Equal Pay: Time's Up Movement Fighting For The US Women's Soccer Team

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Equal Pay Fight For US Women Soccer Players

The United States women’s soccer team, the best in the world, is paid roughly 38 cents on every dollar made by their male counterparts. Further, they have also been ranked no.1 for 10 of the last 11 years. The Time’s Up movement has finally caught up to this enduring and obvious injustice. "The official Time’s Up Instagram account later posted a photo of the actresses, all Time’s Up supporters, in their U.S.W.N.T. jerseys, with the caption ‘It’s time for U.S. Soccer Federation to pay their women players what they deserve,’ writes Lizzie Goodman for the Times.’ That Time’s Up is choosing to formally align itself, and its quest for equal pay in Hollywood, with the women’s national team is particularly gratifying for the players.’”

Are Women’s Rights Under Attack?

Are Women’s Rights Under Attack? asks Women Deliver, the world’s largest conference on gender equality in Vancouver, Canada. There certainly is a push back on abortion laws and a push back internationally with chauvinism in the zeitgeist. The speakers at the conference were mixed however, offering positive and negative views about the present age. Mabel Van Oranje, Board Chairman of Girls Not Brides, said, “Don’t ask me if women’s rights are at risk. Ask the 12 million girls that are married off every year, depriving them of their fundamental human rights and ability to decide their futures.” However, Ailbhe Smith, former Director of Together For Yes of Ireland, one of the few Western countries to buck the right-wing trends begs to differ. “In Ireland we have very obviously and very significantly bucked the trend, which obviously pertains in the U.S. but also to a very large extent now extends elsewhere in the world whether it’s in Europe, whether it’s in South America, whether it’s in India, wherever, of extreme right-wing forces or forces of reaction are taking hold. I do think that we should be very careful not to read every part of the world in absolutely identical ways.”

YouTube Banned Supremacy Videos

Last week, CEO Susan Wojcicki of YouTube banned white supremacy videos. But Hannah Hinchliffe of Fortune, after reading the New York Times interactive story examining one of the young men radicalized by YouTube videos, noted that the tie that binds many of those odious videos is anti-feminism. “Videos that bemoaned the dangers of feminism and bashed feminists (or just women in general) were among the first that Caleb Cain watched as his viewing history inched toward conspiracy theories and graphic violence, enabled by YouTube’s algorithm that steers users toward more engaging content on their topics of choice—in this case, far-right commentary,” Hinchcliffe writes.

Ikea Sexist Campaign In Hong Kong

The South China Morning Post has been extraordinary in chronicling gender bias in Asia. This week they report on a new platform founded by three academics to expose gender injustice in Hong Kong, The Gender and Sexual Justice in Action platform, founded by Dr Minnie Li Ming, one of Hong Kong's leading campaigners for #MeToo, gender studies scholar Professor Petula Ho Sik-ying and Pamela Tsui Pui-kwan, also a gender studies scholar, have taken on Ikea as their first target. Ikea has a sexist campaign in Hong Kong. “The tagline—which translated as ‘you can eat my tofu whenever you like’ contains Chinese slang for groping someone or taking advantage of women. The three academics wrote to the Swedish furniture company and the chairman of the city’s equality watchdog last month to express their discontent,” writes Jeffie Lamb for the Post. “‘We hope [our group] might be like a microscope that examines and detects gender injustice in all settings,’ said Li, of Education University.”

#MeToo and Television

Emily Nussbaum, the Pulitzer Prize winning cultural critic at The New Yorker, writes about the #MeToo reckoning and television. Since the movement went viral on social media in late 2017, there have been a few cycles of television shows put through the pipeline. Nussbaum looks towards some of the new shows through the prism of feminism and, of course, television’s past. “Television has always been a delivery system for morality,” Nussbaum reminds. “In 1977, Edith Bunker fought off an attempted rape (and Archie never called her ‘dingbat’ again); in 1989, on ‘A Different World,’ Dwayne Wayne learned about consent. These stories, which were packaged as ‘very special episodes,’ were regularly treated as big cultural events—maybe because they stood in striking contrast to the way sexual violence was portrayed on crime shows and soaps, which tended to be hard boiled or lurid.”

Fortune Magazine’s Celebrates The 19th Amendment’s Anniversary

June marks a century since the 19th Amendment gave women the right to vote. Fast Company—a progressive business technology magazine—compiles a list of the basic rights that our mothers and grandmothers in the United States were denied until Roe v Wade, which was decided less than 50 years ago. In our grandmother’s generation the article notes, "1938: The Fair Labor Standards Act establishes minimum wage without regard to sex." And in our mother’s generation they add: “1978: The Pregnancy Discrimination Act bans employment discrimination against pregnant women.” The full list, of the long way we have come, is here.

Saudi Arabia: Female Genital Mutilation

Saudi Arabia continues to be a nightmarish place for women to reside. Saudi Arabia— under pressure from the West—is trying to bring up human rights norms on the issue of equal rights. While they are attempting under their latest government initiative to increase home ownership by making a 2030 goal of 70% home ownership (with women being a key part of that number), they lag far behind in other areas. For example, Saudi Arabia has a horrible record even among the nations of the Middle East in female genital mutilation (FGM). A new study by the British women’s rights group Equality Now finds that one in ten women who visited the King Abdulaziz University Hospital in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia between December 2016 and August 2017 have undergone some kind of genital mutilation. “In a convenience sample of 963 women aged 18 to 75 years, 175 (18.2%) had undergone FGM/C,” the study notes. “Compared with women without FGM/C, women with FGM/C were older, married, non-Saudi and had a lower monthly income. Thirty-seven (21.1%) women had had FGM/C with some cutting of body parts (type I or II), 11 (6.3%) with suturing (type III), 46 (26.3%) with no cutting of body parts (type IV) and 81 (46.3%) did not know their type of FGM/C.” See the cross sectional study here.

Cover photo via Market Watch