CLICKING: JANUARY 2019

Clicking is a clickable zapping where you are provided with the most important news of the month. This month in the Clicking: demonstrations for women’s rights, controversies, the planned release of Cyntoia Brown, and a record number of black women elected judges in Texas…

In India, demonstrations are increasing in support of the cancellation of the ban on women entering temples

In India, women are banned from temples as soon as they’ve had their first menstruations, and this has been the case for centuries. Last January, the Supreme Court lifted this ban and two brave young women from Kerala province entered a sacred temple for the first time. Since then, demonstrations have increased in the province and throughout the country to support the annulment of this ancestral rule by the Supreme Court. The two young women, constantly threatened by religious extremists since their act of bravery, were placed under police protection.

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In Angola, the law has finally evolved, now decriminalizing homosexual relations

On 23 January, Angola wrote its country’s history, removing a historical reference in the criminal code that criminalizes “vices against nature”. Often translated as a direct condemnation of homosexual relations, this article of the Penal Code has simply been struck out of the Angolan legal texts. A major advance for the country, which sets an example for its neighbors.

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In Brazil, a gay MP gives up his mandate following an increasing number of threats since the election of President Jair Bolsonaro

Jean Wyllys, an openly gay MP for Rio de Janeiro and engaged in the struggle for LGBTQI+ rights, announced on January 24 that he was giving up his third term and leaving the country. He was a member of the Socialist Party and was much appreciated in his province but even before taking office, Jean Wyllys decided to resign his position on account of the impressive increase in attacks and threats he has faced since the election of the internationally controversial and strongly anti-LGBTQI+ extreme right-wing candidate: Jair Bolsonaro.

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Amina Maelainine, deputy of the Islamist party PJD, without her veil ©DR

A Moroccan Islamist MP creates controversy by appearing without a veil 

Moroccan MP Amina Maelainine of the very conservative Islamist party PJD has been in the news since January. The cause was a photo of her on social networks, where she appeared without a veil, with her hair in the wind and wearing a short-sleeved t-shirt. An outfit to which she did not accustom her fellow citizens during her political appearances apparently, since they are calling her a hypocrite, defending on the one hand the very conservative positions within the government, and on the other hand displaying a certain progressive freedom during her personal time.

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Rahaf, the Saudi refugee in Canada, tells her story

Saudi Arabian Rahaf Mohammed Al-Qunun, an 18-year-old woman, had decided to flee Saudi Arabia to escape “oppression and depression”. After taking refuge for several days in a hotel room in Bangkok in which she had barricaded herself, the young woman was granted asylum in Canada. Arriving in Toronto in early January, she tells us her story, the reasons for her desperate escape, her past ordeal and her new life.

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17 black women elected judges in the state of Texas, a historic record

Last November, 17 black women were elected judges in the state of Texas. They became operational this month. All from the Democratic Party, they had decided to join forces and campaign together, under the same front, and under the slogan “Black Girl Magic Texas”. A slogan that has done them justice, since they break a historical record for this former southern state, traditionally rather conservative.

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Cyntoia Brown in May 2018 ©Lacy Atkins/AP/SIPA

Cyntoia Brown, the American teenager sentenced to life imprisonment, will be released

Fifteen years after her life sentence for murder and prostitution, Cyntoia Brown, incarcerated in Tennessee for shooting a 43-year-old man when she was only 16 and forced into prostitution, will finally be released from prison in August. The case had resurfaced in recent months following a Fox channel report on the young woman’s squalid living conditions, and thanks to the very shared hashtag on the #FreeCyntoiaBrown social networks.

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New York legalizes abortion after 24 weeks under certain conditions

On January 22, the New York State Senate passed the Reproductive Health Act, a law allowing abortion up to 24 weeks of pregnancy. Be careful, this does not mean that all women can have an abortion until the last day of their pregnancy, for no reason! Indeed, these late abortions can only be performed if the mother’s health is in danger and/or the fetus is not viable. 

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In France, rape cases will no longer be tried by the Assize Court

This month, French National Assembly voted to remove jurors from the Assize Court for crimes of rape. Thus, rape is now considered a “light” crime that will never again have the seriousness it was really given. We are talking about “correctionalization of rape”. A case that could and should have been tried in two or three days in an Assize Court will now be examined in a few hours by the “criminal court”.

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Women’s March 2019 ©Jack Gruber/USA TODAY

Accusations against the founders of the Women’s March divide

The 3rd Women’s March took place on January 19. Initially in Washington, it was also simultaneously in several major American cities, such as New York. Thousands of activists braved the cold to demonstrate against President Donald Trump and against sexual harassment and violence against women, but also for equal pay for men and women and the right to abortion… However, the number of demonstrators was lower than expected, and was counted at 60,000 in New York against the expected 100,000. Some organizers had indeed been accused of anti-Semitism, which strongly contributed to the division of those supporting the march: this year, there were two separate marches.

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CEO of palliative care center in the United States resigns after patient was raped multiple times

A patient from a palliative care facility in Phoenix, in a coma and vegetative state for more than 14 years, gave birth unexpectedly at the end of 2018. Following this birth, an investigation revealed that this patient had been raped multiple times by one of the staff responsible for her care, and that these non-consensual reports had resulted in a pregnancy that had not been detected by the medical staff. Last January, the CEO, Bill Timmons, finally decided to resign.

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In the United Kingdom, taking photos under skirts (“upskirting”) are prohibited by law

Men who take pictures under girls’ skirts (without their consent, of course), will soon be sentenced to two years’ imprisonment. Parliament has passed the bill but the text is still awaiting the signature of Queen Elizabeth II before it can come into force.

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©PLOT facebook

A school in Binghamton, NY, put on notice after four black girls were strip-searched 

Four 12-year-old black girls were strip-searched for drugs at school simply because they seemed “hyper and giddy”. They had to undress in front of the nurse and the assistant principal. As soon as they were notified (by the girls, not the school…), parents were quick to complain and were able to hold the floor for two hours at a school board meeting, presenting their demands: put an end to strip searches of children for any reason, the removal of the school leaders and staff involved, and a public apology to students, parents, and the community.

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For the first time in the United States, female Marines will be able to train alongside men

The fifty young women who have just joined the Marine Corps (the least feminized in the US Army) will be able to follow the same 12-week training cycle for the first time alongside their male colleagues. However, these recruits will be trained by instructors of the same sex.

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Taraji P. Henson poses with her star in Hollywood ©Matt Baron/REX/Shutterstock/SIPA

Actress Taraji P. Henson gets a star on Hollywood Boulevard

Taraji P. Henson, 48-year-old actress and Golden Globe winner for her performance of Cookie in Empire, has just had the honor of having a star in her name on the Walk of Fame in Los Angeles.

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Missy Elliott becomes the first female rapper to be admitted to the Songwriters Hall Of Fame

Nominated in November, Missy Elliott was this month admitted to the Songwriters Hall of Fame and became the first female rapper to enter, and the third hip-hop personality after Jermaine Dupri and Jay-Z. 

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Cardi B provoked by a Republican journalist on twitter

The rapper has always been very vocal politically on the networks, especially against Trump. Recently, she spoke out against the construction of the infamous wall on the American border. This upset Tomi Lahren, a pro-Trump journalist, who hastened to belittle Cardi on twitter by ironically stating: “Looks like Cardi B is the latest genius political mind to endorse the Democrats!” The rapper was not long in coming and quickly responded by insulting her, then saying: “You’re so blinded with racism that you don’t even realize the decisions the president you root for is destroying the country you claim to love so much”. To be continued…

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