Today is the 84th anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment that gave the right to vote to women.
From Elizabeth Cady Stanton, author of the 19th Amendment:
"The moment we begin to fear the opinions of others and hesitate to tell the truth that is in us, and from motives of policy are silent when we should speak, the divine floods of light and life no longer flow into our souls."Though it's been only a short 84 years since the ratification of the 19th Amendment, at least it shows that the wheels of progress do turn, if slowly.
Or do they?
On August 22, Iraqi leaders released a draft of the country’s new constitution that makes Islamic law, or shariah, the basis of national legislation, thereby opening the door for conservative clerics to overturn secular laws that can protect women’s human rights.
The Bush Administration bears direct responsibility for this crisis. After inserting himself heavily into negotiations over the draft, US Ambassador to Iraq Zalmay Khalilzad backed demands for constitutional provisions that would give clerics control over family status laws governing marriage, divorce, and women's inheritance and property rights. Iraq’s current family status laws—among the most progressive in the Middle East—could be overturned by this move. Like religious fundamentalists in the United States and around the world, Iraq’s Islamic parties use religion as a means of pursuing a reactionary political agenda that begins with the subjugation of women within the family. By deferring to the clerics on family status laws, the US has handed a key victory to the clerics who are pushing for Iraq to become an Islamic state.
So much for leading by example. What does this say about Bush's view of women's rights in the United States? Isn't the equality of women one of those freedoms for which Bush claims the terrorists hate us?
George W. Bush: Proudly Leading the Way Back to the 14th Century!