Today is International Women’s Day. I’m embarrassed to admit that I didn’t realize it was around the corner until yesterday, but thank you facebook. You were my reminder. This day means a lot to me (woman alert). And I will do a comparison for you: my birthday is St. Patrick’s Day and I am a “wine aficionado” (it’s a nicer term than wino). So you’d think having a birthday on a holiday dedicated to drinking would mean the most…but today means more. Here’s why.
I’m a woman. Not only that, I’m a woman who has a mother, sister and daughter. But honestly? All those things shouldn’t matter as much as the fact that I’m a person. And every PERSON should want every other PERSON to be treated properly.
For that reason, I’m a firm believer that everyone should respect this day, and reflect on it. We women are humans. We’re half the world’s humans. And we deserve to be treated humanely.
I do wish I saw more men being vocal on this day, because it’s not just a day “for us”. It’s a day to stand up for what’s RIGHT. However, I don’t want this to be confused with Sophie Gregoire Trudeau’s post that is stirring the pot today. I don’t believe this is a day to “celebrate men” as she so…strangely…put it. I DO think it’s a day for men to join the movement…to remember that women globally are STILL in desperate need of equality and recognition. Your support does matter, men. And you shouldn’t be afraid to share it.
And for the women: it’s easy to say “I don’t need feminism. I live in the developed world. I have it okay.” Comparably? We do. But we shouldn’t have to feel afraid to walk alone. Or wear less clothing when it’s hot as crap outside. Or glace away from our beverages. We shouldn’t have to live in a world where we assume we’re going to be victimized and targeted SIMPLY because we’re women.
Then there are the people who question if it’s really “that bad”. Are that many of us actually targeted? The answer is yes. We honest to God all are.
I was tall and had ample breasts at twelve-years-old. So I was also cat-called, sexualized, and harassed at twelve-years-old. All I knew was that I wanted to sleepover at my friend’s house, eat cookie dough and watch The X-Files at twelve, but I still had to deal with the barrage of sexual comments as I walked from the bus stop. Moreover, I began to worry that one day it would become something more than “just comments”.
The sad thing is, that’s “having it good” because I’m fortunate enough to live where I’m not punished for being raped, stoned to death for choosing my own partner, or beaten for bearing a daughter instead of a son (and hi…it’s MEN who decide the sex of the child).
International Women’s Day should matter to you, no matter who you are or where you are. You should want BETTER for the frickin’ human race. It’s like that beauty of a meme says “someone else having more rights, doesn’t mean you get less. It’s not pie.” So get vocal women, men, everyone. Demand better.
It’s proven that when women are given the tools and ability to succeed, and when oppression and abuse is overcome, WHOLE communities are healthier and better for it.
Here’s to women. Keep shattering those ceilings.
PS – This is my little strong, fierce and stubborn girl. She’s gonna do amazing things.