An example of what is at stake in this election 


The Montana incest/rape victim did not receive justice because the minor child, violated by her own father, could not find anyone to speak in her favor. Not even her own mother, who pleaded the judge to have mercy on the rapist because his two sons needed him.To say that the judge gave the rapist a 60 days sentence because his misogyny, and the fact that he was moved by the sons need of their father were enough disregard the savagery of the crime and keep the daughter’s violator in the same house with her.

To say that the justice system needs the pleading of a victim for it to work is the textbook definition of discrimination and misogyny! That is why, until we have more women in the senate, on the Supreme Court, in cabinets and in the presidency, laws written by men will continue to serve men, or at least lack a woman’s perspective, the other half of our society, until now almost very silent, and after November 8, more and more vocal.

It is on each one of us Nasty Women to step up and get to the voting polls and #VOTE!! for #women, for #equality, for #justice, for the #LGBTQ community, for the #underdog, for the #environment, for our #children! #YallaVote, #ImWithHer, Hillary Clinton 2016 Hillary Clinton 1 Million Strong For Hillary Clinton in 2016 #NastyWomen #MadamPresident

Here is the feature in the #WashingtonPost about the stories of two teenage girls victims of rape and incest in Montana and California, USA.

Two fathers raped their daughters. One got 60 days in jail. The other? 1,503 years in prison.

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Orlando Massacre: Hate, Extremism and Gun Proliferation


Rainbow-FlagI am infuriated about this atrocious act of hate in ‪#‎Orlando‬ ‪#‎Florida‬ and concerned about retaliation and escalation of violence and hate against both the LGBT and Muslim communities.
Let me be clear, hate and discrimination against the LGBT community is a common practice of bigots of all faiths, it is not foreign to the United States, in fact it is brewed here at home.
When US states and politicians pass laws and regulations that legalize state discrimination against their own citizens and spew hate and self righteousness against the universal right to love, to raise a family and to live in dignity; when all of this is happening at home, and when homophobia continues to be the feeling and the practice of many Americans of all faiths, I urge you all to look at this heinous crime beyond the ‪#‎ISIS‬ lens but also through the lens of the rampant bigotry and homophobia in the United States.
Let’s also not forget that what makes these mass killings possible is the resistance to passing proper gun control laws that make it more difficult for maniacs like Omar Mateen to execute their hate and kill innocent people.
Ironically, the deadliest mass shooting in the United States had to be against an ‪#‎LGBT‬ and a ‪#‎transgender‬ club for people of color, in a republican state, which Governor Rick Scott signed in March a law allowing pastors to religiously object to gay wedding…
And while people like Donald Trump want to reinforce a message of hate to ban all non ‪#‎American‬ ‪#‎muslims‬ from entering the ‪#‎US‬, it’s important to remind Mr. ‪#‎Trump‬ that ‪#‎Mateen‬ is American born, his ‪#‎homophobia‬ was brewed here at home, he practiced his hate for women and his ‪#‎misogyny‬ here at home and the guns he used to kill innocent people were acquired and purchased here at home! So please, spare us your sick wisdom and stupid solutions! CNN Politics CNN International MSNBC Los Angeles Times Hillary Clinton Donald.J.Trump Human Rights Campaign ‪#‎OmarMateen‬ ‪#‎MuslimAmericans‬ Eisenhower Fellowships ‪#‎PrideMonth‬ ‪#‎June2016‬ ‫#‏تفجير_اورلاندو‬

Why Hillary’s win is important to girls, women around the world


Hillary-Historic-moment

Observing and talking to different people the past few days, I could not help this reflection: mothers and parents of girls are more likely to appreciate the historic moment of Hillary Clinton‘s nomination than mothers/parents of boys.
It seems that, mothers in particular, need to be reminded of all the things they were told they could not be, or do when they were girls. Boys were presidents, girls were mothers, teachers at most…

Girls “were told to not express their opinion too strongly — it’s not polite. To not challenge a man — it’s not ladylike”!

Wake up world, this woman made history for us. And yes it took a First Lady and a Senator and a Secretary of State, probably the most experienced politician who ever ran for president to clinch the nomination for The US presidency. Why? Because it’s a damn dysfunctional sick world that would not give the opportunity to women with less recognition or resume. A first term male senator is eligible to run but not a first term female… That’s why she was pulled away from her initial inspirational campaign message of equality to a more down-to-earth “I am experienced and qualified” kind of argument. Why? Because even her democratic opponent, yes the guy everybody is excited about his REVOLUTIONARY message, whether he was conscious of his misogyny or not, played the qualification argument against her.
Come on people! It’s perfectly normal to pull up the qualified argument against a woman but unthinkable to use it against of the 20 other candidates who ran for the nomination, which none of them match her experience. It’s ironic that out of all these candidates, only Carlie Fiorina, the other female candidate, faced the same kind of arguments. Telling, no?

She has always been a pioneer: for those who don’t remember, she went behind White House and State Department officials, changing her speech secretly at the last minute on her way to China and gave the landmark speech about Women’s Rights at the UN world conference on women in Beijing in 1995.
Her words: “women’s rights are human rights and human rights are women’s rights” scared officials back home. Yet she did not play it safe, she stood tall and made the case for women around the world. (See Full speech and video — http://tinyurl.com/ah9fx=:

Thank you ‪#‎HRC‬ for putting up with all the bullying and finally making history! Your words were spot on: it’s true that: “Tonight’s victory is not about one person. It belongs to generations of women and men who struggled and sacrificed and made this moment possible.”

Thank you #HRC, thank you ‪#‎DEMParty‬ and congratulations to ‪#‎America‬

Managing Your Feelings Is Not My Job


An amazingly well written piece! It so happens that I just read it after I had witnessed the discomfort one man exhibited at the sight of a news report about the historic win Hillary Clinton locked out yesterday. I mean, he was really disgusted he could not even finish is “Salade Niscoise”. And you would think a sophisticated guy in the 21st century sitting in the OBGYN wait area eating a sophisticated Salade Niscoise would be less offended to see women celebrating the nomination of the 1st woman president to a major world leading economy, and what he and his likes believe it to be the greatest nation on earth.
And of course this guy and his likes will be very upset and discomforted at the sight of all these feminists which came out of nowhere celebrating a long due and well earned win.
As my Arab kins would say: yalla ta shouf. Deal with it and be gone!
Here is a great read, for a good cynical laugh about all the bruised feelings of those who cannot be gracious losers, the way we have been for centuries.

hecatedemeter

“Whistling girls and crowing hens always come to some bad ends,” my grandma used to say, just before she would tell me that while I was a gracious loser (she was right; I am), I was a “very poor winner.”  By that, my grandma meant that I loved winning too much and that, when I did win, I wasn’t good at pretending not to care.  And, she was right; I do and I’m not; it’s made me a hell of a lawyer.  My grandma loved me and she was just trying to prepare me for what she called “the real world.”

One of the almost unconscious (and completely unpaid) jobs that women are doing all the damn time is managing their own behavior in order to manage men’s emotions.  We do it so much that we’re often not even aware that we’re doing it.  While the Jungian projection is that…

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Only Passionate women run for president


Watching CNN International one of the political commentators described the Clinton/Sanders race as a battle between #Passion and #Pragmatism! I wonder how could one describe a woman’s long journey in public office Pragmatic?
It’s scaring, it’s tough and it takes all the passion in the world to start and finish the race! She’s been making politics better for people, sacrificing her personal life along the way. She’s been unfairly judged all the way and not on substance: scrutinized for the way she wares her hair, for the pitch of her voice and the color of her dress instead of looking at her track record of delivering change and policies in each position she assumed.
That’s why republicans are after her and don’t even mention Sanders! It’s because they know she can deliver, they know she can build consensus, they know she can be trouble because she understands politics and she knows how to make things happen!
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Fighting for minorities is not a political agenda for her, it’s a commitment she has long been upholding. First Lady Hillary Clinton with Latino Children

God knows I’m a dreamer, a daughter or two simple villagers who had not the opportunity to finish middle school. I’m a passionate woman, everything I do, I do out of passion! And so it insults me, deeply insults me, when Hillary Clinton is described as dispassionate and only pragmatic. This is just not right! Not fair and only stands as an argument because she is a woman! Passion is not about the way you keep your hair wild or shout on stage, passion is about commitment to those who have no voice, passion is about a track record of working on civil rights issues, fighting for Children Healthcare, reaching out to minorities when this was not yet a trending issue for politicians to exploit. Passion is about taking all these scars and moving on with a big heart and still be able to sit down at the table with opponents to make the government work for families, single moms, and every person who still believe in the #AmericanDream.
Thank you #Hillary for standing up for me, for taking on all this brutality for me, and for continuing the fight in this totally bias and unfavorable battlefield for me. #ImWithHer #EnoughIsEnough #ArtfulSmear #Misogyny #NoFairGame #DEMdebate
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She’s been fighting for your children and families even before she took public office. A grandmother, Hillary Clinton understands what families needs to grow and stay strong

DAESH vs ISIS and the ignorance of the West


I really don’t understand the debate about the preference of using the acronyms DAESH over ISIS when they both mean the same thing: Islamic State in Iraq and Sham (Syria). ISIS gives no more legitimacy then DAESH does to this barbaric group which flies the colors of a terrorist state in the making. For God’s sake, if you do not wish to call this group a “state”, find them another name, like: “Crazy Bloodthirsty Demons in Iraq and Syria” or “Armed Psychopaths in Iraq and Syria”.

To many diplomats I have heard speaking in the past few days, the invented derogatory meaning of the Arabic acronym DAESH is even more disturbing. According to this article, the term DAESH is close to “Dahes” or “one who sows discord”. Seriously??

First, Dahes or داهس which by the way means in English the person who runs over someone else, or crushes someone else, is not close to the arabic pronunciation of DAESH/ داعش. Any arabic speaker can confirm that.

Second, the continuous justification of the use of the DAESH as a derogatory term simply underlines how the west views the Arabic language as barbaric and violent.

Mr. Cameron and co, the Islamic State in Iraq and Sham calls itself DAESH, therefore by using the term it prefers rather than the English acronym, you have not only called this terrorist state by it’s real name which it’s been marketing on it’s new acquired territory, you are also showing how ignorant and how racist the west is. Get an Arabic translator before you go into ridiculous debates, and if you still have time, try to help these poor people in Iraq and Syria to whom you have exported all your crazy bloodthirsty animals!

Here is the topic of debate in England: defining what to call a terrorist group instead of help finding ways to stop it from spreading its madness!
http://www.theguardian.com/media/2015/jun/29/bbc-to-review-use-of-islamic-state-after-mps-protest-against-term

When Arabs Think The Apocalypse Is Near Because The US Legislated Same-Sex Marriage

This gallery contains 16 photos.


Originally posted on A Separate State of Mind | A Blog by Elie Fares:
I’m so honored and flattered to be living in the most open-minded and widely-accepting region of the world. Not only is everything peachy, wonderful and exceedingly rainbow-y around this place, but people in the region are adamant that their quality of life…

On Human Rights, Homophobia and Donors’ Priorities


On Human Rights, Homophobia and Donors’ Priorities

I had an interesting side conversation last night about donors priorities versus civil society needs. I do agree that sometimes there need to be a better rapprochement between the two so as to reduce the level of corruption, and implementing projects for the sake of pleasing the donor rather than addressing the issues that are at the core of the NGO’s interest.

However, I would like to note a few points on this issue:
1- Mushrooming NGOs and benefit oriented NGOs or the so called “family business NGOs” are there and will always please the donor because they are opportunists and all they think of is the money. I see and work with NGOs everyday that refuse to abide by donors priorities and are still able to make a change in their environment. And they have my respect and the donors’. They are committed to their cause, they are doing their best to find other funding sources. And yes it is a bit more challenging for them, but at the end of the day they are still doing by their mission and cause because they believe in it.

2- I was stricken by the example which a dear (very dear) human rights activist and friend of mine gave me to support his theory on disparity between donors and beneficiaries priorities: “If the donor wants to support LGBT rights, well this not our top priority, we have other more important things to look at…”
Well my dear friend, and my dear civil society colleagues, every Human Rights campaign is a priority for the group that is concerned by it. When every day men, women and transgender people are arrested and put in jail, sexual, physically abused, when they are thrown out of their jobs, bullied by their families and communities, when they suffer from sickness and do not get the proper care, I cannot allow myself to say or even think that their needs are not a Human Rights priority.
Every Human Rights issue is a priority because when we stop believing so, these questions of rights loose the attribution of HUMANITY, of HUMAN and they become a number of random rights that we address by choice or convenience.

For once and for all, when we talk about LGBT rights, about dignity, equality, hope, freedom, justice, we are talking about the rights of the most discriminated against portion of our society. A portion that is often the most creative, compassionate, innovative and brave, but living a double life, hiding from discrimination and bullying. I cannot stop thinking of LGBT rights as a Human Rights priority when there are laws in Lebanon that discriminate against LGBT people and can put them in jail.

Human Rights are universal, there is no such thing as a priority in Human Rights, there is no suchLGBT-Rights-Hillary-Clinton thing as a priority in injustice! The LGBT community is a core part of our Lebanese, Middle Eastern, Near Eastern, Arab, Christian, Jewish, and Muslim, Atheist, Deist, Rural, Urban, Nomade communities. I am so done with hearing discriminatory comments on this issue. It is time to mature, grow up and understand that Homophobia is wrong, Homophobia is weak, Homophobia is every indication of contempt, lack of empathy and dismissal of the rights of LGBT people, equally human to every one in humanity.

If the donors are making LGBT rights a priority, it’s because we are blind enough to see and recognize the needs of a discriminated against, disadvantaged and marginalized community…

This is what I believe in — Eliane Fersan