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International Women's Day

International Women’s Day (8 March) is an occasion marked by women’s groups around the world. This date is also commemorated at the United Nations and is designated in many countries as a national holiday. When women on all continents, often divided by national boundaries and by ethnic, linguistic, cultural, economic and political differences, come together to celebrate their Day, they can look back to a tradition that represents at least nine decades of struggle for equality, justice, peace and development.

Blog Against Sexism Day

I think this says it all — look at the conditions in Afghanistan after the U.S. “liberated” it from the Taliban, and in Pakistan, our ally in the Global War On Terror.

The Taliban government toppled in 2001 was notorious for its treatment of women but, despite efforts of the new government and its international partners, Afghan women are still among the worst off in the world.

We used to have offices with women workers in the provinces but now they are not coming to work because they are getting threats,” Hossai Wardak, of the UN, said at an International Women’s Day fair in Kabul, where women in burqas queued up for advice on contraception.

In Pakistan, Mukhtaran Mai, a rape victim who has become a women’s rights campaigner, led a march in Karachi.

“It’s a long struggle for the women of Pakistan to get the place they deserve in society,” she said. “Women in many areas of Pakistan are not allowed to cast vote nor can they contest elections.”

Mai was gang-raped and left naked on the orders of a tribal council in 2002 as punishment for her brother’s alleged affair with a woman from another tribe.

Read more, including the fundie view of this day, after the jump.The sad truth is that women aren’t faring well in the rest of the world. A World Health Organization report released today says that one girl in five is a victim of sexual violence before the age of 15.

United Nations chief Ban Ki-moon noted that physical domestic violence against women is still frequently concealed or tacitly condoned “in every continent, country and culture.”

Read Limited Progress Towards Gender Equality, the World Bank’s report on the status of women.

If you want to see the fundie view of International Women’s Day, look no further than the Christian NewsWire. Feminism and reproducutive freedom are to blame for everything.

As women around the world observe International Women’s Day the women of the Silent No More Awareness Campaign urge the United Nations and cultures worldwide to celebrate the one thing that makes women unique – the ability to nurture life and give birth.

It is time for people to re-consider the archaic acceptance that for women to be equal to men we must deny our reproductive gifts. The last 50 years of feminism has undermined what it really means to be a woman. Organizations such as the National Organization for Women (NOW) have tried to achieve equality by neutering women. Specifically through the promotion of abortion, yesterday’s feminists have done more harm to their sisters than any previous patriarchal system have.

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Pam Spaulding

Pam Spaulding