A Message From The Creator

A Message From The Creator

Inspirational Woman Of The Day: Cynthia McKinney

Inspirational Woman Of The Day: Cynthia McKinney

Women’s News: Women’s Well-being: Ranking America’s Top 25 Metro Areas

Women’s News: Women’s Well-being: Ranking America’s Top 25 Metro Areas

Inspiration Of Style: Jessica Brown Findlay

Inspiration Of Style: Jessica Brown Findlay

Women’s Health: What’s Good for Women Is Good for the Planet

Women’s Health: What’s Good for Women Is Good for the Planet

A Message From The Creator

“All personal breakthroughs being with a change in beliefs. So how do we change? The most effective way is to get your brain to associate massive pain to the old belief. You must feel deep in your gut that not only has this belief cost you pain in the past, but it’s costing you in the present and, ultimately, can only bring you pain in the future. Then you must associate tremendous pleasure to the idea of adopting a new, empowering belief.”

-Tony Robbins

Inspirational Woman Of The Day: Cynthia McKinney

Cynthia McKinney was born on March 17, 1955, in Atlanta, Georgia. In 1992 she became the first African American woman to represent Georgia in the House of Representatives. In 2002 and 2006 she lost to other Democrats in primary races. In 2008 McKinney was the Green Party presidential candidate with activist Rosa A. Clemente as her running mate. McKinney lives in DeKalb County, Georgia.


Politician. Born on March 17, 1955, in Atlanta, Georgia. An experienced state and national legislator, Cynthia McKinney is now seeking the highest elected office in the United States the presidency. She is the Green Party candidate for the 2008 presidential election, following in the footsteps of earlier African American female politicians, such   Chisholm, who have also tried to win the top executive post.

Her father, Billy McKinney, was one of the first African American police officers in Atlanta. Her mother, Leola, worked as a nurse at one of the city??s hospitals for several decades. From an early age, McKinney was active in the civil rights movement, participating in sit-ins and demonstrations. After graduating from St. Joseph High School, she went to the University of Southern California. There McKinney earned a bachelors degree in international relations in 1978.

McKinney continued her studies at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. She earned a masters degree from the program and then became a diplomatic fellow at Atlanta’s Spelman College in 1984.

In the mid-1980s, McKinney married Jamaican politician Coy Grandison. The couple had one child together, a son named Coy Jr., before divorcing. McKinney’s father submitted her name as a write-in candidate for the state legislature in Georgia in 1986. Despite the fact that she was still living in Jamaica at the time, McKinney was able to get more than 40 percent of the popular vote. She launched a campaign for that seat two years later and won a post in the state’s House of Representatives.

By this time, McKinney’s father was a well-established member of the House of Representatives in Georgia. The two became the first father-daughter team to serve in the legislature at the same time in the state. In 1992, Cynthia McKinney broke new ground on a national level. She became the first African American woman to represent Georgia in the House of Representatives.

Taking office in January 1993, McKinney led the Womens Caucus Task Force on Children, Youth and Families and served on the Armed Forces and International Relations Committees. She showed an interest in foreign policy and was handpicked by President Bill Clinton to attend the presidential inauguration in Nigeria. McKinney was also involved in trying to open up diplomatic relations with the Democratic Republic of Congo.

In addition to her support for many liberal causes and ideas, McKinney was also known around the capital for her braided hair and gold-colored tennis shoes. She faced a new political challenge in

1995 when the district she represented the 11th was redrawn after the Supreme Court ruled that its boundaries were unconstitutional. She then ran for the seat from the 4th district and won in 1996.

Holding on to her post for two more terms, McKinney remained active in foreign affairs. She campaigned for the creation of a Palestinian state within Israel-occupied lands and questioned some of the nation’s positions on the Middle East. In the wake of the September 11th terrorist attacks in 2001, she wrote a letter of support to a Saudi prince who called the U.S. government to review its Middle East policies. The letter brought McKinney a lot of unpleasant media attention, including criticism from other members of Congress. Senator Zell Miller said that. No one . . . should be saying anything in a time of war that could even remotely be interpreted as agreeing with the position of our enemy, according to an article in The New York Times.

In 2002, McKinney found herself in a tough primary race with Denise Majette, a former judge and a more moderate Democrat. Adding to her challenge were reports that some of her campaign contributions came from Arab-American individuals and organizations that were under investigation for possible links to terrorism. In the end, McKinney lost to Majette.

Two years later, McKinney regained her post in the House representing the 4th district. She continued to be outspoken, criticizing the government’s handling of Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

In April 2006, McKinney got into an altercation with a Capitol Hill police officer when she tried to go around a metal detector. She reportedly struck him in the chest with her hand when he tried to stop her, but she was eventually cleared of any wrongdoing by a grand jury. Later that year, McKinney faced another challenging fight for re-election. She was the subject of a positive documentary American Blackout, which was released before the primaries. This was not enough, however, for her to beat out challenger Henry C. Johnson. He became the Democratic candidate for the 4th district after a runoff primary.

Defeated but undeterred, McKinney soon returned to the political arena. She was selected as the Green Party candidate for the 2008 presidential election at the party??s national convention in Chicago that year. Community activist Rosa A. Clemente became her vice-presidential running mate. This all-female ticket faces an uphill battle in the general election from Democrats Barack Obama and Joe Biden and Republicans John McCain and Sarah Palin.

Women’s News: Women’s Well-being: Ranking America’s Top 25 Metro Areas

By  | June 20, 2012

Since the women’s rights movement began in the 1960s, women have secured many professional and personal rights, from more equitable treatment in the workplace to the legalization of abortion.  However, inequities remain: Women still earn less than men and make up a higher percentage of the working poor despite higher rates of college attendance.

A 2012 study by Measure of America, a division of the Social Science Research Council, “Women’s Well-Being: Ranking America’s Top 25 Metro Areas” (PDF), compared the experiences of women in the most populous metropolitan areas of the United States. The researchers used the American Human Development Index, a summary measure that synthesizes government data into three primary categories: a long and healthy life, access to knowledge and a decent standard of living.

Key findings include:

  • The top-scoring metropolitan areas were Washington, D.C., San Francisco, Boston, Minneapolis–St. Paul and New York; the lowest scores were Riverside–San Bernardino, San Antonio, Houston, Tampa–St. Petersburg and Pittsburgh.
  • Women in Washington, D.C. ($37,657), San Francisco ($35,380) and Boston ($31,503) earned significantly more annually than their counterparts in Riverside–San Bernardino ($22,306), Pittsburgh ($23,557) and San Antonio ($24,961). The 2012 poverty guideline for a family of four in the continental United States is $23,050. Women tended to earn more in areas where a higher percentage of women were unmarried.
  • Educational attainment and enrollment accounts for much of the differences in wages. Close to 20% of women in Washington, D.C., hold an advanced degree compared to only 6.9% of those in San Bernardino. “In Pittsburgh, Boston and Minneapolis–St. Paul, only about 6% of young women ages 25 to 34 did not complete high school, the best outcome on this indicator among the 25 cities. In contrast, in Riverside–San Bernardino, Los Angeles and Houston, that rate is almost 17%, nearly three times the rate among the top three.”
  • “African American women face disproportionate health challenges. For instance, they are more than 15 times as likely to be diagnosed with HIV/AIDS as white women, and three times as likely as Latina women.” Close to 44% of African American women are obese, compared to 27% of all women, and they are more likely to be poor and live in distressed areas.
  • Asian-American women are better educated and live longer and are less likely to be obese (7.9% vs. 27%) or smoke (3.6% vs. 15%) than other women.

The researchers noted that “understanding differences among women is critical to crafting policy and making public investments that meet their needs and expand their choices and opportunities.”


Inspiration Of Style: Jessica Brown Findlay

Jessica’s Style

Jessica Brown Findlay is late. But when she finally arrives, the anonymous room in Soho, here in London, becomes inundated with the magical warmth of her presence. She is somewhat puzzling: it is difficult to figure out whether her beauty is the cause or effect of such contagious enthusiasm. The enigma lingers for the entire duration of the encounter.

It is only afterwards, when the impression is settled, that the solution, perhaps more banal than predicted, appears clear: Jessica is an authentic celebration of her life. Her ascent proceeds rapidly. The important role of Lady Sybil Crawley in the successful ITV period drama Downton Abbey and then the film Albatross (2011) opened the road to a cinematographic career no longer just a promising one.

All this after a sudden stop to a completely different profession, that of a classical ballet dancer. And now she is there, on the big screen roller coaster. “As much as the experience of acting may be thrilling, I like to have moments in which my telephone is switched off and no one knows where I am: it also helps me to be a better actress”. These are words that reveal a maturity that one would not expect from a twenty-year-old, the same that is revealed in the relationship she has with her own body, and not only…

“Now I have a grown-up attitude with regards to physical and mental health. I love the softness of my figure. Doing sport is of course fundamental to have a healthy body. But nothing conventional, however: only a bit of Bikram yoga, that calms me and helps me concentrate”.

Leonardo Clausi, Vogue Italia, June 2012, n. 742, p.186

Women’s Health: What’s Good for Women Is Good for the Planet

Maggie Fox

President and CEO of The Climate Reality Project

This week marks the 20th anniversary of the Rio Earth Summit, the pivotal 1992 event that put climate change on the international map. The theme of this year’s Rio+20 summit is sustainable development — economic growth that sustains us in the present without placing the lives and welfare of future generations in jeopardy.

Many of the most daunting and important challenges of the 21st century are the subjects of debate and negotiation at the Summit: how we create and use energy, confront global climate change, and adjust to a rapidly growing population.

Yes, these are huge challenges, but in the last 20 years we have learned one clear and resounding truth: that a commitment to protect the rights of women and young people around the world is a critical step toward a sustainable future.

There are 200 million women in the world who want to use contraception to prevent pregnancy, but don’t have access to these basic services. Access to integrated reproductive health services for all is essential — including maternity care and safe, effective, affordable and acceptable modern methods of contraception. By reducing maternal and child mortality and improving the health of women, these health services have a powerful impact on sustainable development.

Access to modern birth control isn’t a side issue — we truly can’t have sustainable development without it. Empowering women creates a positive ripple effect — creating healthy and more prosperous families and communities, slowing population growth, and helping restore the balance between people and the air, land and water we all depend upon for life.

In so doing, we will also dramatically slow the growth of dangerous greenhouse gas emissions — to the same degree as if we increased the world’s reliance on wind power dramatically, scaled up the efficiency of buildings and vehicles, or made huge strides in reducing deforestation. Now that’s a huge win for women, families and for the planet.

We are also too far behind in ensuring access to comprehensive sexuality education. An essential, powerful impact of the Rio+20 negotiations would be to affirm the human rights of women, men and adolescents to make decisions related to their sexuality, including sexual and reproductive health, free from coercion, discrimination and violence.

But isn’t that too controversial to make progress on now? No, because despite the recent dustups in the United States, public opinion polls consistently show that the vast majority of Americans believe family planning is essential and support open access to contraception here and abroad.

Rio+20 presents a once-in-a-generation opportunity to ensure that women’s health, reproductive rights, and sexuality education are recognized and incorporated in our vision of and an action plan for our shared sustainable future. This is the moment to transform the human side of sustainable development into reality.

Maggie L. Fox is the President and CEO, The Climate Reality Project. Since joining ACP in 2009, Maggie has led a campaign to help citizens around the world discover the truth about the climate crisis and take meaningful steps to bring about change. She is a veteran of numerous political, environmental and national issue campaigns, and has over 30 years of experience mobilizing people to work for progressive change.

This blog post was previously published on Climate Progress.

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