Serena Williams Strikes Back Against Sexism And Inaccurate Judges

I am so proud of Serena Williams for continuing to be a great role model to women and challenging the unfair system that has admitted to inaccurately judging Serena's performance (therefore robbing her of her earned title. She also addresses the sexism involved in sports. She wrote on her blog a few days ago a letter explaining her point of view about the record breaking $92,000 fine she has been stamped with. Many times when a man uses inappropriate language during a sport, he is called "passionate" or ""competitive" or any other positive adjective. For example, John McEnroe & Jimmy Conners are 2 legends in the tennis world, and had outburst 20 times more repetitive and foul mouthed then Serena, but they were not vilified as much as Serena, and were never fined more then 10K. Yet on the other hand, when a woman is aggressive, she is called "a bitch" or "too competitive" or many other negative titles. I felt a pain when Serena was again ROBBED of her title. What's going on here? I'm not even a professional line caller, and I could see how outrageous and wrong many calls against Serena have been. Its only natural Serena snapped! Though she is a super star athlete, guess what: She is also a human being! She actually has feelings, and a heart! She has worked unusually hard all her life, and sacrificed so much, only to have the title she earned fair and square taken from her from tainted judges, and more then once! I'm thrilled that Serena did not let the association get away with out her calling out the truth, since their referees seem unable to consistently do so. Please read Serena's heart felt letter: http://horiwood.com/2009/12/09/serena-williams-reply-to-her-92000-fine/


The children are supported at the UNICEF Snowflake Ball

I had a blast at the annual UNICEF Snowflake Ball at Cipriani's. The work UNICEF does for children around the world has always been very close to my heart. As a child my parents donated money to organizations that helped in need children overseas, and we had pictures up of some of the children we were sponsoring. I knew at a young age how severe the crisis of poverty and poor health care is in many countries. A goal of mine since 6 years old has been to adopt children from Africa and/or Latin American countries, not just because that's my heritage, but mainly because the children in those regions are in more need then the children in the US.

It was a lovely affair, and LA Reid was honored, and Mariah Carey gave him his award. I have loved her music since I was a child, and it was nice to see her. I'm so happy her acting has been gaining praise, because this is one singer that can actually act well! I also met Bryant Gumbel's daughter, Jillian Beth Gumbel. She is really nice and is a volunteer for UNICEF's "The Next Generation". (I am sorry to report that just a couple days after this event, Bryant Gumbel announced he has cancer. Please pray for him and his family during this trying time.)

I met some people who live in Africa, and after telling them of my life long intention of going to Mother Africa, they said they could help me come! It was a dream come true, and I am seriously going to go in 2010. There was a lot of friendly people at the gala. The beautiful Betts sisters ( Maggie and Jessie ) were part of the hosting team for the gala, and also the after party.

After the gala we went to the official after party at Juliet. It sure was a lot of fun! I like having fun when I know it's for a vital and good cause.

Please help UNICEF protect and heal innocent children around the world. Info:http://www.unicef.org/index.php

Photograph captions: Top: Mariah Carey, Ashley - Middle: Jillian Beth Gumbel, Bryant Gumbel, Ashley - Bottom: Prudence Chaiban, Ashley