Is it still a man’s world?

Ugh. I feel sick.

It’s woman’s month in South Africa and the press is full of stories about women being assaulted or beaten up by men.

In the last few days: A metro police man playing golf on his day off chose to verbally assault a group of female players (it ended in violent fisticuffs). A high school boy is caught physically beating a girl on camera at a local Durban school. A group of men beat up a heterosexual couple in a KFC drive through. A male politician slaps a woman for calling him gay.  Seriously?

These are all horrifying stories of violence,  but it is so much worse than simple male brutality or gender violence which is a shameful reality of the society we live in; here and abroad.

I don’t want to be patted on the back for ‘making it’ in a man’s world. When are we just going to get excited about talent and hard work?

I have two sons who are both well above average in intellect  (yes, yes proud and biased mom). Do I want them to compete in the world as men? White men? South African  Christian white men? How ridiculous! Surely as an awesome mom I want them to find their place in the world as themselves. If there is a Hindu woman of mixed Australasian decent who is more qualified than my son – give her the job!!! It shouldn’t matter.

I have just read the ‘note from the chairperson’ in the magazine of a local airline; contributes to my nausea…

Woman’s day in South Africa pays tribute to the 20 000 heroic women who in 1956 marched to the Union Buildings to protest the extension of the pass laws to women.

The article goes on to say that as the airline, they had only 4 female technicians in 1994, but now they have 114. They even have 69 female pilots. Of course total numbers are not mentioned. Is 69 a lot? Are we meant to be grateful? Blegh.

The fact that 61 years after the heroic march we are even still talking about women’s progress in a man’s world is just so sad.

Enough! I want to be a mom. A good mom who had no regrets about missing my children’s childhood because I was chasing  my passion and career in children’s palliative care. I want to have it all and not be judged. Surely I can be awesome if I do  both part time? What about those dad’s who want the same? Or is that not manly enough for society? Sadly financial pressures often make this impossible but gender should not matter.

I see that a cafe in Melbourne, Australia has instituted an 18% ‘man tax’ as a way of highlighting the gap in salaries between men and women. The men have to pay 18% more for the same food and service.  How is it possible that in 2017 one’s gender determines one’s salary.? Truly infuriating, but sadly it’s a true story.

Ok. I’m getting dizzy from the rare air up here on my hobby horse. Dismounting! But one final point. Both men and women contribute to the ongoing gender inequalities and attitudes. Time to evaluate?

Have  great weekend and wmen’s month!

 

 

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