Why is March 8 not a day to congratulate women?

By Lucia Silva Magaña

Foto: Jennifer Nava

International Women’s Day is not a day to celebrate, but to reflect on the struggle of women to gain visibility and have the freedom to decide about their bodies and sexuality.

It is a demand for equality in all areas which represents a fight for justice, peace, and development. 

The fact that women receive a lower salary for doing the same work as men, that the number of femicides is increasing day by day, that most women are victims of human trafficking or sexual abuse, or the gender roles imposed on them, are not a reason to celebrate. These are situations that should no longer exist.

In 1975, the United Nations declared March 8 as International Women’s Day. 

Its origin is due to the various demonstrations that women carried out to demand the right to vote, improve working conditions and seek gender equality.

One example is that of March 8, 1857, when thousands of women textile workers took to the streets of New York to protest for better working conditions. This was one of the first demonstrations where women fought for their rights. 

The commemoration spread to more countries. In Russia it emerged after the Communist Revolution of 1917, in China, it has been commemorated since 1922, and in Spain since 1936. 

The main objective of this day is to raise awareness about the importance of empowering women in all environments, protect their rights, ensure that they can reach their full potential, and make visible the inequality and discrimination that still exists in the world. 

It seeks to eliminate all forms of violence against all women and girls in the public and private spheres, including trafficking and sexual exploitation.

Congratulating women is a way of recreating stereotypes and misogynist attitudes that can manifest every day and are accepted actions, but they represent male superiority. 

The color purple is representative of Women’s Day as it was the color used by the English suffragettes in 1908 as a symbol of the feminist fight.

The growing international women’s movement is helping to make the commemoration a unifying element that strengthens support for women and their participation in all areas (political, social, cultural, and economic).

So now you know, this day do not congratulate or give gifts to women you know.  The objective is to reflect in order to raise awareness and recognize the violence that women suffer on a daily basis and seek ways to eliminate sexist behaviors. Remember that gender equality and women’s rights are fundamental to global progress.


CNDH México. (2018). Día Internacional de la Mujer. 24/02/2022, de CNDH Sitio web: https://www.cndh.org.mx/index.php/noticia/dia-internacional-de-la-mujer

UNESCO. (2021). Día Internacional de la Mujer. 24/02/2022, de UNESCO Sitio web: https://es.unesco.org/commemorations/womenday

El Periódico. (2021). Día Internacional de la Mujer: ¿Qué pasó el 8 de marzo de 1857?. 24/02/2022, de El Periódico Sitio web: https://www.elperiodico.com/es/sociedad/20210308/dia-internacional-de-la-mujer-6672998 

Naciones Unidas. (2021). Día Internacional de la Mujer, 8 de marzo. 24/02/2022, de Naciones Unidas Sitio web: https://www.un.org/es/observances/womens-day/background 

LA RAZÓN ONLINE . (2020). ¿Por qué no se debe felicitar a las mujeres el 8 de marzo?. 25/02/2022, de La Razón Sitio web: https://www.razon.com.mx/mexico/felicitar-mujeres-8-de-marzo/