Archive for ‘Women’

27 February, 2011

Vegan bite size pieces, for feeding Vegan trolls

drink milk as often as you can

When vegans talk about Not Exploiting Animals! the necrovores (“death eaters”) of the world start screaming PETA PROPAGANDA! Vegan Propaganda! TOFU propaganda! Communist Propaganda!

But what happens when schools start telling people “drink milk as often as you can”? And that message is brought directly to the students via a Dairy Lobby Group and a Government Department.
How can this be anything but propaganda for AA (Animal Agriculture)?

One woman (at The Tasty Vegan | A hotbed of veganic activity in British Columbia and beyond.) takes a look at this disturbing issue of dairy-indoctrination

LINK > More Dubious Advice on School Foods by Dairy Industry


And if anyone still has doubts about the evilness of Dairy – a Land O Lakes subsidiary has poured millions of dollars into Monsanto, “that shady agro-giant, that food-world Voldemort” (Elizabeth Farrelly), owning the world – one gene at a time.

Got milk? Got mutant genes!


And in other milk news, a store in London started selling human breast milk ice cream full story here: (“London cooing over breast milk ice-cream”) – and the social networks were buzzing – URGH! was the common reaction.

But all milk comes from breasts – cow breasts, sheep breasts, goat breasts, yak breasts. Urgh!

THE SIMPSONS (FOX) look at milk
Milk from some animals is more acceptable than milk from others.


Video of the week

Ask Your Doctor About Meat™
A brilliant, humorous look at propaganda of meat eating coming from “experts” who know nothing about nutrition (doctors receive very little training in nutrition).
“Meat… It’s dead and it’s made from animals”


Vegany Sweet Goodness

This recipe for Vegan chocolate bars inspired by Mars® Bars
because – not only are Mars® Bars filled with cruelty ingredients, but Mars tests on animals .
A Mars France spokesperson has “admitted that the business division Symbioscience does test on animals while developing “pharmaceutical and therapeutic food ingredients”, including flavanols.”

A chocolate bar and melted chocolate. Chocolat...

Image via Wikipedia

Vegan Mars Bars from Veganarchy Foods
*nuttelex in the recipe is vegan margarine

Be kind to cows… and be kind to your body. Vegan junk food!

So, if you’ve been missing out on that nougat-chocolate treat since going vegan, click on the link > VEGAN MARS BARS http://moralcuisine.tumblr.com/post/3515109080/these-were-something-ive-want-to-try” and enjoy the cooking!

 

 

 

 

Blog post that says so much

The Vegan Swagg blog is up and running: First post: “An Open Letter from a Militant Vegan” a look at animal rights / veganism and social networking.

What I do love about this, it completely tears down the false “I’m one of you” vegan platitudes of a pseudo vegan and …

the best part is I don’t have to deal with the negative feedback from the trolls who seem to think militant vegans are the enemy (yes ALF, I’m looking at you).

This is an issue I looked at here The New Enemy: The Militant Vegan (say what?), so another perspective on any issue is always good.


tweet of the week

@VeganMudblood: Sexism, transphobia, homophobia, racism, classism, sizeism, ageism, etc., have NO place in the #animalrights movement. #vegan

… all I can add to that is, cruelty, torture, exploitation, abuse, slavery and murder have no place in animal rights either.


TROLL of the week

@sarrabee
For sickening, disgusting, hate speech against women and transgender people.

This is a person who rants at, trolls and spams other users, especially those who she/he does not follow – is all about arguing and not about social networking.

He/She is a person who seems to think feminism is all about hating on women, progressives, vegans, non whites, and transgender.

And to me, that is NOT feminism.

For example – @sarrabee
“I’m not actually responding to that person at all. I’m simply reposting his/her tweets. It’s important.” Thursday, 24 February 2011 12:53:23 PM

which was either aimed at me, or a woman called Cindy.

Why the faux gender unknown act?

Which may not seem like anything until followers realise, (and this is what I find amusingly ironic) this same person, he/she was calling out progressives for labeling Ann Coulter a “he/she”. And this @sarrabee person thought that was transphobic. And yet, turns around and uses transphobic terms as an insult against others.

If you don’t know someone’s gender, and it is important to you, as it seems to be for this @sarrabee transgender hater person, then use someone’s name. Or, gender neutral “them”, “their”, “they”, which is becoming increasingly acceptable to use for singular other.

Although, I’m not sure why someone’s gender should be important to anyone other than that persons loved ones and doctor.

In the above tweet, she/he could have said “I’m reposting THEIR tweets” – but his/her insistence on use a gender descriptor for the person he/she was reposting, seems to me that she/he (@sarrabee) cares a lot about gender and calling out progressives and doesn’t really care about transgender people at all.

This person comes across as a twitter troll – follow at your own risk.

from the Feeding Trolls archives




completely selfish fkn moron of the week

from the Im a selfish, self centre, heartless loser files


This comment (You can be both an animal rights activist and an omnivore. Some people don’t have the need to eat meat but some do.) was found at the Facebook group Fight For Animal Rights.

Let’s go over this one more time for the braindead idiots – one of the most basic rights any living thing has, is LIFE. When you eat meat, or consume any animal product, you are depriving that being of LIFE.

Eating animals is not ANIMAL RIGHTS.

You absolutely CANNOT be an animal rights activist who consumes the corpses of animals.

But thanks Shanghai GoGo Discotheque for playing. And losing.

And showing the whole how selfish and greedy you are.

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5 February, 2011

Dr Steve Best “borrows” BBC homage to British Suffragettes

Dr Steve Best, animal activist, associate professor at a Texas University and one of the leading voices in militant activism in the United States, a man who I think has been good for animal rights in his fight for “total liberation”.

However, Dr Best recently blogged this fascinating piece about the British Suffragettes

Note to pacifists: the UK suffragettes used sabotage, arson, and CD to win their campaign, attributed “Filed under: Uncategorized by drstevebest”. (*CD= civil disobedience)

Screen shot

Click image for full size

This blog piece explores the history of the fight for women’s vote (suffrage). It shines a light on some of the leading figures in the women’s Suffrage movement, and some of their tactics – arson, violence, sabotage and civil disobedience.

It starts with “The votes-for-women movement exploded in popularity the UK in 1903 – hence this year’s centenary celebrations – but the story of the campaign begins before the reign of Queen Victoria.” (source: Steven Best’s blog article – Note to pacifists: the UK suffragettes used sabotage, arson, and CD to win their campaign)

This is what made this piece stand out, something in the phrasing didn’t sound right. The maths didn’t add up.

We are long past the centenary.

So let’s try that again
The votes-for-women movement exploded in popularity the UK in 1903 – hence this year’s centenary celebrations – but the story of the campaign begins before the reign of Queen Victoria.” (Source: The history of the suffragettes By Dominic Casciani BBC News Online http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/3153388.stm dated : Thursday, 2 October 2003, 16:07 GMT 17:07 UK

A quick string search found the BBC article, dated 2003, written by Dominic Casciani. I can find neither the name Casciani or BBC or a link to the original article in the Best blog article.

The a screen shot of end of the Best page is found here: graphic of the end of the article, to show that there is no attribution at the end of the blog piece either.

The original BBC piece was written in 2003, to coincide with the centenary of the “votes-for-women” movement, and uses the word “centenary”, which is what the year 2003 would have been.

Although it is possible that the BBC borrowed their piece from Dr Best and back-dated their website, I’m not sure that it happened that way

Even the images used to illustrate these pieces are the same.

This 2011 version of this article has been reproduced here: Negotiation is Over , using the title of the Best blog post, rather than the original title on the original 2003 web post.

It seems strange to me, that so many in the militant divide of the animal rights infighting, point the finger at the “Cult Of Francione”, yet fail to notice their own enthrallment with Steven Best, to the point that anything he says is taken and reproduced as if it was sacred words – without even checking if someone else had written them first.

A simple reading of the text of the blog piece should alert any reader that phrasing is odd. It is 2011, it seems strange year to be celebrating the centenary of 1903 event, not even the British would take that long to organise a celebration.

I am not out to cause trouble for anyone, lest of all a university professor. However, I have been a university student, and If I had have handed in a paper that was as similar to something else, as these two articles are, I would be given an automatic fail.

I am also sure if someone went through my blog they would possibly find instances of graphics and pictures that haven’t been attributed correctly (though wordpress has a function that allows you to insert public domain graphics, which makes this easier). I try hard to list sources, and if I cannot find a picture I like, I will create my own.

I am probably going to end up alienating every animal rights activist and vegan who I have ever respected in posting this piece, but surely the leaders of the animal rights movement should be held to higher standards than a teenage undergrad. I am probably going to lose every shred of credibility I have ever had as a blogger on animal rights.

I imagine I will get hate mail, saying why must I be mean to Dr Best. I hope not, I don’t think it should be sacrilege to point out the similarity between the two articles.

I sincerely hope that followers of Steve Best can respect my reasons for pointing this out. I did not enjoy writing this, I even put out a request of other animal activists, if they could double check for me, and see if what I read was accurate.

I will happily remove this post, if I am asked to
(Edited to add, I will happily remove this post, IF I AM WRONG and am asked to).

22 September, 2010

Is it men or women… ? (Animal Liberation)

A movement is only composed of people moving. To feel its warmth and motion around us is the end as well as the means.
Gloria Steinem

The following are some questions that were raised in this quote by O Anna Niemus, some things to think about – in relationship to how gender can affect how we see things. Yes, these are generalisations, but there is a basis to generalisations. This can be important when looking at why so-called “animal rights” organisations, such as PeTA (who are really welfare), use images of naked, near-naked, and women in bikinis to promote PeTA.

Is it men or women who work the most in slaughterhouses?

Is it men or women who are most involved in domestic battering?

Is it men or women who commit the most rapes?

Is it men or women who vote for the most executions?

Is it men or women who promote war, vote for war, kill in war?

Is it men or women who as ‘talk show hosts’ allow no talk?

Is it men or women who are more often pedophiles?

Is it men or women who torture lab animals more?

~O Anna Niemus

Has pictures of naked women ever convinced any man to go vegetarian? (there advertising though does not promote veganism) There would be a very narrow segment of the female market that would convinced by naked women to make life-changing decisions.

This is not another post of PeTA bashing, just questioning the tactics of brand-name animal organisations, and do their tactics work.

As a tactic to achieve animal liberation, might there be more effective ways than exploiting women. It’s been thirty years, might it not be time to re-evaluate the wisdom of exploiting women in the name of animal rights.

So, does gender make a difference in how people think about issues….


Feedback welcome.

16 September, 2010

Who is Christine O’Donnell? and her position on Animal use in science

Is this the new Sarah Palin?

O’Donnell is a Palin-endorsed candidate, who does not believe in human-made climate change, and may change the face of USAmerican politics. Will she ascend to power, and leave people asking “What happened to science?” in her wake?

If climate change doesn’t exist, but we act as if it is, we spend some money.
If climate change does exist, but we don’t act on it, we kill the planet and all life on it.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

However, sometimes, science isn’t the answer –

However, on the Bill O’Reilly show: Is Cloning Monkeys Morally Wrong? (FOX), O’Donnell made an attempt to clarify her position on cross-species experimentation…

O’DONNELL:… the very core of the debate about human cloning is dignity versus commodity…
By their own admission…

O’REILLY: No.

O’DONNELL: … these groups admitted that the report that said, “Hey, yay, we cloned a monkey. Now we’re using this to start cloning humans.” We have to keep…

O’REILLY: Let them admit anything they want. But they won’t do that here in the United States unless all craziness is going on.

O’DONNELL: They are — they are doing that here in the United States. American scientific companies are cross-breeding humans and animals and coming up with mice with fully functioning human brains. So they’re already into this experiment.

13 September, 2010

Liberation, Peace and Justice


Vodpod videos no longer available.

Liberation, Peace, and Social Justice

This is a video clip I made (not just uploaded), against a background of John Lennon’s “Give Peace A Chance”, with quotes, clips, images from the past century. Ranging from women fighting for the vote, to the Gaza freedom flotilla of 2010. Focusing on civil rights and liberation movements, including John F Kennedy, Nelson Mandela, Gloria Steinem, Pearl Bailey and Bishop Desmond Tutu.

Social justice is something people must stand up for. The lessons through history are that people who stand up for their rights and the rights of others get them.

Northern Ireland, feminism, Palestine, Black Panthers, Nelson Mandela, Tienanmen Square, Suffragettes, Australian Aboriginal sovereignty, socialism, peace, justice, fighting hunger, Cesar Chavez, a montage of images and quotes to inspire Liberation of people and animals…

28 September, 2009

Katrina survivors’ struggle for justice

“Revolt and revolution both wind up at the same crossroads: the police, or folly”
Albert Camus



Vodpod videos no longer available.

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Katrina survivors’ struggle for justice



By Gloria Rubac
Houston
Published Sep 11, 2009 8:00 PM

Four years after Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans, survivors living in Houston are still fighting to keep a roof over their heads. On Aug. 31, three women spoke at a news conference at the Kensington Club II townhome apartments to expose the owner’s corruption and the squalid living conditions he allows.

The news conference was organized by Lenwood Johnson, a housing advocate with the Free Man’s Neighborhood Association. Johnson explained that the Kensington Club II owner is accepting Disaster Housing Assistance Program vouchers from the Federal Emergency Management Agency—yet is not crediting all of the renters’ accounts as being paid. Kofi Taharka, president of the National Black United Front and a representative of the International Action Center, also spoke.

Then residents Eugenia Brown, Quinna Brown, and Jennifer Whittington addressed reporters.

Whittington, who is severely disabled with arthritis and also has cancer, cannot work. She said she was depending on DHAP to contribute to her rent, but after complaining about conditions she received an eviction notice.

Whittington explained that her two sons had tried to find jobs ever since the family came to Houston, but as soon as they told prospective employers they were from New Orleans, they were told, “We aren’t hiring Katrina criminals.”

Eugenia Brown, who suffers from asthma, later showed reporters the mold growing in her apartment, as well as leaking ceilings and pipes. Volunteer movers were packing her belongings in a moving van as she spoke. Yet with nowhere to move to, Brown put her things in storage; for now she is staying with various friends.

Quinna Brown also allowed reporters into her apartment—which had mold, water stains, appliances that did not work, light fixtures falling from the ceiling and leaking pipes. She was in tears as she spoke. “I work at Wendy’s and am trying to keep a home for my 11-year-old daughter, yet the Disaster Housing Assistance Program is not paying the money it is receiving from HUD to the apartment owner,” she told reporters. Brown was trembling and sobbing as said she was about to totally fall apart over losing her home.

Because these women had complained to the owner about the unsafe conditions, he was evicting them rather than make required repairs.

A week after the news conference, Whittington was looking for a shelter to move to, even though she is still appealing her eviction orders and is in her apartment. “Men with guns keep coming to my apartment and threatening and intimidating me,” she told Johnson. “They are from the constable’s office and I am afraid.” Lenwood Johnson is helping her find a shelter to move to.

Johnson told Workers World that the owner wants Whittington out because she is fighting to make him make repairs. When these women complained to DHAP that the living conditions were unbearable, DHAP told them they “weren’t supposed to watch the apartment owners, but the criminals from New Orleans.”

Johnson said: “The struggle continues. We need a full-time watchdog to keep up with the unscrupulous landlords and FEMA. We have contacted the U.S. Justice Department as well as the secretary of Housing and Urban Development and hope they respond. It is criminal the way Katrina survivors are treated.”

The writer spoke on behalf of the International Action Center.


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Feedback welcome.

29 August, 2009

Ice-cream is non-patriarchal

Icecream is nonpatriarchal. Ice cream, frozen yogurt, milk-shakes– every dairy product we can think of is the exclusive product of females. So, okay, they’re cows… But eating this stuff can be a political act that neatly unities feminist principles with a love of animals… Fuck the vegans, I say. Anyone who doesn’t eat ice cream for purely “ethical” reasons is a killjoy and a moron and ultimately not to be trusted. Pro-ice cream is pro-woman”
Kiss My Tiara: How to Rule the World as a SmartMouth Goddess – Sarah Jane Gilman, p25

Dairy is very much a feminist issue

MILK=VEAL

From the treatment of the female animals enslaved to produce it, to the women consumers of this product, and the way it is sold to mothers by playing on their guilt to overdose their children on dairy.

Which, I think has to be seriously, one of the most moronic statements I have ever seen in print regarding dairy and feminism. The SINGLE most effective thing that got me to go from vegetarian to vegan was the two sayings “There is veal invisibly floating in every glass of milk” and “Meat is Murder, Milk is Rape”, and if anyone looks at where milk comes from, and the conditions of the cows, there is no way they could claim it to be a feminist act. And if this author saw the condition of dairy cows, there is no way she could claim to love animals.

Quite apart from the fact, that unless the person gets their milk from a farmer who they know, and who happens to be female, milk isn’t the “product of females” it is the product of large corporations, with a board of directors most likely made up almost exclusively of men, whose first priority is to make money. It is not your health and it is not the welfare of the cows or the consumers. No. They will do whatever it takes to make as much money as possible.

Cows, like all mammals (including people), produce milk to feed their babies, so in order for the cow to produce milk, she has to have a baby. In order to get the cow pregnant, she is continuously raped (sex without consent). And, because the milk corporations do not want to share that milk with a calf, the babies are removed from their mothers, the females to become dairy cows and the males to become veal.

And regardless whether that dairy is organic, or factory farm, the male babies are surplus to requirements, and sent to packing plants (“slaughterhouse”). Because no farmer (few if any), no matter how much they claim to love their animals would spend the money to raise and animal that is unable to make profit.

So, what part of being raped, and having your baby stolen and slaughters sounds feminist?

How does rape and slaughter of babies promote the sisterhood?

The body leeches calcium out of bones to the blood stream in order to neutralise excessive protein. Where does protein come from – animal products. So milk is sold to women as a cure for a disease that has a devastating effect on women more than men, especially post menopausal women – that being osteoporosis. Yet, too many animal products can be a large contributor to the osteoporosis. But do large corporations care about womens’ health? It doesn’t seem that way, not as long as they are selling a product to women whose only nutritional information comes from dairy and meat industry propaganda.

It’s not about whether people and animals are the same, but are their Rights the same. Any living thing is as entitled to the most basic right of all, the right to live a life, especially without suffering.

Dairy is the very essence of imposing of patriarchal values – if you want it, take it.

So, GOT MILK? Got rape, veal, cruelty, suffering, apathy, patriarchy, damaged health, animal cruelty, toxic environment, disease and death?

— SIDEBAR: The following ad for quality cattle crushes came up while I reading for this pieces
Cattle Crush Company Fail search engine


Feedback welcome.

25 April, 2009

ANZAC biscuits (plus vegan recipe)

Anzac Biscuits (it is actually illegal to call them Anzac Cookies) are sweet and crunchy and are very easily veganised for those missing out on cookies and biscuits.

Anzac Day commemorated on 25 April in New Zealand, Australia and some Pacific Islands as a National Day of Remembrance for those involved in War.

During World War 1, women in New Zealand and Australia made these by the thousands to ship to those serving overseas. A recipe was sought for a product that would last the weeks or months it would take to ship by boat to the other side of the world and get supplied out to the trenches.

ANZAC Biscuits seemed to be based on a Scottish recipe for Parkin, they are made without eggs or milk and designed to be long lasting, and ideal for storage. In the trenches of the front lines, soldiers would put these hard biscuits in their mugs and cover them with hot water to make a form of instant porridge (oatmeal).

This was part of the effort of those on the home-front to be part of the Resistance. The wives, girlfriends, mothers and grandmothers, not only ran the businesses and farms, raised the families and funds, and organised the communities while their loved ones were away, they also knitted warm clothing and made food for care packages.

Not every fight can be won or lost, only by foot soldiers. It takes a combination of good effective leadership, brave soldiers willing to make the sacrifice and the Resistance of civilian non-combatants to support the soldiers by any means required.

These are also easily veganised by replacing butter with light nut oil or vegan margarine.

ANZAC biscuits

8 (125 grams) tablespoons vegan margarine (or light nut oil)
1 tablespoon golden syrup (similar to light treacle or corn syrup)

1 cup rolled oats
1 cup shredded coconut
1 cup plain, all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar (white or brown)

2 tablespoons boiling water
1 – 1/2 teaspoon baking soda / bicarbonate of soda

Melt the margarine and golden syrup in a saucepan over a Low heat.

Combine rolled oat, coconut, well sifted flour and sugar.

Combine bicarb soda and water, add this to the melted margarine and syrup. Pour into the dry ingredients and mix to a firm consistency.

Put spoonfuls onto a greased baking tray and bake in a pre-heated oven at 150-160°C (300-325°F) a little less for fan-forced ovens.

Bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on baking tray before moving. (Biscuits come out of the oven soft, hardens on cooling.)


Feedback welcome.

23 March, 2009

Women in struggle and solidarity

Socialist origins of International Women’s Day

Women in struggle and solidarity

By Kathy Durkin
Published Mar 19, 2009 8:31 PM

On International Women’s Day this year, we express our solidarity with our heroic sisters in Gaza who have endured the horrific U.S.-backed Israeli siege and who are standing up with courage and resilience. We hail our Palestinian sisters in the occupied West Bank who face the Israeli Defense Forces and hostile settlements daily. We hail our sisters in Iraq, Afghanistan and everywhere who face U.S. war and occupation.

International Working Women’s Day was founded in 1910 by European women socialists as a coordinated global day of protest and solidarity among women workers. They were inspired by the 1908 New York City march of immigrant women workers for their economic and political rights, and the three-month garment strike there a year later, by mainly women immigrants, and they felt the ferment by women workers in their own countries.

In solidarity with our immigrant sisters, we embrace our Haitian sisters who face deportation; our Latina sisters who daily face the terror of deportation, jail, separation from their children and abuse; and our Muslim and Arab sisters who face bigotry and so much more.

We thank our sisters at Chicago’s Republic Windows and Doors, who heroically took risks by occupying their factory. By their actions, they aided all workers facing layoffs and plant closings, and played a leading role in the national fightback.

The historic socialist and working-class essence of International Women’s Day remains, despite capitalist government and media cover-ups of its real nature. Its history is rife with struggle and solidarity. It has been celebrated by socialist countries and parties, national liberation, anti-imperialist and anti-corporate movements on many continents.

Capitalist crisis impacts women

International Women’s Day and global solidarity among women workers has taken on new meaning in this age of capitalist globalization. The gargantuan, worldwide economic crisis is impacting working-class and oppressed women greatly.

Globalized capitalism is not kind to women. Over 100 million women have been forced to leave their homelands to search for employment as international migrant workers. They face terrible working conditions, are frequently denied pay, subjected to physical and sexual abuse, and often lack economic or human rights or legal protection. Women are 90 percent of the world’s domestic workers; many are migrant workers. Even children have been drafted into domestic work.

Women perform two-thirds of the world’s work, yet earn only one-tenth of its income and own one percent of its property. Women are 75 percent of the 1.3 billion people who subsist on less than one dollar a day. Most of the world’s 800 million poor and hungry are women and children, although women produce 60 percent of the world’s food supply. Poor children are increasingly at risk for starvation due to exorbitant food prices.

Sexual trafficking of women and children has intensified. The global market garners $42 billion annually for profiteers who exploit women and children, including those from Eastern Europe, where jobs and social protections were lost and poverty grew after the fall of socialism.

The crisis of violence against women, which is rooted in class society, property ownership and patriarchal relations, is exacerbated by global corporations, which, in their drive for higher profits, superexploit women’s labor while mistreating women and disregarding human rights for all workers.

As the world financial crisis unfolds, a new United Nations study estimates that up to 22 million women worldwide will lose their jobs, with children hard hit. Women workers are likely to have lower-paying, part-time or temporary jobs, with few benefits, little job protection and meager, if any, resources or property.

However, working women, including migrant workers, are fighting for their rights worldwide, aided by women’s, human rights’ and community groups, trade unions, progressive organizations and governments, and revolutionary parties.

Imperialism and globalized capitalist private ownership are at the root of women’s economic inequality worldwide. This cries out for a socialist solution—with public ownership of industries, where production is for human need, not profit, where society guarantees jobs, health care, education, housing and nutritious food for all, and where all wealth and resources are shared worldwide.

World’s women need socialism

Cuba, despite a U.S. blockade, has shown by its living example that socialism can provide the basis for women’s equality. Under the Federation of Cuban Women’s leadership, women have made great strides.

This historic day’s founder was Clara Zetkin, a leader in the German Social-Democratic Party and head of the International Women’s Secretariat. Her party, which in 1910 had 82,000 women members, supported women’s rights, including universal suffrage and the right to organize politically as women. European women were then pouring into the workforce, where they held low-paid, horrific jobs. They were joining unions and socialist parties at a time when socialist ideas were burgeoning.

Zetkin proposed—to an International Socialist Women’s Conference, in August 1910 at the Worker’s Assembly Hall in Copenhagen, Denmark—that an International Working Women’s Day be set aside annually to recognize the worldwide struggle of women workers and build solidarity. More than 100 women from 17 countries, representing trade unions, women’s organizations and clubs and European socialist parties, unanimously voted for Zetkin’s proposal. It said in part, “In agreement with the class-conscious political and trade union organizations of the [working class] in each country, the socialist women in all countries shall organize a Women’s Day every year.” (www.leftwrite.wordpress.com)

Zetkin, a political strategist, likely saw organizing for this special day as a crucial step in building an anti-capitalist movement and hoped that a yearly coordinated multicountry protest on the same day for the same demands would strengthen it and make it more powerful and would also strengthen ties between women in different countries.

Zetkin aimed to foster cooperation between women in unions, women’s organizations and socialist parties so they would unite and fight jointly. This collaboration would not only raise class and socialist consciousness, as Zetkin hoped, but it could also win the most political women workers to a socialist perspective and organization and push forward the class struggle.

One year later, Zetkin’s strategy took hold. More than one million women poured into the streets in four European countries on March 19—then IWD—to demand jobs and an end to discrimination. Russian revolutionary Alexandra Kollontai said the first “Working Women’s Day was one seething, trembling sea of women. … certainly the first show of militancy [in Europe] by working women.” (www.leftwrite.wordpress.com)

In the pre-war years, International Women’s Day saw European women protesting the looming World War I. A 1917 strike begun on IWD by Russian women garment workers demanding “bread and peace” led to the czar’s ouster, which opened the gates to the workers’ revolution. In 1921, the Soviet Union was the first government to legalize women’s equality.

Some of Zetkin’s issues still resonate today: the struggles against imperialist war and high food prices and for better conditions for women and children.

There are also many different issues and struggles today for women worldwide. The history of colonialism, imperialism and national oppression, with the deliberate underdevelopment of continents, theft of land and resources, superexploitation of the global work force, and the propagation of all forms of oppression and bigotry, greatly broaden the demands from those raised at the 1910 Copenhagen conference.

An international socialist women’s conference today would first extend invitations to women from Asia, Africa, the Middle East, Latin America and the Caribbean—those whose countries have been oppressed by U.S. imperialism, militarism and economic oppression. It would address their issues as well as those of working and oppressed women within the U.S. It would demand an end to racism, anti-immigrant attitudes, sexism, homophobia and all forms of bigotry.

Clara Zetkin was absolutely right about these key points: international solidarity among working women is essential and so is the urgent need for women to organize to get rid of capitalism and fight for socialism.

Adapted from a talk at a WW Forum on March 13.

Articles copyright 1995-2010 Workers World. Verbatim copying and distribution of this entire article is permitted in any medium without royalty provided this notice is preserved.

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