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A long way, but we’re not there yet

Community Columnist

— The modern human is estimated to have been around for approximately 200,000 years or 2,000 centuries, give or take a lifetime. Women were not able to vote in this state until 1917, less than one century ago, and that triumph was achieved despite the fears of men everywhere that political gossip would cause the womenfolk to neglect the home, burn the biscuits and forget to mend the britches.

Susan B. Anthony once asked NY Tribune editor Horace Greeley for his support. He refused, questioning what she would do in the event of war.

“I would do exactly what you would do,” Anthony responded. “I would sit in my office behind my desk and write to encourage others to fight.”

Things have gotten better for women like Hillary, Adele, Lady Gaga and the ubiquitous Oprah, not to mention the Lady Lakers field hockey team repeating back in November, a year after giving Cazenovia its first state title in any sport. However, it’s not the same in other parts of the world.

Though women in Afghanistan have won back the basic rights of education, voting and work since the Taliban government was toppled in 2001, they face an uncertain future as the government is once again keeping company with the ultra Islamics. Female Afghan lawmakers and analysts warn the talks could result in women losing the rights they have regained but still struggle to exercise in a male-dominated society.

“It is not easy being a female leader in Afghanistan. I suffer from it constantly,” said Farida Nekzad, the vice president of the South Asia Media Commission and the managing editor of Afghanistan’s sole independent news agency, Wakht. Continually careful about her safety, she spearheads coverage on domestic violence, the bartering of girls and women between families and the illegal practice of forced marriages in a country that can only boast a 14 percent female literacy rate.

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