Sunday, March 1, 2009

Ready to celebrate?

It’s March and it’s time to celebrate. I’m not talking about St. Patrick’s Day. This is Women’s History Month and next Sunday, March 8, is International Women’s Day.

This, my female friends, is a major holiday in several countries, including China, Russia, Macedonia and Vietnam. I’m talking gifts and flowers. I'm thinking we need to get that March gift-giving thing going here. With 4.8 million more women then men in America, majority should rule.

Even though Hallmark hasn’t caught on yet, we could still “strongly suggest” that all males honor us next Sunday. Celebrate "IWD" by being pampered/worshipped, maybe curling up with a good book (by a female author), and taking a break from work, cooking, cleaning, etc. Instead of green beer, think a nice chardonnay or latte. Gifts and flowers would be nice, too. So if a male asks you do something next Sunday, just reply (indignantly): "Did you forget what day it is???"

The History Lesson
International Women’s Day had its roots in a March 8, 1857, protest over the working conditions in New York’s garment factories. Police attacked the women and forced them to disperse. Symbolically, 15,000 women marched through New York on March 8, 1908, to demand shorter work hours, better pay, voting rights and an end to child labor. Their slogan was "Bread and Roses" -- bread symbolizing economic security and roses for a better quality of life. Later that year, the last Sunday in February was designated as National Women’s Day.

In 1913, the observance was moved to March, perhaps in memory of the March 25, 1911, Triangle Shirtwaist Company fire in New York City where 148 women were killed because of unsafe working conditions. Protests followed, including a silent funeral march of 100,000 people. In 1981 Congress established National Women's History Week to be commemorated in the second week of March and six years later, expanded it to a month. The UN proclaims March 8 as a United Nations Day for Women’s Rights and International Peace. This year’s theme is “Women and men united to end violence against women and girls.”
American Women by the Numbers:

154.7 million: number of females in the U.S. as of October
$34,278: median annual earnings of women 16 or older working full-time, year round
77.5 cents: how much women earn for every $1 earned by men

59%:
females 16 and older in the labor force (71 million)
all 50 states: where women earn less than men
82.8 million: mothers of all ages
1.9: average number of children born to women now 40 to 44
5.6 million: stay-at-home mothers, up from 4.6 million a decade ago
33%: women 25 to 29 with at least a bachelor’s degree (26 % for men)
28.2 million: women 25 and up with at least a bachelor's degree
58%: number of bachelor’s degrees women will earn this year, master's--60%
$939 billion: revenue for 6.5 million women-owned businesses
7.1 million: employed by women-owned businesses
62.6 million: married women
60.7 million: widowed, divorced or never married women
14%: proportion of females in the military (198,400)
3 million: girls participating in high school athletics
174,534: females playing a National Collegiate Athletic Association sport

1 comment:

Candy said...

I'm for anything that involves gifts and flowers, rather than green beer and imaginary stunted folk.