May 17th FEM GA Notes, Millennium Park, Chicago
Review talking points: bring together a broad range of groups to end gender violence, defined feminism by WOW, why feminist GA is necessary, ways in which women suffer from gender inequalities, entertainment.
Kristine Karch wrote “Feminists against NATO” from Germany who is here to protest NATO. No to War No to NATO, supported by over 600 organizations worldwide. The main cause of war and violence is the dominance of masculinity in the war making machine. If NATO’s interests were focused on women’s rights, it would have to abolish itself immediately. Women say no to NATO.
Kristine Karch, Chicago 17.05.2012
I’m very proud that I have been invited here to speak and thank you all.
I’m coming from a women’s network, which is part of the global network “No to war – no to NATO”, supported by more than 600 organizations worldwide.
I bring you warm greetings from the women in Europe, who are on the streets during these days around the NATO summit to demand the abolition of it. NATO is a dinosaurian of cold war period and have to be part of the garbage heap of history.
There are actions in several European cities like Verona and Torino in Italy, Sevilla in Spain, London in Great Britain, Oslo in Norway and Stuttgart, Germany.
Women around the world are fighting for equal rights, against violence, oppression and exclusion. In the analysis of the causes of war feminists identify the patriarchy – the dominance of masculine values within society – besides the power structures of capitalism, racism and militarism.
Male values associated with hierarchies, rivalry, and competition and resulting violence. So-called female values like concern and reconciliation will not find recognition. The attribution of values is not justified biologically, but is generated through society. If we want to struggle against war and militarism we have to analyze these power structures and gender relations in their whole complexity and with their interdependencies and we are obliged to unveiling the inherent violence that starts with domestic violence, continues on the streets, does not spare nature and ends in wars and all people suffer from these.
NATO as war and military alliance with its new strategy contributes to the further militarization of Europe and reproduces patriarchal structures of power. 2:
The implementation of the UN Resolution 1325 (to women, peace and security) does not change anything about it, because NATO does not tackle the causes of violence, militarism and patriarchy
but try to integrate also women into their dirty war activities.
The images of Abu Grahib demonstrate the harmful influence these structures have especially on women.
If NATO would be seriously interested in women’s rights, in peace and security it would have to abolish itself immediately.
As the war in Afghanistan shows women’s rights cannot be implemented by bombs into a country. War enforces patriarchal power structures and leads to a loss of already won (women`s) rights.
Women of NATO states are saying ‘No to NATO’ for all these reasons, and more.
Military expenditure squanders money needed for the education, health and housing services badly needed by women, who carry the main burden of domestic life.
Women suffer displacement, rape, loss, injury and increased burdens due to war. NATO’s military bases in many neighborhoods are a source of social stress, toxic pollution, sexual exploitation and violence. Women’s security is not military security. Women call for the negotiated, non-violent settlement of all conflicts, and the inclusion of women in peace processes.
This means at first: Troops out of Afghanistan
The Security Council Resolution to women, peace, and security, and to also incorporate women into peace-making meetings but NATO does not allow this resolution to prosper because it does not tackle the true causes of militarism, violence and patriarchy. War by nature is a patriarchal structure, and therefore contradicts the empowerment of women.
Break-out groups about the 3 main goals of feminism today and how to change these obstacles.
Fourth wave of feminism, compare how we operate to our feminist ancestors.
3 main goals:
1. Women to speak out about these issues and to have these issues recognized
2. A lot of the oppression of women stems from economics. Child care, women have less capital than men. Feminization of poverty
3. Modern women to be respected are supposed to be strong. Women need to have more of a presence in every aspect of society. When women take leadership roles, we are expected to take on a male persona, so reclaim a more feminine voice. Mothers are expected to take on childcare in addition to all previous responsibilities held.
4. Ways oppression playing out in our own movement, in camps when women want their own spaces.
5. To make men or women labels irrelevant, and to be people.
6. Educating people on issues.
What people are doing regarding these goals:
Muslim women who was arrested with Occupy Des Moines, police removed her hijab, took picture of mug shot with it off, and posted it online. Women organized at the jail and have changed policy
Des Moines Catholic Worker comprised of very few women, and these women are often seen as a commodity, and often view one another as competition. DSM Catholic Workers are organizing a woman’s night where we hope women can come together and empower one another.
Rush Limbaugh march comprised of less than 10% women, only 3 women spoke.
OWS often fails to address gender inequalities.
Germany has a female chancellor, analyze the structures behind the problems, and the institutions that produce these structures. Change the ways in which masculine forms of language are intentionally preference and practiced over feminine usage. Women must be a part of society and find ways to make it inclusive.
Some women don’t aspire to become CEO’s or space in the spotlight
All women event, organized by women, men were the helps. The People’s Summit full of men, Sunday workshop full of men. People’s Summit lacked women’s workshop.
OWS excels in areas of solidarity, and many men who we regard as allies should be more engaged in contributing in areas that are generally revered as feminine duties
What help do you need from your allies? What can we do to collectively make change?
More women in Occupy in general
Encourage men to voice our embrace of feminists
Encourage men to themselves become feminists
The word “feminism” often results in dismissive attitudes.
Christie Thompson Ms. Magazine blogger invites
Taking our goals and putting them on a flyer and handing them out on Sunday march.