Thursday 9 August is Women's Day in South Africa. The Beat spoke to singers Josie Field and Lilly Million about the importance of this day, and if they think there should be a special day for men as well.
|Josie Field (Credit: Nolan Lister)|
How you going to spend Women's Day?
Josie: I will be on my way to Oppikoppi music festival! I am performing there on Friday 10 August but decide to go one day early to soak up the vibe.
Lilly: I will actually be performing at Oppi Koppi on the 9th so half my day will be spent driving there and back while the other half will be spent on stage and checking out a few bands with the little time I will have at the festival. So it will definitely be fun.
Why is it important to have a special day for Women?
Josie: Because just like any other important public holiday we take time to remember or celebrate that occasion. its brings it into our consciousness and helps us not take certain things for granted. I do feel that men should have a special day too though.
Lilly: I guess with the history of this country and how being a woman you were in the past seen as less in terms of your thinking and value as a person it is vital that we mark this day as it was the very day women stood up and fully asserted themselves in a time with so much opposition. There has been many accomplishments with regards to women but there is still a lot of work to be done.
Who are your iconic women (and why)?
Josie: Marilyn Munroe, Joan Biez, Oprah, Janis Joplin, there are many… all because they were courageous, unique and were determined to do their own thing.
Lilly: I have never been one to have heroes but someone I definitely look up to has to be my mother. Sure I could have named someone like Oprah Winfrey, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf or Basetsana Khumalo but I personally do not know those women so my appreciation for them feels quite superficial. However if there is a woman I strive to be like it is my mother because in the greatest adversities she has maintained her strength and knows who she is a woman of GOD and spreads light, love and healing where ever she goes PLUS she is successful and diligent in her goals, her living inspires me.
Which three woman have been your biggest inspiration?
Josie: Alanis Morissette, Fiona Apple and my mom.
Lilly: Being that I am at a place in my life where I am appreciating those close to me I would have to say my mother, my sister and two of my very good friends. Life has not been easy on any of these women and the moments when I find myself drowning in the pains of it all I look at their lives and how they have overcome and continue to and that really just inspires me to keep pushing and really keep living.
What one thing would you change to make the world a better place for women?
Josie: There are so many things! I would start in the criminal justice system. The penalty for Rape must be much higher, in fact, I think I am pro chopping off perpetrators fingers or arms. I would also like to live in a world where prostitution is legal, so woman can choose what to do with their bodies and know they will always be in a safe and protected society.
Lilly: I would put an end to the pornography industry and overly sexual music videos. I feel the woman and her body have been so abused and misused that she herself does not know how to see herself as beautiful unless she is sexually provoking someone. It’s disturbing to see 5 year olds mimic dance moves they have picked up in music videos because your mind wonders as to where will this little girl end up when she hits puberty based on what she is being taught. So that this is one thing I would change in a heartbeat.
Should there be a special day for men as well?
|Lilly Million (Credit: Image supplied)|
Josie: Guys also deserve to be celebrated and cherished consciously.
Lilly: I think there should be one for men. I believe perhaps it will inspire them to be greater than they currently are because I sense a generation of men who feel unappreciated. A boy child born into this world has to contend with paying for the sins of his father’s before he even becomes one so really he stands no chance of becoming a good man because he is already labelled as rotten simply because he is a boy. I think it will also allow women to value men as well and appreciate their function and importance. Personally my view of men is very warped so for girls like me it would definately help to see what else is there besides what we have seen or been shown.
What is your message to women on this day?
Josie: Remember who you are. Nothing is impossible, you can change anything about yourself and the world.
Lilly: I'll speak something I am trying to understand myself - Know what LOVE is, GOD-LOVE, LOVE for yourself and LOVE for others. And when you finally know what that definition is or when you at least have a concept of it never dim it out or change it to suit any imitation trying to represent it. Stay pure.