Neon Mamacita

Close the Gap

September 25, 2015 by annie

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“Women are one half of the world’s population, they deserve equal access to health, education, earning potential, and political empowerment. Ultimately, gender equality is a vital part of humanity’s progress.”

– The World Economic Forum’s Gender Gap Report 2014
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On September 27th, the UN will host the Global Leaders’ Meeting on Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment. This meeting comes at an urgent time, when gender inequality and the resulting poverty and violence, is a contributing factor in driving millions of families out of the middle east.

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It is hard to overstate the terrifying impact that extremist groups like ISIS and Boko Haram have had using rape as a weapon of war. These groups claim that they have a God-given right to rape and abuse women because they are not Sunni Muslims.

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These stories are sickening, but what is perhaps more appalling is the disenfranchisement of women in even the most developed Middle Eastern countries.

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The question remains, why do their governments and religious leaders rob women of their human rights?

Is their religion incompatible with equality between the sexes? If so, how can secular nations push for women’s rights while respecting cultural differences?

Recommended Reading:

World Economic Forum: Global Gender Gap Report 2014

New York Times: Muslim Women on the Veil

Twenty Two Words: Not All Headscarves are Burkas

The New Yorker: Learning to Speak Lingerie

The New Yorker: The Other France

New York Times: ISIS Enshrines a Theology of Rape

The Takeaway: Interview with Samantha Power

Netflix: A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night

Vimeo: Skateistan

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