The words belong to Diane von Furstenberg. Excerpt taken from the Vogue Magazine.
Women have come a long way. From voting rights, over rights for education to the rights to work and equal pay, it was a long lasting fight that still is going on.
1975 the day was adopted by the UN, before that it was mostly a symbol in the socialist movement and the communist countries. Today the day is an official holiday in countries such as Afghanistan, Angola, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, China (for women only), Cuba, Georgia, Guinea-Bissau, Eritrea, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Macedonia (for women only), Madagascar (for women only), Moldova, Mongolia, Nepal, Russia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uganda, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, Vietnam, and Zambia.
Considering that in the aforementioned countries not only women’s rights, but human rights are neglected, I guess we only can look at it and limit it to a symbolic gesture.
Depending where you are born as a girl, life can be easier or very difficult for you. In the Scandinavian countries the development for equal rights started a long time ago, with Finland being the first country in the world giving women voting rights in 1906.
Today more than ever it is important to stand up for women world wide. We witness a time of bigotry and nationalism. The leader of the free world is setting walls and borders which is a huge contradiction to his title.
Women’s rights are human rights. And we have to stand up for and defend each other no matter our race, our religion or our gender. Too many women have fought and suffered so that we would get to this point in our lives. It is important to keep this day in mind all year long and women to encourage each other to be who they want to be. To do the work they want to and to express themselves they want to and feel right about. It is a crucial priority to fight for an inclusive society where women’s rights finally will become human rights.
Here’s to strong women. May we know them. May we be them. May we raise them.
Happy International Women’s Day.
xx Azra/Swedish Avenue