Women’s History Month is here again. Since March, 1987, the United States has set aside time to give a little extra attention to the accomplishments of women. Not too long ago, women were denied the right to participate fully in American society. Today, there are still places around the world where women do not have the freedom to fully participate in activities that are important to the well-being of themselves, their families, and by extension, their social groups. In that case, everyone loses, though this may not be obvious to everyone at first glance.
Let’s use nature as a cue; everything is based on the blending of opposites. A plug is absolutely no good without a socket, in other words, one is not more important than the other. Sperm are no good without eggs; batteries will not work unless both poles are operative. Because of this, the notion forwarded by some that one gender is more important than the other loses its validity. The idea, held by some men and women alike, that women are not as important as men, is therefore, ludicrous.
Both genders are important in the overall scheme of creation. If that were not the case, they would not exist. They do each have their function, however. In modern society, men have traditionally adopted the role of breadwinner, of warrior, of protector, of the part of the human family that does the heavy-lifting when it comes to automobile repairs, building homes, and more. Something is happening, however, where those roles are not as cut and dry as we would think. More and more these roles are shifting. Things are changing. Women are working in construction; they are assuming positions as captains of industry, in fact, the glass ceiling is shattering all over the place. So it appears that people are more resilient, more flexible than previously thought. Perhaps the pendulum swings from one side to another, and all stops are valid in between. So in a situation such as the Black community where many of our men are compromised by incarceration, murder, oppression, and more, women are placed in the position of having to step up and fill in the gaps.
The same can be said about white society. In areas where men are faltering, women are stepping up to the plate. The biggest case in point can be seen in the U.S. Congress wherein more women are serving now than ever before in our history. Many of these women are proving that intelligence, skill, and competence are not just in the male domain. Actually, all around the world women are stepping up and are now represented in many arenas that were heretofore off limits.
With this said, it is important to realize that this change in global perspective regarding women will have to reach far into the dark places that too many women still dwell order for them to understand that they are going to have to save themselves if they are to help our communities survive and thrive. This means that the women who dog our girls and who are in agreement with too many negative depictions of them begin to realize their own self-worth. Even in light of the global rise of women, too many women are quick to criticize and to malign other women. This is probably one of the reasons that so many Black women are quick to condemn the women and girls who are pawns in the hands of alleged sexual predators. This is why they are quick to call them “THOTS” (That Hoe Over There); and to refuse to believe that predation exists. This is why female candidates for elected office are held to a higher standard in our communities. This is a mistake; one of the reasons that the Black community has not been totally destroyed is connected with the efforts of those mothers, grandmothers, sisters, aunts, and other women who have decided that our lives are worth living, and have sacrificed in order to keep things operational as much as possible. It is way past the time where we automatically malign one half of creation in our communities, i.e., our women. We must realize that they hold up half of the sky! A Luta Continua.