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Blogs from 2012

Half The Sky

on 29 September 2012. Posted in 2012

Half The Sky is a two-night event on your local PBS channel on Monday October 1 and Tuesday October 2.  As it says on its web page, http://www.pbs.org/independentlens/half-the-sky/ it talks about “turning oppression into opportunity for women.

If you know my books at all, you know that this is a cause dear to my heart. Please watch this. It’s so important that young people (and some older ones, too) understand that there is one group who are bullied and ignored and disenfranchised and hurt more than any other—and that they make up half the human race. You may not be a racist, an age-ist, a snob in any other way, and you may be a girl or woman yourself, but you may be contributing to the hardship of other girls or women without even realizing it.

The only thing evil needs to triumph is for decent people to do nothing.

There’s another site I’d like you to visit. It’s called Because I Am A Girl, at http://www.planusa.org/content2722639 and it tells you the shocking truth about what it means to be a girl today. Did you know that . . .

  • One billion people live in extreme poverty—70% are women and girls.
  • 67 million children worldwide don’t go to school, over half are girls.
  • One extra year of primary school can mean 10-20% higher wages for a girl.
  • When a girl in the developing world stays in school for seven or more years, she’ll marry later and have fewer, healthier children.
  • There are nearly 60 million child brides worldwide. Some as young as 12.
  • Girls who give birth before the  age of 15 are five times more likely to die in childbirth than women in their twenties.
  • 150 million girls are victims of sexual violence and exploitation.
  • Nearly two-thirds of new HIV infections among youth 15 to 24 are in girls.
  • In a survey for the 2011 Girl Report, 43% of boys agreed with the statement: "There are times when a woman deserves to be beaten."
  • And in the same survey, 60% of children interviewed in India agreed that if  resources are scarce, it’s better to educate a boy than a girl.
  • $92 billion—that’s the estimated economic loss in countries that do not strive to educate girls to the same level as boys.

How many of those facts did you know? I was appalled to read about them. I’d say I only knew about half, and I think myself well-read on the subject.

Most of my readers are girls. In one way or another, they will run into prejudice just because they were born female. (I read a great fantasy story about two kids in the future laughing about the idea that back in the days when people were ignorant and thought that people born with an “innie” were inferior to those born with an “outie.” Maybe they were talking about bellybuttons—but I don’t think so.)

Please at least be aware of what girls go through, and what you can do to protect yourself and even help others if you like. Please know that girls and women own half the sky and half the stars and half the hope in this world.

Thank you for caring!


+2 # RE: Half The SkyMaja 2012-10-03 07:33
Wow. I had no idea it was like that. I'm a young girl myself, and frankly, I'm appalled to find all of this out. It's horrible just to imagine women as 'a weaker sex'. For example, in my school, it's girls who get better test results. Just a random thought.
Honestly, I think women have taken enough in the past for us to have to live like this in modern times.
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+1 # RE: Half The SkyCynthia 2012-10-03 08:13
I'm ashamed to say tha even though I knew about a few, I didn't know most of these facts. It's really horrible that equality of men and women is so horrible in most parts of the world. I think that we who do live in countries where men and women are equal take it for granted. Thanks so much for educating us on this!
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-1 # RE: Half The Skysofia 2012-10-12 09:52
Hi Lisa

Im shocked at the poll!
Boys actually believe that? In the West right?
As for the girl vs boy thing, well no- Im not suprised, sadly. I live this 2nd nature of equality everyday in an british asian family, originating from Pakistan, next to India - the border is the only diffrence between them and that India achieves alot more as a country.
But these people do exist and believe me one day for those who dont believe in God, Karma will get them and for others who do, God will.
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0 # RE: Half The SkyGuest 2012-10-19 20:43
The way women are treated in other countries is atrocious. But we can't begin to fix it overseas in 'third world' countries until we fix the problem in 'first world' countries. Still to this day the average wage for a woman doing the exact same job as a male is lower. Now I don't believe that women should be the superior sex, all I want is equality!!
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0 # Wow...Morgan 2012-11-03 22:16
Wow...just wow. That's all I can say right now. I only knew about half the facts and the rest have left me speechless. I'm tired of people's ignorance regarding women and girls. Its so annoying and sickening! No one, and I mean no one, deserves to be beaten. Ever. This is a subject that really deserves more attention. Thank you Lisa for posting this.
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+1 # Feminist visionGuest 2012-11-04 17:06
Great post LJ, it's so important to draw attention to these issues. Although we mustn't take the impression that equality has been achieved in the western, "developed" world, either. We might have nominal "equal rights" in law, but in practice it's not enough. Gender inequality is a huge, multilayered problem globally, and the progress of women's emancipation still has a long way to go.

Also the inequality between the developed and non-developed world, and how gender inequality is entwined in that relationship is important too. There's lots to know about on these topics for those interested.

The storyline of Night World's 'Enchantress' helped introduce me to women's rights years ago when I was a kid, and a vision of what the world could be like. These things eventually became central to my life and worldview. So thank you for that book!

There is so much hope in reading and education.
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summer welch
0 # ik im late but o well.summer welch 2012-11-06 11:42
im a young girl to but i dont think we should be called the weaker sex because i dont think that like we are because just think there are lots of girls that write books better the guys like right now im writing my own book and i think its coming out really well and in hope one day i will become a great writer like u lisa and i hope u write more books plz and thank you for writting great books.... :lol:
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