Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Kim Family Auction

Courtesy of Blogher...


An auction to benefit the Kim family is up and running. Check it out here and support this wonderful family after the devestating loss of their husband and father.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

The Kim Family are Hereos And Representative of Most San Franciscan Parents


Like many people in the San Francisco Bay Area, I have been closely following the ordeal of the San Francisco Kim family of four. The Kims car went off the road in rural Oregon after Thanksgiving and their car got stuck. The family spent 9 days in the wilderness, with only the provisions in their car to get them by, until Kati Kim and her 4 year old and 7 month old daughters were rescued yesterday. James Kim, Kati's husband and the father of her young daughters is still missing. He left the family on Saturday to go look for help and has not bee seen since. A massive search is under way for James Kim, and editor at CNET. Hopefully he will be found today, alive and in stable condition.


What has moved me most about this story, is the means by which the Kim family was able to keep their young daughters alive for so long in extreme temperatures. Kati Kim breastfeed both of her daughters in recent days, managing to keep two young children healthy while her and her husband frantically did everything they could do to get resued. They burned all of their car tires in order to keep warm and draw attention to their stranded car. Kati and James Kim are heroes and have shown the world that San Franciscans are not just crazy liberals as we're often wrongly portrayed in the press. They are a phenomenal family, yet also representative of the families I know that live in San Francisco. They love their children and would do whatever it took to keep them alive. Please keep James Kim in your prayers, and with luck, he will be found today so this wonderful family can be complete again.

Updates can be found on this website.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Laughing baby

Such a darling video of a baby laughing, it is sure to make you smile!

Delta Airlines Forces Breastfeeding Mother Off Their Airplane

Via Moms Rising...


Delta Airlines recently gave a nursing mother a choice: cover your child with a blanket while nursing or get off the plane. The mother refused to cover her child while he was eating, which any woman who has breastfeed a child before knows can be uncomfortable for them. She was escorted off the plane! Sign the petition Moms Rising has put together to tell Delta how unacceptable their actions were.

More on the story from MSNBC here

Monday, November 06, 2006

Election Coverage

This election is so close...only one more day to go! I hope everyone is getting ready to vote and is looking forward to Nancy Pelosi becoming the new Speaker of the House of Representatives. The day has finally come where a woman is in a very good position to become the third in line for the presidency!


Here are a few good sources to track tomorrows results:


msnbc.com (the politics secition) MSNBC has really made itself the site to go to for all things political. Their coverage of the election tomorrow should be top notch, so be sure to tune in after 8pm pacific time for results.

Dailykos.com--This site is a must read for any Democrat. There should be some really interesting comments on here tomorrow, all day long.

vote-smart.org--A personal favorite

Daily Show with Jon Stewart--Insider Blog--A great humorous political blog

The Huffington Post--Who would have thought Arianna Huffington would have come up with such a wonderful blog? Despite what you might think of her, the blog is great and full of interesting information.


Happy Election Eve!!

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Book Review: Female Chauvinist Pigs


I just finished a wonderful book and wanted to share my thoughts. Ariel Levy's Female Chauvinist Pigs is a timely book (still extremely relevant after being out for over a year) and a must read for any feminist. Levy accurately and accessibly details the trend in our country since the late 1990s for girls to show their equality with men through doing formerly male only things like going to strip clubs or watching pornography.

Anyone following our current cultural trends must have noticed that so-called "it" girls who get all the headlines are raunchy, lack manners and are displaying a false sense of empowerment. Levy's book calls our attention to the fact that when women act like men in striving for equality with them, they are actually putting women down in the process. Instead, she argues, women should embrace being female, be proud of it, and not embarassed to act as women. Womanhood is to be celebrated, not shunned, and that is where true empowerment can begin.

I was particularly fascinated with her chapter on young girls, entitled "Pigs in Training." Levy and I are similar in age, and she notes in detail how different it is for adolscent girls today than it was for those of our generation. Girls today feel as though they have to dress slutty in order to get attention from boys, whereas if you dressed slutty when I was growing up, you were the talk of your school, and not in a good way. She also discusses how confused young girls become in their sexual awakening, being bombarded with sexual images and peer pressure to be sexually active at a young age.


One seventeen-year-old girl I intereviewed in Oakland...said her mother "doesn't really care how sexy we are. She was really involved in the women's movement, so she thinks whatever you do to feel secure and confident is fine." The tricky thing is that adolscents don't automatically know what to do to make themselves feel sexy or secure or confident. Adolescent girls in particular--who are blitzed with cultural pressure to be hot, or seem sexy--have a very difficult time learning to recognize their own sexual desire, which would seem a critical component of feeling sexy. 167-168
Levy's book is dead on in both her bringing our current "raunch" culture to our attention, and in telling women not to fall for it. This is an excellent book and I highly recommend it.

Technorati: ,

Thursday, October 26, 2006

GAY.COM

Check out this website for information on gay and lesbian families. It becomes increasingly important that the issues of gay and lesbian parents achieve visibility in our media. As my husband, son, and I just attended my uncles committment ceremony in Washington, DC many gay and lesbian parents with their children were also in attendence. As parents we all shared the same concerns regarding our childrens health, saftey, and well being. It's a shame that in our country we can all see parenting as a community concern regardless of sexual orientation, race, or class.

Technorati:

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Feminist Mom Back from Hiatus



After being so busy with work and child rearing, I am back from a brief hiatus. There is so much happening right now, it's difficult to decide where to begin!


First off, very exciting things are FINALLY happening for the Democratic party with the downfall of Florida Congressman Mark Foley. After years of suspicions that he was mistreating young congressional pages, he resigned recently, possibly bringing the Republican majority in Congress down with him. Now, if the Democrats can only get their act together and run as a largely unified party much as the Republicans did in 1994, we have a real chance of putting this country back on the right track. It seems like Speaker of the House Hastert has only a small chance now of remaining Speaker, and if we have any luck at all, he will lose his seat all together. Can you believe he had the audacity to blame Former President Bill Clinton in his recent press conference announcing he will not resign (while also avoiding taking any real blame for the handling of the Foley debacle).

So there's hope!! Now we need to make sure all Democrats and independents get out and vote against Republicans at all levels of government, in all races. Republicans need to be sent the message that voters will no longer put up with the way they run this country, fight the war in Iraq, and boot them out before they steer our country even more off track.


On top of this, it now looks as though North Korean Dictator Kim Jong Il is itching for war against us. It's incredible Bush even let things get to the level they did yesterday, where North Korean openly tested nuclear weapons. Diplomacy between our two nations could have ended this buildup years ago, of course Bush refused to have true discussions, hence the mess we're in now.


Also, if you are a registered voter, please, please, please vote no on Prop 85. This harmful proposition would prevent girls under 18 getting legal, safe abortions without parental approval. Those who are truly concerned about the health our our state's girls will be voting no on Proposition 85.
The tax breaks enjoyed by ordained clergy members of all faiths should also be available to other people who are positioned in organizations that help their communities. Unfortunately this is not the case and thus represents yet again the government's priorities to reward religious institutions over other non-profit groups. Interestingly, the jobs and volenteer work that give back to communities are mostly held by women and the majority of clergy are men.
Clergy benefit greatly from a federal tax exemption on most of what they spend on housing which according to the New York Times accounts for a third of their compensation. Paster Warren, who interesting just wrote, "The Purpose Driven Life" which sold over 25 million copies states that the tax exemption compensates for the poor wages received by clergy members.

The tax break is not available to the staff at secular nonprofit organizations whose scale and charitable aims compare to those of religious ministries like Pastor Warren’s church, or to poorly paid inner-city teachers and day care workers who also serve their communities.


Ministers can also opt out of the taxes withheld from social security, all states but one allow clergy to exempt from paying state unemployment taxes, and a few states still include sales tax exemptions from religious publications. It's clear that tax breaks like these disporportionately benefit male dominated institutions and oppresses female dominated professions of the same altrusitic qualities.

Technorati: ,

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Career and Motherhood

Interesting data out in Inside Higher Ed that completely discredits last years New York Times article "Many Women at Elite Colleges Set Career Path To Motherhood."
Victoria Brescoll, currently a postdoctoral research fellow at Yale's Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity, conducted the survey in the 2005-6 academic year as a graduate student in social psychology, said the survey results suggest that men and women equally value career and family, contradicting the implication of Louise Story’s.
The new study suggests that the article also overstated the number of women who hope to leave the workforce long-term. Yale University’s Women’s Center released a survey last week finding that just 4.1 percent of Yale women plan to stop work entirely after having children, compared to 0.7 percent of men. A vast majority of women — 71.8 percent — reported they would take less than one year off work after their children were born.


As it turns out many women and men hold career and family equally important. Unfortunaty, statistics such as these do not include the vast numbers of mothers that work part time or work full time running a self-owned business from home. Also interesting that 'work' is spoken of outside the home when it should really point to the fact that women are staying in the work force as well as 'working' inside the home. When are we going to accept that mothering is unpaid labor?

Monday, October 02, 2006

What Are We Teaching Girls and Boys?

As more highschool sporting events begin to be broadcast on national television the line between sports in highschool as an extracurricular activity and serious profit making capacity starts to disappear. Now highschool athletes are being recruited by the highschools themselves, are considering longterm athletic careers early on in age placing academic standing as a secondary priority, and are currently being exploitated by a sporting industry waiting to sign the next big celebrity sports star.
Much has been said about the problems that will inevitably arise out of this situation but no words have been uttered in regards to the now even larger gap between girl's and boy's sports. With value clearly placed on male athletes this broadcasting of male dominated sports continues to push girl athletes into relative invisibility except in the event of children's spelling bees or cheerleading. Girls basketball and soccer remain the only sports with visibility and limited at that.
If we start to glorify highschool male athletes at such an early age what does that teach young males? Isn't it giving them a false sense of reality? What does it say to our culture's young girls? Value and asset remain a battleground issue for individuals interested in gender and this issue only pushes the solution farther from reality.

Friday, September 29, 2006

Alternative Fairytale for laughs

Once upon a time in a land far away,
a beautiful, independent, self-assured princess
happened upon a frog as she sat contemplating ecological issues
on the shores of an unpolluted pond in a verdant meadow near her castle.
The frog hopped into the princess' lap
and said: " Elegant Lady, I was once a handsome prince,
until an evil witch cast a spell upon me.
One kiss from you, however, and I will turn back
into the dapper, young prince that I am and then, my sweet, we can marry
and set up housekeeping in your castle with my mother,
where you can prepare my meals,
clean my clothes, bear my children,
and forever feel grateful and happy doing so. "
That night,
as the princess dined sumptuously on lightly sauteed frog legs seasoned in a white wine
and onion cream sauce, she chuckled and thought to herself
I don't freakin... think so.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Full Time Position Available at Human Rights Watch

An incredible full time position is open at Human Rights Watch, a New York based NGO working to protect the rights of all. Below are the details...

F/T Position Available:

RESEARCHER ON LESBIAN, GAY, BISEXUAL AND TRANSGENDER RIGHTS

Deadline for applications: October 16, 2006

Please note: Interviews for short-listed candidates will be
held in New York and are tentatively scheduled for October.

Description:
HRW's Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender ("LGBT")Rights
program is seeking a Researcher. The Researcher will focus
on human rights abuses related to sexual orientation and
gender identity and expression worldwide under the
supervision of the Director of the LGBT Rights program,
who will provide guidance on the choice of research and
advocacy projects. The Researcher will be based
preferably in HRW's New York headquarters, although
other locations may be considered.

Qualifications:

An advanced degree in law, public health, international
relations, gender studies, or a related field, and two
to three years of experience in human rights, with a
preferred emphasis in LGBT rights, gender, sexual rights,
or a closely related area, are required.



PLEASE APPLY IMMEDIATELY

(no calls or email inquiries, please)
by emailing together a letter of interest, resume, names or
letters of reference, and a brief writing sample
no later than October 16, 2006 to lgbt@hrw.org. Please
use "LGBT Researcher Application" as the subject of your
email. Only complete applications will be reviewed.
It is preferred that all materials be submitted via email.

Human Rights Watch
Attn: Search Committee (LGBT Researcher)
350 Fifth Avenue, 34th Floor
New York, NY 10118-3299 USA
Fax: (212) 736-1300


Human Rights Watch is an equal opportunity employer.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Elmo is Evil!

Joel Stein has recently written an opinion piece in the LA Times regarding Elmo, a much loved Sesame Street character. He contends that the newer Sesame Street characters are much different than the older more adult based muppets that teach lessons through interaction with real people. He also takes note that Sesame Street has just added its first female character in 13 years thus as television show known for reflecting diversity may be ignoring gender equality.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Toddler Songs That Won't Make Your Ears Bleed


Toddlers are notorious for having horrible taste in music. If you have any at home, you know how challenging it can be to find quality music you can enjoy with your little one. As an avid music fan, I have looked high and low for such songs, and thought I would share them:


Songs you and your toddler can enjoy:

"House Party Time" by Dan Zanes

"Night Owl" by Dan Zanes and Aimee Mann

"This is the Happiest Song I Know" by the Laurie Berkner Band

"We are the Dinosaurs" by Laurie Berkner Band

"The Rainbow Connection" by Sarah McLaughlan

"Three is a Magic Number" by Blind Melon

"Magic Toast" by The Sippy Cups

"We're Going to Be Friends" by The White Stripes

Friday, September 15, 2006

More Women Headed for Midterm Election

So many wonderful Democratic women will be on the ballots for federal elections this coming November. Here is a recent list of nominees, courtesy of the Democratic Party's Women's Vote Center Week in Review...

MORE WOMEN SECURE DEMOCRATIC NOMINATIONS!

Each week we are adding more women candidates to the list of Federal and Statewide Democratic nominees. This week we feature winners in Arizona, Florida, Minnesota, New York, Rhode Island and Wisconsin from our September 5th and 12th primaries. Look for a complete list of women Democratic nominees running for Federal and Statewide office following the September 23rd primary. * indicates Incumbent

Federal

AZ - Ellen Simon (C-1)
AZ - Gabrielle Giffords (C-8)
FL - Corrine Brown (C-3)*
FL - Phyllis Busansky (C-9)
FL - Samm Simpson (C-10)
FL - Kathy Castor (C-11)
FL - Christine Jennings (C-13)
FL - Debbie Wasserman Schultz (C-20)*
MN - Amy Klobucher (Senate)
MN - Colleen Rowley (C-2)
MN - Wendy Wilde (C-3)
MN - Betty McCollum (C-4)*
MN - Patty Wetterling (C-6)
NY - Hillary Clinton (Senate) *
NY - Carolyn McCarthy (C-4)*
NY - Yvette Clarke (C-11)
NY - Nydia Velazquez (C-12)*
NY - Carolyn Maloney (C-14)*
NY - Nita Lowey (C-18)*
NY - Kirsten Gillibrand (C-20)
NY - Louise Slaughter (C-28)*
WI - Tammy Baldwin (C-2)*
WI - Gwen Moore (C-4)*

Thursday, September 14, 2006

NOW Leads Effort to Elect Woman as UN Secretary General

The United Nations has never elected a female Secretary General and it's about time they do just that. NOW is leading a campaign to encourage the UN to vote for a female head. Read more about their campaign here.


Technorati: ,

Good for Chile!

Chile has just passed a law that will allow any female over the age of 14 to attain the contraception of her choice.......get this.......for free!

Any woman over 14 can now ask a physician for a prescription for birth control without the permission of her parents, and the contraceptives, including the morning after pill, will be provided free by the public health care system.

Of course their are some individual organizations who are completely against this for a couple of reasons and those reasons interestingly are quite similar to those arguments that pervade the American debate. Would the difference between Chile and America have anything to do with the female president now in power?


Technorati: ,

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

In-Laws and Second Hand Smoke

If anyone, such as myself, has an issue with family members and second hand smoking around your child point them in this direction. In-laws and second hand smoke can evolve into a potentially crisis-like situation. This fact sheet derived from the Surgeon General's report on second hand smoke is very informative for those who might need a bit of help when approaching the subject.

If anyone has any suggestions or stories on how parents might go about approaching an issue such as this please share as I personally would love any and all advice.


Technorati:

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Hilarious Office Video

If you work in an office or are a fan of the brilliant tv show the office, you'll love...


Tolstoy Lied


Tolstoy Lied by Rachel Kadish was sent to me as a release copy to help spread the word of its publication. Although I am not a fan of fiction, I did enjoy reading this compelling story of a female professor challenging Tolstoy's famous maxim:

"Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way"

The main character, Tracy Farber, take this statement head on. Much of the book follows her quest for love in the midst of striving for professional satisfaction. Her story is interesting to follow, and most women will be able to find at least a part of themselves in Tracy Farber.

I recommend this book to women who enjoy fiction, especially intellectual fiction and good literature. The book is well written and a pleasurable read!

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Time to Stop Prop 85!


If you're a registered voter in the state of California, it's time to start educating yourself about the dangers of Proposition 85. This Proposition will be on the ballot for the November midterm election.

Proposition 85 would require a minor to get her parent's approval before getting an abortion. This is a horrible idea and would put teenage girls lives in danger. If it sounds familiar, that's because it is. Last year, Californians rightfully rejected Proposition 73 which would have done the same thing. Extremists are now trying to get the same law passed under a different name. Their ulitmate goal, of course, is to see abortion outlawed throughout the state and ultimately the nation.


Planned Parenthood is actively working to fight this proposition and they need your help! Below are their suggestions how Californians can help fight against this disasterous proposition:

By visiting Planned Parenthood's, NoOn85.com website, you can:

Set up your own campaign page
Raise funds, recruit members, and network through your own Web page.

Plan a house party
Post information, send invitations, and manage RSVPs.

Volunteer
Choose from dozens of ways to get involved.

Visit the Store
Get NoOn85 gear and support the cause.


Technorati: , ,




Thursday, September 07, 2006

Mothering as Work

I have been thinking a lot lately as motherhood being considered "work." Part of what has got me thinking about this is the upcoming section of the Motherlode Conference in Toronto hosted by the Association for Research on Mothering. The section is entitled "Motherhood and Work/Motherwork." It's a fascinating topic and I'm sorry I won't be able to attend this incredible conference. I personally believe mothering is work and it often feels as such. Taking care of my child requires skills and patience, much in the same way my former profession required. Children, especially young children, require constant caretaking and attention, and that makes it feel like work.

I think a lot of feminists and mothers in general are hesitant to describe their caretaking responsibilies as "work" because parenting is an unpaid labor of love. I don't hesitate to use the word work to describe my job as a stay at home parent, because that's what it is. If I wasn't taking care of my child, I would be in the paid workforce. Therefore, my job as a mother has replaced my former job, making it work. I'm not afraid to use this term...caretaking is hard, messy and very challenging. I consider mothering to be both my profession and my job. In my opinion, the more seriously one takes parenting, the better.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

New Chart for Breastfed Babies

Since the late 1970's doctors have routinely assessed babies' weight gain using a chart based largely on the growth patters of formulafed babies who tend to put on weight very quickly and are generally bigger. As in my experience, assessed according to the formula-based chart, breastfed babies are mistakenly labeled as "underweight". The World Health Organization's new, updated growth chart, which recognizes breastfeeding as the biological norm can be used as a comparitive measure when parents confront doctors who place children in the lower percentile. Though I've seen breastfed babies at seven months and their weight has been 26 pounds and I find labeling breastfeeding as the "biological norm," clearly a problematic, we can at least use this new measure as a tool to rest our troubled minds.

Technorati: , ,

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Back Lash

The New York Times has just recently brought to our attention the diminished numbers of female supreme court law clerks.

Just under 50 percent of new law school graduates in 2005 were women. Yet women account for only 7 of the 37 law clerkships for the new term, the first time the number has been in the single digits since 1994, when there were 4,000 fewer women among the country’s new law school graduates than there are today.


Considering the retirement of Sandra Day O'Connor has decreased the female leadership on the Supreme Court by 50% this is not where we want to be heading.

A post on one popular legal Web site, the Volokh Conspiracy, asked, “Why so few women Supreme Court clerks?” and drew 135 comments during a single week in July. The answers included the relative scarcity of female students among the top editors of the leading law schools’ law reviews — an important preclerkship credential — and the absence of women among the “feeder judges,” the dozen or so federal appeals court judges who, year in and year out, offer a reliable pipeline to the Supreme Court for their own favored law clerks.


There is much speculation as to why women are missing out on these important opportunities and I have a sneaking suspicion it is not due to availablitiy or career drive.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Blogging as Feminist Activism

NOW has an interesting article up on their website this week about the importance of blogging and commenting on other people's blogs in order to build feminist grassroots activism. Now more than ever we are witnessing the political power of blogs, given the role the netroots played in the downfall of Joe Lieberman in Conneticut.

Women are in a particular place of power when it comes to blogging. There are so many wonderful political blogs by women. The more we read and comment on them the more powerful and mainstream they become. People are starting to pay attention to us and we need to keep the momentum going!

A good starting point is the Blogher website. Blogher has done wonders in terms of creating a strong network of women bloggers. Their blogroll keeps us all connected and helps throw a good deal of traffic our way. If you haven't been to Blogher, you're definitely missing out on a major source of potential feminist activism.


Technorati: , ,

Monday, August 28, 2006

Bitch Magazine 10th Anniversary Gala & Auction

Bay Area Feminists...Take Note!

Bitch Magazine is hosting a 10th Anniversary Gala and Auction

Friday, September 8 at 6pm

San Francisco Women's Building
3543 18th St


$15 advance, $25 door
Visit: http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/6353 for more details


All ages welcome!

Thursday, August 24, 2006

FDA FInally Approves Plan B

It's about time! Women 18 and older will finally be able to buy the morning after pill over the counter, says the FDA. Women have been waiting too long for this no-brainer decision...this is wonderful news!

Sales of Plan B over the counter should begin by the end of this year. Read the story here.


Technorati: , ,

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

California Commission on the Status of Women Public Hearings

The state of California is holding a series of public hearings on issues of importance to women. In preparation, they are soliciting proposals for testimonials from women. Three different hearings will be held at the following locations:

September 20, 2006
2 to 6 PM
Center for Healthy Communities
The California Endowment
1000 North Alameda Street
Redwood Room
Los Angeles, CA 90012
Submit testimony sign-up form by September 15, 2006

September 28, 2006
1:30 to 5:30 PM
Fresno State Building
2550 Mariposa Mall, #1036 (Assembly Room)
Fresno, CA 93721
Submit testimony sign-up form by September 25, 2006

October 19, 2006
1 to 5 PM
State Capitol Building
Room 447
Sacramento, CA 95814
Submit testimony sign-up form by October 13, 2006



Issues for testimony include, but are not limited to, sexual harassment, reproductive freedom, racial equality, child support, childcare, human trafficking, access to health care, child custody, women in prison, economic security, divorce, Title IX, housing, education, pay equity, stalking, sexual assault, employment discrimination, women in politics, teen dating violence, domestic violence, hate crimes, athletic equity, disability, CalWORKs, CEDAW & teen pregnancy.


Technorati: ,

Polarized Debate: Mommy Wars and Welfare

Interesting that we are in the process of the mommy war debate and articles such as "A Welfare Law Milestone Finds Many Left Behind" in the New York Times today point to the fact that the mommy war debate is predominantly a class issue. Society places the female role in the home.....except if your on welfare for too long and then it's back to work.

Technorati: ,

Friday, August 18, 2006

Book Review: Two Paths to Equality

Alice Paul and the Struggle for the ERA

I recently read a book about one of the most underappreciated yet major contributors to American feminism in U.S. history, Alice Paul. It is a shame so few Americans know who Alice Paul is. She was a passionate feminist activist, one who went to extremes in her struggle to obtain women’s equality. Paul endured horrible treatment by the U.S. government in her campaign for women’s voting rights, including imprisonment and forced feeding in response to her self imposed hunger strike. These commitments should not be forgotten. Although the book I just read by Amy E. Butler, Two Paths to Equality: Alice Paul and Ethel M. Smith in the ERA Debate 1921-1923, was interesting and provided me with new insight of Paul’s struggle to pass the ERA, I found it was not one of the best ways to learn about Paul contributions. The best ways to familiarize yourself with her contributions to feminism is to see the film, Iron Jawed Angels. The amazing Hillary Swank plays Paul, portraying her accurately and with great respect as a feminist visionary and committed activist.

Written by Amy E. Butler, Two Paths to Equality chronicles the different approaches two feminist leaders, Alice Paul and Ethel M. Smith, took to achieving women’s equality. Paul demanded a constitutional amendment securing quality for women in the form of the ERA (Equal Rights Amendment), while Smith felt the ERA targeted women from a privileged background and did not adequately address the needs of poor and working class women. This book is based on the fascinating concept that first wave feminists, while having similar goals, did not always agree on the means through which they could be achieved.

After a discussion of the background of these two women, Butler gets to the heart of an issue that has divided feminists until this day: whether or not working within the existing political structure can lead to the securing of equal rights for women. Butler ultimately sides with Smith in this debate, concluding her book with these words,


“If today’s focus is on building recognition of the varieties of women’s experiences, then equal rights as a basis of legislative and legal change is not the way” (113).


Although I enjoyed her book, especially the parts discussing how Paul and Smith came to prominence, I do not agree with her conclusions. I disagree with one of her fundamental arguments:


“Equality remains a male-defined concept. It assumes that all people are similarly situated, and it is not flexible enough to account for individual differences according to gender, class or race. Equal rights is a social construct, not just a form of jurisprudence, that upholds a universal standard of equality that typically excludes the interest of some groups to the interests of others” (112-113).

I believe the desire for an ERA should remain a feminist priority, as it is one of the best ways to ensure legal equality between women and men. Without an ERA in our constitution, women will continue to face discrimination and treatment as second class citizens. The ERA is as relevant now as it was in 1921 and women deserve its passage. I guess that makes me a feminist cut from the same cloth as Alice Paul.

If you haven’t done so, be sure to see Iron Jawed Angels. Viewing this film will give you new understanding of Alice Paul, a woman believed to be the first activist in our country to protest using methods of civil disobedience. It would be a shame for us feminists to allow her sacrifices for women in our country to go unremembered.


Technorati: , ,

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Female Democratic Candidates Set for Midterm Election

The November midterm elections are coming up soon and many women will be on the ballot nationwide in both federal and state elections.

Below is a list of female, Democratic candidates according to the Democratic Party's "Women's Vote Center Week in Review"

MORE WOMEN SECURE DEMOCRATIC NOMINATIONS!


Each week, we are adding more women candidates to the list of Federal and Statewide Democratic nominees. This week we feature winners in Connecticut, Colorado, Georgia, Michigan and Missouri from our August 8th primaries and runoffs. Look for a complete list of women Democratic nominees running for Federal and Statewide office in late-September, following the September 28th primaries.

Federal Office

CT - Rosa DeLauro (C-3)
CT - Diane Farrell (C-4)
CO - Diana Degette (C-1)
CO - Angie Paccione (C-4)
MI - Debbie Stabenow (Senate)
MI - Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick (C-13)
MI - Sharon Renier (C-7)
MI - Nancy Skinner (C-9)
MO - Claire McCaskill (Senate)
MO - Sara Jo Shettles (C-6)
MO - Veronica Hambacker (C-8)

Statewide Office

CT - Mary Glassman, Lt. Governor
CT - Susan Bysiewicz, Secretary of State
CT - Denise Nappier, Treasurer
CT - Nancy Wyman, Comptroller
CO - Barbara O'Brien, Lt. Governor
CO - Fern O'Brien, Attorney General
CO - Cary Kennedy, Treasurer
GA - Gail Buckner, Secretary of State
MI - Jennifer Granholm, Governor
MO - Susan Montree, Auditor



If you are a registered voter in any of the states listed below, visit these women's websites to help them get as much early support as possible. The more women elected this fall, the better!

Click here to receive their free weekly newsletter.

Technorati: , , ,

A Must Read For Kids




If you haven't read Eric Schlosser's Fast Food Nation, I highly recommend that the book be on the required reading list for every human in America between the ages of 16 and 80. I was so pleased to find that he had written another book, Chew on This: Everything you didn't want to know about fast food for kids ages 9 to 15. If it's anything like Fast Food Nation, hopefully it will get kids to rethink the mass amount of fast food they consume. We could only be so fortunate!

Technorati: , ,

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Inflammatory Breast Cancer; Did You Know?

I've just recently been informed that a type of breast cancer called Inflammatory Breast Cancer occurs in around 1-4% of women. Signs and symptoms usually present more as a benign breast infection such as Mastitis thus mamagrams do not pick up this particular form of breast cancer. Below I've compiled a link list with information on Inflammatory Breast Cancer. Even though it's relatively rare, women should be more informed about this type of cancer.

News Report on IBC

Inflammatory Breast Cancer Organization
National Cancer Institute
Mayo Clinic
Imaginis


Technorati: ,

Monday, August 14, 2006

Quality Music, TV Shows, Books & Movies for Children

I found an interesting request through Blogher courtesy of The Lovely Mrs. Davis:

She is asking parent bloggers to share the following...

What television, music, movie or book from your childhood are you excited about sharing with your own children?


I love these types of questions so of course I am happy to share mine!

Movie:

E.T.
--This is the first movie I remember truly enjoying as a child. I recently saw parts of it and was amazed at the wonderment I still have while watching this movie. I'm sure many of my generation will agree that this was a defining movie from our childhood and one we would want our children to see.

Music:

Banana Slug String Band--Although it is a little obscure, I loved this band when I was a child. The messages in their songs are wonderful...all about treading lightly on the earth and protecting our environment. "Dirt Made My Lunch" was my favorite song of theirs.

T.V. Show:

Punky Brewster--Although this tv show is sadly outdated (especially the 80s outfits!) this was my absolute favorite tv show as a child. Punky is a great role model for young girls, I know she was for me. She is independent, family oriented and a good friend. I hope my daughter will be able to enjoy this show when she gets a little older. I'm so thrilled it's out on dvd!

Books:


Ramona Quimby Series--Ramona was a fictional character by Beverly Clearly, written to be such a pest, especially to her older sister and to various teachers/adult figures. I never looked at her that way, though. To me she was always misunderstood, curious about the world, and a lot of run to read about.

Are You There God, It's Me Margaret--Hands down the defining book of my adolescence. I must have read this book over 100 times. I hope my daughter will find it as wonderful as I did. In fact, I would read this book again, right now. I would also recommend any other Judy Blume book to my daughter, she is a fantastic writer and grossly underappreciated in our culture.

Technorati: , , ,

Friday, August 11, 2006

Is The Rape of a 14 yr. Old Girl Buried in News?

The terror alert level today has passengers thirsty, but hey at least mothers can still take formula or breast milk. The press has over played this minor inconvience and I say minor because more pressing issues have been placed in the background. The GIs who admitted to raping and murdering a 14 year old girl, along with her family and then burning her body to hide the evidence have cited combat stress as an excuse for their planned behavior.

Said Capt. Elizabeth Walker, an attorney for the defense: "These soldiers are not robots. They are humans with emotions, and a command structure that hung them out to dry."


The soldiers are humans with emotions but the Iraqi girl and her family were not? It's a lack of authority that made me do it?
Wow, I guess if the soldiers are under extreme stress, mixing pain killers with Iraqi whiskey and cough syrup then their planned expedition after they had already harrassed this girl at a military check point was understandable. There is something severely wrong with this senario that anyone who would percieve these horrible individuals to have rights in which to argue such a ludicrous defense is enraging. Especially with respect to little unknown songs such as the one on UTube.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

New Calls for Submissions

Call for Submssions for Women, Action & the Media 2007:

Via their website...

WAM!2007 Call for Proposals

Save the date -- WAM!2007 is coming! In fact, we're hiring a Conference Manager (could it be you?), and our Call for Proposals is already here.

Please send us your session proposals and help us spread the word, and in the meantime, save the date: WAM!2007 will be held right here in Cambridge from March 30 - April 1, 2007. Stay tuned -- we'll have keynote announcements very soon.


Imaging Ourselves Project Deadline Extended. From their website...


What Defines Your Generation of Women?

Submit your work for our Online Exhibit! Download the application form below and read our easy steps to submit.


We are looking for submissions from young women in every corner of the globe. If you have a story to tell, images to share, or a voice that wants to be heard, we welcome your submission. We accept film, audio, images and text.


Imagining Ourselves has many submission categories, including a catagory specific to mothers...


Motherhood: A Life-Changing Experience


One of the most life-changing experiences in a woman’s life is that of having and caring for a child. These days women are having children later and some are not having children at all. Family structures around the world are changing, yet mothers are most often the parent who will stay at home with young children. Child birth itself is a risk for many mothers around the world. Did you know that the 530,000 annual deaths that arise from pregnancy and childbirth complications are preventable? Share your stories on motherhood with us, and discuss your ideas on better maternal healthcare worldwide.

Deadline for submissions: February 1, 2007


Technorati: ,


Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Results for the Race We're All Watching

Lieberman lost!! For us feminists, anti-war activists, Bush loathers and political junkies, this news is huge. For a popular incumbent with huge name recognition to lose a primary election sends an incredible statement: Democrats are finally getting united against the war in Iraq.


Find out more about Ned Lamont, a progressive Democratic, by visiting his website.


Technorati: ,

WIC Now Covers Fruits & Vegetables

In a no-brainer move, WIC (a program to feed women, infants & children) has made the obviously correct decision to include fruits and vegetables to their list of eligible foods. It's amazing that this is news, as these items should of course have been covered all along. It's also amazing to read, as MSNBC reports, that over half of America's children received food through the WIC program.



Technorati: ,

4 Billion Dollar Misogyny

An intense and scary article in the LA Times this past weekend gives a glimpse into the misogynistic world of Joe Francis, the creator of Girls Gone Wild. Four billion dollars a year is produced based on young underaged girls being exploitated and manipulated into various explicit acts using heavy amounts of alcohol and drugs. Joe Francis, who argues 1st Ammendment rights claims empowerment. Lucky for him the article makes him out to be a woman hating rapist.


Technorati: ,

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Breastfeeding in Public is a Mother's Right

Breastfeeding in public is a mother’s right and it amazes me to read that people feel otherwise. Anyone who says different does not have the best interests of children or nursing mothers in mind…period. Kateri at Wet Feet is keeping a wonderful list of pictures of nursing mothers to protest the outrage over the beautiful Baby Talk magazine cover.

This picture captures the joy of nursing for mother and baby perfectly. It should be celebrated, not condemned. 



Technorati: , ,

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Take Action!

On Monday, July 31st, the FDA announced the decision to re-evaluate their policy concerning the morning-after pill. Currently, distribution of the morning-after pill over the counter has been blocked mainly for political reasons as opposed to realistic medical reasons. The FDA is reconsidering this position and according to NARAL, this change of agenda is due to over 40,000 complaints voiced by the public. The catch of course is, the agency has not disclosed when if any alterations in the policy will happen.

Please take the time to send a quick message to acting commissioner, Andrew Von Eschenbach via NARAL,to take action.


Technorati: , , ,

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

More Great Feminist Songs



According to my site meter, it seems like there is a good interest in feminist music. Since the interest is there, here are a few more great feminist songs...



"Point Hope"--Indigo Girls

"Let Me Go Easy"--Indigo Girls--A beautiful song about dying with dignity and on your own terms.
The recent album, Rarities, by the Indigo Girls was grossly overlooked. Both of these songs come from that album. As a fan of their music for over a decade, I have to say I think it's their
best album to date.



Fiona Apple's most recent release, Extraordinary Machine, is an absolute classic. Every song on the album is a gem, especially "Not About Love" and "Tymps (the sick in the head song)."



Both of these cd's are a must for any feminist rock music fan.


Technorati: , ,

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Senate Passes Bill Limiting A Woman's Access to Abortion


It is time to pay some serious attention to our eroding right to an abortion in our country. Little by little, state legislatures and our federal government have been limiting our rights and it must be stopped. In addition to the complete ban on abortion passed by the state of South Dakota, the United States Senate voted today to make it illegal to transport a pregnant girl into a different state in order for her to obtain an abortion. This is horrible news. Already, states such as Mississippi offer only one clinic where a woman can get an abortion. Those of us who have daughters should be especially concerned our country is headed back towards the days of illegal, back alley, life-threatening abortions.

Technorati: ,

ARM Seeking Artwork

Another call for works for the Association for Research on Mothering...


Dear ARM members and Friends,

We are currently working on production for two ARM/Demeter Presspublications as well as our 10th Anniversary Motherlode conference and would like to request artwork for the following:

Mothering and Feminism journal Vol. 8.1 & 2 potential cover artwork

Aboriginal Mothering book (Demeter Press) potential cover artwork

Motherlode conference tote bag/poster artwork image(**IMPT note - please get your abstracts & bios in for our 10thanniversary Motherlode conference - the final deadline for submissionsis August 1st!!)

Please send any/all images asap to arm@yorku.ca.

Jpg/Tif/Pdf files are best.

Renée Knapp
Association for Research on Mothering (ARM)
726 Atkinson, York University
4700 Keele Street
Toronto, ON, Canada
arm@yorku.ca
www.yorku.ca/crm

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Center for New Words: Call for Poems

2006 New Voices Poetry Contest

Send in your poems today!

To be brief:

YOU write up to 3 poems, not more than 2 pages each.

YOU send them to New Words by July 31, 2006 (with a $5 reading fee — drop us a line if you can’t swing it)

WE pick 3 winning poets

YOU read your winning poems at New Voices on September 27, 2006

YOU get prizes

The minutia:


All submissions must:

Contain no more than 3 poems, of not more than 2 pages each poem

Be UNPUBLISHED

Include a COVER PAGE with author’s NAME, CONTACT info, TITLE and word COUNT.

Subsequent pages should include ONLY the TITLES of the POEMS (and the poems themselves, of course).

Be mailed to The Center for New Words, 7 Temple Street, Cambridge, MA 02139

Be received postmarked by July 31, 2006

Be read by YOU, the writer, at New Voices on SEPTEMBER 27, 2006

The Prize: 1st Prize: $100

Tecnorati Tags: , ,

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Newsom to California Democrats: Unite now around Angelides

In an interview today, San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom made an important comment; one that should be taken very seriously by all California Democrats. If we are serious about voting Schwarzenegger out of office, he said, we must rally around Democratic candidate Phil Angelides now. He is right. Schwarzenegger must be sent out of office, and the only real way to do that is to get excited about supporting Angelides. I know he is not the most exciting candidate, but he is the only hope we have of getting California back on track. Although Schwarzenegger will try to run during this campaign as a moderate, make no mistake, he is truly a conservative. For example, not only did he veto a bill legalizing gay marriage, but he also promised to veto a law pending in the California legislature that would require school curriculum to include the contributions of gays and lesbians.


It's time to support pro-choice candidate Phil Angelides. The sooner he gets support from us liberals, the more likely Schwarzenegger will be defeated!

Technorati Tags: , , ,

NARAL Endorses Lieberman

Via Tennessee Guerrilla Women...


Well, this is a shock! NARAL has made the decision to endorse Joe Lieberman as a candidate for the Senate, despite the fact that his opponent, Ned Lamont, is pro-choice. Luckily, women have exploded in disbelief over this very bizarre nomination. Especially in light of Lieberman's recent lack of symathy and support for rape victims who are unable to get contraceptive coverage at a catholic hospital, saying "It's just a short ride to another hospital."


What a disapointing endorsement from a respectable women's organization.

Technorati Tags:
Stephen Colbert, George W Bush's Words

Stephen Colbert has some of the greatest criticism of Bush on mainstream television today. The best part is that it is done through his brilliant, sarcastic humor. Here is one of his best bits.

Monday, July 10, 2006

Call for Papers on Young Mothers

The Association for Research on Mothering is seeking submissions from/about young mothers:

CALL FOR PAPERS NEW DEADLINE : NOV 1, 2006!


The editorial board is seeking submissions for Vol. 9.1 of the Journal of the Association for Research on Mothering (ARM) to be published in Spring/Summer 2007.

The journal will explore the topic of Young Mothers from a variety of perspectives and disciplines. We welcome submissions from scholars, students, activists, artists, mothers and others who work or research in this area. We also welcome creative reflections such as poetry, short stories, and artwork on the subject.

SUBMISSION GUIDELINES: Book reviews are to be no more than 2 pages (500 words), articles should be 15 pages (3750 words). All should be MLA style, in WordPerfect or Word and IBM compatible.

For more information, please contact us at:
ARM: 726 Atkinson College, York University 4700 Keele Street, Toronto, ON, Canada M3J 1P3. Call us at (416) 736-2100, x 60366, or email us at arm@yorku.ca Or visit our website at www.yorku.ca/crm

Submissions must be received by November 1, 2006.

To submit work to the journal, one must be a member of ARM and memberships must be received by November 1, 2006.

The Association for Research on Mothering (ARM) 726 Atkinson, York University 4700 Keele Street Toronto, ON M3J 1P3 416-736-2100 x 60366 (fax) 416-736-5766 arm@yorku.ca

Technorati Tags: , , ,

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Great Feminist Songs

Here are a few great feminist songs...


"Tell Yourself" by Natalie Merchant--

a song for teen girls against eating disorders

"Me & a Gun" by Tori Amos--

an auto-biographical about how she was raped and how she fought back

"Dear Mr. President" by P!nk--

a wonderful, current song about the failings of the Bush administration

"Party of God" by Natalie Merchant--

means different things to different people. To me, it is a song chronicling how God must be so disappointed by the hijacking of religion by the religous right. Best lines

"God must be agreeing/
to be helpless is the worst/
must be the worst part of watching"

"Soon Forget" by Pearl Jam--how money can make men corrupt

Technorati Tags: ,

Victoria's Secret/Abortion Rights in Mississippi

First off, there was much talk the last week over an employee at victorious Secret telling a mother she is not allowed to nurse in their store. I was outraged when I heard of this and wrote to the company immediately to ensure that mothers are allowed to breastfeed. I received an immediate, personal response letting me know of their long standing policy welcoming mothers breastfeeding in their store. What a shame that one employee of theirs caused all that trouble. I was so glad to see so many feminist moms spring right into action to ensure their rights are protected. What an active mothers movement we have!

On a sadder note, the Feminist Majority needs our help asap. They are fighting to protect the last abortion clinic (can you believe there is only ONE in the whole state?!) from extinction. Please contribute what you can to help women get the reproductive support they need in Mississippi.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Feminist Mom Recommends

Here are some of my recent finds. I hope you enjoy them...


Books

Without a Net, edited by Michelle Tea

Closing the Leadership Gap: Why Women Can and Must Run the World

by Marie C. Wilson


Music

Vetiver, "To Find Me Gone"

Bettye Lavette "I've Got My Own Hell to Raise"

,

International Museum of Women

The International Museum of Women is requesting participation in an online survey regarding their electronic program, Imagining Ourselves.

Let them know how Imagining Ourselves has affected your life by filling in our online survey. They are offering a one-year free eMembership to the International Museum of Women to all those who complete the survey.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Bay Area Needs a Mothers Outlaws Group

It appears as though Toronto is the place to be for feminist moms. Not only is Toronto the host of the only research center dedicated to the study of feminist mothering, the Association for Research on Mothering, but it also has an active feminist mothers group, Mother Outlaws.


I have been in awe of what the Mother Outlaws are doing. These women get together to discuss raising children according to their feminist principles and give each other advice and politicial inspiration. We need this in the Bay Area!! Email me if you would like to start a Mother Outlaws group in the bay area: feministmother@gmail.com


If you are lucky enough to live in the Toronto area, here are the details about their group:


MOTHER OUTLAWS

"Mother Outlaws recognize that mothers and children benefit when the mother lives her life, and practices mothering, from a position of agency, authority, authenticity and autonomy"
Mother Outlaws are community gatherings in the Toronto area for women interested in: Discussing current motherhood issues from a feminist perspective - Sharing the links between their own mothering practices and social change

The gatherings occur at members’ homes in the Toronto area for a potluck dinner and informal discussion on a specific topic or at scheduled special events.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006 7-10pm

Real Options (Part 2): Mothering and the Politics of Choice We are currently witnessing an interesting new way of speaking about " choice" for women, their families and their children. At increasing levels, stories in the mainstream media focus on mothers choosing to "opt-out" of participation in the workplace and present work/family issues in an "either/or" way. The way "choice"is often used in such debates often has the effect of reducing the number of available options. In addition, if the real constraints on women’s choices are ignored, then the effect is to individualize problems and to erase or minimize social responsibilities. Of course, there are alternatives to seeing mothers outside of the media fuelled "mommy wars". This meeting will allow women to share their own "real "stories on the choices, decisions, and negotiations they have made as mothers seeking work/family balance. Stories that go unreported if unspoken.
For more information and to RSVP, please contact: Linn Baran, Mother Outlaws Co-ordinator, linnbaran@sympatico.ca

Association for Research on Mothering 726 Atkinson, York University 4700 Keele Street, Toronto, ON M3J 1P3 Phone: (416) 736-2100 x60366 FAX: (416) 736-5766 Email: arm@yorku.ca

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

San Francisco NOW Celebrates Summer Solstice

Today is the first day of summer, also known as summer solstice. In order to celebrate, the newly revamped San Francisco chapter of the National Organization for Women (NOW) is holding a party. Join the celebration from 6PM-9PM at Le Colonial (20 Cosmo Place--off Taylor, between Post & Sutter, near Union Square), for an evening of wine and hors d'oeuvres, jazz, and feminist fellowship.

Their website is still being renovated, but a few details are available here.


Oh, and children are welcome to this event :)

Monday, June 19, 2006

NWSA & Empowered Mothering


What a wonderful conference the National Women's Studies Association held this past weekend! There were ten different feminist mothering sessions and an amazing plenary session on feminist mothering/empowered mothering given by York University professor Andrea O'Reilly (pictured on the right). O'Reilly has a new book out, entitled Rocking the Cradle. After her talk, I immediately went to her organizations booth to purchase her book. Although I am only two chapters into her book, she offers insight on feminist mothering I have never read anywhere else. I couldn't recommend her book more.

While so many things stood out for me at this conference, two will definitely be with me for some time. First, Judith Stadtman Tucker of the Mothers Movement Online have a talk in which she outlined many of the aims of the emerging mothers movement. I particularly liked what she said about many women of my generation (late twenties, early thirties) are joining the mothers movement because we were so shocked to see a lack of support for mothers once we had children. Once we embarked upon our own motherhood journey, we realized what little support there is for mothers in the workplace or in our society in general.

The second most memorable moment for me came from Andrea O'Reilly, of course. At the end of her talk, she said that we can learn a great deal about feminist mothering by listening to the instructions given on a plane before it takes off. The flight attendants give everyone federally mandated instructions in case there is a crash. When the oxygen masks come down, they say, be sure to secure your own mask before securing those of your child. This makes sense because you cannot take care of your child unless you are getting a decent amount of oxygen. O'Reilly said the same can be said for motherhood. Mothers need to take care of themselves before they can take care of their children. If they do, there children will be much better off. What a wonderful real world example to explain the benefits of feminist mothering!!

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Centre for the Research on Mothering

I am excited to report many wonderful things happening with the Centre for the Research on Mothering. The Centre is at the forefront of feminist motherhood, and its director has really put mothering on the map as warranting actual scholarship and academic research.

First up, the Director of the Centre, Andrea O'Reilly, will be speaking at the National Women's Studies Association's annual meeting this Friday in Oakland.

The Centre also has a call for papers for their Journal, The Journal of the Association for Research on Mothering. They are looking for book reviews, artwork, poetry, etc. More information can be found here.

Monday, June 12, 2006

Thank you Troll Baby Graphics!



A big thank you to Karen from Troll Baby Graphics! She redesigned my blog and made it nice and pretty. If you're thinking of redesigning your blog, send her an email: trollbabygraphics@gmail.com.


She's the best!!!

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

California Democratic Primary: Full List of Endorsements

Governor--Phil Angelides

Lieutenant Governor--Jackie Speier

Secretary of State--Debra Bowen

U.S. Senate--Dianne Feinstein


Proposition 81 (bond measure to improve libraries)--Yes

Proposition 82 (preschool for all)--Yes, Yes, Yes!!

Monday, June 05, 2006

Democratic Primary in California Tomorrow!

As a political junkie, I have to say I am so disappointed with our options in the California Democratic Primary tomorrow. The only candidate I am excited to vote for is Jackie Speier, who is running for Lieutenant Governor. Jackie Speier has been a leader in family & women's rights for decades and I am thrilled she is running for second in command for our state. You can read her platform on women's issues here. She is endorsed by all the heavy hitters in democratic/feminist politics, including: Gloria Steinem, California NOW, National Women's Political Committee (NWPC), the Feminist Majority, Women's Political Commitee, and Democratic Action Women's Network.

When it comes to the big ticket, the Democratic candidates for Governor, I have been completely disgusted by this campaign. Not only is there no quality candidate on the ballot, but the two men who are running, Steve Westly and Phil Angelides, have run such smear campaigns that no matter which one wins, they will both be so tainted by their nasty campaigning neither one could stand a chance against Governor Schwartzenegger (can you believe that he is actually runs our state?!) in the November general election. What a shame.

This was a golden opporutunity for Democrats. With President Bush's approval ratings at an all time low and Schwartzenegger's below 50%, they should have banded together to do whatever it takes to vote Republicans out of office. Clearly that will not happen and I hope this is not foreshadowing of what will happen to the Democratic Party in the November midterm elections. Hopefully congressional Democrats will run better campaigns than have been run by the Democratic candidates for Governor.

Friday, June 02, 2006

MojoMom Blog: TV Show Lost Like Raising Children

MojoMom: Locke and Eko: The ultimate Stay-At-Home Dads?

If you're a Lost fan (c'mon, who isn't?!) then check out this hilarious post about how Locke & Eko on the show have island jobs similar to taking care of a baby. The hatch is basically their baby and it has to be tended to every 108 minutes. It's a thankless job but one the island depends on without anyone realizing it or appreciating it. Sound familiar?

Newsweek Retracts Marriage Story

In an interesting turn of events, Newsweek has taken back a story published twenty years ago that stated women over forty are more likely to get killed by a terrorist than get married. It's great to see this from one of the many major magazines partial to declaring us in a "post-feminist" era. Although they are only declaring what we knew all along to be true, it's still nice to hear them take it back.

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

My Job Description

As a work at home mom, I often struggle with my job description. I get asked what my job is all the time and I always have a hard time nailing it down. If I have a hard time describing what I do, obviously others stuffle with it. It frustrates me that at home moms are given such grief & the third degree when we tell people we stay at home. It especially kills me when people are more impressed by my job than they are that I raise my child. Isn't raising children the most important job there is? Why isn't it treated as such?


I think us moms need to reclaim our job description. Lately, I have taken to calling myself a stay at home feminist. It's a label that works for me and I love the shocked reaction people have when I describe myself this way. Especially because I am in my twenties and there aren't too many twenty-somethings moms who would describe themselves in this way. I'd love other people's suggestions for a job description. What do other at home moms like to call themselves?

NWSA Hosts Feminist Mothering Panel

If you are in the Bay Area, there are two upcoming conferences that are wonderful for us feminist moms, especially those that like learning about technology. I plan to attend both. It's so exciting to have two local, wonderfully planned conferences!


The first is the National Women's Studies Association's annual conference. The conference runs from Friday thru Sunday, June 16-18th. What I am most excited about is the panel planned for the early afternoon on June 16th. Andrea O'Reilly, a pioneer in the field of academic research on motherhood/mothering, is planned to speak. Andrea is a professor at York University in Toronto. She founded the Centre for Research on Mothering, and has a new book out this month, entitled "Rocking the Cradle: Thoughts on Motherhood, Feminism and the Possibility of Empowered Mothering." Gwendolyn Mink, Professor of women’s studies at Smith College, is also scheduled to speak. This should be a fantastic panel and I'm sure there will be a wonderful discussion afterwards.


In July, the second annual Blogher conference will be held in San Jose. This conference runs from July 28-29th and will feature two very different days of panels. From the Blogher site:

Day One's Conference Schedule: Day One is a day of hands-on instruction on a variety of topics, most technically-focused.

Day Two's Conference Schedule: Day Two focuses on community, conversation and the culture of blogging. Day Two also includes our Room of Your Own sessions. Room of Your Own sessions are sessions that were created, staffed and proposed by BlogHer Conference attendees.


Personally, I am most excited about the second day. The internet offers so many opportunities to network with other women in the goal of social change and I look forward to learning what I can do better with my blog and other social online networks.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Pink's Dear Mr. President Video

Pop singer Pink has written a wonderful open letter of a song to President Bush and it is an absolute must see video. The song is so pretty and the words are very poignant.


View the video here.

Good Feminist Articles on the Web

What a wonderful time for feminist moms! The mothers movement is getting more and more press. It is so exciting!! Granted most of it is online, but there have been many recent articles in print as well.


Salon.com has a great article, it's definitely worth reading. Entitled "The Maternal is Political," the article by Nina Burleigh can be found here.


On a separate note, the latest issue of Scholar & Feminist published by the Barnard Center for Research on Women is on the web. This wonderful online journal has also produced top quality feminist articles and this most recent issue does not disappoint. It focuses on the work by feminist biographer Carolyn G. Heilburn who wrote, among many other things, a very good biography of Gloria Steinem.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Mothers Acting Up

Mothers Acting Up (MAU) has a great list of resources for political mothers here. Possible actions include:

  • Hosting action parties
  • Writting letters to your elected officials
  • Mailing MAU postcards to friends/family

MAU is a great resources for the mothers movement. They are also asking for reports on political action on behalf of mothers so they can be a resource for people who would like to get involved but are not sure how. Email them (beheard@mothersactingup.org) what you're doing on behalf of mothers to help spread the word.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Lee Sevilla Needs Our Help

When you have a moment, go over to sfgate.com, the website of the San Francisco Chronicle, and read the heart-wrenching story of Lee Sevilla. This 71 year old woman has lived in her car for eight years after a difficult divorce and a series of unfortunate events. Her story is the exact type of story Ann Crittenden highlighted in The Price of Motherhood. Elderly women, especially after divorce, are much more likely to be poor and Lee is living proof of that statistic.

Since she does not want to be a burdon to her grown children she refuses to stay in her daughter's small apartment. Lee in an incredibly resourceful woman and a talented artist. If you send her a photo, she will turn them into hand-drawn postcards.

Send her a request to:

Sevilla
P.O. Box 5484
Playa del Rey, CA 90296

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Mothers Movement Online Celebrates "The Price of Motherhood"

The Mothers Movement has some wonderful essays and book reviews celebrating the fifth anniversary of The Price of Motherhood.


Here are a few highlights:

Mothers Movement editor Judith Stadtman Tucker interviews Ann Crittenden on the fifth anniversary of her book. Find the interview here.

Serene Williams, a regular contributor to the Mothers Movement, writes a book review of The Price of Motherhood here. Read the review and then go read this wonderful book. It is still the best book on the challenges that go along with modern day motherhood.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

NOW making strides for moms & caregivers

The National Organization for Women (NOW) is doing wonderful things for mothers & others who care for children. After making caregiving a feminist cause (as it should be) many months ago, NOW has continued to make progress. Read their article, "The Balancing Act" which chronicles many of their efforts. NOW is a major media force and we must have their support to make laws more family friendly. It's great to see such a mainstream groups put parenting & caregiving at the forefront of their long list of public policy causes.

The NOW website also has many links to wonderful articles about the motherhood movement. Search around and see what you can find. Most notably, I highly recommend reading the fantastic "Mothers United" from the New Jersey Star-Ledger. It's a quick and easy read and hits on women calling for a cease fire in the mommy wars.

Technorati Tags...NOW, mothers, feminism

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Happy Mother's Day!!

Happy Mother's Day to all you moms out there! I hope you have a restful day, and are able to spend it with friends and family. Enjoy your special day. Today we rest, and tomorrow it's back to work!

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Vote @ 18 campaign at Mainstreet Moms

Mainstream Moms have teamed up with Moms Rising to launch their Vote @ 18 campaign. This is a wonderful campaign which calls for mothers to actively work in their local high schools to help register 18 year olds to vote.


It's so important to remember that the November midterm elections can make a world of difference. Please help this wonderful campaign to get young adults civicly involved. More information about their campaign is available here.

Vote @ 18 campaign at Mainstreet Moms

Mainstream Moms have teamed up with Moms Rising to launch their Vote @ 18 campaign. This is a wonderful campaign which calls for mothers to actively work in their local high schools to help register 18 year olds to vote.


It's so important to remember that the November midterm elections can make a world of difference. Please help this wonderful campaign to get young adults civicly involved. More information about their campaign is available here.

The Motherhood Manifesto in "The Nation"


The motherhood movement is getting more attention by the day. The creators of momsrising.org are discussed in a cover story in this week's issue of The Nation. Joan Blades & Kristin Rowe-Finkbeiner are two leaders in addressing the real needs of real mothers. Read their article here.

Also, don't forget to visit their website to send your mother a very cute and timely Mother's Day card. You can find their cards here.