December has been a horrifc month. I’ve written little about the massacre of 20 children on the USA or the gang rape of a woman in India. I’m not going to write much now.
What I am going to say is this. I am a woman. I have three daughters. I have raised or am raising six children. It is time for the women of the world to unite. Swati Parashar has rightfully asked for more western women to speak out against the violence faced by women in developing nations.
Yet we have insane people shooting innocent children in a western country that refuses to control gun ownership, but will pray to “God” about him taking little children.
We’ve seen gang rapes in France and a young girl shot in Pakistan. Here in Australia we’ve had the terrible aduction, rape and murder of two young women in Melbourne and we have a Royal Commission into the abuse of children, many of whom committed suicide later in life. I’ve said before I believe there is a link between the subjugation of women and the abuse of children.
Time for women in all nations to rise up and demand an end to the insanity. Don’t bother making any damn comments on here that it is the victim’s fault. Such comments will not be published. Think very carefully about why you even think such stupid thoughts and DO NOT bring religion into it either! Edit: It has just been brought to my attention this can be misinterpreted by new readers. What I meant here was DO NOT offer religious “justification” for subjugation of women.
Women like Dr Anita Shukla should hang their heads in shame.
What is a pitch war, you ask? I wondered too. As it turns out, nothing to do with cricket pitches or baseball pitches. Just as well really, as I am pretty hopeless at both sports.
Pitch Wars is a writers’ competition in the USA, but with international involvement.
Full details can be found at Brenda Drake’s website. In summary, the Wars offer a panel of mentors who help aspiring authors prepare a manuscript for a pitch to selected agents. I’m writing about it in case any Australian/New Zealand authors might like to take a peek. It closes 8 pm EST (I think that is California time) December 5th USA time, so you still have a few hours to enter – not that I want any more competition, but authors are supposed to support each other! I’m supporting by spreading the word!
While I do have submissions in to two publishers in Australia, given they haven’t snatched up my book (more fool them ), I believe I’m free to explore whatever other avenues happen to come my way.
I’ve probably broken one rule already – the competition details say to submit to three prospective mentors and I only submitted to one. I found out rather late and was running out of time (until I remembered the time difference).
After I hit the “send” on the email, I thought, “Hell, they are likely to think I can’t spell.” As it turns out one of the mentors is Australian (not my genre) and assured me they are aware of spelling style differences between the USA and Australia! Phew, that was a relief!
I see most of the other authors turn to jelly after they have submitted, so I know I’m not alone in feeling “Oh crap, what have I done!”
What will be, will be. It is an experience: each time I “pitch” I learn (so far) what doesn’t work. Hopefully sooner or later I’ll stumble on something that does work!
Maybe I should go and enter another two times to at least comply with the rules. You reckon, huh? I reckon.
When I was young one golden social rule was never discuss religion, politics or sex. I’ll leave sex alone for today.
EDIT: Nothing is this article is mean to detract from the many wonderful men worldwide who not only accept women as their equals but who fight for women’s rights. I am looking at the historical reasons why particular demographics persist in trying to subjugate women, specifically in the western world. Yes, I agree, the Middle East has quite a way to go yet.
If the USA election raised one question in my mind (actually, it raised several but one an article is sufficient) it was the weird relationship religions have with women. As regular readers know, I am an atheist and to be perfectly honest some of the things I have discovered recently have really shocked me. How can women accept being treated like second-class citizens by religion? Maybe I am just particularly uneducated in this respect but so many events of late have highlighted the question I had to look at it. This isn’t about whether a God, or several Gods, exist or not – this is about women and their role in society which in many ways is driven by their role in the prevailing religion of any given culture.
The lesson from the USA election may well be religions better get over themselves and start treating women like equal members of the human species. I read somewhere yesterday there must be Republicans wishing they’d never given women the vote and I’m quite sure there are! Just like many in the south think slaves should never have been freed.
I brought my family here from what is arguably a third world country. Now I am left trying to explain to them why the western world seems to be crumbling before our very eyes. I’d like to take a couple of prime news issues from the last couple of days to illustrate.
Let us first look at that great bastion (so they tell us) of democracy, the United States of America. In case you haven’t noticed, the good ol’ U S of A is having a presedential election. There is slight problem: seems there are concerted efforts in certain states to prevent people from voting. People are queuing for up to 9 hours to be able to vote. This is sounding awfully like the elections problems in some third world countries, like Nigeria where the voting papers didn’t turn up on time.
Jezebel.com provides a great detailed article describing the skullduggery.
Husted, in short, is a shit. He has moved to restrict voting hours in counties that typically lean Democratic while voting to extend hours in Ohio counties that tend to lean Republican. When the New York Times pointed out that this was roundly fucked up, Husted signed an order limiting early voting in all Ohio locations, a move that Democratic officials say will disenfranchise urban voters.
That is just ONE example!
CNN.com follows up with America’s voting system is a disgrace.
Americans worry more about voter fraud than do voters in other countries, because they are the only country without a reliable system of national identification.
In no other country, including federal systems such as Germany, Canada and Australia, does the citizen’s opportunity to vote depend on the affluence and competence of his or her local government.
Hey, Australia rates a mention as having a good system – and we damn well do! Our choices of candidates to vote for seem a little limited, however!
For those who may be geography challenged, it takes a LONG time to get anywhere from Australia, other than to New Zealand! Yet most Australians travel, unlike some other countries. Look at the map – we are a long way from most other countries!
In the 12 months to June 2010, 6.8 million overseas trips were made by Australians, up from 2.1 million two decades earlier. In per capita terms, this was the equivalent to 31 trips overseas for every 100 Australian residents in 2009-10, up from 12 trips per 100 residents in 1989-90.
I have decided not to write about each individual photo, but as you can see I was intrigued with the rocket booster/engine thingies!
We also listened to a lecture by a real astronaut, Ken Cameron, which was both informative and entertaining.
The desks are not a mock-up, they are the real desks and computers from the first mission. There were recordings playing and film of the event: it was really exciting.
Learning how the space station was built by all the countries involved working together was very interesting.
I had forgotten how many failed attempts there were when the USA tried to catch the USSR in the space race. Watching those explosions and crashes one after the other on screen as part of the tour was a reminder that man didn’t land on the moon without a lot of effort.
The sheer size of the full craft on display has to be seen to be believed. When one considers most of that housed fuel and nothing else, it is amazing. What could we achieve with a more efficient fuel?
One of the things we did trying to stay awake to throw our body clocks into the local time zone was a visit to the Kennedy Space Centre. If you ever get the chance, it is WELL WORTH the visit!
I will write more about the visit at a later date, but in the interim here are some space suits! These are REAL space suits! Click on the images to see them in a larger size as they are really interesting – I can’t imagine going to the gym in them!