Without the help of the U.S. War Machine, Chile has elected a socialist, agnostic, separated mother of three named Michelle Bachelet as their President, in hopes of moving the country towards democracy and away from the U.S. sponsored and backed dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet.
Bachelet, the first woman president of Chile, may have some scores to settle. Her father, Alberto Bachelet, was an air force brigadier general, who died in prison in March 1974 as a victim of torture for opposing the regime of Pinochet. In 1975, Bachelet and her mother were also imprisoned for 2 weeks at a notorious torture center, but later went into exile for 5 years. And poof – she is now president of Chile. I am sure it took a bit more perserverance, intellignce and drive than “Poof, now you’re president”. I am also sure that this United States is absolutely not ready for a woman, especially an agnostic, socialist, UNMARRIED (GASP), and independent woman of Ms. Bachelet’s sort, as President, here or abroad. We best fit to become ready, though, as we can’t possibly invade every country that doesn’t place our wanted representatives into their top slots as President. Which brings us to Africa. (Somehow…)
Over in Liberia, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has also been elected President, the first ever for the African continent. I don’t know much about her. I do know that she, too, was in exile from her country. She is Harvard educated, and had Condoleeza Rice and Laura Bush as guests at her inauguration ceremony, which adds to the verdict still being out, for me, on Ms. Sirleaf. I am hopeful though, that, as a woman, she will begin to provide work towards peaceful resolution’s with CÃ´te d’Ivoire.
Which is precisely what I have been thinking about, of late. Does a woman as leader guarantee more thought and action towards peace, or is that just wishful thinking because we can have babies and breast feed? I know I would like to think that somehow, due to our mere physiology, we, as womyn, can help the world to understand peaceful resolution. I’m not yet convinced, though.
While I have been pondering these new turn of events abroad, I found that today also marks the 33rd anniversary of the Roe v. Wade decision, making abortion legal and safe for the women of this country. This ruling is under attack now more than ever, and many women lead the blinded adherence and march towards this pseudo-Christian mythology of Life.
I will look to our new women Presidents and their countries to see how this new leadership takes shape. How it affects our outlook, as women, to remain involved in the control of our wombs, our world, and our future as peace-seeking vessels. And I will hope, now more than ever.