Sunday, September 14, 2014

Random Thoughts

Random thoughts from a random mind. Steve Biscotti, the owner of the Ravens is embarrassed because he was reluctant to do anything about the domestic violence in which his players are involved. Greg McKay, who was convicted, not just accused, but convicted of domestic violence is still playing. Ray McDonald is still playing despite felony abuse charges.  Any number of NFL owners have been convicted of sexual harassment.  Yeah the stink starts at the head of the fish.... Although old fish generally stink whether it be the top or bottom. Ray Rice beat his betrothed, now wife (my guess is that it wasn’t an isolated incident), unconscious. Why would she marry him? Why are women in Baltimore wearing Ray Rice T-Shirts. Yes, some people are stupid. But that's not enough of an answer. Furthermore, This is not only a sports problem, and it is not only an NFL problem. Men who beat their wives or children are ugly thugs who are not good at interpersonal relations and they have either control or power issues. This is not a psychology blob. Oh no, sure women that allow it to happen are frightened, have low self esteem, or are just idiots. I don't mean to be insensitive, in the nicest possible way.  It seems violence against women remains pervasive all over the world. The difference between violence in the West and East, Middle East, and countries in the Southern Hemisphere can be measured in degrees. And not without including a conversation about Poverty, education and opportunity.  What I mean by degrees is that in the West we hardly ever see the ceremonial burning of a widow, which some religion and culture except in a movie like "the burning bed". 

As it happens, I am at an international women’s rights conference, or as it is entitled, Women and Girls Rising. Why do organizations feel that they have to name everything they do? But, over the last two days there have been discussions about everything from violence, to torture, to rape, to religion and to the impact of resources on women around the world. There has also been a cry for the "new normal".  How would you define the new normal?  Would you have to use the old normal in order for people to understand. And then what's the old normal. Or what's normal. If only...?

Anyway, there is certainly gender inequity. That means that sexual medication for men is covered by insurance but not medication for women. Our beloved Anne Richards always said,if men had to get approval to have babies, there would be no discussion about abortion. It would exist. Imagine, Men, who have affairs, are rapists, or who have impregnated their daughters, don't have to take responsibility for the baby.  The radical right (although not limited to them), are opposed to abortion but have no desire to provide financial support for the babies, once they are born. Blah blah blah..

What I miss at this conference is a real  conversation about violence against women in the US. We know, certainly by the news this week, that it is a timely topic. We also know that it doesn't just happen in other places. The fact is that sports figures, terrorists, African kidnappers, some boyfriends, fathers and  husbands think that a woman or a girl is just a thing, a sexual object or a punching bag. Is there a way to end this ugly world problem?  Not in the near future. Maybe not ever. If only it were possible to round up all the little boys in the whole world and teach them to be kind and gentle. Yeah, that will happen in our dreams.  We’re just sayin’… Iris

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