Every year, 8th of March, we celebrate the International women’s day. So, we around the world:
- Show on national TV some nice movie that the lead actor is a woman.
- Put discounts in women clothing shops.
- Buy flowers or small gifts to our female close family members & friends.
- People around the world on social media use #empowerwomen #womensday #internationalwomensday and many other hashtags.
- People update their profile pictures & cover photos with quotes about how that woman are cool and strong.
Where is the problem?
All above is appreciated, yet, not matching the sole purpose of Women’s day! That looks pretty much like how we celebrate Christmas, except that we don’t celebrate Christmas in defense and to raise awareness about the dislodged rights of white Nordic males with white beards…aka Santa!
The point of women’s day is not to celebrate it as “we are happy, we have women, and they are cool”, neither to make women happy that day as much as we can; It is to raise awareness of the gender discrimination living within our daily life for years! To give you three examples:
- Unfair salaries & wage gap: And that is almost in every single country in the world, developed country it is or developing! It is true that by law, in almost all countries, you can’t pay a woman less than a man for the same job because of her gender. But many employers do so, using their right to pay their employees different salaries based on other aspects (that of course in many cases actually not true). We all saw that more useful female employee, with higher experience, that takes less than her male colleague. Not to mention equal opportunities in getting promoted, etc.
- Domestic violence: Women surely can be violent as well, and violence will always exist. Men are not generally speaking physically nor mentally directed to be violent either. The problem is not actually in the violence, more than the equal treatment in the case of violence, either by law, or the community. There is a tendency in many nations to accept minor violence from men towards women (by law, and by citizens), but be extremely irritated by a minimal sign of violence from women towards men.
- Being led: And this is one of the worst. We set a model of life that women need to be led by men in every situation. Either in a relationship, or by a male president in a country, or by a boss at her job. That subsequently diminished most of the women’s leadership skills, not to mention naturally gained self-confidence from such leadership state. Thus, failing in many cases to even lead lady-self life. Which makes a perfect cycle, as those who can’t lead themselves will always look for someone to lead them, and there will be a man standing at the door!
So how should women’s day be celebrated?
Funny enough, but in my opinion, women’s day should not at all be about women! It should be mainly about men and the society overall. It should include boosted media content, tv-shows, movies, conferences & seminars addressing men on how unjustifiably they treat women wrong, and what caused the current state. Giving men a simple list of things they can start with. And as much as I love the fact that women take the stage that day, I want to see men taking the stage, communicating to other men about such topics. In that day, men need help more than women, they are as well victims of the mutation caused by years of discrimination.
Furthermore, that day should focus as well on knowledge. Most men know about Einstein or Tesla. But how many know about Adva Lovelace, Lotfia ElNadi, Frida Kahlo, Olga Skorokhodova, Rukmini Devi Arundale, Lee Tai-young, Miriam Makeba, And the list can go quite long…If our history is quite hollow when it comes to great leading women, and only emphasize and focus on the seductive side of them (ex. Cleopatra), or when we show the powerful angle, it always incorporates her king, that without him, anyway, she wouldn’t be a queen or gain any power.
It is time to show other examples, and rejuvenate our history to include more meaningful stories of women. Yet, without stressing on the “woman” factory, as stressing on that being a woman, and still she could do X and Y only adds salt to the injury!
And what can we do in that day?
Do not stop doing the above things, they are cool! Bring that flower, and go to that movie, but they are secondary, the primary is that:
– Every man should stop and think about how his brain is unfair in treating women, questioning himself and his wrongdoings (and all men have that in one scale to another).
– Women should speak to their close family male members about specific personal actions they do, that they don’t like. Be practical: day x, you did y, and I did not like that as it is z. Take a lead in your feelings and emotions.
– Every woman should show her spouse a sign of leadership, or her boss. Go pitch a new idea, or help your couple in some personal issue he/she (yup she, it is 2017!) is facing. That way, you show leadership by example, and believe me, it will make you feel really great.
In a nutshell
We don’t need flowers, nor discounts. And we don’t need as well cool movies, or empowering Facebook posts/hashtags. We need to rewire and program the brains of male citizens, and the society (as a system). That will never happen by keeping the focus that day on women, but on where the problem resides, men & policies.
Bonus: How a man can feel women’s frustration in 5 mins?
To help some fellow men understand the daily frustration women face for centuries in our male-dominated planet, that in fact, rewired their brains, made many of them lose confidence once a while (thanks to the negative loop), and strength to strive in life.
Go take a shower, NOW!
Go to your bath, get the nearest shampoo or conditioner, and while relaxing under the shower, read what is written on the shampoo label. Let me get mine and tell you how it reads “Tresemme has been driven by a simple truth: Every woman deserves to look & feel fabulous. Like they’ve just stepped out of the salon”
It pissed you off, right? Let me get into your brain, and put your sub-consciousness on a table. Your brain is like: “Wait, what! but I am a guy in fact. I went and bought that shampoo to myself, a guy, why do they have female-forwarded text over it? So, what, men are dirty, they don’t use shampoos? Or we as men do not deserve high-quality products to take care of our hair. And if they want to make it for women, why this company doesn’t make shampoo series, high quality, for men?”
Now imagine when most of the things around you, including people’s behavior, is like that female-forwarded text. Female-dominated, and centered, how would you feel?
That is exactly what every single woman face on daily basis. And how would that make you feel, is her daily life? The worst is that they got used to the level that they even stopped feeling such discrimination unless someone pointed it out to them (something like Stockholm syndrome). Not fun, not fun at all to half of the citizens of this planet!
So let’s celebrate that day next year, a bit different!