This past week has been dedicated to writing, talking and thinking about the International Women’s Day and everything it means. Hopefully, it wasn’t about giving and getting flowers and then ignoring and forgetting what is really important – the fight for gender equality.
I wrote in my previous post that I am quite vocal about it and a strong supporter of the women’s rights movement. And again, that definitely does not mean that anything should be taken from men. I don’t want to take from someone in order to get it myself.
IWD and feminism are not ugly words. They do not carry any animosity towards men – that would entail doing what women experience to men; it would be senseless. No one needs to suffer to reach equality. And that is all that is. Feminists who slender men should stop because that is not the goal nor the way. And those that demean women who are outspoken should stop judging and insulting them. It is all about equality and nothing else. And we all have to fight for it.
After the debates around IWD, after the flowers and the speeches in honor of women today, after remembering the legendary and historic women that went through hell to fight for what shouldn’t have even been an issue, after being motivated to annihilate inequality, we come to March 10 when men are supposedly celebrated for their roles as martyrs. Give me a break! Nobody had even celebrated it and talked about until Women’s Day became international. And now there can’t be one day where women are the main focus without men getting something as well. And yes, one argument might be that if we are demanding equality, one day for us means one day for them. But, let me ask you this? Globally speaking, are women and men fighting the same battles; do they face the same struggles; are we both discriminated and judged; are they unequal and inferior to us? No. And that is why there needs to be a day in the year when those who don’t think about gender inequality every day get reminded that this is still happening and we all have to fight against it. And because of this, celebrating the Holy Forty as an international men’s day is a joke. It turns the battle for gender equality into a joke. It makes the reason why IWD is celebrated into a freaking joke.
As if that didn’t upset me enough, I was approached on Thursday and asked to be a part of the gifting of men. Not just that, but I was proposed with the notion that they need someone young and sexy to give out the presents. I practically lost it. My hair is straight and I swear it turned into perm on the spot. The person in question actually looked shocked at my determined refusal. I mean what on Earth would compel me to not want to stand in front of 90 people, kissing 20 men and playing into a stereotype and fantasy. I told her that this is silly and it diminishes March 8th and every day in the year when we are made to feel inferior as women globally. She tried explaining to me (after all, I’m blond and so I must be dumb and ignorant, right?) that even Wikipedia mentions it. Yes, it does. This day is a Christian holiday acknowledging the brave acts of forty men that stood against an oppressor in the city of Sebaste (today’s Turkey) in the 3rd century. It was a nobel act of defending what they believed in; an act to respect and imitate. Now it’s been made into something more as a counter action against IWD. I have great, phenomenal men in my life who deserve to be celebrated but it isn’t about that.
And furthermore, we struggle against being typecast and judged, treated like pieces of meat, and then women do this to each other. How dare you approach me on the basis that I should be paraded around in front of men! Every day women get yelled obscenities at and degraded for the benefit of men. And women don’t think twice doing the same thing to another woman? That’s just wrong. And we shouldn’t do that, we should support and protect each other, not feed into the stereotypes and dehumanizing fantasies that are pushed upon us.
I might be taking it too seriously and I more than understand that you just can’t get through to some, but I couldn’t live with myself if I didn’t speak up. Women have been quiet for long enough, we all – men and women – have to speak up and stand against inequality.
Have a great weekend!