International Women’s Day ought to be widely celebrated

The logo for International Womens Day features the traditional women empowerment logo. International Womens Day is celebrated worldwide on March 8.

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The logo for International Women’s Day features the traditional women empowerment logo. International Women’s Day is celebrated worldwide on March 8.

There’s an obscure holiday every day of the year, some as foolish as National Kite Flying Day. Most Americans don’t take these holidays seriously and laugh at the randomness of it all. However, there is one holiday that too many Americans overlook that deserves more recognition: International Women’s Day.

International Women’s Day is a globally-celebrated holiday on March 8 that honors the political, social and economic achievements of women all around the world. This holiday ought to be celebrated more seriously in the United States and within the halls of Grady High School. Because of the recent elevation of women’s issues to the forefront of our national consciousness, it would be a perfect chance for young girls to learn about important strides made by global women leaders. Plus, other countries are already celebrating it.  

In recent years, social movements, marches and domestic politics have proven that American women don’t just want their voices to be heard, but they want to drive change.

This was evident when the freshman class of the 116th Congress set a record for most women in Congress in America’s history. This was evident when women decided that #TimesUp on the societal normalization of sexual assault and harassment. This was evident when women took to the streets in record numbers to march for a range of issues — closing the pay gap, reproductive rights and domestic violence. America needs to honor this nationwide movement, and the best way to do that would be to celebrate a holiday that acknowledges the advancement of women.

A greater celebration of this holiday would also serve as a perfect opportunity to educate young girls about powerful and influential women who came before them. Students barely learn about the Women’s Suffrage Movement and other historic events involving powerful women. And if they’re lucky, they only learn about a few female influential leaders like Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton, not the hundreds of women who contributed to the way we live today.

The observance of this holiday would be a way to change the narrative of our history books. For instance, if Grady teachers incorporated women who made great strides in politics, science, math, art, literature and athletics into their curriculum on International Women’s Day, it would be easier for the next generation to picture women in influential roles. This would also empower young girls to pursue whatever career they want because they would learn about strong female role models who had done the same thing.

America prides itself on being a global Superpower and leader of the West. Following that line of thought, it makes sense for America to celebrate International Women’s Day. In some European countries like Albania, Russia and Italy, it is celebrated by giving gifts to women. In Poland, they use it as a day to hold feminist demonstrations. In some African countries like Benin, they use it as a time to raise awareness for women’s health and socioeconomic status. In Armenia, they use International Women’s Day to kick off a month of celebrating women.

Even though some Americans and nonprofits already celebrate this holiday, the U.S. could learn from other countries who are already taking steps to commemorate women’s empowerment and begin its own nationwide International Women’s Day traditions.