It’s Time to End Discrimination in Crash Testing

Men’s bodies and women’s bodies behave differently in collisions due to differences in size, muscle structure and bone density. But the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, which issues five-star safety ratings, does not crash test cars with dummies that accurately represent women. The tests strictly prioritize men’s safety and offer only hope that women may stand a chance. Too often, we don’t. 

Crash test dummies that accurately represent women are available today, and other countries are already planning to require them in crash tests. The U.S. should do the same.

Keeping Score: Rep. Ernst Blocks Birth Control Access Bill; Democrats Urge Biden to Extend Student Loan Pause; Amelia Earhart Statue Unveiled in U.S. Capitol

In every issue of Ms., we track research on our progress in the fight for equality, catalogue can’t-miss quotes from feminist voices and keep tabs on the feminist movement’s many milestones. We’re Keeping Score online, too—in in this biweekly round-up.

This week: Massachusetts bill will strengthen reproductive rights for college students; Justice Alito defends his ruling in the name of “religious liberty”; Rep. Cori Bush introduces legislation for reproductive health services; WNBA star Brittney Griner sentenced to nine years in prison; Hong Kong guarantees space for women on company boards; and more.

Opposition to Climate Action and Reproductive Rights Is a Public Health Failure

Climate change continues to cause fatal flooding and heatwaves that are devastating the U.S. while the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022—legislation that would put $369 billion towards climate action and clean energy—is still on a tenuous path to passage. This bill would reduce carbon emissions roughly 40 percent by 2030 and mitigate the most devastating impacts of the climate crisis, such as life-threatening illnesses and housing and job instability—all of which affect the health of pregnant people.

How Solitary Confinement Harms Women

Every day in the U.S., women endure the torture of solitary confinement, kept in cells the size of small closets for over 22 hours a day, isolated and alone, wondering if the state will execute them. Women are uniquely affected by lengthy incarceration; at least 75 percent of the women currently serving death sentences are mothers.

Sabrina Butler-Smith spent six and a half years behind bars—almost three of them on death row—before she was exonerated and set free. She may have been proven innocent, but after being caged in a six by nine foot cell, Butler-Smith told Ms., “You’re never the same.” 

August 2022 Reads for the Rest of Us

Each month, I provide Ms. readers with a list of new books being published by writers from historically excluded groups. It’s already August and the heat is on. And while we are working hard to save the world, we must take time to read, rest and renew.

These 27 books are bound to support you, learn you, trouble you and try you. They may even heal you. So take some time and take care.

Fifty Years After Title IX, a Look at Billie Jean King’s Activism

This year marks the 50th anniversary of Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, the law that opened all educational programs, including sports, to girls in the United States.

Tennis legend Billie Jean King has done more than any other athlete to make the promise of Title IX a reality. She also won a record 20 Wimbledon titles, 13 US titles, four French titles, and two in Australia between 1961 and 1979.

Beyoncé’s Ode to Black Joy: Merging Past and Future in ‘Renaissance’

Renaissance, Beyoncé’s seventh solo album, offers a much different vibe and one that also represents an intergenerational inheritance engulfed in the pleasures of Black dance music vibrating across the various subcultures of Black communities around the world.

Black women—across genders, sexualities and communities—have been the blueprint, and Beyoncé’s Renaissance proves that.

We Heart: P!nk’s New Protest Anthem, ‘Irrelevant’

On July 18, the music video for P!nk’s new song, “Irrelevant,” dropped and has since been deemed a ‘protest anthem.’ She explained, “As a woman with an opinion and the fearlessness to voice that opinion, it gets very tiring when the only retort is to tell me how irrelevant I am. I am relevant because I exist and because I am a human being. No one is irrelevant. And no one can take away my voice.”

The proceeds from the new track will be donated to Michelle Obama’s national, nonpartisan voting initiative When We All Vote.