A Week of Wins & Woes For Womankind

A NEW WEEKLY SEGMENT DEDICATED TO ALL THINGS WOMANKIND – CELEBRATING OUR TRIUMPHS, RECAPPING THE NEWS AND HAVING A SERIOUS CONVERSATION ABOUT VIOLENCE AND INEQUALITY.

Lets start with the WINS!

Wimbledon’s Rising Star

15-year-old Cori “Coco” Gauff has made headlines around the world, after defeating Venus Williams, a five time Wimbledon singles champion,  Magdalena Rybarikova, and most recently Polona Hercog. She is now officially the youngest player to advance to the round of 16 at a Grand Slam event in 28 years. Idk about you but when I was 15 my greatest achievement was sneaking booze into parties without my mum knowing and finishing year 10 with above average results. And then there’s Gauff, obliterating expectations and already cementing herself as an inspiration to so many girls and women around the world.z

Fun fact: Gauff was picked as a wild card for this year’s qualifying tournament for Wimbledon and ranked at 313th in the world. And now the likes of Beyoncé are blasting her success all over social media. On Twitter, #mylifeatfifteen began trending in Gauff’s honour with users sharing stories of drunken escapades and embarrassing memories of puberty, highlighting and celebrating Gauff’s success, determination and skyrocketing career.

And so another star is born. It only takes a moment of watching a match to envision this amazing sportswoman’s future. Her lean, muscled physique and courtside manner are mature beyond her years, but it is her sportsmanship and unfaltering passion for the sport that cement her status as a beloved and inspiring athlete in the hearts of viewers around the world. She is the embodiment of “nothing is impossible”, standing as the poster-girl for how far determination, dedication and talent will take you. Gauff’s meteoric rise is what we needed this week.

GIRLBOSS: YOUR NEW LINK IN BIO

FINALLY! Move over LinkedIn cause Girlboss is back and better than ever with its new professional networking platform for freelancers, creatives and entrepreneurs. It is a space for like-minded millennial women to connect, empower, share ideas and get inspired. Unfortunately, the platform is currently only available to women living in the U.S. so fingers crossed it reaches us quicker than the letter my boyfriend sent me from Boston 3 months ago does (yeah I’m thinking that’s been lost…).

But I think this is exactly the kind of platform we need. You can even add your star sign and access a daily horoscope if that’s what you’re into, so Amoruso and her team are really tapping into the millennial market there. Unlike LinkedIn, the Girlboss platform only allows you to send one connection per day, encouraging meaningful connections rather than just growing your network for the sake of it. Essentially, it allows you to tell your story and showcase parts of yourself that you can’t fit on a 1-page resume. And the best part? It’s absolutely FREE! So delete those snap handles from your bio and replace them with your Girlboss profileand let’s get networking!

New bio, who dis?

And now for the woes…

A REAL LIFE REPUBLIC OF GILEAD

Let’s head over to Alabama, where it seems that The Handmaid’s Tale has come to life with 27-year-old Marshae Jones being charged with the manslaughterof her unborn baby after being shot in the stomach last December and losing the foetus as a result. The shooter, Ebony Jemison, walked free after the manslaughter charge against her was dismissed. But the blame was swiftly shifted to Jones, who allegedly started the fight with Jamison that led to her being shot in the stomach. The charges against Jones have since been dropped, but this case has made headlines around the globe and raised concerns about control over women’s bodies.

There has long been discussion and disagreement about the rights of a foetus, and police Lieutenant Danny Reid certainly made his stance on this clear through urging people that “the unborn baby is the victim here.” So in its fifth month, the foetus essentially has more value and more rights than the woman carrying it. This is a direct result of the bills passed by Alabama and a number of other states that have led to a near ban on abortion, essentially giving foetuses the same rights of a born baby. This policing of women’s bodies has cast mothers as threat to their own unborn babies, highlighting the glaring misogyny that we are still being faced with.

And so, in cases like Marshae Jones’, women are cast as the villain yet again. But what about the father? Where was he to defend the mother of his unborn child against this attack? According to Amanda Reyes, Executive Director of The Yellowhammer Fund(a member of the National Network of Abortion Funds), “The state of Alabama has proven yet again that the moment a person becomes pregnant their sole responsibility is to produce a live, healthy baby and that it considers any action a pregnant person takes that might impede in that live birth to be a criminal act.”

DOMESTIC VIOLENCE CLAIMS VICTIM #25 OF 2019

An anonymous 27-year-old woman has been murdered at the hands of her partner in a remote North Queensland town. The Kowanyama woman was stabbed multiple times in the neck and torso. She died in the back of an ambulance at 1am on Friday June 28. This woman marks the 25th victim of domestic violence this year. But let me rephrase that. This woman is the 25th to be murdered by a violent attacker who chose to take the life of another, simply because they could.

So is the answer social awareness, education for men and women or rehabilitation for perpetrators? Perhaps it is a combination of all three. We need resources across the country and particularly in small communities where drugs, violence and living below the line is a way of life for so many. And we as a society need to work to end the stigma and re-think the way we report, discuss and think about domestic violence, starting with the way we portray violence and describe the victims, survivors and perpetrators.

It is times like this that #enoughisenough and #metoo seem so minuscule and inefficient. The domestic violence death toll in Australia last year was 63, and it seems that at halfway through 2019 we are on track for a similar figure. But it is not enough to minimise these women to a statistic. There is so much more to the story, and sure these statistics are staggering and induce a wave of solemnity around the country but the names are quickly forgotten. There seems to be a blank space in the move towards equality and ending violence against women, and the lower classes are being left behind. It has been found that women in Indigenous communities like Kowanyama are 32 times more likely to be hospitalised from domestic violence incidents that their no-Indigenous counterparts.

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