AS WE look forward to International Women’s Day, these are what women face in this time of Tokhang, fiery words and wars:
A dead missionary becomes a rape joke.
Journalists critical of the administration are bashed by defenders with rape jokes, while reporters get cat calls and get invited to a room to peek at tattoos.
A lady chief justice and a lady ombudsman are dared to resign for working to uphold the law.
A respected professor and development worker received a “na-ano” joke from a clowning senator during her confirmation hearing. Her appointment was rejected for doing her job clean of politics.
Meanwhile, a lady communications secretary is twisting facts the way she twists her body for the male audience to ogle.
A woman senator is shamed for an affair with a driver and an alleged sex tape.
Students from UP, with passion in their hearts, are labeled as ingrates and rebels.
Meanwhile, a lady communications secretary tries to look bright by posing with law books.
Nuns who knelt before tanks at EDSA in 1986 was all drama, says the communications secretary known as queen of fake news.
Women rebels are to be “shot in their vaginas”.
Maranao women fleeing from their bombed homes in Marawi were wooed by soldiers, let us be your boyfriends so we can protect you, they said.
Lumad students dined with the president before, but now they hear him saying he’ll bomb their schools.
Women are trophy wives for a Congressman who wants a divorce law.
Mothers with meager income and budget are ran over by the TRAIN of “progress”.
A mother who tagged along her kid was shot in a jeep, a drug courier, police claimed.
A mother, a daughter works abroad, comes home broken.
Kristel, couldn’t pay her tuition, swallows her pain. Marianette, aged 12, hangs her dream of staying in school.
What choice is there but to fight? International Women’s Day started as women’s protest for their rights, as protest against wars. Let this day see modern day Gabriela and Lorena fighting the war against hate, lies and oppression.
As Janelle Monae raps: “March to the streets cause I’m willing and I’m able/ categorize me, I defy every label… we're gonna keep selling hope/ We rising up now, you gotta deal you gotta cope”.
As the poet Joi Barrios writes, being a woman is “to speak, to defy, is to challenge violence itself…. To be a woman is a never ceasing battle/ to live and be free.”