Happy International Women's Day!
Today, we celebrate the social, economic, cultural and political achievement of women. But today, we also ask ourselves a very important question: how can I contribute to the long march toward gender equality?
Today, I hope you’ll take a moment to imagine what your life would be like without the women in it. Let’s leave aside for a moment the fact that you simply could not exist without a woman, and focus on the women who impact your life today. We are your colleagues and employees and bosses. We are your girlfriends and wives. We are your doctors, and the scientists behind your medications. We are the growers, harvesters, and preparers of your food. We are your teammates and friends, your teachers and coaches, your policewomen and firefighters and dentists and construction workers. We are the mothers and aunts and daughters and sisters of your children.
And we make 70 cents on your dollar at best. One in three of us have been sexually assaulted, and one in six of us have been raped. All of us have been catcalled, talked over, taken advantage of, disrespected, and treated as lesser. We’ve been put in boxes and locked under glass ceilings. We’ve been asked to meet impossible standards: to be pretty but not too pretty, strong but not too strong, confident but not too confident. We’re told what we can and cannot do, and when we dare to try to achieve the latter we are mocked and ridiculed and demeaned.
And we’re asking you to listen. We’re trying desperately to get you to look hard at the way the world treats us. And we’re asking you to do something about it. To be the voice in the room when we can’t be, and to make sure our voices are heard when we’re there. We’re asking for your kindness and respect and come November, we’re asking for your votes again. And we’ll keep asking for them until we make it where we know we truly belong: seated equally among the men who run this country, demanding equal rights for all women on this planet.
This leaves you two options: stand beside us as we fight for our rights, or kindly move out of the way.