jane would have been, umm, 235 years young. [Feministing]