Just Above Sunset
March 21, 2004 - And the week after International Women's Day?

Home | Question Time | Something Is Up | Connecting Dots | Stay Away | Overload | Our Man in Paris | WLJ Weekly | Book Wrangler | Cobras | The Edge of the Pacific | The Surreal Beach | On Location | Botanicals | Quotes

Some crazy woman doubts our president has his heart in the right place!
Not nice at all…



Last week I noted a little "oops" from our president regarding International Women’s Day.  See March 14, 2004 International Women's Day, HIPPA, and guns... for that.  It’s at the end, following a discussion of the efforts of the Justice Department to subpoena selected hospitals and Planned Parenthood for the medical records of women who have had abortions.


A week has passed and the administration still can’t catch a break on these matters.


It’s not exactly that the current administration is misogynist or anything.  But it sure seems that way to some.


Here is an example of how listing events in order can make you think subversive thoughts.  It’s an old trick.

See Bush's feminine side: The president's record on women's rights sits ill with his pose as saviour of the hijab-wearing masses
Suzanne Goldenberg, The Guardian (UK), Tuesday March 16, 2004

Here’s the indictment -


George and Laura Bush invited a number of their closest Afghan and Iraqi women friends to a reception at the White House the other day.  In his remarks, Mr Bush was nostalgic about his first meeting with the guest of honour: Raja Habib Khuzai, one of three women on the US-appointed Iraqi governing council.  Apparently she turned up for her audience at the Oval Office weeping tears of joy, declaring: "My liberator."


It is a fairly safe guess that would not be a typical female reaction to meeting Mr Bush.  On the very first day of his presidency, he imposed a ban on US foreign aid to any agency offering abortion advice.  A year later, the US government withheld more than $30m for a United Nations population control programme because it espoused "reproductive rights".  It also opposed UN measures to help girls and women raped during times of war in case that assistance included advice about the morning-after pill or abortion.  Programmes for Aids victims have been advised not to mention the word "condom". 


At home, the White House closed its office for women's outreach, the labour department's network of women's offices and other agencies monitoring gender discrimination at the workplace.  Last September, Mr Bush proposed diverting $2bn in welfare funds to programmes promoting marriage.  Two months later, he presided over the most significant retreat on abortion rights in 30 years by signing into law a ban on late terminations. 


But with an election next November, that record is inconvenient.  Mr Bush would much rather be remembered in his new role as the global saviour of downtrodden women, the liberator of Ms Khuzai and so many other hapless, hijab-wearing millions. 


To that end, Mr Bush enlisted his normally retiring wife, Laura, to make an opening speech.  He also announced the appointment of both his sister, Dorothy, and a daughter of the vice-president, Dick Cheney, to a UN commission on the status of women. 


The centrepiece of Bush's argument was that America went to war in Iraq and Afghanistan not to fight al-Qaida or to hunt out and destroy a dictator's weapons of mass destruction, but to improve their sorry lot in life. 


Well he did.


You might click on the link and read the whole thing.  It’s enough to make anyone but Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell angry.  


Copyright 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006 - Alan M. Pavlik
The inclusion of any text from others is quotation
for the purpose of illustration and commentary,
as permitted by the fair use doctrine of U.S. copyright law. 
See the Details page for the relevant citation.

This issue updated and published on...

Paris readers add nine hours....