Friday, March 8, 2013

INTERNATIONAL WOMEN'S DAY

 The story that this celebration originated after a protest in the US is apprently apocryphal.
It was probably substituted for the fact that the first celebration of working women was observed in 1909 in the US following a declaration by the Socialist Party of America because the aforementioned Socialist Party of America has fallen out of favour in the US.

    Frankly, I find this a feeble fête, a token gesture. It doesn’t have a fraction of the clout of Valentine’s Day or Mother’s Day. We’re not even showered with flowers, cars, chocolates and diamonds on this day like the other “women’s” holidays. Heck, this not even an official public holiday, a day off worldwide as would befit the celebration of such magnificent creatures as us. In France this is called la Journée de la Femme, prompting a writer friend to say wryly: "Quelle femme?"
    But seriously, as sure as I am that we all enjoy being showered with champagne and diamonds, do we really need another soft, flowery celebration of women’s wonderfulness? Wouldn't a solid foundation of respect and human rights, decent pay and freedom from routine beatings and rape be of more use to us?                       
    International Women’s Day should be an occasion to pass laws worldwide that would improve the lives of women who still have to fear being raped on a bus and generally disrespected.
    Respect is a better gift than flowers and chocolates.

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March 8, 2014: This year's celebration seems a little more muscular than the last one, things like equal pay are being mentioned in a more energetic way, but a hundred years is too long to wait for pay parity. Higher salaries and wages must be demanded and contracts negotiated more fiercely.

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