Monday, May 19, 2008

There's Still Time

to get in touch with your MP before tomorrow's Human Fertilisation and Embryology vote. I did. I have yet to have a reply but I will let you know what it says when I do.

I quote from the government's website: "Amendments to abortion law are likely to be introduced during the passage of this Bill." We need to be all over this like a rash. The bill is before committee as I type and you can watch the privileged white men argue about what happens to women's bodies if you go to - but don't blame me if you end up frothing at the mouth and looking for someone to beat senseless. I'm late with this post because things IRL came up and overtook me, but PLEASE, if you have two minutes to spare, e-mail your MP or phone the House of Commons on 020 7219 3000 and ask to speak to, or leave a message for your MP. They need to hear us.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Oh, You know how it goes...

This goes on and on in my city and elsewhere, perhaps because of this. As an antidote to which, I suggest reading this. And for those of you with a strong stomach and a taste for the extreme, I point you at this. Enjoy.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Guess What!

It's now legal for women to drive cars in Saudi Arabia!! After an 18 year ban, women may finally, legally, get behind the wheel without fear of imprisonment or losing their job. Now, how about some other rights for women and girls in Saudi? Like the right not to be gang-raped and subsequently sentenced to a vicious beating and imprisonment?

And, yes, I know that the "Qatif Girl" was pardoned. I also know that she broke the law and probably understood the consequences. I UNDERSTAND that there are people out there who will tell me that there are cultural issues and differences that I ought to consider. And my answer to those people is an unequivocal NO. I will no longer be tolerating the abuse of women and children simply because it can be explained or excused by men as cultural or religious practise.

How can anyone can argue in favour of disenfranchised women, or the enforced wearing of abaya: full body covering that women must wear after they begin to menstruate? How can anyone accept that women's testimony in court is unequal to her male counterpart? Just like Female Genital Mutilation these are obvious human rights abuses. Cultural codes and norms be buggered. I'm sick of it. Getting behind the wheel of a car is a dramatic, empowering act; I hope it is the very beginning of successful protest and liberation for Saudi women.

Friday, January 11, 2008

This week I have been mostly

putting my hands into bags of unusually wet, mouldy clothing and discovering that said clothing is in fact soiled bedding. Actual poo, people. Poo on my hands. And the thing is, the person who "donated" the diarrhoea-smeared sheets actually looked me in the eye and SMILED at me as she handed me the bag. I have also cut my hand on a bag of broken porcelain figurines. I hate this job. I've ranted before about this and I hate to sound jaded but shitty sheets and smashed up pots? Really?

But! I have also opened bags of the most amazing donations: a gold sovereign, first edition books, beautifully cared for and cleaned clothes, brand new unwanted Christmas gifts! When this happens I love the job. Even though I'm busy being charitable (!) I'm still looking for something PhD related so if anyone has any suggestions? I am working on an article for an academic journal and I am hoping to branch out a bit and write something for our local paper about various Salford-based women's groups.

Oh, and today I am grateful for last night's yoga and also for tasty mushroom cup soup. Yay!