Cross-post from The-Goddess:
" I want to stand for the rights of all people, not just women, but certainly I believe in rights for women everywhere. "
I bumped this up from comments, not to pick on anyone, but because as a feminist, I hear this line from Progressive men all the time. I understand that you want rights to apply to everyone - so do I. What men don't seem to get is that the state of women is the state of the species.
Women are 53% of the population. The primary care of children falls almost universally on the Mother. Most of the people who live in poverty are women, and therefore so do their children. 80% of the people hurt in a war are women and their children. This is not an exaggeration, not an accident and it is not inconsequential. Women do not start wars.
We don't represent a majority vote in the decision-making body of any major power on the planet. We have least access to power, and control least of the money, in spite of doing most of the grueling, repetitive and filthy work in the world for little or no pay. If there's shit or vomit to be cleaned, food to be raised or prepared, a child, an invalid or an elder to be cared for, 99% of the time, it is a woman that does it.
This image we have of Big Daddy going to work and bring home the bacon is bullshit in most of the world. Men in Africa lose weight when the crops need tending because they won't prepare food for themselves while the women are tending the fields 16 hours a day. That rice you had with your Chinese take-out was almost certainly farmed by a woman's hand, and she was probably paid little or nothing for doing it. Your clothes were likely sewn in a sweatshop where women are forced to have abortion, work as prostitutes, sew as slaves and their "masters" receive awards from the likes of Tom Delay. Go to a bar, or a gathering place in any town or village, and you will find men socializing while the women are at work.