Link Love (04/08/2012)

News Across the World

Bangladesh: “The typical image of acid attack victims in Bangladesh is the common description of a women victim who is someone who has denied  a man by rejecting his advances. But in reality acid attacks effect both genders. It also affects many children. Many victims and survivors like Akhter also have had no previous conflict with their attackers.” Is stop violence advocacy working? Author tracks acid crime – Women News Network

Egypt: “In addition to recorded individual attacks like those above, an attempted women’s rally scheduled to take place in the Square on June 8 ended in terrorwhen the women participating in the demonstration were beaten and violently groped, despite having male companions form a human chain around them for protection.” Sexual violence rises in Egypt’s Tahrir – Al Jazeera & “Amid the rising speculations that FGM would be legalized in Egypt, the Freedom and Justice Party was accused in May of sending a large medical convoy into the village of Abu Aziz in the Minya governorate, south of Cairo which offered to perform the operation for as little as 30 Egyptian pounds ($4.90).” Are fears of legalization of female genital mutilation in Egypt real? – Al Arabiya

Iran: “Banning people from traveling abroad has been an old practice used by the Iranian state to raise pressure on political and civil society activists for years. However, a security court created a stir recently by banning foreign travel for jailed human rights lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh’s husband and their 13-year-old daughter, Mehraveh Khandan. Nasrin Stoudeh has been sentenced to 11 years in prison.” Is the State of Iran Afraid of a 13-Year-Old Girl? – Care2

Pakistan: “Farida Afridi was shot dead in cold blood for the crime of being a decent, caring human being. As the executive director of the human rights NGO, Sawera, Afridi was working in Fata performing the most thankless of jobs: trying to improve the plight of women in an area where many people have never even considered the concept of women’s rights. ” Farida Afridi – The Express Tribune & “The women’s rights advocacy organization Rahnuma, which guides victims, describes `swara’ as a practice “where a girl is given as an offering to `settle’ a conflict or dispute.” The practice is most common in Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa Province (KP) and the southern Punjab, where it is known as `vani’, but also takes place in other parts of the country.” Enslaved by Tradition – IRIN

Somalia: “Samantha Lewthwaite, the British terror suspect on the run from police in East Africa, is in Somalia recruiting and training all-women attack squads, The Daily Telegraph has learnt.” Samantha Lewthwaite ‘recruiting all-women terror squads’ – Telegraph

Syria: ” Government forces in Syria are targeting women for rape and assault as the conflict between President Bashar al-Assad and anti-government forces continues to escalate, according to a report released by a human rights group on Wednesday.” Rape, assault are weapons of war in Syria: rights group – Reuters

Thought-provoking

“I started to feel differently about Universal government mandated and regulated Health care. I realized how many times my family had avoided hospital care because of our lack of coverage. When I mentioned to Canadians that I had been in a car accident as a teen and hadn’t gone into the hospital, they were shocked! Here, you always went to the hospital, just in case. And the back pain I had endured ever since would have been investigated and cared for with whatever X-rays, Physiotherapy or even Surgery that was needed, which would have been at no cost to me. In our particular province, even chiropractic care was provided after a car accident by the provincial care insurance.When I asked for prayers for my little brother who had been burned in an accident, they were all puzzled why the story did not include immediately rushing him to the hospital. When they asked me to clarify and I explained that many people in the States are not insured and they try to put off medical care unless absolutely needed, they literally could not comprehend such a thing.” How I lost my fear of Universal Health Care – Permission to Live

Three-quarters of the children in the school district do not have the basic literacy skills for their grade level, a state of affairs that is “severe and heartbreaking,” says Mark Rosenbaum, a University of Michigan Law School professor and ACLU cooperating attorney in the Detroit Free Press” Is There a “Right to Learn to Read”? – Care2

“Most people in this world are slaves to their brains. Comfort is suggested by some cluster of neurons somewhere up there, and without really even thinking about it, the rest of the brain latches on to the idea an begins moving towards that comfort. Pushing yourself away from comfort requires constant vigilance and negotiating with that little part of the brain that tries to sabotage us. A big part of that vigilance is using the pattern matching part of your brain to recognize when a course of action may create subtle bad habits, and stopping it before that happens.” Brain Training – Tynan

“The only way we can stop being a victim is by taking responsibility for ourselves, and holding ourselves accountable for our thoughts, feelings, and actions.  No matter what has happened to us in our past, it is our responsibility to make sense of it, and to integrate it into our lives.  The secret is out, whether you feel slighted, annoyed, offended, or angry about this truth – it is the only way to get to the other side of the pain and begin to thrive.  Living in the moment, and being joyful, is not something that just happens.  We have to work on it,  nurture it, carry it with us and look at it head on.  We have to walk in our pain with our head up, take ownership of it, and sometimes it will bend us.  Sometimes it will set us back, but the point is to keep moving forward.  What you may find is that in this process lies the joy. In this process is yourself.” Taking Accountability for Ourselves – Rooted In Being

Religion

There, but for the grace of God, go I. This suggests that the person who is the object of whatever misfortune you’re referring to is not the recipient of God’s grace. The thing is (at least as I understand it) grace isn’t grace if it’s selectively handed out like party favors. Relating to someone, and even sharing common experiences, or how you could see yourself in their similar situation is one thing. But making it sound like you’re not suffering because of God’s grace while they are is just unkind.” Nine (Final) Christian Cliches to Avoid – Christian Piatt

“In the end, taking the Bible “literally” means assuming that God directly inspired the authors of the Bible and wrote through them, almost to the point of guiding their pens. It means assuming that the Bible was handed to us by God in the form we have it today. It means accepting its words at face value, accepting its history as history, and accepting its prohibitions and commands as still valid. And it means leaving aside any analysis of the text that would call this into question.” Theology 101: Reading the Bible “Literally” – Love, Joy, Feminism

“In short, he says that rape is a result of egalitarian sex. Is this an endorsement of rape? Explicitly, no. Tacitly, yes. Doug Wilson may not be aware of this (although I suspect he is), but equating rape with a force of nature (gravity) is excusing rape. ” Dough Wilson on the Gospel Coalition: How Christian Patriarchy Turns Sex into Rape and Pregnancy into Slavery – The Phoenix and Olive Branch

Equality

A woman candidate is not the same thing as a woman’s candidate.” On Wendy Long (and other women candidates who couldn’t care less about women) – Feministing

“Instead of focusing our attention on who has what, he believes we should put our efforts towards making sure that everyone has enough. When everyone has enough to satisfy their needs, Sufficiencians (okay, I totally made that up, but we’ll just go with it) believe that we won’t care if there are others who have more.” Equality and Justice, Part II – Feministe

“Racism, sexism, etc., are all irrational, unfounded power structures a social focus on obedience helps propagate and exacerbate. They need people to be unquestioning and obedient to survive. Critical thinking, part of our free will and our counter-balance is the antithesis of all isms. It wouldn’t hurt then to start teaching our kids about Stanley Milgram and the benefits of a little defiance.” Milgram and the Patriarchy – Gender Focus

Seven Republican governors have already announced their intention to reject the Medicaid expansion, which, if implemented, would give more than 4 million people in those states access to affordable health coverage. Workers below the poverty line in those states, however, are in a double bind: They can’t access coverage through the Medicaid expansion but are ineligible for Obamacare subsidies to help people above the poverty line afford health coverage. This creates a coverage gap for low-wage workers.” The Health Coverage Chasm (Infographic) – Care2

“In some ways, those issues just make the point that what’s bad for America in general is especially bad for queer people — after all, that’s sort of what being marginalized means. But there are specific issues besides same-sex marriage that affect the queer and trans* community, and on the whole, the Republican party has either ignored or actively worsened them. ” Why Claiming Republicans Are “Hardly Anti-Gay” Makes Hardly Any Sense – Autostraddle

“So, why don’t women want to lead? The answer is in the pages of the magazines we read and now even in the news coverage of the political debates we watch, which promote cultural standards that destroy women’s confidence and prescribe unattainable standards in all areas of our lives. In order for women to lead – for women to want to lead, to feel that we are capable of leading – we need to redefine leadership altogether. We need to define leadership not as perfection but as intelligence, honesty and doing the right thing. It is also essential that we question and change a society that sets the standard for achievement impossibly high for women and upsettingly low for men.” Why Millennial Women Do Not Want to Lead – Forbes

Health

“Whatever the long-term ramifications, the initial results from Strayer’s study are intriguing and indeed suggest that significant time spent out in nature — hiking in this case — can have positive effects on the human brain and psyche.  Strayer recommends three days of wilderness exposure to reap the greatest benefits, however, day or weekend outings also play an important role and should not be underestimated for improving mental capacities and overall well-being.” If You’re Smart, Take a Hike – Care2

“It may surprise you to learn that there has never been any scientific evidence to support the “eight by eight” doctrine when it comes to proper hydration.” Hydration 101: How Much Water Do You Really Need – Dr. Chris Kresser

Beauty & Body Image

“This truth holds even when your own body is the object, i.e. for your relationship with yourself. You can love yourself (your body) and accept yourself (your body) and embrace yourself (your body) while simultaneously working to change yourself (your body). That is a fully stable and healthy relationship with you.” The Body Image Movement, Body Sovereignty & You – Decoding Dress

“The thing I – and others – need to learn is that just because one of us chooses to handle her body in one way does not necessarily mean those who handle their bodies in another way are wrong or morally weak or politically suspect.   My decision to run four miles a day and eat baby carrots does not negate your decision to eat half a pizza and vice versa.  I am not somehow better than you for that reason, nor are you better than me.” Is losing weight anti-feminist? – Fit and Feminist

Inspirational

“And, in the end, I came to realize that part of what’s “wrong with me” is my continued reliance on proximity. The people nearest to me don’t always make the best friends.” Girl Talk: The Evolution of Female Friendship – The Frisky

“As we start to practice mindfulness and the Pregnant Pause, it teaches us how to remain calm and keep our rational minds in charge in stressful situations. And the person who is able to keep a more objective view of reality, to manage themselves and others in productive ways in stressful situations, will surely be the stronger, wiser leader. And, I’ll let you in on a secret. You will experience a greater sense of well-being and lower stress levels as you practice this tool.” The Most Important Tool for Emotional Intelligence – The Glass Hammer

“The reason we struggle with insecurity is because we compare our behind-the-scenes to everyone else’s highlight reel.” Moving Past Comparison – Not Dead Yet Style

Blogging

6 Proven Tips for Getting into the “Write” Mood – The Renegade Writer

6 lessons from my first 6 months as a small business owner – The Long Haul Project

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