Democracy Now!

Women's Rights

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  • We are joined by two leading voices in the fight against mass incarceration: Michelle Alexander, author of the best-selling book "The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness," and Susan Burton, founder and executive director of A New Way of Life, a nonprofit that provides housing and other support to formerly incarcerated women. Burton is the author of the new memoir, "Becoming Ms. Burton: From Prison to Recovery to Leading the Fight for Incarcerated Women," in which she describes her journey from a childhood filled with abuse to drug addiction as an adult, and then to the fight to address the underlying issues that send women to prison. Alexander writes in the book’s introduction, "There once lived a woman with deep brown skin and black hair who freed people from bondage and ushered them to safety. She welcomed them to safe homes and offered food, shelter, and help reuniting with family and loved ones. She met them wherever they could be found and organized countless others to provide support and aid in various forms so they would not be recaptured and sent back to captivity. … Some people know this woman by the name Harriet Tubman. I know her as Susan."

    See Burton and Alexander speak in New York City Friday night at 7pm. More details here

  • As Donald Trump approaches his 100th day as president on Saturday, his approval ratings are the lowest any president has had at this stage in generations. A recent poll by NBC News and The Wall Street Journal found just 40 percent of Americans currently approve of his job performance. Trump took to Twitter to call the poll "totally wrong." We speak to the pioneering Vermont politician, former Vermont Governor Madeleine May Kunin. In 1997, she became just the fourth woman in U.S. history to be elected governor whose husband had not previously served. Kunin was born in Switzerland in 1933 and came to the United States as a child. She later served as U.S. ambassador to Switzerland. In recent months, she has been a vocal critic of President Trump. She recently participated in the Tax Day march in Burlington, Vermont, and also wrote a piece thanking Trump for "waking us from our slumber."

  • President Donald Trump is lending his support to Bill O’Reilly, as the number of advertisers boycotting the Fox News host’s program has increased to at least 52, following revelations that he and the network Fox News paid out $13 million to settle lawsuits by five women who accuse O’Reilly of sexual harassment and inappropriate sexual behavior. Other women have made similar accusations. In an Oval Office interview with The New York Times Wednesday, Trump said, "I think he’s a person I know well. He is a good person. … I think he shouldn’t have settled. Personally, I think he shouldn’t have settled. Because you should have taken it all the way. I don’t think Bill did anything wrong." We speak to attorney Lisa Bloom, who represents Dr. Wendy Walsh, one of the women who has publicly accused Bill O’Reilly of unwanted sexual advances. She also represented Jill Harth, a Florida business associate of Trump who sued him for sexual harassment after he allegedly groped her at a business dinner and later attempted to sexually assault her in the empty bedroom of his daughter Ivanka.

  • The number of advertisers boycotting Bill O’Reilly’s Fox News program has increased to at least 52, following revelations that he and the network paid out $13 million to settle lawsuits by five women who accuse O’Reilly of sexual harassment and inappropriate sexual behavior. Meanwhile, a third Fox News employee has joined a lawsuit charging the network with racial discrimination. The employees claim top executives—including former CEO Roger Ailes—refused to intervene as they were forced to endure "years-long relentless racial animus" at the hands of a white manager. We speak to Arisha Hatch, managing director of campaigns at Color of Change, which has organized a major campaign calling on advertisers to boycott "The O’Reilly Factor."

  • President Trump is expected to sign an executive order Tuesday to dismantle a slew of climate rules put in place by President Obama. The executive order marks the first step to undo President Obama’s Clean Power Plan to limit power plant emissions. The rule was seen as a critical element of the U.S. pledge to cut emissions as part of the 2015 Paris Agreement. Trump’s executive order is also expected to scrap regulations limiting methane emissions and open up the door for more coal mining and fracking on federal lands. For more, we speak with Rebecca Solnit, one of the nation’s most celebrated writers, who has spent years writing about climate change. She’s the author of more than 20 books, including, most recently, "The Mother of All Questions."

  • Part 2 of our conversation with Rebecca Solnit, one of the nation’s most celebrated writers. She’s the author of more than 20 books, including, most recently, "The Mother of All Questions."

  • Women rallied around the world Wednesday to mark International Women’s Day. Here in the United States, it was dubbed "A Day Without a Woman," as organizers called on women to go on strike. In Prince George’s County, Maryland, the entire school district closed down after 1,700 teachers asked for the day off. In Virginia, the entire public school system of Alexandria also closed after 300 workers requested the day off. Here in New York, thousands rallied outside Trump International Hotel. Speakers included Linda Sarsour, a lead organizer of the historic January 21 Women’s March on Washington. Sarsour was one of 13 activists later arrested for acts of civil disobedience outside Trump Tower. Meanwhile, thousands of people took part in a rally at New York City’s Washington Square Park. We air voices from the rally.

  • In New York, thousands of women marched from Washington Square Park past the site of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire, the deadliest workplace accident in New York City’s history and a seminal moment for the American labor rights movement. They proceeded past the historic LGBTQ landmark, Stonewall Inn, in the West Village and then ended the march in Zuccotti Park, the site of the 2011 Occupy Wall Street uprising. Democracy Now!’s Deena Guzder and Charina Nadura spoke to some of the protesters.

  • By Amy Goodman & Denis Moynihan
    International Women’s Day has been celebrated on March 8 for more than a century, but this year’s global day of action was marked with an added sense of urgency.

  • Today is International Women’s Day, and thousands of women are staging a one-day strike in what’s been dubbed a Day Without a Woman. The impact of the strike is already being felt in the United States. In Virginia, the entire public school system of Alexandria is closed today after 300 women requested the day off. Some schools are also closing in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, and in New York City. The U.S. Women’s Strike was called by organizers of the Women’s March on Washington, the largest nationwide day of protest after an inauguration in U.S. history. And women in the United States are not alone. Women in more than 50 countries are expected to take part in their own strikes. The International Women’s Strike effort was launched in October 2016 after women in Poland, South Korea, Argentina and Sweden organized strikes to fight issues from the criminalization of abortion to femicide. For more, we speak with Tithi Bhattacharya, associate professor of South Asian history at Purdue University. She is one of the national organizers of today’s Women’s Strike.

  • When President Trump signed his first executive order in January to temporarily ban refugees and people from seven majority-Muslim nations, he said it was needed, in part, to protect women. A little-noticed part of the executive order reads, "The United States should not admit those who engage in acts of bigotry or hatred, including 'honor' killings, other forms of violence against women." Some observers have noticed the irony in the executive order. Both the man who signed the order, Donald Trump, and the man who drafted the order, his chief strategist, Stephen Bannon, have in the past been accused of committing violence against women. During the presidential campaign, Trump famously boasted about sexually assaulting women and grabbing them "by the pussy," in a leaked video recorded by NBC’s "Access Hollywood." Eight women have now come forward and accused Donald Trump of sexual assault and harassment. And Trump is not alone. Stephen Bannon was charged with domestic violence and battery in 1996. Trump’s first pick to be labor secretary, fast-food giant CEO Andrew Puzder, was accused of domestic abuse by his ex-wife, who even went on "Oprah" in disguise to speak about domestic violence. For more, we turn to a recent Democracy Now! interview with Eve Ensler, playwright, author of "The Vagina Monologues," and Christine Schuler Deschryver, director of V-Day Congo.

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