Women’s issues need immediate attention

Michelle Conty

Michelle Conty

Michelle Conty

I went to see The Vagina Monologues over the weekend, and have to admit, I went with mixed emotions. I had heard about the monologues and was familiar with some narratives in the production but was unsure of whether or not it would be a collection of man-bashing rants and sappy sentimental soap-opera like spiels. I was impressed. All I can really say is, it’s about time.

About time someone tried to do something about the issues women have to confront on a regular basis. Before I get on a rant here, let me clarify, I am not a femi-nazi. I don’t have issues with men, many, if not most, of my close friends are men. And, if it matters, I am straight. But I am tired of women’s issues not being addressed and wondering when something is going to be done. We have come a long way. My mother wanted to be an architect. However, women were not allowed to enter that field at the time. Working for A.C. Nielson in Chicago in the 1960s, she had to train men to be her supervisors because women were not allowed to hold supervisor positions. Even now, women don’t make dollar for dollar on what men make.

The atrocities of the 20,000-70,000 women held, tortured and raped in Bosnian concentration camps sat in the pit of my stomach for days. I was disgusted not only at such a reprehensible crime but that not enough is being done to stop it. A Bosnian woman interviewed for the monologues spoke of having a rifle shoved inside of her, being raped repeatedly and assaulted with foreign objects. She told of hearing the skin tear and a piece of her vagina coming off in her hand.

I’m sorry gentlemen, I love you, but if men were the ones being raped and had foreign objects shoved inside of them, this type of thing would stop.

Here in the United States, more than 500,000 women were raped in 2001.

Female genital mutilation is inflicted on two million girls a year, mostly in Africa. These girls can expect to have their clitoris cut or removed altogether. In a man, it would be the equivalent of amputating most or all of the penis.

The clitoris has the highest concentration of nerve fibers in the human body, twice the number as in the penis.

I would like to challenge the men who are worth their salt to do something about how women are treated. It amazes me that the good guys out there have friends who beat their wives and that so many women and children are assaulted.

Men shame each other over far less important things.