"we've come a long way, ladies,"
said the first black first lady,
playing off of a 1970s ad campaign
for virginia slims cigarettes.
as michelle obama celebrated & commemorated
the 100th anniversary of international women's day
earlier in the month at the white house,
she accentuated the positive －
the progress & proven power of women worldwide.
"we as a nation benefit
from every girl whose potential is fulfilled,
from every woman whose talent is tapped.
we as a nation benefit
from their intelligence,
from their hard work,
from their creativity,
from their leadership.
". . . countries across the globe
are more prosperous, they're more peaceful
when women are more equal &
have the rights & opportunities they deserve.
"no government can succeed if it excludes half of its people."
m'obama noted that american women now make up
the majority of college graduates & almost half of the workforce.
but she also noted that american women
still earn less than men,
& still lag behind in math & science-related fields.
& that, as they say, is the tip of the sexist iceberg.
bratz dolls. hooters girls.
sexual enhancement products. birth control options.
reproductive rights. family leave.
breastfeeding. potty parity.
the list is limitless, really.
yeah, we've got a long way to go, ladies.
but women in many other countries have much further to go.
every day is a good day to help our sisters out
as they struggle around the globe for
their own safety, health & fair treatment.
whether you are a woman
or one grew you in & birthed you out of her body
[hint: this means you],
please consider contributing to one of the following organizations
as they work for peace & equality for women everywhere.
- women for women international － help female survivors of war rebuild their lives.
- care － help poor women live, learn & earn.
- kiva － empower an entrepreneurial woman with a microloan.
- save the children － put a girl through school for a year.
- say no - unite to end violence against women.
& yeah, she's applauding for you, ladies.
image source: vintage ad browser, associated press.