1. “Remember Thomas Jefferson’s Betrayal,” a piece by Bill Moyers in the July 2, 2012 issue of Reader Supported News, an online compilation service. Jefferson penned those immortal words, “All men are created equal.” But he didn’t free his slaves, even those he fathered with his slave Sally Hemmings.” As Moyers says, “So, the ideal of equality Jefferson proclaimed, he also betrayed.” Jefferson wrote about “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” But he denied it to others. Moyers writes that Jefferson “lived it wrong, denying to others the rights he claimed for himself.” And so, “Jefferson came to embody the oldest and longest war of all – the war between the self and truth, between what we know and how we live.”
2. “What’s Sex Got to Do with It?” asks Kavita N. Ramdas in the Summer 2012 issue of the Stanford Social Innovation Review. “Girls are hot. Reproductive rights are not,” she starts out. And she ends with: “…if we want our daughters to grow up with confidence, courage, and competence, we must make sure that they grow up with knowledge about and access to contraception. We should build schools, fund libraries, encourage teacher training, and support free tuition, but we also need to push for comprehensive access to sex education for both girls and boys, not just aborad, but right here in the United States. The words of Margaret Sanger are as prescient now as they were when she first uttered them: ‘No woman can call herself free who does not own and control her body. No woman can call herself free until she can choose consciously whether she will or will not be a mother.’ If the future freedom of the world depends on the freedom of women, it must include sexual and reproductive freedom. If not, their ‘freedom,’ to paraphrase Janis Joplin, will be just another word for ‘nothing left to lose.'”
3. I just read Nora Ephron’s 1996 commencement address at Wellesley. This is a must-read for women and men. “Don’t delude yourself that the powerful cultural values that wrecked the lives of so many of my classmates have vanished from the earth…. Don’t underestimate how much antagonism there is toward women and how many people wish we could turn the clock back.” Thanks to dear friend, Alene.