irena sendler.

i was just stumbling and i stumbled upon a snopes.com page that explains the story of irena sendler (and verifies it).
apparently this woman is known as the female Oskar Schindler because she helped smuggle as many as 3,000 polish jew adults and children out of Warsaw.  her story was largely unknown until high school kids wrote a play about her effort in 1999.  however, it is believe that she was up for a Nobel Peace Prize nomination in 2007, but lost to Al Gore.  Al Gore.  and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

ok, granted, Al Gore has done good work, and has raised a lot of awareness, but consider how debated his acts still are.  for instance, teachers in England can be imprisoned for Political Indoctrination if they show his film without telling their students of the at least 9 glaring scientific fallacies (i can’t actually site that at this moment because i just read it yesterday in an open letter published in the paper version of the New York Times and i haven’t found it online).  not everyone believes in global warming and the science isn’t yet set in stone (if science can ever be set in stone).

however, we know the Holocaust happened.  for sure.  and we know this woman helped human beings escape certain death.  for sure.  we know she put her life at risk and underwent unspeakable torture at the hands of the Third Reich.  for sure.  and we know that’s work for peace if there ever was work for peace.  for sure.
(for still more information: Life in a Jar: The Irena Sendler Project)

but you know who won the NPP?  a man.  you know why Irena Sendler’s name isn’t bigger?  because she’s not Oscar Schindler.   can you guess why Gore won that NPP?  because climate change is on everyone’s mind, not having a hand in on ending holocaust.
and you know what people want?   men to get the glory and for the good news to be newsworthy.

it just makes me really angry to see this woman being lost in history, as if history can afford to lose any of its heroines.  i’m glad men do good things.  really, i am, don’t get me wrong.  men are good.  but when their glory outshines that of women, there’s a problem.  it’s a problem, too, when women’s glory outshines men, because this isn’t an issue of Sexes, it’s an issue of Sexism, but i’m fairly certain those instances are far fewer than the former.
and it makes me angry that people would allow a conveniently controversial story to win out over truly honouring a solid, heroic humanitarian deed.  when that’s the point, according to my understanding, of the NPP in the first place.

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