Thursday, April 11, 2019

News About Women, 4/11/2019

1.  Katie Bouman had an important role to play in the development of the computer program which made the black hole photograph possible: 

Katie Bouman led development of a computer program that made the breakthrough image possible.
The remarkable photo, showing a halo of dust and gas 500 million trillion km from Earth, was released on Wednesday.
For Dr Bouman, its creation was the realisation of an endeavour previously thought impossible.
Excitedly bracing herself for the groundbreaking moment, Dr Bouman was pictured loading the image on her laptop.
"Watching in disbelief as the first image I ever made of a black hole was in the process of being reconstructed," she wrote in the caption to the Facebook post.
She started making the algorithm three years ago while she was a graduate student at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).

2.  In Sudan, women have had just about enough:

Sudan’s military has overthrown the country’s longtime president, Omar al-Bashir. It’s a huge win for the hundreds of thousands of Sudanese protesters who have taken to the streets for months calling for his ouster — and for the brave women who have been a driving force in the protest movement.
Sudan’s public order laws, which control women’s freedom of dress, behavior, association, and education, have led to the oppression and punishment of Sudanese women for years and enabled a patriarchal system to thrive. Girls as young as 10 years old are legally allowed to marry, and girls are frequently forced into marriages with much older men without their consent. Marital rape is also legal in the country.
Yet despite having faced this kind of repression and exploitation for decades — or, perhaps, because of that fact — women have been at the forefront of the nationwide protests since they began in December. Reports estimate that more than 70 percent of the protesters who have gone out into the streets are women, according to the BBC.

3.  Women have also had enough of harassment at Nigeria's street markets.

4.  Meanwhile, in Texas, a Republican state Representative Tony Tinderholt proposed a House bill which would have criminalized abortion and could have opened up

the possibility of prosecutors charging a woman who has an abortion with criminal homicide, which can be punishable by the death penalty under current Texas law.
But then the Republican state Representative Jeff Leach said that he would not allow the proposed bill to leave the House Committee on Judiciary and Civil Jurisprudence he chairs for a vote in the full House.

Still, Tinderholt is unrepentant:

Tinderholt released a statement Wednesday evening defending the bill, explaining that exempting mothers from homicide charges would “treat unborn children differently than other people who are murdered.”

5.  And finally, though not really a news item, the more I read about Stacy Abrams, the better I like her.  She is whip-smart and has great political skills.