Keep on pushing forward ladies

Disillusioned by tribal politics and a President who has reduced civil discourse to a new low and untruthfulness to a new high, it was nice to get outdoors and participate in the second Women’s March in my city. My wife and I joined some friends and over 5,000 more marchers to hear important messages about pushing women and human issues forward.

I am very encouraged by the 26,000 women who have moved ahead with running for office. We need more women in all forms of government as they are woefully underrepresented. Some of the highlights from the speeches in addition to the above are as follows:

– while the push for equality was mentioned most, I was impressed by a Muslim American woman, Rose Hamid who spoke of equity, to value our differences in perspectives and not let fear of the unknown drive wedges between us. Hamid gained notoriety for sitting quietly in a Trump campaign event, until she was escorted out.

– I was appalled to hear a statistic that I had written about a couple of years ago continues to get worse – we have an increasing rate of maternal mortality around childbirth and our global ranking on this statistic is even more negative. A key driver is the lack of healthcare insurance access and education in too many areas of the country.

– I was troubled by the increasing statistics around domestic violence. Locally, the first four homicides of the year in my city were related to domestic violence. Men and women need to help women get out of relationships where signals are apparent. And, better education for boys and girls need to occur that violence is not the answer to relationship conflict.

– I am encouraged by the unifying voices from various fabrics of our culture regarding the need to treat everyone with dignity and respect. And, we must listen to each other and glean points of view. We are listening to respond, not hear.

– I am encouraged by the recognition to act and not just talk or tweet. One speaker said the quote, which may have been made by Rosa Parks, that “even the mighty oak tree was once a nut that stood its ground.” So, don’t worry if someone is calling you a nut.

I have often written about the tough-to-read book “Half the Sky,” by Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn about the plight of women and girls around the globe. The Chinese proverb is “women hold up half the sky.” Not only is it the right thing to do, but treating women with dignity, respect and equality is the economic best thing to do. Otherwise, a country or area is competing with only 1/2 of its intellectual capital.

As our country enters its 104 consecutive month of economic growth and closes out its seventh consecutive year of 2 million plus jobs added, we should celebrate our economic success, but it is not bearing fruit equitably for everyone. Our economic classes have become more disparate and women remain relatively underpaid. Plus, with significant pay disparity, women are subject to more sexual harassment to keep better paying jobs or get better work scheduling for their parental duties.

So, let’s applaud this push by women. We will all benefit with more female voices being heard and heeded. That sky is heavy without the extra half holding it up.

 

16 thoughts on “Keep on pushing forward ladies

  1. Note to Readers: One of the humorous stories was how Muslim women felt about being required to walk behind their men in the Middle East. They felt OK because of one word – landmines.

  2. Note to Readers: A key issue for women and families is healthcare access. More than a few issues can be addressed by expanding Medicaid in the remains states and stabilizing the ACA overturning measures by the GOP to increase premiums for those not subsidized.

    Quite simply, this increasing maternal death rate, the opiod crisis, the mental health care needs are better addressed by Medicaid expansion and a stabilized ACA.

  3. Excellent post, Keith! And two thumbs up 👍🏾👍🏾 to you for joining in the events this weekend. The points you make here are some that everyone needs to be thinking about. Inequality in pay, domestic violence, lack of adequate health care are all troubling and so unnecessary in this, the 21st century. When we have a leader who encourages and promotes violence, who has zero respect for women, it is difficult to overcome these issues, but at least many are speaking out and refusing to sit in silence.

    • Thanks Jill. I heard a great discussion on local NPR about DV that was very informative. Apparently, one of the better models to help is located in San Diego.

  4. Reblogged this on Filosofa's Word and commented:
    Last weekend, women and many men put on their marching shoes and took to the streets in protest of many policies that have been put forth by Trump & Co. in the past year. Women still suffer from issues of inequality in pay, in access to health care, in sexual harassment, and in domestic violence. Our friend Keith, along with his wife, attended one of these marches and has written on some of the points that were highlighted in the speeches of the day. Even I was shocked at some of the statistics, such as the first four murders of the year in Keith’s city being related to domestic violence. Please take a few moments to read Keith’s excellent assessment. Thank you, Keith!

    • Jill, thanks greatly for the reblog. We need to get these issues out and involve men and women in the fight. I noticed many of the bipartisan Senators to help reopen the government were women. It should be noted in 2013, when Ted Cruz led the shutdown, it was ten women who saved the day and kept the US from defaulting on debt. Keith

      • I agree … we need to keep these issues in the spotlight, else people just assume that they don’t exist anymore. Just today I read a comment on Twitter, from a woman, as it were, and she said she didn’t understand why all these women were marching, for women had complete equality and had for years. Good thing I didn’t hear her say it in person, else she might be in the hospital and me in jail!

      • Jill, I have an old colleague who used a catch phrase when he disagreed with what the person just said. He would say “help me understand….” It is a good way to invite them into conversation. Keith

  5. Dear Keith,

    Oh what a day. I always come away from one of these marches, exhausted. There is the walking, the talking, all the stimulation. At our March, we walked quite a way on a warm beautiful day before arriving at a park. I was able to sit in a chair close to the stage. All the speakers, singers were moving. I always find the immigration stories to be heart breakers but these speakers were interspersed between singers and inspirational speeches.

    There were thousands of women, men and children who showed up at the park in St. Petersburg, Fl. Some of those running for elected offices were there.

    I’m glad you enjoyed your day. I find that it gives me encouragement.

    Hugs, Gronda

    • Gronda, it made us feel that we contributed. It was also a lovely day. What is nice is this is a movement, not just two marches. Trump has been catalyst for the rights of women, but not as he intended.

      By the way, Senator Susan Collins brought a “talking stick” to the bipartisan Senator meetings. So, cool. Keith

  6. Note to Readers: A couple of survey numbers reported on CBS. 63% of women do not approve of the job the President is doing, yet only 50% believe his policies are harmful to women. This seems low or is reflective of the next point. Women do not like that a Republucan led Congress is trying to take away their healthcare AND they are refusing to have torwn halls moreso than before.

    It was noted that men would throw their hat in the ring if they meet 60% of the requirement, while women would want to meet more of the requirements. With Trump and poor Congressional representatives, women are now realizing they can do a better job than these guys and experience obviously did not matter.

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