International Women’s Day 2020

International Women's Day 2020

Isabella DiGiulio

International Women’s Day is a day to recognize the accomplishments of women throughout history, along with the issues they still face. This year the theme was “I am Generation Equality: Realizing Women’s Rights”. It is celebrated annually on March 8 across the world. Although it wasn’t officially recognized by the United Nations till 1977, many countries used March 8 to come together and advocate for women’s rights following WWII. 

Women’s rights have truly come a long way, with the first women’s convention organized by women at Seneca Falls in 1848. Then, in 1920 women in the United States earned the right to vote with the 19th Amendment. On June 10, 1963 the Equal Pay Act was passed aimed to end wage discrimination against women. A recent milestone in 2016 was Hillary Clinton becoming the first woman to receive a presidential nomination. There are also many significant women who’ve had a great impact on our world, including Amelia Earhart, Rosa Parks, and Malala Yousafzai.

“Malala Yousafzai, who fought for women’s education. I think that’s super important, because all over the world women deserve to be educated,” said Junior Claire Dekruyf.

Even with all this progress, many believe there are still many issues we need to face. A broad issue would be gender bias, which is a preference or prejudice towards or against one gender. An example of this could be male dominance in a certain career branch. Another issue many people claim is still prevalent today is equal pay. A global issue would be women’s education among third-world countries, where it is difficult for a girl to receive a full education. International Women’s Day gives both men and women a chance to reflect on these issues and more, as well as having them voice their opinions about it.

“In the United States equal pay is still something that is not happening right now. […] I think equality still has a lot of improvement. And with the whole Me Too movement, there’s still a lot of issues facing women in our country,” claims Junior Gracie Jaime.

International Women’s Day is a time to not only recognize the women in the past who forged the way, but also the women now who inspire us. To most it’s the women close to them, like mothers and grandmothers or even teachers and coaches. Some may find inspiration with celebrities like Oprah Winfrey, who was the first black female host with a nationally syndicated daily talk show.

My coach Jamie is the first person that comes to my mind when I think of an inspirational woman, because she was an olympic gold medalist and coached at Stanford.  […] Also Mrs. Ochoa because she’s so kind and caring, and again just really shows how powerful women are,”

— Dekruyf

International Women’s Day is a chance to bring together and empower women across the globe with all different backgrounds. It also allows women and men to have a conversation on the issues women face and learn from each other. The goal for many is to just be treated with respect and as equals.

“I think international women’s day is important, because people all over the world and in every country women need to be represented, and equality is still an issue that women face even in the United States. So I think drawing attention to it is definitely something that needs to be recognized,” said Jaime.