Tunisia isn’t one of the countries most of us think about too much, but news of its revolution has captured my attention. The recently ousted Tunisian president, Zein al-Abidine Ben Ali, ruled the country for 23 years. Although he promoted a greater role for women, his second wife, Leila Travelsi, was detested for her alleged corruption and control over large sectors of the Tunisian economy. She and her ten siblings reportedly took money from shopkeepers—Mafia style—and demanded shares in many companies, banks to airlines, TV stations to car dealerships. Tunisians could stand no more.
This got me thinking: Is revolution good or bad? I guess it can be good and bad. It was good when the thirteen British Colonies of North America rose up against the Kingdom of Great Britain after being denied representation in Parliament. It was bad when the ouster of Russian Czar Nicholas II in 1917 almost immediately led to the rise of Communism under Lenin.
We’ve witnessed fashion revolutions in our FOF lives (think casual dress on Friday), business revolutions (think store openings on Sunday) and health revolutions (think smoking bans). Some affect us greatly, some not at all. But one revolution has touched every one of us: The Feminist Revolution. It started a long, long time ago and it’s not over yet. But we’ve come a long way, baby! (Except, of course, for Leila Travelsi).