Tuesday, March 8, 2011

International Women's Day, 2011

I am hurriedly posting this little reminder that today is the hundredth anniversary of International Women's Day. Hurriedly because for most people who might chance upon this, it's probably pretty much over, and also because thanks to a fateful evening at the bar, I'm actually helping monitor our own local event and will have to get down there before too awfully long. Santa Cruz is taking part in the international project Join Me On the Bridge. We'll be walking from the Water Street bridge to the Town Clock, another local icon, where we'll undoubtedly hear a lot of talk about peace, equal pay for equal work, and what still needs to be done for women's issues everywhere.

Frankly, this is not so much a lapse of memory on my part as complete ignorance of the date. But it's one worth knowing about. Egypt, for instance, having newly ousted a dictator, is being called out of it's old mentality by a demand for a million woman march on Tahrir Square, because women were being frozen out of leadership positions in the new government. I just checked on what happened, since they are ahead of us in time. It's a bit troubling, but you can read about it here. As the article ends: "Mubarak is gone. Misogyny might be a tougher foe."

Although today is officially the anniversary, the first year it was actually held on March 19th. So if you feel like you've missed out, check to see if, as in Santa Cruz, there will be some larger celebrations this weekend near you. 

And if nothing else, take a moment today to think about what women's rights have meant to you.

Yes, even if you're a man.

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