If only the 25th of November did not exist. If only the International Day against Gender Violence did not exist. It would be the clearest indication that there is no longer need to protect women from the pathology that is costing us so many lives.
Yet the truth is that here we are. Reality is stubborn, no matter how much some try to deny the obvious, today 38 women who were alive last year are missing.
This day belongs to them. To them and to all of those who have been abused, harassed, attacked and murdered for being women. Each one of these deaths is, and must be, another incentive to continue working together to put an end to this nightmare once and for all.
On a day like November 25th, to not stand together, nor to show a common front in the face of this brutal threat, would be disrespectful to the victims. Today, all women, not only us Spanish women, but women from all over the world have the same and unique objective on our agenda: to cry out against gender violence, to raise our voices in defense of all women who have suffered, in their bodies and souls, the blow of mistreatment, abuse and humiliation. And to prevent our girls from continuing to suffer from what seems to be a never-ending cycle.
Though, it must come to an end. Nowadays, when we constantly talk about economic, environmental or energic sustainability, we tend to forget that violence against women is the greatest threat to society and democracy of our time, a cancer that is corroding our societies and our coexistence.
That is why we have to demand that the rights of women are defended worldwide and that pursuing violence against women is a global priority. We need a unanimous and coordinated response from the international community. No more excuses, no more cover-ups, no more delays.
Giving up is not an option, there is much more work to be done. We need to reach that “state of peace” that Maria Zambrano spoke about, that is to reach the threshold between the past and the future. An authentic revolution that will not be achieved – as she said- until violence has not been eradicated from customs, until peace is not a calling, a passion, a faith that inspires and enlightens others.
That is the peace that we as women pursue, the peace for which feminists have been fighting for so long. The peace that, as Albert Camus wrote, is the only battle worth fighting for.
María Teresa Fernández de la Vega
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