INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY #EACHFOREQUAL
In the spirit of women’s month, I am going to share more women centered content. Today, March 8th is international women’s day and the theme is #Eachforequal which is basically actions we can take as individuals to challenge stereotypes, fight prejudice and celebrate women’s achievements. I decided to write about the theme for #IWD2020.
What is a stereotype? A stereotype is a widely held but fixed and oversimplified image or idea of a particular type of person or thing. Current stereotypes that exist for women currently do not allow us to see women as full humans. These black and white lenses don’t allow us to see spectrum of nuances. Women are not selfish for not wanting children. Women are not weak for having a caesarean section. Not wanting to cook doesn’t make any woman less woman than she is. Single women are not necessarily difficult. Women are not automatically rude when they are more successful. Partying isn’t synonymous with sluts in regards to women. Women don’t have to be girly girls to be considered “woman enough”.
Yes, we have changed some things in the last hundred years with regards to women’s rights in Nigeria but we still have a long way to go. 10,000 women are still being raped daily. Click here to see the article about the rape stats The prevalence of female genital mutilation between women between 15-49 is 24.8%. We rank at number 122 of 129 on the SDG gender index. Period poverty and purity culture are still very prevalent in our society. Single women still need to have a male guardian or companion vouch for them to get a place to rent. So yeah, we are still very behind.
CELEBRATE WOMEN’S ACHIEVEMENT
While we celebrate women’s achievements, let us remember to not erase the work that has been done by women. Do not dilute the stories of women that start movements like we did for Funmilayo ransome-kuti, Rosa Parks etc. Tell the stories of women with their layers, complexities and flaws. Also, remember that it is possible to celebrate women without attaching trauma to them. There is no need for you to only praise your mum for cooking for the children when she was tired and sick and still had to go to work the next day. It’s possible to praise women for things they did without continually associating trauma to it. There is nothing heroic about an overworked and underpaid woman.
We still have a long way to go before gender equality actually becomes a reality, there is still a lot of work to be done.
Let us get to work in our individual spaces to strive for equality and equity and let that trickle down to the larger society. Happy International women’s day! 🙂
What does International women’s day mean to you?
Do you believe in equality of sexes?
If yes, what do you do personally or on a larger scale to create an environment for equality?