#Emilymatters – Yas Necati guest blog

Filed in Uncategorized by on January 31, 2014 3 Comments

The following guest post is by Yas Necati, a seventeen year old activist from London and winner of The Guardian Women Awards 2013: Best hope for the future (UK). Yas has campaigned tirelessly for a number of feminist causes and she is particularly proud to be a member of the No More Page 3 team.

We’re delighted that Yas will be a member of our panel at the upcoming Emily Davison Statue in Parliament Campaign event.

 

When I stood outside News UK HQ for the first time, I imagined I was a Suffragette… ok – I wasn’t quite fighting for the right to vote… but a fight for liberation nonetheless.  The press may be separate to politics – but feminism asks for equal rights on every ground. I looked up at the cold, towering building with both fear and a sense of anticipation. I was about to take on the biggest-selling family newspaper in the country with origami flowers! I imagined all the women in the past who have chained themselves to railings, broken into parliament and starved themselves for equal rights. I thought of Emily Davison, because she wouldn’t have been afraid to do the right thing… to fight for equal representation for women… had she been alive today.

 

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Just over 100 years ago, Emily Davison stepped in front of the King’s horse at the Epsom Derby and lost her life. Many remember her as a martyr for women’s rights; a hero, an inspiration. Emily may have left us that day, but her legacy lives on. I’m sure I’m not the only feminist who’s called on her for strength when I’ve needed it the most. I’ve done a lot of scary things as a campaigner… and often wanted to opt out… but I always ask myself “What would Emily do?”… and if taking up residence in the Houses of Parliament on Census Night isn’t proof enough she would’ve risen to any challenge, I don’t know what is!

As we enter 2014, feminism is just as vital as ever. Perhaps, it could be argued, that it’s necessary to carry on the fight now more than ever. It’s crucial that we don’t allow women’s past achievements to be lost or forgotten, and that we continue to strive for an egalitarian society in an environment that claims we “already have one.” 2013 saw a massive growth in feminist societies in schools and universities, and an explosion in the feminist movement as a whole. It’s time now to embrace the change that’s already happened, and continue to strive for more.

 

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I don’t see Emily Davison’s feminism as a different feminism to my own. We may have been fighting for different things, but the ultimate goal is the same. When I stood outside News UK I wanted women to be treated with equal respect in the media. Emily Davison wanted women to be treated with equal respect in politics. Whatever way you look at it, our battle is one; a fight for rights, representation and a better future. Emily Davison will always be a part of that battle.

Please join us in sharing your reason as to why Emily matters today by using the hashtag #Emilymatters and supporting the Emily Davison Statue in Parliament Campaign.

 

Yas Necati

For Yas Necati’s blog, click here.

For the No More Page 3 petition, click here.

 

“Emily Wilding Davison was a great campaigning feminist. Her struggle continues and she remains an icon for women even over a century after her death.”
Emily Thornberry MP, founder of the
Emily Davison Statue in Parliament Campaign

 

 

Special Parliamentary Performance & Debate Details: 

The debate:

The panel includes Dr Helen Pankhurst, great-granddaughter of Emmeline Pankhurst and granddaughter of Sylvia Pankhurst, Yas Necati, feminist campaigner and winner of The Guardian Women awards 2013: Best hope for the future (UK) and Emma Barnett (writer and broadcaster).

 

The play:
Brian Astbury directs an exclusive presentation of To Freedom’s Cause – a new play about one of the nation’s most important suffragettes – as part of a special Parliamentary event to promote the Emily Wilding Davison statue campaign.

 

This is the powerful story of people who encountered Emily,
who changed her life and whose lives she changed

 

Sign up:
Emily Davison is one of our most important feminist icons. Her legacy continues through current campaigns such as No More Page 3 and the Everyday Sexism Project. Sign the petition in support of the campaign calling for a statue of Emily to be erected in Parliament:

http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/51269

 

Get involved:
Due to the location restrictions, this is an invitation only event.

A small number of tickets will be made available via Twitter.

Emily Davison was a pioneer in using modern media to promote direct political action. She believed that women and men had the right to be equal citizens.

Join the conversation now by following @2FCPlay and using #Emilymatters

 

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 Emily Davison’s legacy is for life, not just for 2013. 

 

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