WOC Alert 6/24/99 - Patriarchy Everywhere;

Free Polazzo friendlysystems at mindspring.com
Thu Jun 24 21:54:33 JEST 1999

Hello Friends,

Since SAYMA approved a minute on Patriarchy several years ago, I thought
you'all would be interested in this Alert from the
Women Organizing for a Change.   

It appears that the Patriarchy is alive and kicking.   Hopefully, the new
millennium will balance the scales and put women into
power for a change.


Free Polazzo
Anneewakee Creek Friends Worship Group
Douglasville, GA

>WOC Alert 6/24/99
>WOC Alerts are distributed for free by Women Leaders Online/Women
>Organizing for Change, http://wlo.org. We're the largest women's
>advocacy community on the Internet, and we're building a network of
>one million women and men to gain equality for women. Help us reach
>our goal by forwarding this to your friends! To subscribe,
>mailto:listserv at listserv.aol.com with the message: subscribe WOC
>firstname lastname
>Two weeks ago, wrestling coach turned Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert
>called his troops together and demanded that they stop their intransigent
>behavior and infighting.  He warned them that if they didn't begin standi
>ng together and passing legislation, they would blow their chances of 
>re-election in November 2000.
>Then an interesting thing happened.  The first vote out of the box was to 
>ban the FDA from testing or approving RU-486.  Their response to the call to 
>unite was to attack women's rights to self-determination.
>But, as they say on late night TV, there's more.  The drive to incorporate 
>patriarchal ideals as the law of the land is in full swing.  The majority in 
>Congress seems hell bent on voting against women's beliefs and women'
>s issues every chance they get.  The House Judiciary Committee voted to make 
>it a federal crime to assist a young woman travel across state lines for an 
>abortion to evade parental consent laws in her own state, even if sh
>e is pregnant as a result of incest.
>Even on issues not commonly thought of as women's issues, the Congressional 
>majority went out of their way to insult women.  As the right wing moved to 
>eviscerate even modest gun control measures, women were blamed for vi
>olence.  Majority Pooh-bah Tom DeLay (R-TX) launched into a diatribe on the 
>floor of the House, saying the Littleton Colorado mass murder by boys was 
>actually caused by birth control, day care and lack of prayer in school
>.  And when the women of the House, led Carolyn McCarthy (D-NY, whose 
>husband was murdered by a mentally ill man with free access to guns) were 
>lined up to debate in favor of gun control, the GOP bullies charged down the
>aisle, trying to shout the women down.
>But this virulent sexism is not limited to Congress.  The Republican 
>presidential aspirants are also preaching - and practicing -- patriarchy.  
>Frontrunner George Dubya Bush, while claiming to be compassionate,  never saw
> an abortion restriction he didn't like (and sign, as Governor).  Pat 
>Buchanan, Gary Bauer, Steve Forbes, Alan Keyes, and even candidate come 
>lately Orrin Hatch all consider eliminating women's rights to abortion a
>stone of their campaigns.  Dan Quayle, not content with just attacking 
>abortion, has resurrected his attacks on single mothers, with Murphy Brown 
>again in his sights.  [Note to Dan:  She's a FICTIONAL character, stupid.]
> And even Liddy Dole, who rumor has it is actually a woman herself, has 
>joined in the attacks.  She recently condemned the feminist movement for 
>raising women's hopes and dreams, and said the Family and Medical Leave Act
>was a mistake.
>So, one might ask, are these folks nuts?  Why are they going  out of their 
>way to aggravate and insult women?
>No, they haven't taken leave of their senses.  This cultural war is part of 
>a deliberate strategy to activate their base for next year's elections.  If 
>they can motivate the angry white male voters to turn out in force, a
>nd women don't vote, they could win big.
>And their strategy just might work.  Neither of the Democratic presidential 
>candidates are currently attracting much support from women (indeed, the 
>only candidate with a positive gender gap is E. Dole).  And most polls s
>how women fairly distanced from most candidates on all levels of the ballot. 
> And if women don't vote, women's rights will lose.
>There is too much at stake for women next year - more than any election 
>since 1980.  In fact, all three branches of our government could be changed 
>by the election results.  We will, of course, be electing a President. In
> all likelihood, because 3 of the Supreme Court justices are over 70, this 
>means that the next election will determine whether the current 5-4 split in 
>the Court becomes more or less supportive of women. We will also be e
>lecting one-third of the Senate, and the entire House.  Most of the state 
>houses are up for election next year, and these folks will be determining 
>redistricting for the next 10 years.
>It isn't too early to being working with the candidates of your choice.  
>Look for key races where you can make an impact - even if it means you must 
>run yourself.  If you are supporting a candidate, urge her or him to aff
>irmatively support and defend women's right as a key part of the campaign.  
>Remind them of the bad old days of 1994, when the angry white men prevailed. 
> Tell them if they want women's votes, they must support women's rig
>WLO is planning several activities to coincide with the 1999 convention of
>the National Women's Political Caucus (NWPC), which will be held at the
>San Francisco Hilton and Towers at 333 O'Farrell St. from June 30 to July
>NWPC is the largest bi-partisan group training progressive women
>candidates for office. Featured speakers include Eleanor Clift of
>Newsweek, Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez of Califonia, Gloria Feldt of
>Planned Parenthood, and Liz Abzug, the outspoken daughter of NWPC co-
>founder Bella Abzug.
>First, WLO co-founders Antonia Stolper and Bob Fertik will host a
>reception for Bay Area WLO members on Friday, July 2, from 8-10 p.m. Our
>special guests include Joan Blades, co-founder of Berkeley Systems
>(www.berksys.com), creators of the famous "After Dark" flying toaster
>screen savers and "You Don't Know Jack" trivia games. Joan also launched
>"Censure and Move On", an Internet petition campaign which collected half
>a million signatures protesting the Republican impeachment campaign.
>Tickets for the reception are $25 and can be purchased by clicking on the
>credit card button at http://wlo.org/join.html. A contribution also
>entitles you to WLO membership benefits, including participation in the
>WLO discussion lists at http://wlo.org/discuss.htm.
>Second, WLO is recruiting volunteers to provide Internet training on
>Friday and Saturday, July 2-3. WLO will help provide basic Internet
>training to women candidates, campaign workers, and grassroots activists.
>If you are a WLO subscriber living in the Bay Area, or an NWPC member
>planning to attend the convention, we need your help! Even if you only
>know how to send and receive e-mails, browse the web, use a search engine,
>and subscribe to an e-mail list - which everyone on the WLO list can do! -
>you have valuable skills which can make a difference for a woman
>Volunteers who can contribute a half-day or a full-day can come to the
>Friday evening reception for free. If you're available, please e-mail Bob
>at polwoman at igc.org. You'll get a chance to meet dynamic women leaders,
>and your efforts will help increase the number of feminists in office!
>3. Wal-Mart Update
>In just over two weeks, WLO members and supporters have diverted $31,274.14 
>to stores other than Wal-Mart, in protest of the megachain's refusal to 
>carry Emergency Contraception in their pharmacies.  We are now hearing th
>at the so-called right to life movement is trying to launch an economic 
>support campaign for Wal-Mart.  That means it is time for us to get even 
>more serious and get buying elsewhere.
>In case you missed our Wal-Mart action, here are the details:
>Wal-Mart recently announced that it was making a "business decision"
>and would not carry emergency contraceptives in any of its stores
>(although they do carry Viagra and guns, the twin symbols of
>masculinity). This decision will severely damage the ability of many
>women to prevent pregnancies from involuntary sex such as rape and
>incest, as well as consensual unplanned sex, particularly hurting
>women in rural areas where Wal-Mart may have driven out any
>We cannot let Wal-Mart force women into playing pregnancy roulette.
>And since they are characterizing this as a business decision, they
>should understand exactly what this decision will do to their
>business. Whether or not you are a regular Wal-Mart shopper, you can
>help them achieve this understanding.
>Once a week, tell Wal-Mart how much you spent elsewhere that could
>have been spent at Wal-Mart. This includes all the normal stuff you
>would expect, plus groceries, since the current Wal-Mart corporate
>strategy is to include full grocery supermarkets in their new stores.
>Just keep a weekly running total, then email Wal-Mart
>(letters at wal-mart.com) with a message such as this: "This week, I
>spent $134.23 at stores other than Wal-Mart. I made a business
>decision not to patronize Wal-Mart for these purchases, since your
>decision not to sell Emergency Contraception made it clear that you
>did not want my business, nor that of other women. If you change your
>minds and start providing the medicine women need, please let me
>Please send a copy of your weekly emails to wlo_wal_mart at yahoo.com and
>we'll keep track of the money Wal-Mart is losing. When you finally get
>a reply which indicates that Wal-Mart has changed its mind, send it to
>wlo_wal_mart at yahoo.com so we can post it on our Wal-Mart page at
>If you have not yet become a member of Women Leaders Online, we really
>need your support. Your contribution of $100, $50, $25, $10 -- or whatever
>you can spare -- will help keep our financially-challenged but dedicated
>staff paid and our alerts flying across the Net.
>In addition, contributing members are entitled to participate in our
>interactive e-mail discussion lists, including WLO-News, WLO-Media, and
>many state lists -- visit http://wlo.org and press "Discuss" for details.
>So please send your contribution today to: Women Leaders Online, P.O. Box
>11019, Washington, DC 20008, with your e-mail address on your check. You
>can also contribute securely by credit card by visiting
>http://wlo.org/join.html and clicking on the credit card icon.
>Jeanne Clark, Executive Director
>Please Post Widely!
>Women Leaders Online/Women Organizing for Change
>PO Box 11019, Washington DC 20008
>Voice/Fax: 202-364-3018
>E-mail: wlo at wlo.org  Web: http://wlo.org
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