What women's rights look like when the two sides come together as one.
What women's rights are when women are no longer manipulated by party rhetoric.

Friday, August 31, 2012

Women Lead The Way At The RNC

Cynthia Ruccia

Well, it's a wrap. The balloons have dropped, the benediction read, the speeches are finished. What an inspiring convention!! Why? Because for me and others who want gender parity in this country, we got to see some amazingly accomplished women, we got to hear them speak, and they were all together on one stage at one time. What a rare occurrence!!

For a party that is often singled out as being anti woman, it was refreshing to see that Republican women have quietly aimed for the top and have often succeeded. We were reminded that although the numbers of women in power are woefully small, some of them are Republican and they are no slouches. Any one of them could become president some day. And all of them set the bar for the next wave of female leaders.

I'm going to post below a few of the speeches in case you missed them. And I hope that by highlighting Republican women this week, I will not be receiving the hate mail I received when I put up the speech by Mia Love. I also hope that other women will not be so stupid as to turn a blind eye, cold shoulder and turn their backs on me, this blog, but most of all these fabulous women just because they are not of your party. We women need all hands on deck to go from where we are to where we need to be. In a political season of empty promises and fact checking, we mustn't forget that our gender controls little in the U.S. Our talk to our daughters that they can be anything they want to be is empty chatter at this point. We have done a poor job finding our way to the top. Yes that is tough talk, but it is the reality. We'll just have to try a little harder to break through.

Women of all generations and political persuasions ought to join hands and realize that there is more that unites us than that which divides us. We need to stop being "dog whistled" and stop letting ourselves be lead around by messages designed to divide us. What is more important than taking our rightful place at the table representing 51% of the population?  What is more crucial to our future as a nation than having our voices heard not because we have to scream our desires and be the dreaded "shrill" but because our voices carry the same critical mass as that other gender?

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

She Made Me Cry

Cynthia Ruccia

Who is Mia Love? She is the electrifying speaker who by a mile was the best speaker on the Republican Convention stage yesterday. She is the Republican Mayor of Saratoga Springs, Utah, the daughter of Haitian immigrants, married to a white man. They have beautiful children. She's a runner and teaches running in her spare time. She's a riveting speaker who reminds us of the promise of America and to me is the embodiment of inspiration, aspiration and hope. She's running for a seat in the U.S.House. She became mayor of her city when it was in crisis and she turned it around. She was introduced to the convention by this video:

And then she came onto the stage:

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Notes About Women From the RNC.....

Cynthia Ruccia

Where do I start? I've been watching the goings on in Tampa mostly on C-SPAN where the coverage is practically 24/7 and mostly without any talking heads telling me what to think. I'm going to write some of my own impressions, and if you'd like to add yours, that would be great. It's a moment in time to write something for posterity I suppose (not meaning to put too grandiose a point on it). After all, our own raw impressions in real time are important.

I am jolted by the awareness that women are everywhere. Absolutely everywhere. My friend T sent me an email listing all of the speakers and all of the committee members, and it appears that there are more women than men involved. What this tells me is that women are the backbone of the Republican Party in the same way that they are the backbone of the Democratic Party. Or as some of the young people might say, women are the party b*****s doing all of the work. Sorry if that's a little graphic for some, but hey, it certainly spells out a truism rather starkly.

Beyond that, my own eyes tell me that the delegates at this convention are likely skewing female. At the very least there is probably a rough parity between the two genders. So what in the world is that all about? I mean, hasn't the Republican Party declared a War on Women? If so, what are all of these women doing on the floor of the convention acting like they belong there?  You could have the real liberal gleeful fantasy/nightmare that there is REALLY a war on women, and that since the Republicans are pro-gun, any minute now the men are going to pull their guns out and kill all of those darned women since that is the purpose of the war. Right?

Thursday, August 23, 2012

OMG---Am I Being Called A Racist AGAIN??????

Cynthia Ruccia

In 2007--2008 as the staggering sexist tirades escalated against Hillary Clinton as she ran for the Democratic nomination for president (yes it happened----check out the first two videos in the right column for those of you who need proof), people like me felt a growing anger. The sexist insults and jabs kept coming unabated. It turned many of us from mild-mannered regular people into furious warriors not content to just sweep it under the rug. While each of us felt we were alone, we learned soon enough that there were millions of us, and together we spoke up, spoke out, and made our feelings known.

In return, three main things blew back at us. First of all, we were screamed at to shut up, that we would lose our right to an-----ABORTION if we kept speaking up. HUH???? What in the world was that all about? By pushing the envelope and going outside of the accepted script, we laid bare the worst fears of Democratic women whose fear of losing reproductive freedoms superseded everything, including the sexist assaults on the woman who could have become our first woman president. We've been fighting into that wind ever since, and the dialogue is changing in surprising ways.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

An Interesting Conversation On Women's Parity

Cynthia Ruccia

File:Kay Bailey Hutchison, official photo 2.jpg                    A portrait shot of a smiling, middle-aged Caucasian female (Kirsten Gillibrand) looking straight ahead. She has long blonde hair, and is wearing a dark blazer with a grey top; on her left lapel is a gold pin that reads "United States Senator". She is placed in front of a dark background.

Last Monday, August 20, I watched a show that I had eagerly awaited on MSNBC. It was at noon eastern, and it had been billed to be a show focusing on why women aren't running anything in the U.S. Well, as you know, that is my subject, and I was pleased to see that this topic had filtered its way up to this larger-sized platform.

Now I know that many of us cringe at the thought of MSNBC, the station that many of us feel took the most liberties in being so sexist towards both Hillary Clinton and then Sarah Palin in 2008. I felt/feel that way too. Some of you know that I've turned into a jock in my old age. I work out alot and do triathlons, 5K races, and a few half-marathons. Why I even just qualified a couple of weeks ago to compete in the National Senior Olympics finals next summer in triathlon!! Woo hoo!! I bring it up because I roll out of bed in the morning and onto my elliptical machine to warm up. And nine times out of ten I tune in to MSNBC because that coverage pisses me off so much that it gets my adrenaline going and I'm warmed up in no time. And that is how I am able to tolerate the coverage there.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

We Can't Let The History of 2008 Be Rewritten. We Mustn't Forget.

Cynthia Ruccia

It has been brought to my attention that some of the people I had teamed up with during the 2008 campaign have decided to go back to the Democrats to support Barack Obama in 2012. That of course is their right as Americans, and I won't argue that point. However, it just seems so incongruous to me to join back with the very same people who perpetuated the worst outbreak of sexism and misogyny of my adult life.  Are we just going to let that sexism be swept under the rug? Are we going to have it stand for the record that the party of women used the very tools that they say they support to run off the women who tried to make it to the top?

There is no question that the Democrats used whatever it took to win in 2008, and that included vicious sexist attacks against Hillary Clinton and Sarah Palin, and they never used their bully pulpit to speak up against these attacks. You can view the two videos in the right column that illustrate a sampling of what went on in 2008.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Not the Correct Women's Agenda

Cynthia Ruccia

Now that we've got the two major party tickets set for the presidential race, I guess it was just a matter of time that the fight for women's votes would resume. This is a fight I am relishing because I think that it has the potential of turning the "women's issue agenda" on its ear.

My friend K sent me this piece from Politico that clearly spells out the battle lines. The piece talks about how the Democrats will go after Paul Ryan as being radically anti-woman and all of the liberal suspects are quoted in the article about how Ryan hates women. The talk is all about the typical Democratic vagina monologues------how anti-choice Ryan is, how he hates Planned Parenthood, how he is going to ruin women's lives, blah blah blah. I have written extensively about these stances on the left and how it is viewed as the third rail of feminism, and I guess I'm going to have to update them.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

The 2012 Dream Ticket

Cynthia Ruccia

I know it may seem pathetic, but I just want one more chance to dream about what could be this election cycle. I understand that my dream is a long shot, but I'm dreaming it anyways. I'm a great believer in thinking and dreaming big and believing that anything is possible. I take it as part of the holy grail of being an American.

My wildest dream amounts to this: both parties nominating a female VP and that no matter what, history will be made. We will finally shatter that particular glass ceiling once and for all, and it will just be a matter of time before a woman is elected President. And when these things come to pass, there will be a domino effect. People will get used to the symbolism of seeing a woman in charge, and they will then grow comfortable with the idea of women running things, and so finally the dam will burst, and women will start running things in proportion to their numbers. And by having the genders power share, our country will have a chance to create a new golden age, and we can once again know that the ideals of our founding fathers will be heeded, and the compact of equality for all will be fulfilled.

My Final Word on the Sexist Hit Piece at Harper's

Cynthia Ruccia
I have sent this letter to the owner of Harper's, John R. "Rick" MacArthur. Subject closed. August 2, 2012 Dear Rick, I am writing you because my father always taught me to go right to the top, and that advice has served me well. My name is Cynthia Ruccia, and my husband, Nick, and I have been enjoying Harper’s for some time now. We’ve enjoyed the quirky, the thought provoking, and everything in between that we have had the pleasure to read. Even during the economic downturn a few years back when we were streamlining and simplifying like so many other American families, and although we cancelled some of our magazine subscriptions, we decided to keep Harper’s because we love the history of the magazine and because it wasn’t really slanted left or right or any other way.