I was thinking of this thread yesterday. There are some things, that I just don't understand about this, and am honestly asking about things I'm puzzled over. How can the OP be so passionate about something and not even know the proper body parts? As others have pointed out, it would be the labia showing, not the vagina. That seems so odd to me. Also, why would a woman's strength come from her vagina? That's like telling a boy that his penis is what makes him a strong man... and that's just, IDK, wrong? In my mind it is, anyway. I feel that raising daughters with strong character, thinking for themselves, has nothing to do with their strength as sexual beings. To me they are two different lessons. We are teaching them to be strong women LONG before there is any social impact of them as sexual beings.
I also don't get why "acting like a lady" is negative. To me, it's more about manners and being polite. We live in a society. What good comes from letting dd wear loose underwear and a skirt on the playground so that boys (who will tease) and girls (who will also tease) and adults (who will scratch their heads) can see her labia while playing? What "power" does that give her? How is teaching public modesty, without shaming, negative? What are we taking away by saying to sit with the knees together when wearing a skirt? At home, do what you want... but since none of us live isolated, I think it's important to understand the social mores where you live and culturally accept them as the unwritten social contract. And as a huge breastfeeding advocate, if we want to talk about this kind of power in women, by god, it's in their breasts as much as it is in their vagina! If we're going to expose ourselves, let's start up top. ;)
(Also, I've never heard anywhere, a woman in slacks or shorts being told to keep their knees together. Never. Even in conservative muslim countries. But my cousin, who plays the bagpipes, does sit with his knees together when wearing his kilt.)
We were at chamber concert yesterday and dd, wearing a longer Land's End dress, sat with her legs "criss-cross-applesauce" in the seat, with the skirt pulled over her knees (no panties showing). The lead violinist was a female, on the edge of her seat in her long, formal dress, with her legs spread wide with her impassioned performance. I cannot even imagine that anyone would tell either of them to sit with their knees together because "there's a vagina lurking underneath". That, to me, sounds like a personal hang-up and not something that is prevalent in our society. Yeah, if your skirt is shorter than knee-length, have some manners, but pants, long skirts and the like... nope, I don't see it.