Monday, March 06, 2006

International Women's Day: a reflection!

As the 8th of March is nearing, my mailbox fills up with invitations from all over the world to attend manifestations. Of course you can pick only one or two close by, all the rest has your sympathy and gets a mail back of support.
But each year again you sit back in a mood of reflection, counting the positive actions and moves that happened to women all over the globe as well as the negative ones, and lately the balance is very uneven in the negative direction.
Just a few minutes ago I read the governor of South Dakota signed the law that prohibits abortion unless the life of the woman is endangered! A law that puts women back to the dark ages in a country, the US. that proclaims itself as the champion of freedom, democracy etc...etc.. except for the human rights of women?
Especially the poor, the black, the latino, the native-american women?
In another news item I read that Cindy Sheehan, once again, is arrested in New York for protesting a senseless, desastrous war in Iraq with a delegation of Iraqi women, is there no more shame, when the best and the boldest among us are treated like they are the criminals?!
Thousands of women each and every year again die of Aids, of maltreatment, of abuse, of oppression, of violence, domestic and due to conflicts (war), and its like the whole world is watching and doesn't give a damn!
Sometimes that is the way it seems to be, but luckily you know and are aware that is not true. Thousands of bold women from all over the planet do take a stand, are involved, stick out their necks and even their lives for the well being of their not so fortunate sisters ( Code Pink, Feminist Majority, Encore FĂ©ministe etc...etc...) and therefore, especially on a day as the 8th of March it gives you a good feeling of belonging to that worldwide sisterhood of brave Warrior Women who care and keep on fighting the righteous struggle for peace, and justice and equality!
One Cindy Sheehan is worth a thousand Condoleeza Rice's and Hilary's ( for their kind in power are even worse then men!)
I have travelled a lot, I was in Iraq, the Middle East, Africa, all over Europe, the States and my eyes have seen a lot. As a writer, journalist and poet I often have tried to give a voice to the voiceless and the silenced,
everywhere I have talked to the women, to the homeless in Johannesburg, in the shacks of Gugulethu by Capetown- up to Winnie Mandela and no matter how poor I was welcomed with a smile and they told me their story while holding my hands.
Nobody has a crystal ball to look into the future, but when we take a global vision of the NOW, we only can state that the world has NOT become a safer place, that 'democracy' has become a hollow meaning , used as a shield to cover the hidden agenda's of the warmongers and that women and children remain the most vulnerable victims.
But as we are strong, undefeatable we must keep on keeping on thinking and acting positive, cherish the love and the friendship around us and then harvest all the bright moments!