What is a woman?

A woman is a daughter, sister, niece, wife, mother, aunt, stepmother, and grandmother. She is the glue that holds the family together. She kisses booboos, heals hurts, encourages the timid, and guides the growth of her family.

A woman is the family organizer, nutritionist, financial advisor, health director, spiritual counselor, laundry expert, and cleaning lady. She provides guidance and protection for her family. In her spare time she also grooms, feeds, and exercises the family pets, and squeezes in some exercise time and hobby time for herself. In addition to all this, a majority of the women today also hold down full-time jobs.

Today’s woman is many things to many people. She keeps the organization running smoothly—whether that is a corporation or family. Most women usually do all this at the sacrifice of her own wants and needs.

Women have played important roles throughout history. They kept watch when Jesus was crucified and were the first to discover the empty tomb. Because he was crucified just before sundown on the Sabbath there was not enough time to properly prepare his body for burial. At sunup the day following the Sabbath the women came with oils and spices to prepare the body. This scene has always struck me as another typical duty women would do. Just as they attend the birth of an individual they are also the ones to oversee the end of that life. Who else could attend to a body with so much love and reverence?

Women played important roles at the birth of our country. The history books are full of stories of our founding fathers but we don’t hear much about the founding mothers. While the men were away from their farms for months at a time arguing over the declaration of our independence from England, it was the women who literally kept the home fires burning.

The women sewed and mended their families’ clothes, cooked their meals, birthed their children, and plowed the fields. Many also fought the enemy whether it was the British, Indians, or the Confederate or Union troops.

If a woman is capable of all this, can anyone please tell me why women have come under attack in what should be an enlightened era? The mood of the country seems to be “keep them barefoot and pregnant”. Women have been attacked on several fronts recently including reproductive rights and equal rights in the workplace.

One of the biggest dangers to women’s equal rights occurred last week when Wisconsin governor Scott Walker signed a bill repealing the state’s Equal Pay Enforcement Act which allowed victims of workplace discrimination to seek damages in state courts. With the repeal of the Equal Pay Enforcement Act it now forces those suffering from job discrimination to seek remedy in the federal courts which is more expensive and time-consuming.

Wisconsin’s Equal Pay Enforcement Act came about in 2009 as a response to a suit by Lilly Ledbetter who had been discriminated against by her employer for years without her knowledge. When she learned of the discrimination she filed suit in federal court and won but was thrown out by the Supreme Court which ruled that she filed the suit too late and should have filed it as soon as the discrimination began—even though she didn’t know about it for years.

With the repeal of the Equal Pay Enforcement Act women can be paid less and their employers can get away with it as long as women don’t have knowledge of it for a certain amount of time. If this can happen in Wisconsin it can happen in other states also.

Women’s reproductive rights, birth control, and painful invasive procedures have also been in the news recently. With this and now elimination of protection for equal pay, what is next for the hard-working women of this country?

I don’t understand this animosity toward women. What has the woman in your life done for you today? Give her a kiss and say “thank you” then vow to make sure her rights will be legally protected.

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