In review: A personal take on International Women’s Day
By Cassie Schattle, Staff Writer
International Women’s Day came and went a few weeks ago, and although flowers were given and shoutouts were made on social media, the amount of lasting remarks still echoing today are very few. Women are an integral part of society; it would be doing them a disservice to only give them a shout out one day a year.
Beginning in New York City in 1908, IWD started when thousands of female textile workers went on strike to protest their rights in relation to working conditions and voting eligibility, states an article by Madison Feller on Elle. With the strikes lasting over a year, it was finally the Socialist Party of America that worked towards the creation of National Women’s Day.
According to Feller, on March 8, women around the world wear purple in celebration, take the day off (in some countries it’s a holiday), and some even join large protests while others participate in commercial sales.
“Wherever you are, International Women’s Day is a day to take stock of all that women have accomplished – and how much must still change,” writes Feller. And she is not wrong.
Has IWD become a passing fad, where people acknowledge all the hard work for a day and then go about their daily lives? Are there people out there questioning why we celebrate the day in the first place? Are you one of those people asking why we need IWD; what purpose it serves?
Sadly, the facts are facts. Women have come far in this man’s world, but there is still a constant battle for equal pay; not to mention the fact that over half of household chores are still completed by women. It gets even worse, when the rates of domestic violence, and human trafficking as well, are slowly climbing, with women a large percentage of the target victims.
As other worries in the world take over, like the current pandemic sending everyone into a state of shock, the issues of women’s rights are easily forgotten, as easily as the last thing you ate for breakfast. And of course, there will always be some other issue that takes precedence over any other issue – humans are ones to make excuses whenever they are faced with something that troubles them or forces them to address their own comfortability – but this is one cause that should not be allowed to fade into the background.
In the Guardian, Harriet Minter states that, “IWD is about celebrating the role of women, but it’s also about campaigning for change and then making that change happen.”
Minter goes on to challenge her readers, asking what they, themselves, could do to make a difference. And that challenge goes out to you as well.
What actions did you take on International Women’s Day, and what actions are you still taking? Women’s rights have come a long way since 1908, but there is still a ton of work that needs to be done. Humanity will always be at war, and it will always require people to fight. Action, any form of action, is a step in the right direction. What type of action will you take today?