I've seeded a number of articles on Jill Sein and I have had comments by people who did not understand that Jill Stein, and her running mate, activist Cheri Honkala (a leading activist for poor people and against predatory banks), have a very strong platform on women's rights. Before I report what they stand for, here is their preamble to this part of their platform:
Our history has been marred with oppression of and brutality to women. The Green Party deplores this system of male domination, known as, in all its forms, both subtle and overt - from oppression, inequality, and discrimination to all forms of violence against women and girls including rape, trafficking, forced sex which is also rape, slavery, prostitution and violence against women within marriage and relationships and in all institutions. The change the world is crying for cannot occur unless women's voices are heard.
The details of the platform are very important. Women's issues are subdivided into four categories:
1) Social Equality
- We support the equal application of the Constitution of the United States of America to all citizens, and therefore call for passage of the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA)....
- We call for equal representation of women in Congress instead of the current 15% in 2010.
- The Green Party calls for U.S. passage of CEDAW, the Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination Against Women, which was adopted in 1979 by the U.N. General Assembly and ratified by 173 countries. The U.S. is one of the very few countries, and the only industrialized nation, that have not ratified it.
- The Equal Employment Opportunities Commission should actively investigate and prosecute sexual harassment complaints....
- We support the inclusion of an equal number of women and men in peace talks and negotiations....
Most of recent political debate involves the reproductive rights of women, including the incredibly stupid remarks on "legitimate rape" and pregancy by Missouri Senate candidate Todd Akin. Here is the position of Stein, Honkala, and the Greens:
2) Reproductive Rights
- Women's rights must be protected and expanded to guarantee each woman's right as a full participant in society, free from sexual harassment, job discrimination or interference in the intensely personal choice about whether to have a child.
- Women's right to control their bodies is non-negotiable....
- We endorse women's right to use contraception and, when they choose, to have an abortion....
- We encourage women and men to prevent unwanted pregnancies....
A key issue, not in the debate-realm of inanities between the Obama and Romney camps, but very much in the on-the-ground daily experience of women who are struggling to make the two ends meet, is the issue of economic equality:
- Since, nationally, women earn only 77% of men’s wages for equal work, despite outnumbering men in the workforce and despite the U.S. 1963 Equal Pay Act, we support intensified effort to see this unfair gap closed, including support for the Paycheck Fairness Act now in the Senate as S.182 and similar legislation, and greater effort at enforcement.
- Single mothers are the largest and most severely impoverished group in the United States... With the extreme pay inequity, single mothers cannot afford child care, nurture their children, and move out of poverty.
- The Green Party supports real reforms to end poverty and return dignity and opportunity to all mothers.
In tandem with economic inequality is violence against women and its partner oppression. Jill Stein and the Greens address these problem directly:
4) Violence and Oppression
- Language is often used as a weapon by those with power, and women have traditionally borne the brunt of inflicted injuries. Freedom of speech is vital to democracy. However, we believe that this freedom should not be used to perpetuate oppression and abuse.
- Violence against women is increasing nationwide. We must address the root cause of all violence even as we specifically address violence to women. We support stronger legislation, programs and enforcement. We also call for new dialog and re-thinking that can lead to better language, ideas and solutions. We urge that the term, domestic violence, be replaced by the term, violence, because the term, domestic violence, is perceived as not real violence and leads to it not being treated legally and practically for the violence that it is. We urge that the term, sex work, not be used in relation to prostitution... Much of what is commonly called prostitution is actually sex trafficking by definition. The Green Party calls for a safer world for women and girls.
- The Green Party has zero tolerance for the illegal international trafficking in humans.... Estimates of human trafficking in the U.S. vary greatly from 18,000 to 50,000 to over 100,000 with a worldwide estimate of 12.5 million, mostly women and children.
- The Green Party calls for new U.S. legislation relating to prostitution modeled on the Swedish law passed in 1999, now adopted by other countries and being considered by more, that has drastically reduced human trafficking and prostitution in Sweden. That law criminalizes the purchase of services from prostitutes, pimps and brothel keepers instead of criminalizing the prostitutes. The Green Party urges the U.S. to open dialogs and visit with Sweden as a step toward introducing legislation in the U.S. Congress to address the exploitation, violence and harm to women through prostitution.
- The Green Party supports all efforts to eradicate this extreme abuse of human rights...
- We support the State Department's annual Trafficking in Persons Report as an important document to begin to combat this abuse. We support and urge enforcement of the Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protection Act (HR 3244) signed into law on October 28, 2000...
- The Green Party urges a more thorough dialog and understanding of violence against women and girls, including from prostitution and trafficking, that causes health and injury damage that seriously degrades their lives, even to death or premature death including from HIV, syphilis and many other diseases, as well as causing severe economic hardships.
Hopefully this will let both men and women know that the presidential candidate Jill Stein and her funning mate, Cheri Honkala, have a strong platform that goes beyond the inane Republican talking points and their equally vacuous counterpoints by Obama supporters. One might have expected more of Obama who has been "heralded" as the women's candidate. The Greens clearly offer a clear platform that addresses these important issues for women, children, men, and the rebirth of our democracy.