My Plea on International Women’s Day

Today, March 8, is a day celebrated for more than a century now as International Women’s Day. In it’s earliest iteration, it was founded as “International Working Women’s Day” and was actually linked back to the American Socialist Party.  To be crystal clear, I am NOT a Socialist.  But I most definitely am a Woman, and I choose to support, elevate, empower and celebrate women around the world today and every day.
In 2017, I’m astonished that so many women in my own country and around the globe still lack equality and in so many parts of the world, basic human rights. Global politics and policies continue to separate and divide us, and it breaks my heart that so many of my sisters would rather tear each other apart over our differences than stand together to uplift and protect the most vulnerable among us. Instead of engaging in intelligent discussions to seek common ground, too many of us draw uncrossable lines in the social media sand fostered by religious and political divisiveness.  Too many of us take the stance that because we are not personally oppressed, it is foolishness that prompts those who protest another person’s felt struggle. Certainly, it is our right as free-born people to peacefully protest, and I completely respect the choice of those who do… and those who don’t.  Hey Girl, you do you.
But as for me:
As an incredibly privileged American born woman, I’m deeply grateful for the women who came before me and for their protests, marches, and tireless campaigns to educate and fight for the rights I enjoy today. I am clear that while much progress has been made, there is still much work to be done here and around the globe. As long as there remains such unbearable things as gender inequality, patriarchy, misogyny, domestic violence, rape culture, sex trafficking, ritual genital mutilation, child marriage, and honor killings, we must continue to bravely stand up and speak out for the most vulnerable among us.
 
I have been to many countries outside of the US. I’ve worked with many women over the years who don’t enjoy the same rights as I do. Not even close! As a result, I’ve raised funds, rallied and educated people here about many of the horrors women and girls still face daily- because once you’ve seen that kind of pain and oppression, you simply can’t unsee it. My compassion and empathy compels me to do whatever I can, whenever I can.
 
And while I cannot speak for the other women who choose to protest today (or any other day), I can tell you that this is exactly the reason I do proudly count myself among them. I will continue to speak out and stand up on behalf of women and girls globally and dedicate myself to advancing the rights of my sisters here, there, and everywhere. For me, it goes much farther and deeper than the political divisions and power grabs that taint the surface of any one event; it is that we must love every other human to the very best of our ability, and that sometimes means drawing attention to injustice suffered and doing whatever possible to address and correct it. On this, I believe, we surely agree.
Want to join my list of like-minded butterfly souls?

blonde, the blessings butterfly, head shot