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Why the WNBA’s new contract matters, a study finds most women don’t regret abortions in the long term, and how five sets of parents raised ambitious young women.
Today’s featured news
On Friday, The Washington Post reported that a large photograph of the 2017 Women’s March at a National Archives exhibit celebrating women’s suffrage had been altered — signs held by marchers that were critical of President Trump and referenced women’s anatomy were blurred. A placard that says “God Hates Trump,” for example, was erased so that it reads, “God Hates.”
The National Archives acknowledged in a statement that it made multiple alterations and later apologized in a news release. Many people, including history professor Wendy Kline, expressed dismay at the alterations:
The 2017 Women’s March, seen as a referendum on Trump’s election, was the largest single-day protest in history and drew hundreds of thousands to the nation’s capital. The fourth annual Women’s March on Saturday took place in hundreds of cities across the globe, but the rally in Washington was much smaller than its 2017 iteration, a result of financial mismanagement, claims of anti-Semitism and changing leadership.
Research based on data collected from nearly 3,000 U.S. women found that those who reported engaging in sexual activity weekly were 28 percent less likely to have experienced menopause at any given age than women who engaged in sexual activity less than monthly. Those who had sex monthly were 19 percent less likely to experience menopause at any given age compared with those who had sex less than monthly.
The Guardian reported that the study, published in the journal Royal Society Open Science, raises the possibility that lifestyle factors could play a more significant role in determining when menopause occurs than previously thought. Study author Megan Arnot posited that if a woman is not having sex, the body might “choose” not to invest in ovulation. However, the study did not delve into biological reasons regarding the link. As other OB/GYNs have pointed out, little research has been done regarding the biology of menopause.
For the second time in history, women outnumbered men in the U.S. paid workforce, according to Labor Department data. (The first time was in early 2010, following the Great Recession.) As The Post reports, the trend reflects fast job growth in sectors that have long attracted women, including health care and education, as well as the fact that women are obtaining college degrees in higher numbers than men.
A separate study found that men who lost jobs in male-dominated industries were more likely to take jobs in historically female-dominated industries than men who had no gaps in their employment. When joining a more female-dominated industry, these men experienced an average wage increase and a boost in the “prestige” rating of their occupation.
The WNBA announced that it has reached a tentative labor agreement with its players’ union. Under the proposed agreement, average compensation for players will exceed six figures for the first time — a 53 percent increase in total cash compensation, according to the league. As The Post reports, the deal also includes “drastic improvement” in maternity and child-care benefits, including paid leave.
As Lily contributor Alicia Jessop writes, the agreement is significant “for all women athletes” given the fight for equal pay in other professional sports.
Five need-to-know stories in 100 words or less
1. A study analyzing the experiences of 667 U.S. women found that years after having an abortion, most felt they had made the right decision. After five years, 84 percent reported either primarily positive emotions or none at all, while 6 percent had primarily negative feelings. There was “no evidence” of new negative or positive emotions, according to the authors.
2. Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.) revealed in a video for the Root that she has alopecia, an autoimmune condition that can cause complete hair loss, and is also bald. Pressley — the first black woman to represent Massachusetts in Congress — said the last of her hair fell out in December, before voting to impeach President Trump: “It was a moment of transformation not of my choosing. But I knew the moment demanded that I stand in it and that I lean in.”
3. Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, will no longer be known as “royal highnesses” and will repay millions spent on renovating their mansion, according to a palace statement. Those changes come as the couple steps back from their royal duties and begins splitting time between Britain and Canada.
4. Just days before the Grammy Awards, which airs on Jan. 26, the Recording Academy announced that it has suspended its chief executive, Deborah Dugan, following a “formal allegation of misconduct by a senior female member of the Recording Academy.” Dugan, the first woman to hold the position, was less than six months into her tenure.
What women are making in the newsroom
What does it take to raise a strong, successful, smart and caring girl? That’s the question Jordan Lloyd Bookey and Amy Joyce posed to the parents of five exceptional girls, including 13-year-old Naomi Wadler, who was the youngest speaker at the inaugural March For Our Lives. Read their reflections on raising ambitious young women here.
This week, we hear from musician Your Smith
You may recognize singer Your Smith by her real name — Caroline Smith, which she performed under for several years. But in 2018, Smith changed her artist name and sound for a fresh start. Your Smith is currently on tour and has upcoming shows in Chicago, Boston, Brooklyn and Washington, D.C.
On why she changed her artist name: “When you look at my old Google search, it was just a smattering of, to me, what looked like — oh, this girl is trying to figure it out, she’s really trying to make some people happy. And I was like, no more, man. I want a fresh Google search. I want to move forward with the confidence of knowing what it means to be me. And as it turns out, when you start over, nothing bad happens.”
Three words to describe her new sound and persona: “I would say unapologetic. I would say — this isn’t one word, but it’s kind of a weird smattering of influences, so I would say eclectic. What I wanted to evoke was this warmth and familiarity in a sound you’ve never heard before.”
What she’s looking forward to on her tour: “I’m totally shook that some of the shows are selling out. That’s not what I expected. It’s the general anxiety of, well, is anyone going to come? I think everybody worries about that. So knowing that there are people buying tickets — it’s mind-boggling. I’m really excited to go connect with all those people who are connecting with me.”
The Lily seeks high school students and recent grads for a video series
We’re looking for real-life high school students and recent grads for a video series on The Lily’s Snapchat Discover. We want to hear from young people who are navigating new experiences after recently graduating from high school, and students who are wondering what life will be like after graduation. You can fill out this form.
Things we love but weren’t paid to promote
I can’t get enough of these markers. Whether I want to draw on paper, cardboard or even on windows, these are the absolute best. They are made out of acrylic paint, so the color is even all the way through; they’re smooth and look fantastic. They come in a large variety of tips: Thicker ones are better for large coverage and smaller ones for details. (They can be a bit tricky to use, so be sure to read the instructions and be careful with the paper you choose.)
—Maria Alconada Brooks, Lily art director
[bye-koo] Saying goodbye with a haiku
Listen to everything we’ve recommended here.
A quick, curated list of Team Lily’s go-to content this week