Feminist Weekly Update: May 31, 2016

Feminist Update
Your weekly update on all things feminism. Keep up to date on the election, the news, and what is going on in the world of women.
Women and Girls Foundation Updates:

The Women and Girls Foundation is now on Instagram! Follow us at @wgfpa!
In the News:
Senate passes equal pay resolution for U.S. National Soccer teams: Last week, the Senate unanimously approved a nonbinding resolution calling on the U.S. Soccer Federation to “immediately end gender pay inequity and to treat all athletes with the respect and dignity those athletes deserve.” This action comes after five members of the U.S. Women’s National Team filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in March. One of the resolution’s sponsors, Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash), said: “This isn’t just about the money. It’s also about the message it sends to women and girls across our country and the world. The pay gap between the men and women’s national soccer teams is emblematic of what is happening all across our country.” For more: Huffington Post
Hidden heart disease named top health threat for U.S. women: The results of a recent survey confirmed that many U.S. women believe breast cancer to be the biggest threat to their health, though heart disease actually poses a much greater risk. Every year in the U.S. about 40,000 women die from breast cancer, according to statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Meanwhile, roughly 10 times that number die from heart disease. Greater awareness and advances in detection and treatment have dramatically decreased breast cancer deaths over the past few decades, but heart disease now claims the life of 1 in every 4 women. For more: NPR
Victim speaks out in widely-protested gang rape case in Brazil: Brazilians protest in front of the Legislative Assembly of Rio de Janeiro on May 27, 2016, against a gang rape of a 16-year-old girl. (VANDERLEI ALMEIDA/AFP/Getty Images)The teenage victim of an alleged gang rape in Rio de Janeiro spoke out for the first time last week as police made the first arrests. The case has sparked several large protests in Brazil, including gatherings in front of the Legislative Assembly, Supreme Court, and on Copacabana Beach. “If I have to wait for the justice system, they’ve already shown that nothing is going to happen,” the victim said. She also commented about the death threats she received: “It not only hurt me, it hurt my soul, because people judged me, tried to blame me for something which was not my fault.” For more: New York Times
South Carolina becomes 13th state to ban 20-week abortions: South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley signed a bill into law last week that makes it illegal for women to have abortions after the twentieth week of their pregnancies. The bill does not provide exceptions for rape or incest. For more: CNN
Women become local leaders in Syria as war upends gender norms: As many men are killed or imprisoned during the ongoing war in Syria, more and more women are at the forefront of efforts to solve local problems and to counter the seemingly never-ending violence. Women are developing alternative media platforms, launching community initiatives, and taking over jobs previously dominated by men. Reem Kanjo, a manager of the Women Now center in the northwestern city of Saraqeb, said: “The situation will gradually change with the continuous insistence of women to have a role in decision-making.” A fourth-year student at the University of Damascus commented: “The current conflict in Syria has played a positive role in breaking the stereotype of women as housewives. Women today have a great opportunity and they should take advantage of it, especially with the number of men being lost in Syria to the fighting, imprisonment and abduction.” For more: Huffington Post
Male activists help represent the fight for better reproductive health internationally: They're guys who stand up for women's rights. Left to right: Patrick Segawa and Steven Twinomugisha of Uganda, Mark Gachagua of Kenya and Bryan Eric Mallari of the Philippines at the Women Deliver conference.A handful of male activists at the Women Deliver Conference in Copenhagen last week are among the many changemakers worldwide advocating for better reproductive health. These activists are all dedicated to bringing men and boys into conversations about sexual health — “We don’t separate boys and girls when we give classes,” said Steven Twinomugisha, a 27-year-old in Uganda who works with nonprofits to change attitudes about gender and family planning. They also take care not to silence potential women activists. “There are times when I’ve had to become silent,” Zimbabwean advocate Yemurai Nyoni said. “You have to know when there’s someone better than you to speak.” For more: NPR
Do you know the contributions of women to Memorial Day? If not, check out this Forbes article!
Election Updates: 
Donald Trump clinches Republican nomination: Last week, Donald Trump reached the magic number of 1,237 delegates necessary to officially claim the Republican nomination. He reached this milestone after 29 unbound delegates decided to support him at the Republican convention. For more: NPR
Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders prepare for California primary: Both of the Democratic presidential candidates, Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders, are spending a significant amount of campaign time and resources in preparation for the California primary contest on June 7th. The state is a delegate-rich prize, and a new survey from the Public Policy Institute of California shows Clinton in a virtual tie with Bernie Sanders among Democratic primary likely voters. For more: NPR
Feminists of the Week:
Jessica Post St. Martin places her hand to her heart and bows to the Queen at the Ohio Renaissance Festival as she passes. (Photo credit: Allison Yeager) An all-female jousting troupe called the Knights of the Rose are some of the rare female representatives in the extreme and niche sport modeled after the medieval activity of knights. In the Middle Ages, the joust was an opportunity for knights to flaunt their wealth, strength, and masculinity. The creation of this all-female jousting team brought freedom from “ego and testosterone,” according to Gesa Wellenstein, who had been jousting with co-ed groups for five years before joining the Roses in 2013. Roses leader Jessica Post commented that at Renaissance Faires, women no longer confine themselves to costuming as wenches, or maidens, or peasant girls. “There’s been this huge movement of women realizing how strong we are, and they’ll come out dressed in armor whether they know how to use it or not,” she explained. “Because we have warrior hearts too.” For more: New York Times