Her famous "Favorite Things" lists are hit-or-miss for me. Some of the stuff she/her staff suggests is adorable and affordable, some not, some OMG sooo not.
Regardless, at the beginning of December － the start of stuff season － Ms. O dedicated her show to dramatically disenfranchised women worldwide. Women beaten for trying to go to school, girls sold into sex slavery, mothers dying as a product of pregnancy. Women for whom the term "women's rights" is just an imaginary figment, a cruel joke.
Naturally, Oprah also profiled people who are helping. Secretary of State Hilary Clinton pledging women's rights will be one of her signature issues and a higher-than-ever American diplomacy priority. Husband-wife Pulitzer Prize winners Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn talking about their new book, Half the Sky: Turning Oppression in to Opportunity for Women Worldwide, and the movement it has created.
So here's the bottom line: It's the season of giving. Please give to empower women and girls globally.
- Buy the above-mentioned book. It's "a passionate call to arms, from two of our most fiercely moral voices, against our era’s most pervasive human rights violation."
- Give to Helen Keller International, which iodizes salt so that babies born to impoverished women get enough of the brain-developing element.
- Give to American Assistance for Cambodia, which helps keep girls stay in school and out of brothels.
- Give to Mercy Corps, which facilitates microloans to poor women to launch their own businesses, support their families and boost their economies.
- Read through these fascinating facts about girls in developing countries, then check out the Girl Effect Facebook page and become a fan.
Still iffy? Consider this: While American women earn 80 cents on the male dollar [unfair, for sure], more girls in developing countries have been killed in the last fifty years－ just because they were girls － than men were killed in all the wars of the 20th century.
Help a girl stay above-ground today. Give to empower women.