Yesterday was International Women’s Day, which is a day to celebrate women’s rights and the gains that have been made in gender equality. I am all for this celebration. There have been countless women who have made a difference in this world, enabling me to live the life I do. I am so grateful to have these great women before me.
Instead of the expected celebration, there seemed to be more of an underlying tone of protest surrounding the day. Many even participated in “A Day Without a Woman” by not going to work or spending any money to illustrate the impact women have. Many schools closed for the day because of lack of staff, and some businesses also closed.
I have to admit, it will be interesting to see the data about the impact on the economy, but I am not crazy about the idea. I dare say I find it a bit selfish of those who participated because:
- Shutting schools down affects so many families. Parents may have to miss work because they don’t have child care.
- Children miss a day of learning
- Women who can’t afford to take the day off may have to work even harder to make up for those that are absent. Not so empowering.
- Efforts to organize and participate in “A Day Without a Woman” could have been invested in work that would actually change the issues women face.
I am not hating on women, and I do think there are equality issues, but missing work because you’re not getting your way doesn’t seem like a statement. It seems more like a temper tantrum.
A friend of mine ranted on the subject on Facebook yesterday and summed it up perfectly:
“When I was entering the workforce in the 1970s the way we demonstrated our value was to show up everyday and do the best work possible, take advantage of every opportunity that presented itself and be a productive member of society. I am disappointed beyond words by so many women today, by your actions you are erasing gains made over the years, acting like the entitled children you have become.”
~Diana Conner Alger
I am not a political person. I don’t discuss politics with others, and truthfully, I pay little attention to it. I decided several years ago to minimize the negativity in my life, and keeping up with news and politics, is well, um…pretty negative.
As a journalism student, I’m forced to be more exposed to what is going on in the world, and I keep up with what is going on a little more. I still usually stay outside political issues, but the events surrounding International Women’s Day just rubbed me the wrong way.
There were many positive celebrations yesterday, but the spirit of protest surrounding the day seriously detracted from them. It was supposed to be a day to celebrate great women, instead it felt more like a pity party.
I’d love to hear what you think about or how you celebrated International Women’s Day. Did you participate or were you affected by the “A Day Without a Woman”? Leave me a comment or find me on Twitter.