BRAZIL: Women Not Wanted

The nine black-caped judges of the federal court of appeals in Rio pondered an age-old question: Are men and women equal? The question had been raised again by pretty Maria Sandra Cordeiro de Mello, 21-year-old daughter of a wealthy army colonel. Ambitious to be a diplomat, Maria Sandra had appealed a lower court ruling which held that the government may exclude women from its diplomatic service.

The learned appeals judges quoted Plato, Aristotle, Nietzsche and Rousseau on the inequality of the sexes. When Maria's lawyer (a woman) cited such examples of U.S. stateswomen as Health, Education & Welfare Secretary Oveta Gulp...

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