It never fails. Women do something, or something exists promoting women’s equality and people ask, often in a nasty and condescending tone, “Why is this needed? Women have all the same rights as men!”
Since I would absolutely hate to disturb you from all your social media drama-seeking and contributing, daring to suggest that you take some of that time to research this, let me help you out. On August 18, 1920, the 19th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution granted women the right to vote. At that time, voting was one of the many areas of life in which women were not equal to men.
Before you get angry at those who decide to bring up things like this, stop. Shift that anger toward those who participate in, support, or turn a blind eye to gender discrimination. They’re the ones you have the issue with, not the ones who mention it. Be mad at the person who started and wants to continue keeping the fire going. Not the one trying to put it out.
To answer the question of, “Why is this needed?” well, there you go. Since women were NOT always our equals on paper, this day is a way to not only celebrate this, but to remind ourselves of just how things used to be. Not to mention, an entire gender finally being finally granted a single right that only men had back then?
Women have come an incredibly long way since then. Some of those accomplishments can never be measured. Aside from being the freaking mothers of our world and the fact that every last one of us was born following a WOMAN carrying us for several months, women are responsible for a LOT of what we have and can do today.
Still don’t get “why this is needed”?
Strongly believe that “women have all the same rights as men”?
On paper, sure they do. Maybe.
But here’s my thing. I don’t believe equality is as much about the laws on paper as it is how society views women, often in negative or “lesser” ways than they view men.
When I see a woman post on social media or on a comment thread to a story, something folks don’t agree with and every other comment in response to it is “Dumb bitch” or “stupid cunt” (by people who consider themselves as adults, no less), or anything else which is not at all related to the topic, nor would ever be said to a man, that tells me that women are not viewed as equals.
When a woman is sexually assaulted and damn near most of the time, she is wrong either because she did something to “allow” it or she didn’t do enough to prevent it, while the GROWN MAN who chose to do this to her gets absolutely nothing said to him, that tells me that women are not viewed as equals.
Women are still taken advantage of all the time in terms of employment advancement. It baffles me that people pretend this doesn’t still happen. A friend of mine in the entertainment business on my Facebook page, as recent as damn yesterday, said this happened to her. Wouldn’t give the man what he wanted, so he threatened to hurt her career. This is 1970s “ABC Afterschool Specials” stuff. Not 2017, “best country in the world” nonsense.
Men are okay to be overweight and even praised in some cases. However, women are put down for carrying extra weight, however little it may be. Never mind the fact that many of them have had children. So what’s the man’s excuse?
All the sexist “jokes” that exist, to include to ever famous and lame “make me a sandwich” and “kitchen” jokes. Please.
Women are blamed all the time for “getting pregnant.” Unless something has changed recently that I don’t know about, women can’t just get pregnant. They need a little help.
Speaking of which, let’s talk relationships. A single man is viewed as a swinging bachelor and it is totally acceptable often praised. A single woman, on the other hand, is fifty shades of effed up if she is single, especially as she advances in age. We very seldom hear older men told that they need to be in relationships. However, not the case for women. An older woman is not in a relationship and right away, many tend to assume something is wrong with her. Couldn’t possibly be that the men they get with are found to be totally worthless; nah. A woman is apparently supposed to just deal with it and be in a relationship, or SHAME ON HER.
And ladies, before you decide to jump on the men, slow your roll. Many know just how vicious women can be toward each other as well. I’ve seen so many cases where a woman has done or said the same or worse to another woman than a man has, along with the sexist jokes and comments, and the fact that many ridicule these women when they report a sexual assault. They call these women an “embarrassment,” say that they are lying, especially when the reporting didn’t happen “quickly” enough. Just look at what’s going on now with Bill Cosby.
Then there are those women who are quick to boast about how “strong” they are, and because of this, other women should be that was as well. Especially in terms of equality. Women have often said that since they are not going through or haven’t been through something of a damaging, sexual nature, then all should be that way. In other words, the fact that a particular woman isn’t or hasn’t been discriminated against somehow means that this likely applies to everyone else just the same, which is garbage. But the thing is, expecting women to never speak up about equality just because you don’t feel oppressed in any way is like telling others not to go to the hospital because YOU aren’t sick.
It’s not all about you.
And oh yeah…women in many cases are still expected to just take their husbands’ names upon getting married.
I’m sure there are many more examples out there. What folks fail to realize is that equality isn’t as much about laws as it is about how women are viewed and treated by society. The law can say whatever we want it to say. The calendar can say whatever it wants. But when we start VIEWING women as equals in ALL WAYS and not just when we are forced to is when we make REAL progress.
I could even say the ever famous “If it happened to your daughter,” but it shouldn’t take that. If you can be angry about your daughter not being treated equally to men, then you DO have the ability to recognize it.
But I love and admire the ladies who speak up against inequality and continue to fight the good fight, even when there are so many out there, to include many of their own sisters, who rake them over the coals when they do so. Days like today are for you.
I know what today is for. And I, for one, stand with you.