What was once a silenced and nearly invisible mass of people is now rapidly scaling the walls that kept them hidden away: Women.
Even after women received the right to vote in 1920, they faced an uphill battle trying to make their voices heard. But in recent years, women have created space for themselves and have become much more active participants in the political arena—calling attention to women’s issues and general political issues of interest.
Women are advocating more than ever. They are taking it to the streets; they are taking it to Congress, to local movements, and to social media. The premiere example of all these efforts was the Women’s March, held the day after the 2017 presidential inauguration. Women all over the world used social media to plan what turned out to be one of the largest single-day protests in U.S. history. Not only did women attend the flagship march in Washington, D.C., but the march also turned global. Women used this march to advocate for causes such as human rights, women’s rights, reproductive rights, immigration reform, healthcare reform, religious freedom, environmental awareness, LGBTQ rights, and racial equality. The prowess behind January’s Women’s March arguably inspired protests and marches that occurred afterwards such as “A Day Without a Woman” and the “March for Science.”
Social media has been a huge factor in bringing women from all over the world together to stand up for causes in which they believe. It creates a common platform for women to plan events, hear from other women, and publically broadcast their views on certain topics. For better or worse, social media allows a person to let the world in on their thoughts the moment they occur.
Female attorneys already have the advantage of being trained in the law and knowing the steps that must be taken to turn a mere hope into law. Therefore, it benefits the goal of women’s advocacy for female attorneys to use social media to express their thoughts and hear from each other to learn about the issues that are collectively important to women. Social media can then be used to plan events, such as the widespread Women’s March. Planned events need not be at such a grand scale in order to be effective. Arguably one of the most effective methods of advocacy would be for women to get together and reach out to local political officials to have their interests represented.
In the age of social media, which connects a person to the world with just few clicks of a smart phone, women are using this method to band together and speak. It is of utmost importance that women continue to advocate and use their voices to raise awareness and fight for important causes. Not even 100 years ago, women’s voices were all but silent. It is time to speak. It is time to advocate.
Diana Rabbani graduated from Notre Dame Law School in May 2017 and is currently a post-bar clerk at the San Diego City Attorney’s Office.