What's up, Europe? Gender, media and European integration. The story of a a young Dane exploring the continent.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Another constitution-inspired petition

Earlier I have posted on two citizens' initiatives, Oneseat and Nuclear Power No Thanks, inspired by article 47 of the proposed European Constitution.

Now a new one has seen the light of the day. The 112 petition encourages the European Commission to ensure better aid to Europeans who dial 112. The web page explains:

In the EU, 15 to 30 % of the emergency calls get an inappropriate or even no answer at all!

The European Commission’s own figures show that every year 5,000 more lives as well as EUR 5,000,000,000 could be saved.

Therefore, I request the European Commission to ensure an efficient 112 service all over the EU to my family and me for the 50th anniversary of the United Europe in 2007.

Some of the testimonies on the web page is also quite thought-provoking:

Kristina called 112 in Belgium. The operator did not understand French or English. The ambulance arrived only one and a half hour later...

Oliver lives at the border between Germany and Austria. Once he had to call an emergency number in Austria but he did not know which one to call...

Manuel called the 112 in Spain and finally had to carry his father to the hospital emergency unit on his own because of the poor and slow 112 service...

The European Emergency Number Association is behind the petition.

PS: If some of you did not know 112 is the emergency number that you can use in all EU member states.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

No, we do not have genitalia


Hush. Apparently you are not suppose to say that.

From News for Greens:

"A public high school has suspended three students who disobeyed officials by saying the word “vagina” during a reading from a well-known feminist play.
The honour students, Megan Reback, Elan Stahl and Hannah Levinson, included the word during their reading of “The Vagina Monologues” because “it wasn’t crude and it wasn’t inappropriate and it was very real and very pure,” Reback said.

Their defiant stand is being applauded by the play’s author, who said Tuesday that the school should be celebrating, rather than punishing, the three juniors.

“Don’t we want our children to resist authority when it’s not appropriate and wise?” said Eve Ensler, author of “The Vagina Monologues.”

It is also interesting to consider that this story (according to News for Greens) were more prominently covered in Canada than in the US where it took place.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Democrats win

This is the results of my earlier poll. It seems the US would have a democratic president if readers of Scratching the Surface were to decide. Perhaps not an extremely surprising result since many of my readers are European.

Thanks for your participation. If nothing else this poll made me aware how hard it is to 'measure' the political opinions of people living in different political systems. It is really difficult to find political categories everyone can relate to without, at the same time, making them so 'broad' that the poll will, more or less, say nothing at all.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

New design

Pink-ish and raw - I know! However, I feel it sends out that feminist vibe. Thanks to Feministiskt Initiativ for inspiration to the colour. Enjoy!

Scratching the Surface expands business

I am now officially back in Brussels and have begun writing my masters thesis. For anyone curious about what I will spent the next half year on I cordially invite you to visit mymediathesis.blogspot.com. I will do my best to update frequently! Deadline is 1st of August.

PS: The name of the blog is the title I have been proposed by my thesis adviser. Does not really say a lot, I know.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

A new Berlin wall?

I really hope this will not big business.

Again, sorry for non-Danish readers.

Friday, March 09, 2007


Recently, with International Women's Day as the occasion, I received this curiosity (PDF); an except from a fifties textbook on how to be a good wife. The absurdity of its advice becomes even more apparent if you reverse the gender roles (PDF).

My apologies to readers whom are not acquainted with Scandinavian languages.