Wednesday 5: The Best of the Internet This Week

In this week’s Wednesday 5: Sofia Vergara’s skit at the Emmys erupts in accusations of sexism; despite that moment, it was a good night for roles for women over 40; a reminder of the things women couldn’t do 96 years ago; ads that showcase income inequality between men and women banned in certain airports; and in this week’s dose of inspiration, a view of what 90 looks like!



Sofia Vergara, Joke or Sexism at Emmys?

Here at Women’s Voices for Change we have a history of critiquing the Emmy Awards for its treatment of women. Unfortunately, it looks as if last night’s shenanigans starring Sofia Vergara will give another bullet point to add to the list of things not to do at the Emmys. And, it turns out, Vergara’s pedestal moment, when she was asked to twirl about and let the world admire her assets, has been blasted for sexism and objectifying women from sources far and wide, including the Twitterverse, which went off in real time last night on the skit. Sarah Begley of TIME wrote:

Maybe it benefits women like Vergara to play along with jokes like this, but there’s no excuse for the Academy to engage in such a blatantly sexist trope. It does a disservice to Vergara’s skills as an actress and comedian to pretend—even in a self-conscious way— like she’s just a body. Sure, it was self-aware—but a self-aware wink doesn’t work like a get-out-of-jail-free card.

Vergara responded to the hoopla with: “I think it’s absolutely the opposite. It means that somebody can be hot and also be funny and make fun of herself” (Entertainment Weekly). 

. . 2. . A Good Night for Roles for Women Over 40 . Speaking of the Emmys, despite the sexist moment noted above, women fared well overall at this year’s awards, particularly in categories with a history of missing women. Breaking Bad’s Moira Walley-Beckett won for Outstanding Writer for a Drama Series, and director Gail Mancuso won for Outstanding Directing for a Comedy Series for Modern Family. Women post-40 also shone last night: Julia Louis-Dreyfus won as Selina Meyer in HBO’s Veep, Jessica Lange won for American Horror Story: Coven, as did Kathy Bates. Allison Janney won for both Mom and Masters of Sex, and The Good Wife’s Julianna Margulies and Breaking Bad’s Anna Gunn also took home Emmys. Not bad. Dina Gachman of Forbes summed it up: . Roles for women over forty might be slight on the feature film front, but on TV they’re becoming more complex and interesting, and—even more importantly—the creators and execs are casting smart, talented women, rather than pretty objects to be admired. . . 3.

14 Things Women Couldn’t Do 96 Years Ago

votes-for-womenThis year marks the 94th anniversary of the ratification of the 19th amendment, which gave women the right to vote. A few weeks ago we shared a list of things women could not do in the 1960s—a stark reminder of some of the basic rights we perhaps take for granted today. Here, we share with you Marie Claire‘s response about the state of women’s rights in the 1920s, and the many of the lifestyle choices they were forced to make. Here are some highlights from the sobering list

  • The average bride was just 21 years old.
  • Oral contraception didn’t exist.
  • Women could get fired for being pregnant.
  • Women could face difficulty getting a credit card.
  • There were no women in the military.



“Kentucky women are paid $0.76 to every man’s $1”


UltraViolet, a women’s rights advocacy group, was shut out by several airports in its attempts to display ads that feature the data of states with “histories of economic inequality between the sexes, like Texas, Louisiana and North Carolina.” The facts on display on the site state things like:

“Kentucky women are paid $0.76 to every man’s $1”

The reason for the shutout? “We have a policy in which we do not accept political advertising at the airport, and so the ad was declined on those merits,” Angie Tabor, manager of communications and media relations at the Columbus, Ohio, airport, told ThinkProgress. Other politicians have called the data featured on the ads “offensive.”

Read the full story at



What 90 Looks Like!

In this week’s dose of inspiration, we share with you 90-year-old Jean Veloz dancing her birthday away.

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