Tag Archives: women news

France Considers Sex Work Law Punishing Johns

todays lady news
  • France’s parliament is reviewing a proposed bill today to curb sex work by punishing the johns with a $2,000 fine while protecting the sex workers. Prostitution is currently legal in France. [France24Huffington Post]
  • Civil rights activist Faya Rose Toure was arrested in Selma, Alabama for protesting the construction of a monument to the first grand wizard of the Ku Klux Klan.  What the fuck, Alabama?  Really?  [AL.com] Keep reading »

Alabama Judge To Resentence Rapist Who Got Zero Prison Time

rapist austin clem

Following an outcry over some complete and utter bullllllshit, an Alabama judge will resentence a convicted rapist who got exactly zero prison time for his crimes. Austin Clem was found guilty by a jury of raping a teenaged girl, who was his neighbor, twice when she was 14 and again when she was 18.  Two weeks ago, Judge James Woodroof sentenced Clem to two years in a program for non-violent offenders — despite the fact that rape is one of the most violent acts there is — and three years of supervised probation. Everyone but Austin Clem himself promptly asked Judge Woodroof, What the fuck are you thinking?  The district attorney for the Limestone County jurisdiction appealed the sentencing as too lenient. His victim, who is now age 20, even went on Melissa Harris-Perry’s show to speak out against his slap-on-the-wrist sentencing. The judge has responded accordingly: yesterday, he filed paperwork for re-sentencing.  Put that criminal behind bars where he belongs so he can’t hurt someone else again. [WHNT, Mother Jones]

Supreme Court To Take Up Hobby Lobby Birth Control Case

todays lady news
  • The case filed by Hobby Lobby, a craft store owned by Christians who don’t believe in birth control and refuses to cover it under the Affordable Care Act, is headed to the Supreme Court. In March 2014, the highest court in the land will take up the question of whether a company can refuse to cover contraception for its employees due to the religious objections of its owners. Presently, only churches and other religious non-profits can refuse to cover BC. [Huffington Post] Keep reading »

Three Women Freed From Decades Of Captivity In London

todays lady news
  • A couple in their 60s was arrested in London for holding three women as slaves for 30 years. Police say the women — one 69, one 57, and one 30 — had been brainwashed and kept in “invisible handcuffs.”  The youngest woman had allegedly spent her entire life inside the house. Eventually one of the women saw a program about forced marriage on TV and memorized the phone number for a help hotline mentioned on the show. [New York Times]
  • Graphic anti-abortion mailers are targeting doctors throughout Texas. [My San Antonio] Keep reading »

Oh, For Eff’s Sake, Michelle Obama Is Not A “Feminist’s Nightmare”

Michelle Obama

One of the most intriguing characters on “Scandal” is First Lady Mellie Grant. She’s not just a WASP sent from Central Casting, or a put-upon wife of a philanderer. Mellie gave up her Yale and Harvard-bred ambitions for the full-time job of photo ops and glad-handing as the First Lady. Just like Lucy Ricardo always wanted husband Ricky to just give her one opportunity to be in a show, Mellie Grant wants to influence policy and make big moves wherever she can. At every turn, she is stopped, often angrily, by her husband the President and his apoplectic Chief Of Staff. Both men remind her, every episode it seems, that the First Lady is supposed to be pretty sidekick, not a policy wonk.  In one episode, Mellie is witheringly informed her job is to be “ornamental.”

Watching Mellie Grant on “Scandal” has made me look at Michelle Obama differently for sure. It’s not hard to imagine she, too, feels a bit trapped in a golden cage. We don’t exactly know whether Michelle Obama feels like her intellect is being wasted, but we do know from Jodi Kantor’s book, The Obamas, a portrait of the Obama marriage, that Barack’s high-level staff has bristled in the past at Michelle’s involvement. But  also we know that Michelle dedicated her first year as First Lady to acclimating her two children to their new home and school and has spent many years since promoting healthy eating and exercise. All this has been summed up by Michelle Cottle, a Daily Beast scribe in a piece for Politico Magazine, as a feminist failure. Keep reading »

Gloria Steinem, Oprah Winfrey Receive The Presidential Medal Of Freedom

oprah winfrey presidential medal freedom
  • Gloria Steinem and Oprah Winfrey both received the Presidential Medal of Freedom today from President Barack Obama at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C.  Ironically, Steinem was the first-ever woman to speak at the Club in 1971 and, at the time, was given the traditional gift of a men’s tie. [Ms Magazine, Marie Claire]
  • The Supreme Court refused to block a restriction on Texas abortions. [New York Times]
  • An Alabama woman has spoken out about the sentencing of her rapist, Austin Clem, who received no jail time despite being convicted of three rape charges, including raping her when she was only 13. [New York Times]
  • The General Synod of the Church of England voted to allow women to be bishops. [Guardian UK] Keep reading »
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