I find it ludicruous that people continue to make statements all over the internet (and in real-life, shock/horror) about how “International Women’s Day Is EVERY DAY”, usually because some douche with half a dick either stopped saying “fat bitch” in the open office or is resentful because “girls get free drinks”.  Or because you hugged your mom/sister/female cat.

In case you hadn’t noticed, women get paid (in this “progressive” part of the world) roughly 75-80% of what a man does for the same work, are far more likely to be the victims of sexual attack, are more likely not to report any sexual or domestic violence, sexual harassment or bullying, are more likely to feel pressured into feelings of low self-worth by 90% of the marketing directed at them, etc etc etc…  Sounds great, huh?  I LOVE how “International Women’s Day is Every Day!” (FYI – that was in a sing-song voice in my head because I’m being massively sarcastic and snipey – just thought you ought to know)

To say nothing of how it ain’t International Women’s Day EVERY DAY in Less Developed Countries (or LDC’s for slang), where women are raped, brutalized, killed (for infractions the average Westerner couldn’t even begin to perceive and quickly write off as “just another icky headline”), mutilated, forced into sexual servitude, not given access to education, nevermind the opportunity to have a job or any sort of free speech, for that matter, denied access to birth control, property rights, healthcare.  As of 2005, “A rigorous study in ten countries from different regions found between 15 per cent and 71 per cent of women reported having experienced violence by a partner over the course of their lifetime, and up to nearly a third had reported violence in the past year.”  As of 2006, “Nearly two-thirds of the world’s 780 million people who cannot read are women”.  As of 2007’s Milennium Development Goals Report “Over half a million women still die each year from treatable and preventable complications of pregnancy and childbirth, an average of about one death every minute.”  2008’s QOTD? “The paucity of gender-disaggregated data on women’s access to credit, property ownership and other critical skills and tools for economic security continues to hamper efforts to address extreme poverty and hunger among women and girls.”  So really?  Yeah.  Don’t tell me you sorted this out because you hugged your MOM today and said “Thanks, just for having a vagina, things are great for ‘you girls’, now, huh?”

I had a conversation recently about feminism, and what it means to me in the face of current talks in the media about “aging gracefully, doing the same jobs men can do blah blah blah.”  It seems to me that there are an awful lot of so-called ‘feminists’ that disagree with all sorts: cosmetic surgery (because clearly women only undergo it because they’re forced to BY MEN), makeup, dress-up, prostitution, provocative clothing/speech et cetera.  Here’s my take on it, so listen up:

Being a feminist and being lucky enough to be a woman in the era and in the region that I am means that I CAN DO WHAT THE FUCK I WANT.  I have the access to education and research to make my own decisions, and can then be responsible about the consequences of my actions.  I can express my thoughts, feelings, and sexuality in the manner that *I deem appropriate, can feel secure that my rights will be (arguably) upheld by government when I indicate that they are in breach. I also have the right to change my mind about any decisions, statements or actions I have made in the past or might make in the future.  I don’t have to answer to anyone or be held to some bullshit stereotypical standard of gender role that society has laid out for me, and if I do decide I ‘like’ something stereotypically “female” it doesn’t define me in my entirety nor does it devalue my social contribution as a feminist.

So how am I celebrating International Women’s Day?  By giving you a song that, if it were written/sung by a man, would incite gender riots.  Why the fuck not?  I’m lucky enough to be able to write it, live where I live, have access to education, healthcare and human rights, and be a fucking AWESOME woman.  It’s all part of this wicked gender disparity dialogue that is so, so, not done. 

Thank you to http://www.guardian.co.uk for the pay-chart. Thank you to http://www.weareequals.org/ for their incredible “bond” video. Thanks to whoever made the above JPEG, which I totally stole. AS IT IS MY RIGHT – erm….. Cheers. x

One thought on “International Women’s Day – It’s Actually NOT Everyday.

  1. Rad blog Nikki. I study social justice and human rights. I am also taking some sociology and gender courses and they’re very intriguing, I learn a lot…heart disease is rampant and a leading cause of death amongst women and I recently lost my Mother to that (last month). I am completely enthralled by women’s rights and feminism… (among other social issues such as gay rights).

    And I love LOVE LOVEEE (sarcasm) how women make far less than men in the same jobs, how women compete for “pink ghetto” jobs (such as daycare worker or secretary) and I love how women are expected to maintain domestic priority; unpaid labour… unpaid labour, by the way, means millions of dollars in unpaid labour. In a capitalist society, coupled with consumerism, the men who create social ills for women rely on unpaid labour.

    True story.

    Regards, Nathan

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