Progress toward equal rights for women. Toward women being human beings first, broads/gals/chattels not at all.
How do we measure it? Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s have soared over the past 56 years, from 63.9% to 77.8%! [This is for year-round, full-time work, figures from U.S. Women’s Bureau and the National Committee on Pay Equity.] In another 56 years we’ll reach just over 90% at that rate. Or participation in Congress? 91 women serve in the 110th Congress: 75 in the House (55 Democrats and 20 Republicans) and 16 in the Senate (11 Democrats and 5 Republicans). Actually the 110th started out with 94 women but 3 died, frail creatures that we are. And that is a new record! 94 out of 535, or 17.5%.
Okay, all these statistics are depressing and boring. How about something easier? I’ve got it! As long as I open the newspaper and the big sale at, say, Macy’s, is selling shoes that all look like this
then I know we are not doing well.
That imposing black number bottom left, the lady paratrooper model, has a heel four and one-half inches high. A third of a foot. Gives the girl soldier that added height that commands respect, and she can also rip the enemy’s throat out with a heel swing, or maybe just step on his toe and butt-stroke him with her rifle stock. She’ll be a career soldier, too, because after wearing shoes with 4.5 inch heels for 4 years, she will no longer be able to wear anything else.
The little silver pump bottom right may not add so much height to its wearer, only three inches or so, but everyone should give her a lot of respect for the suffering she smilingly endures, jamming a roughly square-ended human foot into a leather funnel as pointy-ended as an icing-squirter, for eight to ten hours a day.
And every single one of these designs sings out the same paeans to femininity with which Western poets have garlanded us for centuries: our grace and beauty, our delicacy, our nurturing tenderness, our oh so many gentle virtues…
The real religion of the world comes from women much more than from men – from mothers most of all, who carry the key of our souls in their bosoms. ~Oliver Wendell Holmes
The Woman-Soul leadeth us
Upward and on!
– Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe
Lead on, women, but ditch the fetishistic footwear, eh?
[All ugly shoes shown are trademarked by their manufacturers who are completely responsible for such triumphs of function and design. As a trade-off for not having permission to use the photos, I won’t embarrass the companies by identifying the brands depicted. Seems fair to me.]