EDITORIAL: You go (stand up for your liberties), girl!
Despite controversies, celebration of Women’s Day is important
Ever since the Women’s March on Washington on Jan. 21, the world has been waiting to see what women would do to follow up on the protest that seemed to foreshadow a movement. And with yesterday being International Women’s Day (also known as "Women's Day"), it seems as though the world may have gotten its answer.
To celebrate women and actively deliver a message about the importance of them in society, International Women’s Day came equipped with protests, marches and closings surrounding the theme of “A Day Without a Woman.”
“A Day Without a Woman” focuses on the gravity of inequality in workplaces by simulating jobs and careers without the inclusion of women. Women everywhere, who work in schools and offices, boycotted their places of employment in order to show how significant a woman’s place is, and not only in the workplace. Even Rutgers participated in this protest by hosting a walkout for those interested in participating, allowing some students and professors to demonstrate their impact on the University.
However, as many things do in society, the protests were met with some controversy. This controversy came from both sides. Some people have complained that taking part in these strikes leaves schools and healthcare offices helpless. Students, whose parents cannot arrange to have daycare services for their children last-minute, are left in confusion. This is a fair concern, however, taking off from work is not the only way to celebrate International Women’s Day. In fact, some women who were planning on taking part in these protests explained that the idea of “A Day Without a Woman” is problematic in itself because of the privilege that it is based off of. Not every woman can afford to take a day off from work, and this way, the protest is discreetly creating divisions among women themselves and barring some from participating in a day that is supposed to celebrate them. This is important to consider. Although it was meant to unite women, it also shows that we cannot ignore how there are intersectional problems within the gender itself and that there is more than the equality between men and women that needs to be reached.
Another celebration of International Women’s Day that came under controversy was the one implemented by the social media app, Snapchat. Snapchat provided filters that users can place over their faces, allowing them to pose as depictions of Frida Kahlo, Rosa Parks and Marie Curie. Although these filters were created in order to celebrate women, the message may have been misconstrued because of Snapchat’s delivery.
Because Snapchat is a fun, social app, it is most likely that these filters will be used as a joke rather than a commemoration. Perhaps if Snapchat had used these influential women’s faces as a filter to place around a picture rather than transforming the user’s faces into these late pioneers of change, it would have been acceptable. But instead, Snapchat chose to create these filters that shockingly even gives users added touches of makeup and lighter-colored eyes. This takes away from the message.
In a political and social climate that is not always so women-friendly — despite President Donald J. Trump’s assertion on Twitter that he has “tremendous respect for women” — it is crucial that the world stands together to honor the women in it. Women are intelligent and significant members of society who have struggled to make their name in a world that has been bent on putting them down. No matter how you choose to celebrate International Women’s Day, the recognition of the day, and women’s importance, is needed.
The Daily Targum's editorials represent the views of the majority of the 149th editorial board. Columns, cartoons and letters do not necessarily reflect the views of the Targum Publishing Company or its staff.