Last summer, an American-born teenager of Somali descent fled her parents’ home in a suburb here after she discovered that a coming vacation to Somalia would include a sacred rite of passage: the cutting of her genitalia. In Guinea, a New Yorker escaped to the American Embassy after an aunt told her that her family trip would involve genital cutting. And in Seattle, at least one physician said parents had sent girls back to Somalia to undergo cutting.
Immigrant parents from African and other nations have long sent their daughters back to their ancestral homes for the summer, a trip intended to help them connect with their families and traditions.
During their stays, some girls are swept into bedrooms or backwoods and subjected to genital cutting in the belief that it will prevent promiscuity, ready them for marriage or otherwise align them with the ideals of their culture.
“Vacation cutting,” as the practice is deemed by those who oppose it, has existed in immigrant enclaves around the world for decades. Federal law has banned genital cutting in the United States since 1996, and last year it became illegal to transport girls for that purpose.
The share of women in the construction industry has remained shockingly low—under 3 percent—for decades, due in large part to the discrimination that blocks women from entering and staying in the field. Sexual harassment and hostility, lack of mentors, and stereotyped assumptions about women’s capabilities all contribute to the problem. Unequal access to construction jobs in turn negatively affects women’s income, as traditionally male fields pay higher wages and have a lower wage gap than those dominated by women. More must be done to reverse this trend in construction, and the growth of women’s participation in similar nontraditional fields shows that it is possible.
State officials want to know how and why a Pennsylvania woman died while serving a two-day jail term related to her children’s truancy.
Eileen Dinino, a 55-year-old mother of seven, died Saturday at the Berks County Jail in Bern Township, about halfway through the 48-hour sentence she was ordered to serve after her children racked up multiple truancy violations.
A jail staff member found Dinino unresponsive in her bunk while performing blood pressure exams on inmates.
This sort of violence against women by their families and partners isn’t just “a Pakistani problem.” Take a quick global look at the numbers. Nearly 40 percent of murders of women around the world are committed by someone a woman knows intimately, according to the World Health Organization. That number is the same in the United States. A study published in 2013 by Science estimated that one in three women worldwide experiences violence at the hands of her partner at some point in her lifetime. “It is the most prevalent form of gender-based violence,” says Palermo.
But much of this violence goes unreported and unpunished globally. “With my colleagues, we estimated that among women who suffer various forms of violence, only 7 percent either report or seek services related to that violence,” Palermo says. “Most suffer in silence.”
How bad is street harassment in America? Pretty bad, according to a report published this week by Stop Street Harassment, a Virginia-based nonprofit.
SSH commissioned market research firm GfK to run a nationwide survey of 2,040 American adults—the largest such survey ever—to learn about their experiences with street harassment. The resulting report defines street harassment as “unwanted interactions in public spaces between strangers that are motivated by a person’s actual or perceived gender, sexual orientation, or gender expression.” The relative ubiquity of street harassment makes it difficult to quantify, author Holly Kearl explains in the report, because many people “may not even identify what happened as wrong.”
Nevertheless, the report reveals some striking data points: Of those surveyed, 65 percent of women and 25 percent of men reported experiencing street harassment at some point. Men were overwhelmingly the harassers of both women and men, and people of color and LGBT people were a lot more likely to say they’d been harassed than white or straight people were.
Colonial Hills Baptist Church youth program Youth E.D.G.E. Indy created the video to teach 7th graders to obey church rules. The blog Stuff Fundies Like reported that the video was originally posted to the youth group’s Facebook page, but was removed after complaints about violence against women.
In the video, youth pastor Nate Utley demonstrates the importance of Youth E.D.G.E. regulations.
“Don’t disrespect or talk back to your leaders at any time,” Utley warns in one lesson.
After a girl tells him to “Shut up,” the pastor picks up a plastic “baseball bat” and beats her until she appears lifeless.
Later in the video, Utley beats a second girl with the “baseball bat” because she failed to put a pizza box in the trash can.
Young Adults Pastor Keith Lewis eventually explained that the video “was meant to be a humorous introduction for the incoming 7th graders.”
honor killings claim the lives of more than 1,000 Pakistani women every year, according to a Pakistani rights group.
They have widespread appeal. Eighty-three percent of Pakistanis support stonings for adultery according to a Pew survey, and only 8 percent oppose it. Even those who chose modernity over Islamic fundamentalism overwhelmingly favor stonings, according to Pew research.
Some Islamic fundamentalists think that only through the murder of an offending family member can honor be restored to the rest of the family. Honor killings predominantly affect women — 943 women were killed under such circumstances in 2011 and another 869 in 2013, though not all of them were stoned. Some were just gunned down in cold blood.