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Obama on “Women’s Rights” in His Speech in Cairo, Egypt

Obama's concept of women's rights?

Obama's concept of women's rights?

Oh. My. God. Is this man really as clueless as he sounds? Obama on the rights of Muslim women in the U.S.:

…freedom in America is indivisible from the freedom to practice one’s religion. That is why there is a mosque in every state of our union, and over 1,200 mosques within our borders. That is why the U.S. government has gone to court to protect the right of women and girls to wear the hijab, and to punish those who would deny it.

On what he refers to as “women’s rights”:

I know there is debate about this issue. I reject the view of some in the West that a woman who chooses to cover her hair is somehow less equal, but I do believe that a woman who is denied an education is denied equality. And it is no coincidence that countries where women are well-educated are far more likely to be prosperous.

Now let me be clear: issues of women’s equality are by no means simply an issue for Islam. In Turkey, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Indonesia, we have seen Muslim-majority countries elect a woman to lead. Meanwhile, the struggle for women’s equality continues in many aspects of American life, and in countries around the world.

Our daughters can contribute just as much to society as our sons, and our common prosperity will be advanced by allowing all humanity – men and women – to reach their full potential. I do not believe that women must make the same choices as men in order to be equal, and I respect those women who choose to live their lives in traditional roles. But it should be their choice. That is why the United States will partner with any Muslim-majority country to support expanded literacy for girls, and to help young women pursue employment through micro-financing that helps people live their dreams.

That is all Obama had to say about “women’s rights” yesterday in his speech to a Muslim audience.

I’m really struggling to get my rage under control right now, but I think it’s going to be a losing battle. This man is beyond clueless. Does he have any idea of the daily abuse women are subjected to in Muslim countries? Here is Peter Daou’s reaction to Obama’s mealy mouthed words about women’s rights:

Is that a joke?

With women being stoned, raped, abused, battered, mutilated, and slaughtered on a daily basis across the globe, violence that is so often perpetrated in the name of religion, the most our president can speak about is protecting their right to wear the hijab? I would have been much more heartened if the preponderance of the speech had been about how in the 21st century, we CANNOT tolerate the pervasive abuse of our mothers and sisters and daughters.

Daou’s entire article about the speech in Huffpo is well worth reading. But Murphy’s reaction at Pumapac is even more congruent with mine:

Hang on a second there, Jackass. No woman (or man) in the West believes that a woman who chooses to cover her hair is somehow less equal. What we KNOW is that religio-fascist regimes which REQUIRE a woman to cover herself in public view women as less equal.

It is not WE who view ANY woman as less equal you sexist pig. It is THEY who view women as less equal.

When I see photos of women in burquas in Afghanistan and Saudi Arabia I don’t think they are LESS equal for lord’s sake. If anything I see them as MORE EQUAL. More equal in the sense that they deserve to be fought for; to be rescued, protected, FREED!

Again, please read all of Murphy’s piece. It’s simply brilliant.

Based on his own words, here is a summary of what our President believes about “women’s rights”:

1. There is a “debate” about whether women should have equal rights.

2. Muslim women must have the right to cover their heads in public, and the full force of the U.S. Government will be used to protect that right. (Of course, as Murphy points out, the supposed “controversy” about prejudice against muslim women wearing the hajib is a ridiculous strawman argument.)

3. Muslim countries have elected women leaders, and by implication the U.S. is worse than they are because we have never had a woman President. (Does this man have any sense of the irony of what he said?)

4. Women shouldn’t be denigrated for choosing “traditional roles.”

5. Countries that allow women to “reach their full potential” will be richer.

6. Literacy for women should be encouraged.

Woman being prepared for stoning in Iran

Woman being prepared for stoning in Iran

President Obama had nothing to say about young women having acid thrown in their faces for going to school. He had nothing to say about women being stoned to death in public for adultery or even for being raped (h/t Peter Daou). He had nothing to say about women being sexually harrassed constantly in Egypt (See here also). He had nothing to say about laws permitting women to be raped by their husbands and requiring women to get permission from their husbands to leave the house. He had nothing to say about young women who are dying by self-immolation rather than go on living under the horrendous conditions they face in their country. He had nothing to say about the rampant physical abuse suffered by pregnant women in Pakistan and the concurrent epidemic of depression among women there. He had nothing to say about honor killings in Muslim families.

I could go on, but why bother? American voters elected a misogynist who is utterly clueless about women’s life experiences, about what would be needed to achieve equality for women, and about what women want period. This man imagines that he can find “common ground” with murderers of abortion doctors, and with men who think that women are the property of men. Oh, and by the way, our clueless, uncaring President had nothing to say about gay rights the horrendous treatment of homosexuals in Muslim countries either.

I can’t even begin to describe my feelings of disgust and contempt right now.

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112 Responses

  1. Check out the ignorant comments to Daou’s article. Every time someone calls out Obama on his backtracks, lies, and empty words, the Obots come out in full force telling said progressive/liberal/Democrat to “get over it” if they ever supported the Clintons or worked for Hillary.

    • What really floored me was that he says there is a “debate about this issue.” Good Lord! His mother must be turning over in her grave right now.

      • I think this means we need to make room under the bus for every woman in the world now.

      • For Obama it’s all about his absent father, see there is no book about his mothers dreams .

        He had nothing to say about women being sexually harrassed constantly in Egypt (See here also).

        Harassed while wearing a the traditional hijab, but of course using his logic it was the women’s fault and not the menz in these ‘Holy’ traditional societies.

        I frankly don’t want my tax payer money to be used to defend the ‘oppression’ of women and I will vote in a Republican if this so called Democrat wants to bring Sharia Law here. He obviously hasn’t read the international news about the abuse and murders of women. Freedom is women choosing for themselves and not the male patriarchy.

        In memory of Amina and Sarah Said

        Yaser Abdel Said AMW info:
        Sex: Male
        Race: Other
        Height: 6’2″
        Weight: 180 lbs.
        Hair: Black, Usually wears a mustache
        Eyes: Brown
        Other Physical Characteristics: Last seen wearing a black turtleneck shirt/sweater, a brown coat and tan pants
        Believed to be armed with a handgun

        Has he put the full force of the government to bring their killer to justice, their very own father? Women’s lives are just as valuable as men’s and these young teenagers deserved to live out their lives, they didn’t deserve to be brutally murdered. And their ‘traditional’ mother is not helping out…that is the saddest part of this story, apart from the fact that it happened here in the US!

      • hey ya al what obama said was enough as a muslim young lady i would like you people to understand that we love our religion and us asking permission from our husbands is part of it we love respecting them among many things

        • Maryan, you need to understand that as a non Muslim, those words make me incredibly freaking sad, right before they piss me off.

        • Oh come on Cinie, don’t prejudge.

          You might enjoy a life of docile servitude.

        • I see the Hijab as the equivalent of wearing chains, while your master hides behind religion and seeks to be honored for oppressing women. I would rather die than wear a hijab!

          Real men aren’t afraid of women and don’t oppress women to feel important.

        • We love to scamper to Sex-Daddy and ask permission. We show him we love him by acting like children who have no right to make decisions. If Sex-Daddy graciously says yes, we put on our rag prisons and go out to enjoy obeying him. Life is so fun when you have no wish to be anything other than a tool to run a man’s house.

    • The truth is the obots need to “get over” it. They need to accept the fact that they embraced a hateful, deceitful coward of a man. Deal with it, Obamanation! It’s your stinky, not ours. And while you’re “getting over” it, you should also start cleaning the freakin’ mess up.

  2. Mr Feminism misses the point. I’m shocked, shocked I say.

    Okay,not really. This is unsurprising coming from a guy who has more males on his Committee on Women and Girls than females. The guys probably advised him hajibs were the biggest problem facing muslim women.

    • “This is unsurprising coming from a guy who has more males on his Committee on Women and Girls than females.”

      Really? That’s just rich.

  3. Great post, BostonBoomer! I’ve been stuck in a room with that speech on a repeating loop and it’s making me crazy. It’s good to know it’s already being evaluated.

    I don’t have access to the social link generator on this computer so if Dakinikat is around, could you add them? Otherwise I’ll do it when I get home.

  4. Let’s face it. Obama will never take a strong stance on anything much less on women or LGBT rights. He’s not going to rock the boat or risk offending the men in power who allow the continued degradation, abuse, and murder of their women. For Obama this is just another opportunity to be adored by the press.

  5. Okay, let me get this straight now. Women wearing the hijab is his idea of feminism and equality.? Can’t wait for that on the cover of Ms.

    • Soon American women will be permitted to wear chastity belts again.

      • but only if we really really want to. It will be all in the name of equality/ rolls eyes.

        • The fact that we’ll be shunned by our communities if we don’t want to wear them will have nothing to do with our choice either. Just like acid being thrown in women’s faces has nothing to do with their “choosing” to stay home and be poor and illiterate.

        • I would rather die than wear one 😦 We must Divest From Misogyny our very lives depend on it, and with our own President fluffing this non-sense up, it is an urgent matter.

    • Don’t forget the right to “choose traditional roles.” Obama is strongly behind the rights of women to be barefoot, pregnant, and homebound.

      • Well I don’t know about barefoot, but I’d say pregnant most definitely since he still hasn’t gotten around to that conscience clause.

    • Have the swooners had anything to say lately? Seems it’s awful quiet on the bodice ripper front.

    • TOTUS strikes again.roflmao….

    • Yes, Mr ‘FeMANist’!

    • I doubt that you’ll ever see any criticism of Obama on the cover of Ms. That magazine has drunk the kool-aid.

  6. Someone asked about franklyO yesterday and he shows up in the comments to Daou’s piece:

    I thought people here might want to see what a non-platitudinous, substantive, brave speech about women’s rights looks like.

    From Hillary Clinton’s speech in Beijing, in 1995 (going back to the future, before feminism was redefined by Obama and his current so-called feminist supporters):

    “Our goals for this conference, to strengthen families and societies by empowering women to take greater control over their own destinies, cannot be fully achieved unless all governments — here and around the world — accept their responsibility to protect and promote internationally recognized human rights. The — The international community has long acknowledged and recently reaffirmed at Vienna that both women and men are entitled to a range of protections and personal freedoms, from the right of personal security to the right to determine freely the number and spacing of the children they bear. No one — No one should be forced to remain silent for fear of religious or political persecution, arrest, abuse, or torture.

    Tragically, women are most often the ones whose human rights are violated. Even now, in the late 20th century, the rape of women continues to be used as an instrument of armed conflict. Women and children make up a large majority of the world”s refugees. And when women are excluded from the political process, they become even more vulnerable to abuse. I believe that now, on the eve of a new millennium, it is time to break the silence.”

    • I’m always amazed by the speech. Keep in mind it was 14 years ago, when major political figures were staying away from issues such as women rights and equality.

      To give such a speech not as some women rally in Bekley but in China is another thing all by itself.

      But whaddya know: She’s evil and calculating.

    • The LOONS, of course, miss the point entirely. They whine and whine about how even though she spoke out it goes on. God, these people are dense.

      Then there was the nutball that insisted the choice was this or screaming that they are all a bunch of barbarians. In Obama land there is no such thing as rationality.

    • Thank-you, Hillary, for breaking the silence, in 1995.

      Thank-you, Barack Obama, for deepening it, in 2008.

  7. Thank You BB. Great, great post. The more I think about this, the angrier I get.

    Saw frankyo over there fighting the good fight. There are a few really good comments in support of him that are getting shot down by the “give him time, baby steps, and you worked for Hillary” crowd.

    What’s it gonna take to wake people up? I am afraid of the answer.

    • Thank you, soupcity. I am so angry!

      • BB, you are spot on, I so fear for my family members that are women… I listened to the radio today and some said things, like; He didn’t say these things while on the campaign trail’ and ‘I voted for him too’ (sad sounds).

        I live in Obama country and hearing that is like OMG…I even had to check the channel! 😯

  8. There is another post at Huffpo now by a woman, Shirin Sadeghi from Al Jazeera. Here’s what she has to say.

    …Obama’s inevitable message to the Muslim world: that the United States will look the other way at your governments’ repressive policies because a working relationship with them is more important than a consideration of the peoples’ rights.

    and

    Even when he touched on women’s rights, Obama framed it in a Western perspective: he disagrees with Western nations – perhaps an allusion to Germany and France’s recent problems – who struggle with Muslim women wearing hejab.

    But he didn’t come at the issue from the perspective that was promised — by addressing Muslims in Muslim countries. If that were indeed the case, we should have heard his analysis of women who are compelled or forced to wear hejab in these countries and women whose lives and livelihoods are severely impaired by the segregation of sexes that pervades much of the Muslim world.

    He commendably touched on the need for girls and women’s education in Muslim countries – but ignored the fact that in the Muslim countries where women have least access to education, Islamic fundamentalism is often strongest.

    At times in his speech, it was almost as if Obama in his elegant oration was pandering to the fundamentalists and the oppressive governments who have defined the Islamic dialogue for decades. He said that he does not want to be a prisoner of the past, but his speech was littered with history which, while accurate, is old news when it stands alone without direction or context.

    • Cue the whining progressives who’ll insist that it was unreasonable to suggest he should address issues like honor killings.

      It wouldn’t have been politically expedient.

      I bet we used the same kind of excuses when we were turning a blind eye to Saddam killing off the Kurds.

      Ah Change we can all believe in, ain’t it grand?

      • Well, I think he could have gone a teensy bit further than he did without really hitting them over the head with their inhumanity.

        • Hillary certainly did.

          The point was to stand on principle.

          As usual on issues of principle,Obama punted. Standing on issues such as human rights would have been too messy.

          Frankly, someone can wake me when we believe the women and children of the muslim world ARE worth fighting for. Heck, right now, our leader and his merry band of cheerleaders(yeah I’m talking to you progressives who insist that voting for any other option than D is e-vil) aren’t even willing to speak out against their abuse.

        • Sadly, ObamaNation doesn’t even think American women are worth fighting for, much less women in other countries. Heck, if they did, they would never have voted for the misogynist in chief.

      • Yes! The blind was turned when Sadam was murdering Kurds, that is committing genocide. But we all know how Obummer feels about genocides. He doesn’t really think they happened at all.

        Witness his about-turn in the atricious genocide committed by barbarian Turkish armies against the defenseless Armenians.

        He campaigned on the promise that he would ask the Turkish goverment to acknowledge their brutalities and murdering 2 million Armenians.

        But going for his (what else?) Speech Tour in Turkey recently he didn’t say a word. Biggest phony of the Western world…A narcissistsic Empty Suit –the Ventriloquist Dummy of Wall Street and Misogynits Anonymous Inc.
        Why don’t we order this all-talk-no-action piece of presidential fluff a Hijab! Hell, he’d look good in it.
        and the teleprompter can be adjusted accordingly!!

      • It’s 11-dimensional chess, remember?

    • yes! Yes! YES!!! It’s like, please don’t blow up anything on my watch and I’ll sell out all the women in your country.

      and what no promise to make the mutilation of women’s genitalia a religious freedom issue here in the US too?

      And this is what MS thinks a feminist looks like?

      • The other day in the public library, I had a very-hard-to-resist urge to deface that issue of Ms. Magazine….

      • Boxer and Clinton on Women: Women’s Rights are Human Rights

        This is not culture, this is not custom, this is criminal…

        Sec. Hillary Clinton Defends Reproductive Rights and Family Planning

        We could have had the most experienced candidate that just happened to be a woman and who knew that Women Rights are Human Rights. 😥

      • yes! Yes! YES!!! It’s like, please don’t blow up anything on my watch and I’ll sell out all the women in your country.

        and what no promise to make the mutilation of women’s genitalia a religious freedom issue here in the US too?

        And this is what MS thinks a feminist looks like?

        Mr. FeMANist might also fight for the right of Honor Killings as a ‘religious freedom’, why stop at the Hijab…once the ‘religious oppressive’ horse is out of the barn….

    • At times he was pandering?? More like occasionally he was not pandering. Most elegantly, of course.

    • This is oustandning becasue it hits on the most insidious part of Obama’s dishonest sppech.

      Obama chose the hejab so that he could say to the oppressive patriarchs, “Look, we will even stick up for your special rules for the little ladies…” He was pandering to wahabists. Pathetic.

      If he was going to say anything about muslim women not being allowed to wear head scarves in the West, he should have said it in France.

      In Cairo he should have said, “Honor killing must stop, it must stop everywhere, now and forever. And until it does an unbridgeable chasm will exist between us.”

      • Bingo! It’s one thing to make a statement like that in France. To make a statement like that when addressing the Middle East–there are no words.

    • At times in his speech, it was almost as if Obama in his elegant oration was pandering to the fundamentalists and the oppressive governments who have defined the Islamic dialogue for decades.

      Yep, she recognized the ultimate Panderer that we have witnessed for months now. That was my first thought: it’s the same M.O. he has used all along–pander to whatever audience you are trying to manipulate. He should have stuck to being a “professor” (though he lied about that appellation too) or a preacher–that was his true calling. He doesn’t have the principles or courage to be a true leader.

    • Well, he thinks there is a ‘MODERATE TALIBAN’ and recently the Pakistani government sent him a big ‘NO’ they are just all TALIBAN! But still he dreams on, just like his ‘Dreams of My Father’.

  9. Very. Bad. News.

    Hmmm? Why does he pander so — it’s whichever way the wind blows isn’t it?

    The whole world can see that now.

    • It’s all about the oil, I guess.

    • Dak says we may need the Saudis to bail us out if the Chinese get sick of the job.

      • She’s probably right… but talk about selling your soul. sigh.

      • yup, it’s all about sovereign wealth funds these days … and it would look so bad if we had to rely on the Norwegians to do it

      • He better start playing nice because China is not happy with Hillary.


        Backlash from China as Clinton calls for Tiananmen ‘healing’

        US secretary of state calls on regime to name protesters killed in 1989, release those still held and foster democracy

        China has accused the US of “crudely meddling” in its affairs after Hillary Clinton urged Beijing to account for those killed in a crackdown on pro-democracy demonstrations in Tiananmen Square 20 years ago.

        The US secretary of state last night also called on China to release those still imprisoned in connection with the protests, stop harassing those who took part and begin a dialogue with victims’ families.

        She urged the regime to “examine openly the darker events of its past and provide a public accounting of those killed, detained or missing, both to learn and to heal”.

        “China can honour the memory of that day by moving to give the rule of law, protection of internationally recognised human rights and democratic development the same priority as it has given to economic reform,” she said.

        A China foreign ministry spokesman, Qin Gang, said at a press conference: “The statement from the United States ignores the facts and makes groundless accusations against the Chinese government.

        “We express our strong dissatisfaction and resolute opposition. We urge the United States to forsake its prejudices, correct its erroneous ways and avoid obstructing and damaging China-US relations.”

        http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2009/jun/04/tiananmen-clinton-china-meddling-1989

        • So our options are to sell our principles down the river or go bankrupt. Peachy.

        • Remind me again–which one is president? The ambivalent, abstract, non-committal philosopher-wannabe or this courageous and clear-voiced woman named Hillary?

        • He will tell them Tiananmen Square was just cultural differences, like the oppression of women, and that will give it the Obama Seal of Approval! His supporters will spin it, into some big deal and claim it is good for Human Rights and All of Humanity (I noticed he used that today).

  10. OT, David Carradine apparently hanged himself.

    http://www.usmagazine.com/news/actor-david-carradine-found-dead-200946

  11. Well, it is going to be interesting to hear what Hillary says on “This Week” with George Stephanopoulos.

    • I’m sure she’ll find a graceful way to explain why women in muslim countries need us to fight for their rights instead of selling them out.

    • i.ll.be watching…

    • She’ll be on Greta tonight. You could just watch her there.

    • Downticket

      Thanks for informing that Hillary will be on the Next Week with Stephanopoulos. I will never forget that he was one of the few that took on Obama and exposed his weaknesses during the N.C. debate on ABC. Barack came off looking like a 10-year-old schoolboy who was caught with his pants down in the schoolyard! He was mumbling and couldn’t even put a cohenrent thought together. Hillary shone during the debate clearly showing her clear grasp of the issues–and was not taking Obama’s bullshit too well.

      Next day in N.C. onstage in front of his fan club, Obama gave her the “Flip-Off” with his midfinger seething with obvious resentment and anger and telling the crowds “well, Hilllary was in good form last night…she threw the kitchen sink at me last night.” Then the flip-offing went viral on youtube. What an infantile intellect and misogynist fluff this new Prez (Bush III) really is.

      Thanks to the marketing millions his big time donors gave him–and the corporate media full backing–this anorexic resume won! Incredible….

  12. Daou even brings up the murder of 13-year old Aisha Ibrahim Duhulow. I didn’t read all of the comments but it doesn’t appear that any obots addressed the brutal execution of a child victim of rape.

    From Amnesty International: “Amnesty International has campaigned to end the use of the punishment of stoning, calling it gruesome and horrific. This killing of Aisha Ibrahim Duhulow demonstrates the cruelty and the inherent discrimination against women of this punishment.”

    Women, by far, are the victims of this form of “punishment.” This is such an important and compelling human rights issue and ObamaNation just yawns.

    • We’ll go to war over oil. However, MENTIONING that it is wrong to end the life of a rape victim, that’s going overboard.

      Gotta love our priorites.

      I’m forced to choose between a party that is willing to fight(but for the wrong things quite often) and a party that doesn’t have the balls to fight for a damn thing, not even the principles it supposedly stands for.

      Sigh.

  13. God, no wonder Obama is such a fool. He’s actually struck dumb by his own cluelessness along with everybody else.

  14. Can somebody here explain to me how the f#@k I missed Paul Street’s spectacular piece?

    The Dawning Age of Obama as a Potentially Teach-able Moment for The Left

    There has been a lot of left-wing teeth-gnashing over the policies of the United States’ fake-progressive president Barack Obama.

    I think everybody here should read it. Even the comments are good.

    I still can’t believe I missed it.

  15. This post is listed at Memeorandum

  16. I share your rage bb.
    But I had to cover the photo while I read. It is just too … well, I don’t even have words for it!

    “I respect those women who choose to live their lives in traditional roles.” – like say, Michelle?

    And the bs about electing a woman to lead, wtf?!

    I saw him visiting a mosque with Hillary. He seemed bored. At first with his hands deep in his pockets, later with crossed arms. I couldn’t help thinking, how difficult it must be for her, in a situation like that, to show interest, without seeming to try to outrank him.

    • He could have said, “I prefer women who choose to live their lives in traditional roles.”

      That would be honest.

      djmm

  17. Obama is the most misogynistic, clueless President ever inhabiting the White House.

    How out of touch with reality can he be? How nonsensical is his confused PUNCH-DRUNK rhetoric that confuses the covering of the muslim women’s hair with….Equality?

    What did Barack smoke and/or snort prior to giving his tepid, uninspiring, Empty Words Speech?

    Carter II
    Bush III

    Obama talks from both sides of his mouth. Diplomacy and Development? REally? When he is spending $22 more billion bucks on military with 65 billion each for Iran and Iraq? And he has drawn up a budget of
    $665 billion this year! SHAME on this Misogynist Warmonger that makes Bush blush with envy!

  18. Thank you so much for providing the Dawning of Age of Obama Links above….great stuff! Love the Confluence addendum.

    (deleted by moderator)

    Thanks for this great post with the great references!!!!!

    • You must be new here. We don’t refer to Barack Obama by his middle name.

      • Well, all the progressive dudes on TV are doing it today, “Forget the content, the speech is the mostamazingeva because of who he is Barack Redacted Obama!”

        • I heard it on WTOP, DC’s most popular news radio, emphasizing his middle name to indicate how impressive the speech because of who he was (what’s in a name?).

          His middle name is now very chic here.

      • NPR made a big deal out Obama using his full name and the name being so unique for an American president.

        It’s the new Big Thing.

    • Thanks for coming memi. I hope to see you again.

  19. My first reaction: This spiel is like walking onto a female-victim crime scene and boldly proclaiming your support for women choosing to wear miniskirts. It totally misses the point in front of his face.

    then, subsequent reactions:
    “I know there is debate about this issue.” Why not say ‘there should be no debate about the rights of women?”

    “I reject the view of some in the West …” Yeah, we pretty much expect you to reject our views nowadays.

    “the struggle for women’s equality continues in many aspects of American life” Glad you noticed, Mr. Select-A-Pres. Like in the 2008 election, for example.

    “Our daughters can contribute just as much to society as our sons” Well, after the misogyny fest you unleashed in America, that is really doubtful, no matter how talented (shall I say Hillary-like?) they are.

    He really pisses me off.

    Boomer, thanks for writing this. The sad truth is he does know about the stoning, beating, raping, “circumcising”, and murder of women around the world. He just doesn’t really care.

    MyIQ–thanks for Hillary’s speech. That is what a feminist champion sounds like. BTW–in the election, Sarah Palin also addressed those issues in a speech. It was the moment I began to think I could vote for her.

  20. Heresiarch sees the words and thinking of Tony Blair in Obama’s speech today. Very good analysis over at his Heresy Corner blog.

  21. Oded Fehr: Stop Violence Against Women

    Amnesty International: Stop Violence Against Women

    Every minute of every day all over the world, women are harassed, attacked and even killed just for being women, daughters, Sisters, mothers, children.

    It doesn’t have to be this way. Amnesty International is working to stop it. Making a difference is easier than you think. The first step is making your voice heard, make some noise to stop violence against women. Take action at Amnesty Internationals’ website.

    Women are FULL Human beings…on the whole planet, the fact that some men oppress them doesn’t negate that fact. We Must Divest From Misogyny!

  22. International Women’s Day Clip

    70% of the world’s poor are women and they own just 1% of the world’s titled land, the are abused, oppressed and now Obama wants to help out here locally to put on a hijab on women!

    Afghan women commit self-immolation to escape miseries

    Tens of women commit self-immolation every month across Afghanistan to get rid of their miseries and destitution. according to UNIFEM survey: “65% of the 50,000 widows in Kabul see suicide the only option.”

    We are in a sad state of affairs with our President no raising concern over human rights and sending a message that he is willing to look the other way.

  23. So, if one fights for Women’s Rights as Human Rights, one is NOW a bigot?!? I am a person of color and a woman and deserve to be treated as a living HUMAN BEING, deserving of my Human Rights!

    The one country that I would consider living in is SECULAR Turkey. Why didn’t Obama say that in Turkey and why didn’t he state his views clearly during the campaign?

    Secular Islamic Turkey
    http://www.pbs.org/wnet/religionandethics/episodes/april-6-2009/secular-islamic-turkey/2609/

    Throughout history people have been persecuted by religion and women continue to be persecuted under religion even today.

  24. It is heartbreaking that in our country where you don’t properly speak of yourself first, where we volunteer countless hours to help raise people up, where we are free… we have managed to elect such a moron.

  25. I am 58 and a woman who has traveled widely and is a practicing Sufi. I believe that Obama, having lived in Indonesia, perhaps understands how to begin a process that will never begin with wholesale condemnation.

    After all, we have the states of Utah, Idaho and Montana in which Mormonism is popular and who elect LDS government officials which proclaims that a woman is second to her husband in all things. Apparently these women voluntarily submit to the pronouncements of male deacons and hierarchy. Yet we do not insist that members of LDS give up this practice.

    In my life time in 1956, my mother refused to attend my Episcopalian kindergarten events, because women were required to wear hats and men were not. Mennonites, Amish and others in the USA also make dress requirements of their members.

    So in the USA, if a Sikh man or woman or certain Islamic practitioners wish to follow customs attached to a religion, we must grant them that right. They are free to choose. It may not be my choice, but I defend their right to choose on all these and many more issues. I think this is something to be rightly proud of.

    I too have struggled for women’s rights-small and large here in the USA.
    You can wear pants to school today, which we could not. You can live with someone before marriage, without being exiled from the community, which we struggled for.

    But my most successful change in society was raising my two daughters differently. Wherever they go, they are living undeniable proof that women are strong, intelligent, creative and free.

    Yet we in the USA feel a bigoted and biased view of a small minority of Islamic practitioners. We hear the worst of the worst stories which, indeed are horrible, in which people twist the precepts of a religion /culture to commit acts of violence stemming from hate, suffering, anger, helplessness and despair.

    Turkey may be secular in name, but it’s treatment of political prisoners or even those in disagreement with the government is heinous despite any gender differences. And don’t even mention homosexual orientation. I don’t agree on mentioning Turkey as a national ideal at any time.

    IF we project onto others our own angry shadow-that Obama doesn’t care about women’s health happiness and equality, that he stands for everyone in our lives that has overlooked or abused us, so that he must be a ‘moron’-we miss the subtle seed that will really bring change.

    Why would a woman consider suicide as an option? Because she has no resources, no education, no hope.Education is the key to everything. IF he can sweet talk countries into educating women equally, that will bring change.

    I think we’ve already proved that attempts at imposing our wishes from the USA doesn’t work. So increasing the tools for educated women-which cannot be denied in actual examination of Islamic law-is a solid step. (Certainly Iran has highly educated women engineers, doctors and teachers for instance.)

    When the women are educated, the children change the society.

    So, based on a my life and the struggle for women’s equality, I cannot agree that Obama is a “moron.” I think he is a clever fox, who will catch more flies with honey than vinegar.

    It is a long view. Yes, we must continue to protest all forms of oppression of women and work for equality-how about the equal rights amendment in our own country?
    The anger and outrage is real, but by name calling we just prove we’ve lost out center and feel powerless.

    I do not feel powerless and will take any step forward I can get!

    • I think you give the man too much credit. He must take a stand, or nothing he says counts. Limiting women’s choices to covering their hair and going to school sets up a false choice that promotes nothing. You choose to believe that Obama is being clever. So do I. That’s where our agreement ends. He is cleverly promoting traditional roles for women, like the one he seems to have imposed upon his college educated, Mom-in-Chief wife. That’s the opposite of progress.

  26. After all, we have the states of Utah, Idaho and Montana in which Mormonism is popular and who elect LDS government officials which proclaims that a woman is second to her husband in all things. Apparently these women voluntarily submit to the pronouncements of male deacons and hierarchy. Yet we do not insist that members of LDS give up this practice.

    Don’t single out the Mormon church. ALL patriarchal religions have teachings that relegate women to second-class status. Not everyone who practices those religions follows those teachings. We cannot stop women from voluntarily accepting inferior status, but we can ensure that it is indeed voluntary and not codified into law.

    And we damn sure can speak out and say it’s wrong.

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