Today is International Women’s Day. My member-supported radio station, WXPN is playing songs by women artists all day long. Just heard the Helen Reddy classic, I Am Woman, Hear Me Roar. which harkens back to my youth. Social media has various and sundry posts about empowerment and the need for women to be acknowledged for our achievements. A video I watched this morning, highlights the gender discrepancy that occurs on a daily basis with regard to equal pay for equal work. What I appreciated about it is that the children in this Norwegian presentation recognized the inequity and the boys willingly gave the girls their share to balance it out.
The campaign focus for this year is:
What does that mean?
For me, it means
- equal opportunity for all people of all gender expression in the workplace.
- commensurate pay for services rendered.
- walking about in the world without fear of harassment or encroachment of space.
- freedom of feeling for boys and girls, so that no one is told, ‘boys don’t cry,’ or ‘girls need to be ladylike’.
- body sovereignty.
- giving voice to all who feel silenced.
- acceptance that people come in all shapes and sizes, all abilities, all sexual orientations, all skin tones, all cultures, all religions, none of it implying superiority or inferiority.
Even though the holiday falls on one particular day of the year, the need for recognition of honoring the women in our lives 365, is essential. I shake my head in bewilderment that one man determined that women were less-than and it spread like a contagion. A quote from one of my role models, Ruth Bader Ginsberg (a.k.a Notorious RBG) speaks volumes about the outrageous acceptance of the status quo.
“[W]hen I’m sometimes asked when will there be enough [women on the supreme court]? And I say ‘When there are nine.’ People are shocked. But there’d been nine men, and nobody’s ever raised a question about that.”
— In an interview with 10th Circuit Bench & Bar Conference at the University of Colorado in Boulder, via CBS News
For the women in my life who have inspired me and helped me to become the one who is writing these words. First and foremost is my mother Selma Weinstein who believed in me beyond the beyond and now, on the others side of the veil, still does. My grandmother, Henrietta Hirsch (a.k.a. Giggie) was my live-and- in- person angel until I was four years old and when she passed soon after, has been with me, keeping watch. My sister, Jan Weinstein-Sparta who raised her three children and is now caring for her granddaughter, in the midst of her own health issues. To my niece, Rachael Kay Sparta who is sharing co-parenting duties for Aryanna (her niece). My aunts (my grandmother’s sisters) who were among 13 sibs; most especially my Aunt Katie who was a role model for fun and lightheartedness and my Aunt Edith who lived to be 103, whose independence and longevity astounded me. My dear mentor Yvonne Kaye has been a stalwart symbol of resilience and re-creating herself as she has taught me (much like my mother) that I can do anything I set my mind and heart to. My cousin Marilyn Alkus Bonomi who lived in our home while attending Temple University in the 1960s and helped to shape this peace and social justice activist. My ‘older and wiser cousin,’ Jody Weiner-Rosenblum who would be my soul-friend even if we weren’t related. To all of our ancestors whose existence heralded our own. To all of my friends who shape the world through their creativity. To all who heal the wounds (their own and those of others). To all the movers and shakers who dare to shake things up to wake us up. To those facing their health challenges and losses valiantly. To those who have crossed over and continue to touch our lives in extraordinary ways.
Who are your Inspiristas?
Here’s to all of the women who uplift us!
Photo credit: Pixabay