The world's sexiest vegetarians and more

Murder is a leading cause of death for pregnant women. Plus: Saudi Arabia makes things worse for women, while Kenya heads in the right direction.

Published June 26, 2007 6:49PM (EDT)

Who says being carnal requires eating meat? PETA has just come out with the results of its annual "World's Sexiest Vegetarians" contest. Winners include singer Carrie Underwood and Kevin Eubanks, leader of the band for "The Tonight Show." Eubanks received endorsements from Jay Leno, who is decidedly not one of the world's sexiest vegetarians.

On a much less cheerful note, ABC News reports that murder is a leading cause of death for pregnant women. According to the article, studies in Chicago, New York and Maryland have found that "20 percent of women who die during pregnancy are murder victims." A 14-year study by Washington Post that ended in 2004 found 1,300 instances of pregnant women being killed by boyfriends or husbands.

In more depressing news, new segregation rules at Saudi Arabian banks are undermining women's career potential in one of the only realms in which they had any career potential to begin with, reports the Associated Press. Women are now being relegated to women-only suites, or assigned to first-floor offices so that they won't have to take the elevator with men. One woman interviewed by the AP reports that she can now speak to male colleagues only by phone and can't attend meetings. This is especially disheartening because, according to the AP, "banking is one of the few areas where Saudi women have gained more rights in recent years." So much for that.

But here's something good: The president of Kenya, Mwai Kibaki, just unveiled a 5 billion-shilling funding partnership between Equity Bank and the United Nations Development Program, reports Business Daily Africa. According to the Standard, this is in addition to the 2 billion-shilling fund set aside by the government. Apparently, a recent report found that 61 percent of household entrepreneurs in Kenya were women, but that there was "continued neglect" in helping women improve their business. So these initiatives hope to help entrepreneurs out by providing financial support to businesswomen. What's more, the president has set a goal of having women hold 50 percent of public sector jobs.

By Catherine Price

Catherine Price is an award-winning journalist and author of Vitamania: How Vitamins Revolutionized the Way We Think About Food. Her written and multimedia work has appeared in publications including The Best American Science Writing, The New York Times, Popular Science, O: The Oprah Magazine, the Los Angeles Times, The San Francisco Chronicle, The Washington Post Magazine, Salon, Slate, Men’s Journal, Mother Jones, PARADE, Health Magazine, and Outside. Price lives in Philadelphia.

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