To my women friends:
“1. If you had been born in remote village near the world’s second highest mountain, K2 in Pakistan, your “school” would have been an open-air-platform – no roof, no walls. As winter came, you were freezing all day long. In the summer you baked in searing heat. Even the worse, the village could not afford a full-time teacher, so you and your friends were expected to sit on the platform eight hours a day, several days a week, and go over your lesson quietly, on your own, with no supervising adult. If you are a girl in that village, you’d consider yourself very very lucky, to have the privilege of sitting on that open-air platform among all the boys to receive lessons at all. Usually it is 70 boys and 4 girls. Girls are culturally forbidden to attend school, so only few brave families, those willing to buck the trend, sent the girls to learn how to read, to add and subtract, to learn something about history and science and their world. The rest of the village girls would remain ignorant and illiterate all their lives.
2. If you were a girl trying to go to school in Kandahar, Afghanistan in the fall 2008, the local Taliban thug could stopped you, asked if you were on your way to school, and, when you said yes, pulled your burka back and thrown acid in your face. This happened to Shamsia Husseini, age fifteen, her sister, and thirteen other girls. Month later after their burns were treated, the girls returned to school, with painful scars and blurred vision. Shamasia suffered some hearing loss in the attack and had to cup her hand to her ear to hear the lessons. “My parents told me to keep coming to school even if I am killed,” said Shamasia, at 17, in a moment after class. “The people who did this to me do not women to be educated. They want us to be stupid things”.
3. If you had been born in a hill tribe in Laos, your school might have been two open-air-rooms, each with holes in the roof the size Volkswagens. Without money for books or paper, much less computers, your lessons would consist entirely of repeating after the teacher as he or she occasionally wrote something on the blackboard and you sat on the dirt floor. When it rained, as it does often there, school would not be in session.
4. If you had been born a girl in the southern African country in Zambia, after puberty you would like to stay at home one week per month because you could not afford sanitary pads. Initially you might try to use an reuse old rag during your period, but because your school probably lack running water and a place to rinse the rags, you wind up simply staying home and waiting out your periods while the boys go on learning. Missing this much school would probably cause you to fall so far behind you just gave the school entirely.
5. If you had been born a girl in Nepal, instead of going to school an aunt or trafficker could have taken you across the border, selling you into prostitution at age ten. Border guards would look other way as you were trucked into India and sold into sex slavery, where you’d be drugged, raped, and forced to prostitute yourself for seven days a week, without ever seeing a penny of the money you were producing for your pimps and traffickers.”
From Lisa Bloom’s book “Think”.
I am sharing these stories with you to make us to realize how lucky we are to be born in countries where women treated equally and we have a lot of rights and opportunities. Remember about it and do the best of your life on behalf of the sisters in the third world countries who do not have what we do.