Rewind

The Week in Women: Trump vs. babies, same-sex marriages of convenience, and a Gap ad oopsie

Women and children in Tanzania in 2008. (MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)

This week’s news cycle was all about the little ones. Headlines captured the many vicissitudes of a child’s life—from fetus to foul-mouthed grade-schooler. Let’s take a look back, shall we?

A small child was heard referring to Hillary Clinton as a “bitch” during a Donald Trump rally in Virginia. According to reporters on the scene, the boy repeatedly screamed “Take that bitch down!” as he sat next to his mother, who blamed her son’s language on “Democratic schools.” During the same rally, Trump demanded that a crying baby be removed from the room—which is perhaps a bit rich coming from someone who believes that calling people “losers” constitutes a valid form of political discourse.

Women who have had their appendix or tonsils surgically removed may experience increased fertility, according to a new study from the University of Dundee in Scotland. Researchers examined the medical records of more than half a million women, and found that for every 100 pregnancies in women who hadn’t undergone the aforementioned surgeries, there were 134 pregnancies in women who had their appendix removed, 149 pregnancies in women who had their tonsils removed, and 143 pregnancies in women who had both organs removed. It isn’t clear why these surgeries improve chances of pregnancy, but at least we know that getting to eat ice cream and popsicles for a week isn’t the only upside of a tonsillectomy.

To create stable homes for themselves and their children, women in a remote Tanzanian village are entering into same-sex marriages. According to a feature in Marie Claire magazine, a Kurya tribe tradition, which sees heterosexual women and widows marry in order to preserve their lifestyles, has undergone a resurgence in popularity recently. This domestic arrangement reduces the incidence of abuse, child marriage, and female genital mutilation. Women can take male lovers, but any resulting children belong to the female marriage. Juma, who ran away from her abusive husband after giving birth to his baby, said that her marriage to a woman “is working out better than I could have imagined.” She continued: “I wasn’t sure at first, because it was such a new experience—now, I wouldn’t choose any other way.”

Gap Kids’ U.K. branch has come under fire for promoting gender stereotypes in a recent marketing campaign. One of the clothing company’s new ads features a little boy wearing an Albert Einstein T-shirt, and it is accompanied by copy that reads, “The Little Scholar” and “Your future starts here.” Another image shows a girl wearing a sweatshirt with a “G” stamped on the front; ad copy labels her “The Social Butterfly” and proclaims that “Chambray shirts + logo sweaters are the talk of the playground.” Unsurprisingly, this juxtaposition was met with a swift backlash on Twitter, with users decrying the campaign’s “1950s sexism.” To make matters worse, the ad misspelled the name of Albert Einstein. The irony. It hurts a little.

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