Dear Colleagues,

Today, 8 March 2017 is International Women's Day.  You may be aware that some of the organizers of the Women's March have called for a day of action for equity, justice, and the human rights of women—through collective action, economic solidarity, and a one-day strike.  They have named this collective action a “A Day Without a Woman”—with three things women and allies can do:

  1. Wear RED.
  2. Women are encouraged, as possible, not to engage in paid or unpaid labor.
  3. Avoid spending money—with exceptions for small businesses, and businesses owned by women and people of color that support gender, racial, and economic equity.
I plan to wear red and avoid spending money as defined.  I do plan to work in our ACPA officestomorrow and I will honor the decisions of our female-identified employees to respond as their consciences dictate. (Today I am wearing purple for transgender solidarity and it was amazing to see people fill up the Texas Capitol in every form of wearable purple).   Today is a good day to reflect as well on the assertion and realization of human rights for women and all of us who share this planet.     Sojourner Truth's Ain't I A Woman? spoke to me today.  I invite you to to share with students and others as you feel appropriate.  

AIN'T I A WOMAN? by Sojourner Truth

Delivered 1851 at the Women's Convention in Akron, Ohio

Well, children, where there is so much racket there must be something out of kilter. I think that 'twixt the negroes of the South and the women at the North, all talking about rights, the white men will be in a fix pretty soon. But what's all this here talking about?

That man over there says that women need to be helped into carriages, and lifted over ditches, and to have the best place everywhere. Nobody ever helps me into carriages, or over mud-puddles, or gives me any best place! And ain't I a woman? Look at me! Look at my arm! I have ploughed and planted, and gathered into barns, and no man could head me! And ain't I a woman? I could work as much and eat as much as a man - when I could get it - and bear the lash as well! And ain't I a woman? I have borne thirteen children, and seen most all sold off to slavery, and when I cried out with my mother's grief, none but Jesus heard me! And ain't I a woman?

Then they talk about this thing in the head; what's this they call it? [member of audience whispers, "intellect"] That's it, honey. What's that got to do with women's rights or negroes' rights? If my cup won't hold but a pint, and yours holds a quart, wouldn't you be mean not to let me have my little half measure full?

Then that little man in black there, he says women can't have as much rights as men, 'cause Christ wasn't a woman! Where did your Christ come from? Where did your Christ come from? From God and a woman! Man had nothing to do with Him.

If the first woman God ever made was strong enough to turn the world upside down all alone, these women together ought to be able to turn it back , and get it right side up again! And now they is asking to do it, the men better let them.

Obliged to you for hearing me, and now old Sojourner ain't got nothing more to say.