Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Women go 'missing' by the millions

This is a frightening article. I would love to have more data, though it does sound very, very plausible. We in the west forget that in most of the world the life of a woman is not worth much.

(Ayaan Hirsi Ali, a Somali-born Dutch legislator, lives under 24-hour protection because of death threats against her by Islamic radicals since the murder of Theo van Gogh, with whom she made the film "Submission" about women and Islam. This Global Viewpoint article was distributed by Tribune Media Services.)

As I was preparing for this article, I asked a friend who is Jewish if it was appropriate to use the term "holocaust" to portray the worldwide violence against women. He was startled. But when I read him the figures in a 2004 policy paper published by the Geneva Center for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces, he said yes, without hesitation.
One United Nations estimate says from 113 million to 200 million women around the world are demographically "missing." Every year, from 1.5 million to 3 million women and girls lose their lives as a result of gender-based violence or neglect.
How could this possibly be true? Here are some of the factors:
In countries where the birth of a boy is considered a gift and the birth of a girl a curse from the gods, selective abortion and infanticide eliminate female babies. Read More.

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