In solidarity with our sisters and brothers around the world, Debra Schrishuhn and Dan O’Neal for Alan, Mike F, Mike H, Janis, Dr Bill, Kimberly, Bryan, and Shayna—your PDA National Team
Today is March 8th, International Women’s Day, recognized as the time we celebrate women’s history and accomplishments and bring visibility to the critical issues of suffrage, workplace equity, autonomy, and human rights worldwide. Progressive Democrats of America (PDA) and the progressive movement stand with, celebrate, and salute the struggle and the rising of women everywhere.
As of this year, 37 states of the 38 total required have ratified the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA), using the “Three-State” approach to ratification. PDA was among the first multi-issue, national, progressive organizations to endorse and support this strategy. Andrea Miller, Executive Director of People Demanding Action, PDA’s sibling organization, reports that PDAction has been instrumental in efforts to pass the ERA in Virginia—efforts that unfortunately fell one vote short in the Virginia House of Delegates. Read the full report here.
With Democratic pickups of just a few State House of Delegates seats in later this year, full and final ERA ratification is virtually assured in 2020. Donate $100, $20, $10, or whatever you can to help PDA continue our efforts on behalf of the ERA and equality for everyone everywhere.
First celebrated in 1909, the origins of a widely recognized International Women’s Day (IWD) began in the U.S. when women fought for equal rights, labor rights, and suffrage. After women gained suffrage in Soviet Russia in 1917, March 8th became a holiday there as well. IWD has grown into a day celebrated around the world with festivals, marches, and demonstrations, all focused on continuing the struggle for equality and women’s rights. In 1975, the United Nations adopted March 8th as International Women’s Day, and it is a national holiday in many countries today.
In Kenya, women of the Rendille community in Marsabit County recently banded together to protect their communal lands from outside investors and developers. Across five rural Indian states, Women’s Peer Groups are working to end child marriage in their communities. According to Rajaa Altalli of the Center for Civil Society, women are leading the effort for peace and stability in war-ravished Syria. Here in the U.S., PDA ally CODEPINK is calling for the release from jail of all peaceful Saudi women’s rights activists currently imprisoned by the Saudi government.
Last year, more women than ever before were elected to Congress and state legislatures in the U.S., with turnout boosted by the female electorate. Once again, a woman is the Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives. The #MeToo movement has brought broad awareness of pervasive sexual misconduct and the need for serious policy and societal reform. Women and children are leading movements to end senseless gun violence, accelerate efforts to combat climate change, and reform incarceration policy.
Yet, double standards and discrimination persist. A male head of state can lie constantly, have multiple extra-marital affairs, make racist pronouncements, overturn more than two centuries of precedents, and defy Constitutional boundaries without political repercussions, but criticisms of a U.S. ally by a woman of color in the House of Representatives brings forth a resolution of disapproval.
Clearly, we still have a lot of work to do. PDA joins the celebration of International Women’s Day, as we redouble our efforts to promote global peace, sustainability, and justice. Tell Congress to remove the arbitrary deadline from the ERA. Then please give $100, $20, $10, or whatever you can to support PDA’s mobilizing on behalf of the ERA and women everywhere.
P.S. We’re here to help you make progress in your state and locality! If you need help organizing a new PDA chapter or energizing your existing chapter, please contact PDA Field Coordinator Dan O’Neal. Join the PDA Phone Team making easy, effective calls from your own home with Mike “Phone Guy” Fox. Also please pitch in $1000, $100, or whatever you can afford to support our organizing for Equality For All.