How the International Women’s Media Foundation Fights for Women in Journalism and Strengthens Press Freedom

Last year, 12 women journalists were murdered, and the number of women journalists imprisoned rose by 64 percent. By continuing to award courageous journalists, the International Women’s Media Foundation is making it known that the threat of violence against women reporters is ever-present. Still, it also is a testament to the unwavering spirit of women journalists globally. 

Over the next several months, Ms. and IWMF will collaborate monthly to highlight the works of these journalists, all of whom are nominees or winners of the Courage in Journalism award.

(This essay is part of the “Feminist Journalism is Essential to Democracy” project—Ms. magazine’s latest installment of Women & Democracy, presented in partnership with the International Women’s Media Foundation.)

Miles Apart: Texas and California Lawmakers Stake Opposite Corners of Abortion Policy

It’s about 1,500 miles from Austin to Sacramento, but Texas and California lawmakers are a million miles apart on how to treat private data related to reproductive health.

The goalposts are moving, what used to be legal is now illegal in many places, and online speech and personal data are the new battleground—with millions of people’s health and lives in the balance.

When Is a Threat a Threat?: A Forthcoming SCOTUS Ruling Could Have a Sweeping Impact on Gender-Based Violence

The Supreme Court heard oral arguments on April 19 in a case that could have a sweeping impact on the ability of victims of stalking, verbal abuse and online harassment to be protected from their abusers.

In the case, Counterman v. Colorado, the Court appeared willing to increase the threshold for identifying speech that rises to the level of a “true threat” and ignore the collateral damage of protecting harassers—which will have devastating consequences for victims of abuse.

Are Y’all Ready for a Black Mermaid? How Black Twitter Challenges White Supremacist Imaginations

The conflicting responses to Halle Bailey’s casting in “The Little Mermaid” highlight the importance of representation as a tool for fighting white supremacy.

“In a society where everyone wants to forget race, and act as if racial discrimination does not exist, digital spaces of support become the space where marginalized groups can have conversations that center their bodies and lived experiences.”

The Danger of Incels—and How We Shift the Thinking of Men Attracted to These Groups

The sources of misogyny and violence against women are complex, and it is critical to examine them—not just during National Sexual Assault Awareness Month, but always.

One such perpetrator of violence: incels, or “involuntary celibates.” The grievances of this group over their perceived sexual exclusion often takes the form of violence, especially violence against women. Society must come together to address the root causes of incel violence—or continue to face the deadly consequences.

Across U.S., Students Walk Out of Class to Demand Gun Control Legislation

Tens of thousands of students across the U.S. joined in a collective action on Wednesday, April 5, at noon local time, and walked out of their classes en masse to demand gun control legislation.

The student participants spanned geographical location—from Oregon, to Texas, to Massachusetts—and age, ranging from elementary school to high school and beyond. Some demonstrations were frantic and loud, with urgent chants directed to lawmakers and gun manufacturers: “Our blood, your hands.” “Books, not bullets.” “Hey, hey, NRA, how many kids did you kill today?” Others were silent and somber.

‘I Oppose the Mandatory Hijab’ Button Campaign Puts Iranian Women’s Rights Front and Center

Wearing the hijab didn’t bother me—I had the sanctuary of my home and progressive parents, and I was privileged enough to immigrate to America. I had a choice. The “I oppose the mandatory hijab” buttons are for the Iranian women who don’t have choices.

Anyone who can name one or two of their fundamental rights under threat should wear a button, take a picture and post it on social media. To request a button, or for more information, email: freedombutton2023@gmail.com.