Saturday: Females are Fabulous (all the moreso during Fourth of July weekend)

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Lithuania's President Dalia Grybauskaite attend the international conference "Women Enhancing Democracy: Best Practices" in Vilnius on June 30, 2011 AFP PHOTO PETRAS MALUKAS (Click photo to read a transcript of Dalia's and Hillary's post-bilateral remarks.)

Morning, news junkies.

Do you remember the I Love Lucy episode where Lucy goes on “Females are Fabulous” (game show which the announcer says is “based on the theory that any woman is willing to make an idiot out of herself in order to win a prize”)? Well, I was watching that episode while I was on the treadmill yesterday, a little after I saw the picture to the right, of Hillary and Dalia, which I instantly knew would be my Saturday intro pick. I figured this roundup is as good a time as any to turn that concept on its head… So here’s to the modern fabulous woman, based on the theory that women can compete in a man’s world instead of having to do stupid pet tricks to be recognized! For this weekend’s roundup, I’m going to stick mostly to items about women who are doing just that. Which means–you guessed it–a whole lotta Hillary.

Hillary in Lithuania…

…on Thursday, heralding the fight for women’s rights as “the great struggle of the 21st century” at the Women Enhancing Democracy Event (great applause/laugh line in bold):

Sometimes dignity means nothing more profound than to walk safely to fetch water or visit a friend without fear that you’ll be beaten, harassed, or kidnapped. But for too many women in too many places, even these most basic rights remain a distant dream. Whether you are a woman in downtown Cairo or a mother in a small Indian village or a girl growing up right here in Vilnius or in New York City, we have to send a clear, unmistakable message that young women, just like young men, have the right to their dreams and their dignity in the 21st century.

When you look back at the last 300 years of history, you can see a pattern. You can see that the 19th century, the great human rights struggle was against organized slavery; the 20th century, the great struggle was against totalitarianism; the great struggle of the 21st century is to ensure that women are fully given the rights they have as human beings – in their families, in their societies, and in the world.

So let us work together, day by day, to make sure that when we meet again 10 years from now, we will be able to look back on progress, not only continuing progress in my country, which someday, perhaps, will match Finland and Lithuania with having a woman president – (laughter) – but in every country everywhere – (applause). And particularly, let those of us who enjoy the benefits of freedom, for whom legal restrictions and barriers have been broken down, and what remains are more internal, more psychological – let us be sure that we keep opening doors for those elsewhere. We cannot take any solace in our own freedoms when women elsewhere are denied those same rights.

…and on Friday, still in Lithuania, issuing remarks on Women’s Rights in the MENA region. (“As one woman put it, the men were keen for me to be here when we demanding that Mubarak should go, but now that he has gone, they want me to go home.”) The New Age, a South African paper, headline on Hillary’s remarks: “Clinton warns against sidelining women in Arab Spring.” Hillary gave a news conference with remarks specifically on Syria as well.

And, here’s a neat interview she did with a female journalist in Lithuania:

QUESTION: Secretary Clinton, former First Lady of the United States Eleanor Roosevelt only allowed female reporters to her press conferences, forcing – so editors to hire women. Do such methods – should be taken in our days for similar reasons, for – strengthen positions of women?

SECRETARY CLINTON: I think that’s a very interesting question. Eleanor Roosevelt is someone whom I admire greatly, and because she would only be interviewed by women reporters, she forced newspapers to hire more women. I think that that is probably not necessary in today’s world because you’re sitting there and I am frequently interviewed by very able women reporters. But I do think that focusing on women’s rights and equality for women remains a very big issue for the world today.

Kat also sent me this great extensive writeup from Bloomberg on Hillary’s remarks about women at the African Union during her travels last month: Clinton Tells African Leaders Economies Would Fail Without Women’s Toil, which I want to excerpt a bit from:

For Clinton, the plight of women has helped drive an aggressive travel schedule that her office says has clocked up more miles than any of her predecessors. She’s gone 567,305 miles, visiting 85 countries in 232 days on the road since taking office in January 2009. She makes it a point to meet local women in impoverished nations.

In Zambia, which hadn’t hosted a secretary of state since Henry Kissinger in 1976, Clinton was met by a singing and dancing chorus of local businesswomen who had taken part in a U.S.-funded program to train female entrepreneurs on how to tap financing and export their goods.

“Have you been to a market? Have you looked at fields being tilled? Have you watched children being raised?” Clinton told her hosts at a meeting in Lusaka, Zambia to discuss a U.S. trade agreement with 37 African countries. “Women are holding up half the economy already.”

‘Anything is Possible’

Among those listening was Linda Moono, part of a group that set up the only Mexican restaurant in Lusaka and helps young entrepreneurs get their businesses off the ground.

“I was inspired, particularly by her focus on young women,” she said in a June 9 interview. “She makes one believe anything is possible.”

Earlier this week, Madame Secretary gave an exclusive to Jim Clancy of CNN International’s Freedom Project on the release of the 2011 Trafficking in Persons (TIP) report: Sec. Clinton on slavery: “Unforgettable and unforgivable” (full transcript at the link):

Watch Sec. Clinton describe her passion for fighting 21st century slavery, which she calls ‘unforgettable and unforgivable’, here.

Watch the full interview here.

Fiercest advocate-in-chief that she is, Hillary also co-hosted an LGBT Pride month event at the State Department with GLIFAA (Gays and Lesbians in Foreign Affairs Agencies). From On Top Magazine’s coverage of Hillary’s remarks at the event–“Hillary Clinton Cheers New York Gay Marriage”:

At the event co-hosted by the Department of State and the affinity group Gays and Lesbians in Foreign Affairs Agencies (GLIFAA), Clinton called the law a historic victory for human rights.

“If you followed closely, which I’m sure all of you did, the debate in New York, one of the key votes that was switched at the end was a Republican senator from the Buffalo area who became convinced that it was just not any longer fair for him to see one group of his constituents as different from another. Senators stood up and talked about nieces and nephews and grandchildren and others who are very dear to them, and they don’t want them being objectified or discriminated against. And from their own personal connections and relationships, they began to make the larger connection with somebody else’s niece or nephew of grandchild and what that family must feel like,” Clinton said.

“So I ask all of you to look for ways to support those who are on the front lines of this movement, who are defending themselves and the people they care about with great courage and resilience. This is one of the most urgent and important human rights struggles of all times,” she added.

BBC News and other outlets also reported on Hillary’s comments about the US envoy in Rome helping Lady Gaga secure Europride show:

“Organisers of the EuroPride event desperately wanted her to perform, and a letter to her from Ambassador Thorne was instrumental in sealing the deal,” Mrs Clinton told a group of gay and lesbian state department employees on Monday.

Fox News, oddly enough, ran this headline… SMART POWER: Hillary Brokers Lady Gaga Gay Pride Gig for Rome.

Shifting the human rights gears back to Hillary’s signature issue… Hillary sent a video message to the “Women Leaders as Agents of Change” Colloquium. Teaser:

Hello and welcome to this colloquium dedicated to empowering women as agents of change. I want to thank the Prime Minister for hosting this important forum. As Trinidad and Tobago’s first female prime minister, she is a role model for women not only in her own country, but throughout the region.

In the United States this month we are celebrating the unique contributions by Americans of Caribbean descent. Caribbean-American women have added in ways large and small to the story of America. We have seen them act as agents of change in our own country.

On Friday, Hillary had this to say about the first meeting of the Lifeline Donor Steering Committee (NGO initiative):

And I think our seven NGO partners are creating a virtual SOS warning platform to improve our abilities to identify where and when people are in danger. So we can get a response as quickly as needed.

In other Hillaryland-related news… from Ann Lewis’ NoLimits.org… Congress: Fair Pay Deserves a Vote:

The devastating ruling in the Wal-Mart v. Dukes case highlights the importance of The Paycheck Fairness Act, which calls for an end to pay secrecy and sex-based pay discrimination. The bill, reintroduced this year by Senator Barbara Mikulski and Representative Rosa DeLauro, would strengthen the equal pay laws, and help take equal pay from the law books to our checkbooks.

The Paycheck Fairness Act would prohibit punishment of employees who voluntarily share wage information; require gender-based data collection, allow employees to compare their wages to the wages of others who hold their job, even outside the workplace, and strengthen compensation and punitive damages for victims of sex-based wage discrimination.

Think of the impact that The Paycheck Fairness Act would have had on Lilly Ledbetter and the women of Wal-Mart. Let’s pass The Paycheck Fairness Act for millions of working women in the U.S.

Click here to contact your representative about The Paycheck Fairness Act.

And, here’s another shero milestone to be proud of this Fourth of July weekend… Last month, the US Army made Pratima Dharm the first Hindu chaplain in US history. I caught a profile of her in an Indian American periodical this week, but I can’t find the article online. The Huffpo piece (from earlier last month) that I’ve linked to is pretty good, though:

“Our motto is priest to some, chaplain to all,” states Chaplain Dharm. She acknowledges her cultural background makes her uniquely qualified to take on the challenge of being the first Hindu Chaplain. She was born and raised in India, and can read and write Sanskrit, the language ancient Hindu scriptures were written in. “The basic principles of Hinduism make being a ‘chaplain to all’ an ideal endeavor. Hinduism by its very nature teaches tolerance, acceptance and respect for all religions, a key characteristic of successful military chaplains.”

I have some other items I want to link to briefly:

Amelia Earhart 74 years ago. (Click to go to the article.)

I have a few different historical trivia reads to cover, but there’s a bit more Hillary stuff all the way at the end, so stay tuned.

This Day in Women’s History:

Donning a helmet and goggles, one 10 minute flight in an open-cockpit biplane was all it took. She was hooked for life. Amelia Earhart is possibly the world’s most famous female aviator. On July 2, it will be 64 (editor note sic 74) years since she was last heard from over the Pacific Ocean. It was one of the last legs of her attempted flight around the world when her radio went silent.

Oh and of course, Today in American History…some milestones to remember this weekend:

Independence Day is celebrated two days too late. The Second Continental Congress voted for a Declaration of Independence on July 2, prompting John Adams to write his wife, “I am apt to believe that [July 2, 1776], will be celebrated, by succeeding Generations, as the great anniversary Festival.”

Adams correctly foresaw shows, games, sports, buns, bells, and bonfires—but he got the date wrong. The written document wasn’t edited and approved until the Fourth of July, and that was the date printers affixed to “broadside” announcements sent out across the land. July 2 was soon forgotten.

(Related: “U.S. Independence Celebrated on the Wrong Day?”)

In fact, no one actually signed the Declaration of Independence at any time during July 1776. Signing began on August 2, with John Hancock’s famously bold scribble, and wasn’t completed until late November.

On July 2, 1964, President Lyndon Johnson signed into law the Civil Rights Act, which prohibited any form of discrimination in public places, as well as authorized the integration of public facilities. To this very day the Civil Rights Act remains one of the most important pieces of legislation, not just for people of color but for all Americans of different gender, religion, and socio-economic status.

One month later, on July 2, 1777, a convention of 72 delegates met in Windsor, Vermont, to adopt the state’s new—and revolutionary—constitution; it was formally adopted on July 8, 1777. Vermont’s constitution was not only the first written national constitution drafted in North America, but also the first to prohibit slavery and to give all adult males, not just property owners, the right to vote.

I’ll close with a snippet from Hillary’s Video Message for Independence Day:

February 26, 2008 (John Kuntz / The Plain Dealer)

Today is a time to celebrate the birth of our nation and the values that have sustained us for 235 years – equality, opportunity and the rights enshrined in our founding documents.

This year, we have been reminded again that these are not just American values, they are truly universal values. And as people across North Africa, the Middle East and around the world risk their lives to claim these universal human rights and freedoms, Americans are proud to stand with them. We are united by our common hopes and aspirations for a better world.

Chelsea, Hillary, and Dorothy Rodham... Pennsylvania 2008

I love the above pic of Hillary ’08 against the blue part of the flag and the stars…I also love this pic to the right with the red and white stripes backdrop for three generations of American women.

Happy Fourth of July weekend everyone! If you get a chance, let us know what’s on your blogging list.

[originally posted at Let Them Listen; crossposted at Taylor Marsh and Liberal Rapture]


26 Comments on “Saturday: Females are Fabulous (all the moreso during Fourth of July weekend)”

  1. The Rock says:

    I know she says she won’t run, but there really isn’t anybody else. None of the clowns on the Republican side are worth more than a few grains of corn, and Obumbles is dead set on crushing the American dream, simply by showing up to work 3 out of the 5 days of the week. I’ve signed every ‘Draft Hillary’ petition online. I keep in touch with some of the other Hillary volunteers in Houston. Just waiting to hear her say ‘I’m in.’

    Did you hear my president talk to Wolf Blitzer about the economy? Did you hear him make more sense than any of the yokels that are actually charged with making the decisions? And for him to hold the CGI meetings in Chicago… Are we POSITIVE Hillary isn’t running? That has to be a politically motivated well-timed, well-placed shot across the bow of Obumbles, done by the master….

    Leader.

    Thank you Wonk for the post. It’s been a very very very difficult week, and I need a full dose of Hillary to keep my spirits up. Here are a few links from MY reading list…

    My other favorite blog….
    http://www.hillaryis44.org/2011/07/01/obooberama-we-are-not-amused/

    He isn’t even making the RIGHT case for repealing some of the tax breaks…
    http://news.yahoo.com/obama-ending-tax-breaks-required-cut-deficit-103420710.html

    Dak may want to weigh in on this one. Is this a case of possibliy positive austerity measures?
    http://news.yahoo.com/italian-cabinet-heads-hot-budget-cuts-153723481.html

    You can’t MAKE this stuff up!! I swear I thought this was from Comedy Central. Alas, it is true……
    http://www.vancouversun.com/news/Another+oddity+North+Korea+heads+disarmament+body/5026018/story.html

    Have a good day all!!

    Hillary 2012

    • paper doll says:

      I know she says she won’t run, but there really isn’t anybody else

      God knows Rock, that is true .

      Fab Wonk round up as usual! Thanks!

  2. Pat Johnson says:

    I still am unable to look at Hillary Clinton without experiencing a bout of sadness over “what might have been”.

    Comparing her performance to the current dunce in the White House just evokes memories of how much we have lost.

  3. paper doll says:

    Pat, when I look at them, or try to think of them at the same time it feels like parallel universes and I have one foot in each…how do I get beamed up the the Hillary one?

  4. paper doll says:

    The assault on public education in America

    The ruling class in the United States is intensifying its campaign to dismantle public education.

    http://tinyurl.com/5wpcvsc

    With the new fiscal year that began yesterday, states throughout the country are slashing education funding, leading to the layoff of tens of thousands of teachers and the closure of hundreds of schools.

    Both the Democratic and Republican parties are using the fiscal crisis—the outcome of decades of tax cuts to the rich, the bailout of the banks, and an economic crash caused by rampant speculation—as an opportunity to undermine and eliminate public education.

    In 2010 alone, 151,000 state and local education workers were laid off. In the coming school year, a further 227,000 layoffs are planned…….

  5. Fannie says:

    Happy 4 July to all you skydancers.

  6. joanelle says:

    Hope you are all flying old glory today and all weekend! Happy Birthday America!

    It’s beyond saddness Pat – I’m still heartbroken that our country got scr@wed out of moving forward and put us into the worse possible situation.

  7. Peggy Sue says:

    What a great roundup, Wonk! I don’t agree with Hillary Clinton on every issue–military issues primarily–but she is a tremendous ambassador and the energizer bunny when it comes to reaching out and speaking for ordinary people, women, children, gays, etc.. Anyone whose voice need amplification, Hillary Clinton is their microphone.

    For my money, this line says it all:

    “She makes one believe anything is possible.”

    And that’s the mark of a true leader. Almost brings tears to my eyes.

    You made my day.

  8. dakinikat says:

    For Strauss-Kahn Prosecutors, Accuser’s Phone Call Was Alarming Revelation

    A series of troubling statements, fabrications and associations unraveled the case against Dominique Strauss-Kahn and upended prosecutors’ view of the hotel housekeeper at the center of the ordeal.

    In the latest revelation, investigators with the Manhattan district attorney’s office finished translating a recording of a phone call between the housekeeper and a boyfriend in an immigration jail in Arizona.

    “She says words to the effect of, ‘Don’t worry, this guy has a lot of money. I know what I’m doing,’ ” a well-placed law enforcement official said.

    oh, dear, this is going to throw fuel onto the fire of women falsely accusing men of rape

    The NY Post (not a particularly good source but anyway) also have it that she was a prostitute.

    • Branjor says:

      Actually, dak, that doesn’t make much sense. The outcome of a criminal trial is generally jail for the accused, if convicted, not money for the accuser. It would only make sense if she was planning to civilly sue him after an acquittal in the criminal trial, and she would be unlikely to win a civil suit if he was acquitted criminally. It’s possible, as the families of O.J. Simpson’s victims won a civil suit against him after he was criminally acquitted, but it’s less likely and sure not a slam dunk.

  9. dakinikat says:

    Here’s a rare spot of good news in the state-by-state abortion battle: A U.S. district court judge has temporarily blocked South Dakota’s new abortion law, which would have gone into effect today with a 72-hour waiting period and a forced visit to a crisis pregnancy center.

    The three-day waiting period would have been the longest in the nation, and although some states keep trying to outdo each other on the anti-choice front, making women visit “counselors” whose goal it is to talk them out of abortions was also a new low. Chief Judge Karen Schreier (a Clinton appointee) agreed with Planned Parenthood and the ACLU that the law put an undue burden on women seeking abortions, in violation of the Fourteenth Amendment, and found that the law violated women’s free speech rights by forcing them to discuss their decision with a non-medical third party — and a religious one at that.

    The law would have also required physicians to discuss “complications associated with abortion,” which the judge said was based on discredited information, and to ensure that the woman had not been coerced, which the judge said was unconstitutionally vague.

    Whereas South Dakota governor Dennis Daugaard had said paternalistically of the law he signed, “I hope that women who are considering an abortion will use this three-day period to make good choices,” Schreier’s decision was marked by feminist language:

    “Forcing a woman to divulge to a stranger at a pregnancy help center the fact that she has chosen to undergo an abortion humiliates and degrades her as a human being. The woman will feel degraded by the compulsive nature of the Pregnancy Help Center requirements, which suggest that she has made the ‘wrong’ decision, has not really ‘thought’ about her decision to undergo an abortion, or is ‘not intelligent enough’ to make the decision with the advice of a physician. Furthermore, these women are forced into a hostile environment.”

  10. dakinikat says:

    nprpolitics NPR Politics
    Minnesota Shutdown Hits Vulnerable First http://n.pr/jc9n0Q

    Minnesota’s second shutdown in six years was striking much deeper than the partial 2005 shutdown. It took state parks and rest stops offline, closed horse tracks and made it impossible to get a fishing license. But it also was hitting the state’s most vulnerable, ending reading services for the blind, silencing a help line for the elderly and stopping child care subsidies for the poor.

  11. bostonboomer says:

    Thank you for this wonderful, inspiring post, Wonk. Thank goodness for Hillary! Thanks also for the thrilling news about Little Isis. She is very talented and deserving of recognition.

    • littleisis says:

      Thanks! (((BB))) I might be talented, but talent doesn’t get you anywhere without hard work, sass and some sincere ball bustin’. Hillary inspires me to keep on plugging and in the past few years I have set higher standards for myself because of the example inspiring women like her set.
      Love Hillary, and love all of you!

  12. dakinikat says:

    Polaris_Project Polaris Project
    by DMVPhilanthropy
    4 girls rescued from #humantraffickers in #India http://ow.ly/5uYLh

  13. littleisis says:

    Happy fourth of July weekend skydancers!!!

  14. JeanLouise says:

    The statement that the DSK accuser is a prostitute came from someone on or close to the defense team. It’s worth less than nothing.

    • dakinikat says:

      Since the NYPost said it I didn’t put much stock in it.

      • paper doll says:

        The media generally cannot believed…in this especially. They have been a visual tool from the start.There’s offers of money or how about an offer to keep your life? I’d take the later offer . She’s between incredibly powerful forces in a land without law .

  15. AliceP. says:

    This was a great post! Whenever I’m reading over at FDL occasionally I will still see someone say “Hillary wouldn’t have been any better” then they will note some issue they disagree with her about. I notice it’s never to do with women’s rights. She’s still never given ANY credit for her long years of work in this area.

    She’d most certainly have been better for women. I guess that doesn’t “count” in certain circles.

    I don’t see anyone else who can do what she could have done on the horizon. I hope she takes another run. If not we may be stuck with the Backman’s and Palin’s. It’s funny how no woman who is a democrat is good enough or perfect enough for some progs though. Recently at Huffpo I saw the comment that women just haven’t run anyone “worthy” yet…nobody challenged that remark.

    It’s not as if all the men we’ve had as POTUS were worthy but, that’s fine with them. We’re stuck in the fifties!!

    Hillary still inspires me though I am not satisfied with her post. She’s doing a great job and would have been better as POTUS.