Happy International Women’s Day!

    Happy International Women’s Day!

    Today, Monday the 8th March, is International Women’s Day friends, and it’s a time for us all to celebrate the achievements of the great women of the past and the present, and those who can inspire the next generation.

    This was the date assigned, over a century ago, to recognise women’s suffrage in Russia in 1917. It was a socialist holiday celebrated by feminists, before being more widely adopted by the United Nations in 1975.

    And this year’s theme is #ChooseToChallenge. In 2020 we proved that we can rise up together against injustice in the name of Black Lives Matter, but for however long there is intolerance and injustice in the world there is always work to be done. We need to challenge out-dated stereotypes and institutional bias every day, but this particular day is a great time for us to find and celebrate the women who are setting the bar higher.

    So let’s make a shout out for the women who are currently shaping the world to become a better place. Some of the most talented women in the world are breaking through glass ceilings in the halls of government. New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has shown herself to be a consummate stateswoman, leading her country with a calm and caring assurance and emerging as one of the world stars of the fight against the pandemic.

    Closer to home, Estonia elected its first female Prime Minster last month as 43 year old centrist lawyer Kaja Kallas took office and took the wind out of the sails of extremist factions in the country and in wider Eastern Europe. Her Reform Party heads a coalition that she says is a new start for a better year and, sitting on the fault line between the Soviet Union and Europe, she promises to bring a cool head to a bubbling region.

    Patrice Cullors, Alicia Garza and Opal Tometi are the three women credited with the inspiration to launch Black Lives Matter, which achieved incredible traction in 2020.

    It was back in 2013 when the three American writers and activists were enraged and frustrated over George Zimmerman’s acquittal in the shooting of Trayvon Martin.  As the neighbourhood watch co-ordinator in a gated community in Florida, Zimmerman fatally shot visiting student Martin and the three women had seen enough.

    Garza inspired the slogan, writing on Facebook: “I continue to be surprised at how little Black lives matter”. In 2013 Cullors created the hashtag and Tometi set up the social media campaign for BLM.

    The world is in good hands when we have women such as these leading our nations and fighting injustice.

    And hey, remember folks…next Sunday is Mother’s Day!


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