I recently found the following on another blog I was reading:
"A feminist (male or female) is someone who supports the idea that women should have the same political, social, and economic rights as men."
So, I am delighted to have independent confirmation of something that I have known and been proud of for a long time, to wit, that I am a feminist. I attribute this in great part to my parents who not so very much preached, but rather lived this precept. I mean, it sounds perfectly reasonable to me. In fact it seems like anything else is ipso facto just plain wrong.
In fact, I'll go even one step further. I viscerally understand the passage in one of James Herriot's books where he says he immensely enjoyed the company of women. I'm also reminded of a scene in the TV cop show "Without a Trace" in which Jack Malone (the character played by Anthony LaPaglia) is trying to form a bond with a serial killer to get him to reveal where he's buried several bodies. The killer says something like "You really like women, don't you?" and Malone responds with about a minute and a half of paean to women, citing remarkable attributes he sees in them from little girls to grandmothers. The killer then says "Wow, you've really thought about this haven't you?" to which Malone responds "Nah, that's just off the top of my head." I can identify.
That being the case, you will understand how I feel fortunate that almost my entire professional life has been spent in a field where M is the minority gender. A friend of mine, another male librarian, told me the following story: He was in the staff lunch room at his library in one of the US southern states one day when all the other staff were complaining of the failings of their husbands and/or boyfriends. He said something to the effect of aren't you concerned that I'll take offense? and the response was "Nah, you're just one of the girls!" He said he was inordinately pleased by that. I told him I was jealous.
So, I'm pleased to offer the reminder that March is National Women's History Month. This month long commemoration of the role of women in our history is a golden opportunity to pause and reflect upon what a magnificent world this is thanks to the contributions of the millions and millions of women and girls who have made and make up half of our population. Whether they're ordinary every day "average Janes", scientists, inventors, homemakers, authors, lesbians or straight, partnered or single, black, brown, yellow, red, or white, rich or poor, atheists or believers, or any combination of these or a thousand other descriptors, our planet would be a far poorer place were it not for women.
I know this is more than halfway through the month, but that is by design. It's not only in the first week or so of these "National (you fill in the blank) Months" that we need to be reminded to take time to ponder on, honor, or in some other way be involved with the cause, or event celebrated. So, as we glide into the final weeks of 2017's National Women's History Month, whether you're F or M or anywhere in between, I'd invite you to think about what a great place our world is thanks to the contributions of women.
The National Women's History Project web site is a great place to start. You can also try doing a subject search in the Library's catalog for women or for the names of any outstanding women you're interested in knowing more about. You can also ask at the Reference Desk for help in finding information about women's role in history or particular women. There are many ways to go about it, but please take the opportunity to increase your knowledge about women's contributions to bettering the world. You'll be glad you did.