“International Women’s Day is annually held on March 8 to celebrate women’s achievements throughout history and across nations. It is also known as the United Nations (UN) Day for Women’s Rights and International Peace.”
This International Women’s day, along with celebrating the beacons of the human race, we also wanted to take it a step further and ask men to do better. After seeing a tweet by Farida Nabourema, we decided to ask South African men to pledge to do better by women and gender equality in their own lives.
Dear male friends, colleagues and family members, please this March 8, I do not wish to receive Happy Women’s Day messages. Rather I want pledges and commitments from you standing by our side against gender inequality and make this world less unbearable and unsafe for us girls.
– Farida Nabourema
“We have heard and in some cases used terms such as ‘feminazi’, phrases like ‘men are trash’ and deplorable questions asking ‘what did she do/what was she wearing to bring this on herself.’ This shows the societal norm of attenuating gender-linked issues and dismissing women when they challenge men’s vile behaviour. The truth is that these problems would not exist if we (men) were not causing and contributing to them.
I pledge to call out sexist jokes and to talk to my younger nephews about how to treat women; by standing up for women who I see being harassed and discussing issues surrounding gender inequality and women abuse with those around me. By unlearning my own questionable views and changing my behaviour to create a more comfortable environment for women.
I vow to listen, to use my male privilege to open platforms wherever possible and ultimately to be a true ally in the fight for gender equality.”
TEBELLO “TIBZ” MOTSOANE | Entrepreneur
“As men, I believe it is our responsibility to support women as best we can. Most of us have been blessed with so much support from mothers, aunts, spouses, friends and more and we must reciprocate.
My business is blessed to have amazing female talent running it. Everyday I learn from my team and they make me better. I appreciate all that they do for me.
My pledge is to always #DoBetter and be a better teammate, friend and to learn more in order to continuously do better.”
TSHEGO KOKE | Television Presenter
“I pledge to #DoBetter by women by making sure that I learn about the social issues women face and equality. Not only learning but also sharing what I learn with the men around me on how the void can be filled, how the relations between men and women can be gauged in getting us to being equal.
Respecting women as a whole, loving them and always understanding that there are people younger than us that look to us to see how people and women are treated. Therefore, what we should do, is place women on a pedestal so that those who come after us can do the same for the women of the future.”
Women will always continue the fight for gender equality but patriarchy has ensured that the male voice will need to be audible in the fight too. Patriarchy isn’t a system that has set back women only, but men too – social ideas on masculinity, the worth of men and the LGBTQI+ community have all been products of the system. A fight against patriarchy is a fight for the human race.