The Uphill Slide

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Did He Realize How Sexist or ist That Statement Was?


Maryam Zaringhalam and Kelly Fleming, both 28, came with poster board signs they’d made at an event Friday night with the group 500 Women Scientists. Zaringhalam, a molecular biologist, and Fleming, a chemical engineer, had been concerned about the way diversity issues were dealt with by the march organizing committee.

“But I thought, people are going to be taking pictures at the march and this is what I want them to see,” Zaringhalam said. “I want them to see someone who looks like me.”

Zaringhalam is an Iranian American who was in Iran when President Trump issued his executive order on immigration. Though she is an American citizen, Zaringhalam worried she would not be allowed back into the country.

At their sign making event Friday night, a passerby had asked what the women were doing. When they told him, he responded, “You don’t look like scientists.”

“I think he thought he was flirting,” Fleming said, making a face. Zaringhalam came up with the motto for her sign: “this is what a scientist looks like.”


Earth Day 2017



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