Sara, there have been many threads on NC.com about the objectification of women in American culture. Obviously many of us disagree with it. I don't think anyone here would say things are perfect for women in the US. I don't want you to have the impression that we American women think everything is ideal for women here or that we like the way women are portrayed in the media/Playboy etc.
Yet you don't find anything wrong with that, because you feel that the woman is getting more respect by being allowed to be naked or semi naked in public (here im not talking street-wise, more magazine/tv wise) because it shows that she has freedom. Well, I don't view that as freedom really, more of thinking of a woman as a thing that can be bought.
I'm stating this to show you that although many people in the ME consider this to be wrong, some people in the US don't want to think of why we do think that way. I'm trying to point out that somethings some American people do which are considered "everyda˙" or "normal" are just as surprising to us as "honor killing" is to you(Not neccessarily the bikini/playboy example).
Now you'll tell me that not everyone thinks that way but I can assure you that not everyone here agrees/does "honor killing" either.
ETA: Aren't working women in the US also payed less than men even if they're doing the same work?
Legally, men and women are supposed to make the same pay for the same work. That doesn't always happen in reality of course.