Last week, I wrote about my worry of the Afghan women. The Taliban had retaken Afghanistan, and have stated their plan of returning to a more restrictive government, especially for women.
American women have been on my mind this week. I’ve been thinking about my daughter, my mom, my sisters, my nieces, and the many women in my life. Although we don’t have a Taliban running our government, we do have Taliban-style of elected officials and religious leaders. In many ways, these men (and some women), think of women as second-class citizens, chattel. Many men in our society act in the same ways as the Taliban.
I’ve been wondering to calm my mind and feelings about the challenges my daughter will encounter that my sons will not have to worry about as they live their lives.
She will, based on the statistics, encounter one or more of the following limitations at the hands of men (and some women) throughout her life:
Someone will believe they have the right to touch her body without permission, and possibly force themselves upon her.
Someone will believe it is okay to talk to her in a disrespectful way, call her names, and talk to her in a demeaning way—verbally or in writing.
Someone will tell her the only way to get ahead is to perform a favor for them.
Someone will tell her the idea she has won’t work, and then steal it for themselves without giving her credit.
Someone will silence her by not listening to what she has to say, or interrupt to shut her down.
Many someone’s, especially elected officials will say she has no control or say over her own body, and punish her for making her own choices; they will refuse to push forward the Equal Rights Amendment; and work to ensure she earns less than her male counterparts and will believe that is okay.
We have a media who is more than willing to call out the atrocities, discrimination, and subversion of women by the Taliban.
The same media will work around, use non-specific language, or just plain ignore the atrocities, discrimination, and subversion of women by our own leaders, our own men, and our own women, who act like the Taliban in the United States, both overtly and covertly.
So…how does a father (or a mother), calm their minds about the future of their daughters?