Friday, August 16, 2019

My outfit is not an invitation

The Artdog Image of Interest

August is a month when many students start back to school--many in new schools. I'm dedicating my Images of Interest for the next several weeks to a reminder that as young girls grow into young women, whether they're in public or private schools or in college, they often are subject to gender-based street harassment--catcalls, comments on their looks, etc. They don't need this grief, but all too many experience it.

Tatyana Fazlalizadeh, My outfit is not an invitation.

This month's Images of Interest are dedicated to those maturing girls and young women, as a reminder that we adults in the community have a responsibility to call out harassment wherever it manifests. I am deeply grateful to artist Tatyana Fazlalizadeh, whose whose work I featured last March.

In this month of Back to School and Women's Equality day, I'm delighted to share more of her "Stop Telling Women to Smile" public art project.

IMAGE: Many thanks to artist Tatyana Fazlalizadeh and her "Stop Telling Women to Smilepublic art project, and to Katherine Brooks's Huffington Post article, for this image.

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Sharing the childcare

The Artdog Quote(s) of the Week

Once again, Ruth Bader Ginsburg is onto something. Ginsburg's whole career has been a struggle for gender equality, probably since well before the Dean of the Harvard Law School asked her and eight female classmates, "Why are you at Harvard Law School, taking the place of a man?" It's no surprise she advocates sharing the childcare.

My Quotes of the Week this month are inspired by Women's Equality Day, but of course, true feminism isn't only focused on women's rights. Gender equality benefits both sexes. And sharing the childcare is one of those areas where all sides benefit richly.


It may at first seem odd to claim that sharing child care responsibilities benefits men, but that's mainly because of the cultural programming most of us have been receiving since birth. The benefits to both men and the children they nurture are clear from many studies.

Yet fractured families and cultural norms too often unhelpfully keep men out of children's lives. Few men become professionals in early childhood education, and when they do they may be looked upon with suspicion. Yet studies have shown that men who are involved in the intimate details of caring for small children are less likely to be abusers than men who are less involved.



But males sharing the childcare (and doing household chores) can bring other benefits, too. A 2014 study revealed that couples who split household chores equally tend to have sex more often, and report satisfaction with their sexual experiences, than couples in less egalitarian arrangements.

The feminist ideal would have neither gender constrained to an arbitrary gender role. That would be better for mothers, better for fathers, and most certainly better for the next generation.

When fathers and mothers share the childcare everyone benefits. (uncredited photo from Aviva)

IMAGE CREDIT: Many thanks to DesiBucket and Lifehack Quotes, for the quote from the Notorious, and to AZ Quotes for the thought from Gloria Steinem. The photo of the parents and child enjoying a playful moment is courtesy of Aviva UK.

Sunday, August 11, 2019

Hope, faith, and joy

A special greeting for Eid-al-Adha

This evening begins the holy festival of Eid-al-Adha for our Muslim friends. From what I've been able to learn, an appropriate greeting is "May the divine blessings of Allah bring you hope, faith, and joy on Eid al-Adha and forever."


I'm trying to stay current with holiday greetings for major religions throughout the year, instead of only thinking about holidays in December! This festival changes dates, based on a lunar calendar, but if I got this right, it runs from this evening through Wednesday evening. We all could benefit from greater hope, faith, and joy, in the spirit of this festival!

I remain convinced that we must seek stronger bonds of understanding across cultural differences, so that we may build bridges (PLEASE, not walls!) between ourselves and our neighbors. Eid Mubarak, my friends. May all of us open ourselves to receive greater hope, faith, and joy!

IMAGE CREDIT: many thanks to Religion World, for this beautiful design.

Friday, August 9, 2019

"I Deserve to be Respected"

The Artdog Image of Interest

August is a month when many students start back to school--many in new schools. I'm dedicating my Images of Interest for the next several weeks to a reminder that as young girls grow into young women, whether they're in public or private schools or in college, they often are subject to gender-based street harassment--catcalls, comments on their looks, etc. They don't need this grief, but all too many experience it.

Tatyana FazlalizadehYo Merezco ser Respetada, "I Deserve to be Respected."

This month's Images of Interest are dedicated to those maturing girls and young women, as a reminder that we adults in the community have a responsibility to call out harassment wherever it manifests. I am deeply grateful to artist Tatyana Fazlalizadeh, whose whose work I featured last March.

In this month of Back to School and Women's Equality day, I'm delighted to share more of her "Stop Telling Women to Smile" public art project.

IMAGE: Many thanks to artist Tatyana Fazlalizadeh and her "Stop Telling Women to Smilepublic art project for this image.

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

Why we voted Tuesday in Johnson County, Kansas

We voted Tuesday in Johnson County, Kansas.

Well, a few of us did. We only met a handful of neighbors at the polls, and the poll workers almost seemed startled to see us. After all, it was a pretty tiny ballot. We had just three votes to cast, in an obscure little election to narrow down the number of our local community college's Board of Trustees. Really, a very tiny election.

Each voter is offered a sticker. (Johnson County Post)

But we voted Tuesday in Johnson County, Kansas.

My whole family voted (except for the one who's in the hospital unexpectedly). In spite of the heat ("feels like" 95° F/35° C), and really heavy humidity. In spite of being tired and too busy. In spite of having to stop work and make a special trip. In spite of the fact that we had to wade through a lotta names, most of which we'd never heard before. Do a bit of digging to find out anything about the candidates.

But we made sure we voted Tuesday in Johnson County, Kansas.

A lot of people act as if primaries are not important. Those tiny little ballots, those obscure little elections, those trifling local races--what do those matter? Better to wait for the big, headliner elections, when your vote really matters. Right?

Why on Earth should we make sure we voted Tuesday in Johnson County, Kansas? It's silly. Right?

Johnson County voting machines create a paper ballot voters can check. (Tammy Ljungblad/Kansas City Star)

Wrong. Primaries are where political careers get their start. Primaries are where major policy decisions are made. And primaries, being small-scale elections, are where each and every vote counts more than anywhere else. You get more "bang for your vote" in a primary than you ever could in a general election.

I learned it's important to make certain we vote in elections like Tuesday, in Johnson County, Kansas.

For most of my adult life, I have voted with an official "R" for Republican by my name, for two reasons. First, in Kansas we have closed primaries. Only voters who have declared a party affiliation may vote in that party's primary. Second, for most of my adult life, in Johnson County (and much of Kansas), the Republican candidate ran unopposed in the general election. I declared myself to be a Republican (If you read this blog, you'll realize I'm therefore beyond RINO), because I was determined to vote in the elections where the decisions were made.

That's what set the pattern, and made made sure we voted Tuesday in Johnson County, Kansas.
The entrance to our local Johnson County Community College. (file photo/Kansas City Star)

By the way, that teeny-tiny little primary for our local community college? It was contest to chart the of our local educational institution. Would they take a conservative approach and keep the incumbents, or would they try a more progressive approach?

That's why we made sure we voted Tuesday in Johnson County, Kansas.

IMAGE CREDITS: Many thanks to the Shawnee Mission Post, for the photo of the "I Voted in Johnson County" sticker. And thanks also to the Kansas City Star, for the photos of Johnson County's voting machines in action (photographed by Tammy Ljungblad), and the JCCC entrance.

Monday, August 5, 2019

Oppression

The Artdog Quote of the Week

My Quotes of the Week this month are inspired by Women's Equality Day, which this year  happens to fall on a Monday (when I try to make sure my Quotes of the Week go live).



When I went looking for appropriate quotes for the rest of the Mondays, I found this little gem from Letty Cottin Pogrebin. She's the writer and social activist who founded Ms. Magazine (full confession: Ms. was massively influential in my early life).

This is one of those quotes that makes me nod and say, "Oh, she got that right!" So it was a natural for me to include in this women's equality-themed month.

But although the place where I found this quote is full of lots of cool quotes and images, I didn't particularly groove with the way this one had been visually realized. I had a different thought about how it should be presented. I hope you like it.

SHARING IMAGE CREDIT: The visualization of this women's equality quote was all mine, but I couldn't have done what I wanted with it, if I hadn't had a little help. My help in this case came from Wikimedia Commons and a photographer named Andreas F. Borchert, who photographed the perfect pediment for me to make my point. 

Part of this image is an adapted detail from Borchert's Dublin Roman Catholic St. Audoen's Church Pediment. In order to fulfill the creative commons usage requirements, it's important for me to credit this source (though you know me: I would have anyway). And I certainly did take Mr. Borchert's license to "remix" his image pretty far. I cropped the section I needed, then applied the Sketch: Reticulation filter in Photoshop. I finished the work in Adobe Illustrator, where I created the typography and reduced the opacity of the pediment photo. 

Now it's your turn: if you like this women's equality-themed quote-image realization and want to use it, please credit both Jan S. Gephardt and Andreas F. Borchert, with links back to his license page and this blog post. Thanks!

Friday, August 2, 2019

A young woman's worth

The Artdog Image of Interest

August is a month when many students start back to school--many in new schools. I'm dedicating my Images of Interest for the next several weeks to a reminder that as young girls grow into young women, whether they're in public or private schools or in college, they often are subject to gender-based street harassment--catcalls, comments on their looks, etc. They don't need this grief, but all too many experience it.

Tatyana FazlalizadehMy Worth extends far Beyond my Body

This month's Images of Interest are dedicated to those maturing girls and young women, as a reminder that we adults in the community have a responsibility to call out harassment wherever it manifests. I am deeply grateful to artist Tatyana Fazlalizadeh, whose work I featured last March.

In this month of Back to School and Women's Equality day, I'm delighted to share more of her "Stop Telling Women to Smile" public art project.

IMAGE: Many thanks to artist Tatyana Fazlalizadeh and her "Stop Telling Women to Smile" public art project for this image.