Every year since 1909, when the Socialist Party of America used the day to honor a women’s strike against working conditions, the world has been celebrating women with International Women’s Day.
The holiday encourages and recognizes women and their achievements no matter their nationality, ethnicity, division or culture. It’s for pushing gender equality and recognizing the pursuits and accomplishments that women achieve every day across the globe.
From 1913-1914, the day was even a World War I protesting method to promote peace. Later, in 1975, during International Women’s Year, the United Nations began officially celebrating it annually on March 8.
This year, the theme is #PressforProgress. The goal is to call for strength in friendships, workplaces and communities to be gender inclusive and close the gap. If women keep pressing, there will be progress.
But the question that continues to be raised is why we need to keep this day in action. It’s been over 100 years, and despite the consistent push for it, equality has yet to be achieved. Women are still being paid less, treated with less respect and looked down upon. Women shouldn’t need a day to be celebrated (although it’s definitely deserved) and to push harder than men for basic needs and rights. But it’s 2018 and the fight is still on, and women are still pressing for progress.
Participation opportunities are endless — from selfie borders to social media hashtags, showing your strength and support has never been easier. Think, act and fight against the social norms and offensive situations and take action in the press for progress.
From 9:00 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. on Mar. 8 in the Student Union, Capital will be hosting the second annual International Women’s Day of Action, where there will be discussions and presentations featuring the theme of gender parity, sexual harassment and sexual assault. There will also be a performance by Capital’s Chapel Choir, an art exhibit that highlights female artists, and a film presentation.
“[International Women’s Day] draws the spotlight toward us long enough for everyone else to see that we continue to refuse to back down,” Becky Horgan, sophomore, said. “We stand together, we continue to fight for our rights as women and for equality for everyone … We are women and we are proud to be who we are.”
On International Women’s Day, women (and men) across the globe will be celebrating the strength and determination that women have always had and fought for in this patriarchal world. Join the fight, show your support and #PressforProgress.