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Tipsheet

Big Think Survey Puts America in Top Ten Worst Countries to Be a Woman

AP Photo/Cliff Owen

The Big Think may want to find some new "experts." In a poll of over 500 "experts on women's issues" conducted between March 26 and May 4, the outlet found that America was among the top ten most dangerous countries for women. 

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In its analysis, Big Think revealed that the "surprise" addition of the U.S. was a result of the recent "Me Too" campaigns that have exposed a series of sexual assault cases.

The U.S. did not figure in the Top 10 for the previous survey in 2011. Its 'surprise' addition this time, experts say, is because of the #MeToo movement and #TimesUp campaign, highlighting issues of sexual violence and harassment – both in the high-profile cases that started the ball rolling, and the many others that came to light since.

The culture that spurred the "Me Too" movement is disturbing, and those crimes have rightfully been uncovered. But most agree it's absurd to loop the U.S. with the other nine nations, whose record of human rights abuses are far more egregious.

More than a few people asked Big Think - and the academics and policymakers who it surveyed - why so many people from Central America were rushing to seek asylum in the States, if it's so terrible.

Women's rights activists in the U.S. will tell you that Republican lawmakers are routinely passing laws that are "taking women back" to the 1950s. In their eyes, President Trump has done a lot of the damage. He's pledged to nominate pro-life judges, has upended several pro-abortion measures, and rolled back Obama's birth control mandate. The Women's March that began in 2017 was largely organized in response to Trump's perceived "anti-women" agenda. 

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Now a few words about the other nine nations on the list. India sits at the top in part because an average of one rape every 15 minutes has been reported in recent years. In Saudi Arabia, women are expected to have male guardians. They recently celebrated the end of the ban on women driving, but most agree that is a small victory. The list of things Saudi women still cannot do is rather long.  

In Bangladesh, which isn't even included on the list, women are often targets of acid attacks by men who feel spurned. The same goes for females in Cambodia (who was also not included on the list), Afghanistan, Pakistan and India.

When I first saw the report, Malala Yousafzai immediately came to mind. As a teenager growing up in Pakistan,  Yousafzai did the unthinkable: she pursued an education. So, the Taliban shot her in the head. She survived and now thrives as a women's rights activist, even earning a Nobel Peace Prize in 2014.

Tell me again how bad women have it here?

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