Monday, December 14, 2009

one of O's favorite things: empowering women.

I heart Oprah. No big surprise there.

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.

Here's how:
  • 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 Mercy Corps, which facilitates microloans to poor women to launch their own businesses, support their families and boost their economies.

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.

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