On Wednesdays We Wear Red

Illustration by Marisol Muro

 

During the final presidential debate last October, Donald Trump raised his index finger, shook his peroxide bouffant and muttered the words “such a nasty woman” into his microphone. Never in his wildest dreams could he have imagined the backlash that would occur from the five-letter slur he used to describe Hilary Clinton. As if transforming from a shiny chrysalis to a majestic butterfly, within minutes the Nasty Women hashtag had flourished from a sexist insult into a fully-fledged female rights movement.

Taking a leaf out of Tina Fey’s coming-of-age comedy for International Women’s Day is an unlikely turn of events, however instead of mean girls wearing pink this Wednesday, #NastyWomen are embracing red.

Standing together in solidarity, women around the world are set to wear an item of red clothing whilst striking in honour of the Day Without a Woman campaign. Nasty Women are encouraged to “take the day off from paid or unpaid labor to celebrate International Women’s Day and support the on-going battle for gender equality.

 

“We are striking for a feminism for the 99%, not a feminism for the boardrooms.”

 

In line with the Day Without a Woman drive, participants will avoid spending money at businesses that are not independently owned by females or minority groups. The event organisers state that women’s absence in the workplace on Wednesday will further emphasise the “enormous value that women of all backgrounds add to our socio-economic system—and the pervasive and systemic gender-based inequalities that still exist.”

With the talk of spells and synchronized mass rituals against the US President, enchanted women are prevailing as modern day feminist icons. Kim Sparrow, a member of the Global Women’s Strike explains why brooms are this year’s emblem for change.

“Some of us are putting a broom outside our door. The Global Women’s Strike have adopted it as one of our tools for the [event]. All of the strands are stronger together and it symbolizes that we are able to sweep out austerity and [unwanted] cuts.”

As a grassroots network, the GWS demands representation for women of various backgrounds including, women of colour, mothers, women in the LGBTQ + community, sex workers and women with disabilities.

Kim Sparrow stresses, “We are striking for justice, equality, a caring society and a feminism for the 99%, not a feminism for the boardrooms.”

To find out how to get involved with Day Without a Women visit their website here.

 

 

I wrote this article for Grenade’s International Women’s Day issue.

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