Is the Swiss women's strike just the beginning?
United behind purple banners, hundreds of thousands of protesters have gone on strike across Switzerland for equal rights and equal pay for women and men. Organisers say the rally is the biggest political demonstration in the country's recent history. Media outlets point out parallels with another of today's big protest movements.
We need a change of mentality
La Tribune de Genève hopes the strike will have a lasting impact:
“Even if the strike and protests are successful, it doesn't guarantee that there will be a breakthrough or profound change. The battles that will ensue are the most difficult because they will be fought out in people's heads. And as history has amply demonstrated, what's needed is a catalyst. We've seen this with the climate strikes. People laughed at the start, but they've created a profound, enduring awareness. ... Hopefully the strike will be the start of something bigger. Regardless of all the different points of view and conflicts over methods or slogans, equality must impose itself as a project that will benefit all of society. Let's work on revolutionising the mindset. The rest will follow.”
The impatience is spreading
As far as women's rights go few countries if any can rest on their laurels, the Süddeutsche Zeitung comments:
“The fight for equal rights is a century-long task, and it hasn't been won in either Germany, France or Sweden. ... But if all these rich, democratic states can't fully implement women's rights, who can? ... If you take too long to fulfil your promises you lose your credibility. That's the lesson the elites in politics, business and society are currently learning as regards climate change - maybe they'll also learn it from women. Anyone who saw the young feminists in Switzerland (and their male companions) on Friday got a good dose of the impatience that characterises this entire generation.”