<\body> Stories in America: Bush Delivers to Religious Groups, Threats Against Afghan Women Continue

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Bush Delivers to Religious Groups, Threats Against Afghan Women Continue

In a March 3, 2006 NewsHour piece, South Dakota Republican Senator Bill Napoli was asked to describe a scenario in which an abortion exception may be invoked. "A real-life description to me would be a rape victim, brutally raped, savaged. The girl was a virgin. She was religious. She planned on saving her virginity until she was married. She was brutalized and raped, sodomized as bad as you can possibly make it, and is impregnated. I mean, that girl could be so messed up, physically and psychologically, that carrying that child could very well threaten her life," he said.

As much as that quote gives me nightmares, we must remind ourselves that elected officials like Napoli believe in the right to control women's bodies and lives and they're passing laws to make sure their twisted fantasies become reality.


Grants Flow To Bush Allies On Social Issues - Washington Post
For years, conservatives have complained about what they saw as the liberal tilt of federal grant money. Taxpayer funds went to abortion rights groups such as Planned Parenthood to promote birth control, and groups closely aligned with the AFL-CIO got Labor Department grants to run worker-training programs. In the Bush administration, conservatives are discovering that turnabout is fair play: Millions of dollars in taxpayer funds have flowed to groups that support President Bush's agenda on abortion and other social issues. Under the auspices of its religion-based initiatives and other federal programs, the administration has funneled at least $157 million in grants to organizations run by political and ideological allies, according to federal grant documents and interviews.

Sonia Nazario risked her life to write a story. It was nothing compared with what her subject went through. - SF Chronicle
For some journalists, research means sitting at a computer and surfing Google and other information services. For Sonia Nazario, a Los Angeles Times projects reporter, it means getting covered with fleas and filth as she investigates the children of hardcore drug addicts.

Amazon Says Technology, Not Ideology, Skewed Results - NY Times
Amazon.com last week modified its search engine after an abortion rights organization complained that search results appeared skewed toward anti-abortion books. Until a few days ago, a search of Amazon's catalog of books using the word "abortion" turned up pages with the question, "Did you mean adoption?" at the top, followed by a list of books related to abortion. Amazon removed that question from the search results page after it received a complaint from a member of the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice, a national organization based in Washington.

Benedict dropped a bombshell, saying it is right to ask if 'more space' can be given women in ministry - Newsday
Benedict dropped an ecclesiastical bombshell, proving his merit as a historian and a pastor. He said that sacramental ordination to priesthood was not the only avenue to ministerial service, but "nevertheless, it is right to ask oneself if more space, more positions of responsibility, can be given to women, even in the ministerial services." He did not elaborate. Why is this such a bombshell? The priest asked about governance and ministry, each of which is restricted to the clergy. The pope answered that each might be possible for women.

Reproductive Rights

Abortion law a wake-up call to safeguard rights - Des Moiness Register
Here's a chilling thought sequence: In South Dakota, a murderer can be sentenced to death. The state's new abortion ban, signed this month, says a fetus has the same legal rights as its mother. So why not put women to death for having abortions?
It sounds far-fetched, but so did the bill that's now law, banning all abortions except those necessary to save a mother's life. The new law -- which won't be enforced until court cases are resolved — punishes only doctors, with up to five years in prison. But if it's correct that "the unborn child from the moment of conception is a whole separate human being," and that the state constitution applies equally to the born and unborn, then what's the logical conclusion?

The NYT's Woman Problem - The American Prospect
Is The New York Times still pro-choice? You wouldn't know it from reading the op-ed page.


WATER: Women Have a Crucial Role to Play - IPS
Millions of women and girls in poor countries walk an average of six kilometres a day to carry 20 litres of water on average to their homes. Millions of others drop out of school because of the lack of private and separate sanitation facilities. Taking women into account in projects aimed at improving access to water, sanitation and hygiene would help them to lift themselves out of poverty. If women participated in defining these plans, it would multiply the benefit to the community, according to a report presented at the Mar. 16-22 Fourth World Water Forum in Mexico.

UNICEF official warns of continuing threats to Afghan women and children - UN News
With Afghanistan's new school year officially beginning tomorrow, a senior United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) official has warned of a continued threat facing Afghan women and children from high rates of child and maternal mortality, low levels of school enrolment and neglect of children's fundamental rights.

Chinese family-planning official rules out changes in controversial 'one child' - AP
China's top family-planning official has ruled out changes in its controversial ''one child'' birth control policy, warning that the crowded country is facing a new surge of births, a news report said Wednesday. The communist government has limited most urban couples to one child and rural couples to two since the 1970s in an effort to restrain the growth of China's population of 1.3 billion people and conserve scarce resources.

Asia must educate young on HIV - Stuff
Asia must break down taboos about sex and stop discrimination if it is to halt the world's fastest growing HIV rates, an expert warns, with half of all new cases in the continent aged between 14 and 24. Professor Myung-Hwan Cho, President of the Aids Society of Asia and the Pacific, said Asia's 8.3 million HIV cases were dwarfed by Africa's 23 million, but that the disease was spreading faster in Asia than anywhere else in the world.

Penalise educated stay-at-home women - Expatica
The Dutch Labour Party (PvdA) has proposed recovering part of the cost of study from highly-educated women who decide not to seek paid work. MP Sharon Dijksma, deputy chairperson of the PvdA's parliamentary party, believes the punitive measure is needed to stimulate more women to join the workforce. She outlined her ideas in 'Forum', a magazine published by employers' group VNO-NCW. "A highly-educated woman who chooses to stay at home and not to work - that is destruction of capital," Dijksma said. "If you receive the benefit of an expensive education at the cost of society, you should not be allowed to throw away that knowledge unpunished."

HIV Infections in Malaysia Women on Rise - AP
The number of women infected with HIV in Malaysia is on the rise, and housewives outnumber female sex workers four to one, the Malaysian AIDS Council said Wednesday. In 1986, when the first AIDS cases were discovered in Malaysia, there were no female victims, but by 2004 women accounted for 7 percent of all HIV infections, the council said. Of the 67,438 people found to be infected with HIV between 1996 and 2004, 4,841 were women. Of these, 1,756 were housewives and 435 were sex workers, said the council, Malaysia's main non-governmental group dealing with AIDS.


At 3/22/2006 7:20 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

See what I mean? (see above post)


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