This is Not Feminism

Did you see the recent meme with celebrities wearing a t-shirt that says, “This is what a feminist looks like“? (You know, the latest excuse for all the Benedict Cumberbatch photos in your Facebook feed.) Well, there are allegations that it wasn’t the most feminist move:

They are the T-shirts designed to make a political statement about women’s rights – but the female workers making them are paid just 62p an hour in an Indian Ocean ‘sweatshop’.

Between shifts women making garments emblazoned with the slogan ‘This is what a feminist looks like’ sleep in spartan dormitories, 16 to a room.

Read the full article

The organization behind the campaign, the Fawcett Society, went ahead with it even after discovering the t-shirts were made in Mauritius (instead of in the UK as they’d expected). Not only that, despite saying they’re concerned about potential sweatshop labor, they seem willing to sit back and wait for the journalist involved to produce more evidence instead of pro-actively investigating the claims. What a shame.

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On Inequality and Abortion Rights

Many feminist legal scholars, including Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, have argued that the Supreme Court should have legalized abortion on the grounds of equality rather than privacy. Pregnancy and childbirth are not only physical and medical experiences, after all. They are also social experiences that, in modern America, just as when abortion was criminalized in the 1870s, serve to restrict women’s ability to participate in society on equal footing with men.

Pro: Reclaiming Abortion Rights by Katha Pollitt