The Equitability of Equality
By Lynn Branigan
I’m often captivated by the meaning of words, particularly when they are used in varying context, or expressed by people who want to make a very specific point. For my August message, I consulted the dictionary to unpack the meaning of Women’s Equality Day.
- Equality is defined as the state of being equal, especially in status, rights, and opportunities
- Equal means alike in quantity, degree, value, etc.
- Equity is characterized by what is fair, just, and right
Women’s Equality Day was designated in 1973 to commemorate the certification of the 19th Amendment to the Constitution, which granted women the right to vote in the US. The certification came after 72 years of peaceful protest. It took too long for sure, and the march for equality beyond the right to vote is still underway. The question is why?
Women’s Equality Day is not about making women superior or dominant. It’s about making us equal in status, rights and opportunities. It’s about women being valued as highly as men (not more highly than men).
As I observe what’s happening across the country now, I see people marching and protesting for equality. They are pursuing what’s fair, right, and just: the state of being equal. I believe any resistance is fear unmasked: those who have enjoyed a disproportionate degree of power and control are intimidated by others who are pursuing a fair share. Equality shouldn’t be frightening. There is room on the other side of fear for equal distribution of rights, wealth, power, influence, and so much more.
During this month, when we mark Women’s Equality Day, She Runs It celebrates all people who are working for a more equitable world. We may stand with you. We may march with you. We may protest with you. We’ve been working for women for nearly 110 years, and we will apply this stamina to the broader movement toward equality. It’s only equitable.