Tuesday, 4 July 2017
The Inequality of Women

by Michael Curtis

The Neapolitan song, O Sole Mio, Che bella cosa, has been made famous by great Italian tenors, Enrico Caruso in the past and more recently Luciano Pavarotti who won the Grammy Award in 1980 for his rendition of the song, and warbled in a rewritten English version by Elvis Presley.

Now a soprano version of the song will be heard in Venice as a result of a historic breakthrough. A 24 year old mother of two named Giorgia Boscolo, after taking a six months course and 400 hours of training of a highly technical kind, has been officially recognized as a female gondoliera, the first since the profession of gondoliers came into existence in 1094. Usually the role of gondolier has been handed down from father to son. In this case Boscolo’s father, himself a gondolier who assumed as everyone else did that the profession was a man’s job, welcomed her. If women can go to space, take part in military activity, why not guide a gondola in the Grand Canal in Venice and sing O Sole Mio.

In spite of the commanding feats of the heroic Wonder Woman, at least in comic book form, women are not yet leading the world, or sharing equally in activities. Of course changes are occurring, as women become more prominent politically and in public offices, with Theresa May in Britain, Angela Merkel in Germany, Christine Lagarde at the IMF, Irina Bokova, director of UNESCO, Ann Hidalgo, Mayor of Paris, Nicola Sturgeon and Ruth Davidson in Scotland. Record numbers of women parliamentary representatives result from the recent elections in Britain (207 or 30%) and in France (155 or 27%). The new French President Emmanuel Macron has appointed women to half of the cabinet positions. Three members of the US Supreme Court are women.

Yet only about 20% of members of national parliaments are female, and the overall number of women heads of state, or governments, or in cabinet positions, is small. In at least five countries, not a single woman is represented in parliament, nor appointed as a cabinet minister.

Curiously, the highest proportion of women in parliament presently is in Rwanda (61%), and Bolivia (53%), while it is 21% in the U.S. House of Representatives, and 19% in the Senate. When Margaret Thatcher was British Prime Minister she appointed only one woman to her cabinet.

In spite of international attempts to reduce eliminate disparities the realistic issue is that women still do not have parity in life, behavior, economy, profession, or as partners in law firms or CEOs of major companies. The Beijing Declaration and platform for action in 1995 built on commitments made at world conferences on women held in Mexico City in 1975, Copenhagen in 1980, and Niarobi in1985. It pointed out the lack of empowerment and the many human rights violations experienced by women, the existing inequality between men and women, and the need to eliminate discrimination against women and to raise the social status of women. It called for the full and equal participation of women in political, civil, economic, social, and cultural life.

That remains to be done. Indeed, discrimination has yet again been exhibited in sport and by the media. A recent example is in July 2017 at the celebrated All English Lawn Tennis Club championship in Wimbledon, London. Gender bias favors male tennis players over women, and there is a disparity in the coverage of male and female players. Though women get equal prize money, one of the few sports in which this happens, about 76% of airtime in 2015, and 60% in 2016 was devoted to men. The disparity was aggravated by the fact that men’s games are longer than those of women.

Analysis and commentary all illustrate the disparity and discrimination, and the difficulties women face. Figures show that women get about 75% of what men make in similar jobs. Women constitute a small number of the CEOs listed in the Forbes 500. Anne Marie Slaughter in her article “Why Women Still Can’t Have It All”, in The Atlantic, July-August 2012, based on personal experience as well as on objective reality, has indicated the difficulties, and the economic and cultural obstacles, for women in combining home and office, unless they are superwomen, wealthy or self-employed. There remain insuperable tensions between family and career.

Violence against women persists at alarmingly high levels, particularly in Arab and Islamic countries, but also in all countries. In normal behavior women are cautious and take precautions in meeting alone with males, especially in eating or driving situations. The media also cause difficulties in their stereotyping of women and their disproportionate amount of attention and photos of the appearance of women rather than on their accomplishments.

Despite progress, the impact of the lack of political commitment, persistence of sexist stereotypes of women, and increase in religious fundamentalism, all hinder reform. The Beijing Declaration has not been fully observed. There has been only limited progress, such as removing certain discriminations, toward gender equality. It is obvious that women’s participation in the labor force, in education, and in political representation has increased. Nevertheless, inequality and discrimination remain strong, and is worsened by the increasing global inequality and the persistence and use of gender stereotypes. Attention must be paid to the women’s rights agenda and the removal or limitation of bias.

Posted on 07/04/2017 1:46 PM by Michael Curtis
4 Jul 2017
Dusty Wombs
Women conceive and raise children. They apparently hate this god-given function. Instead, in the USA they hold most advanced degrees and most jobs. To some extent, their control over the educational system does a disservice to youngsters, especially boys who have no male role models in the increasingly matriarchal "single mom" household. and lets admit it, some still sleep their way to promotions and jail sentences are never considered. Worse, they won't even replace our population to continue our civilization. Western woman has failed the world. she needs to grow up and act more like her grandmother. Instead of murdering her own baby in the womb, she should be proudly rocking the cradle, singing O Solo Mio to her little angel.

5 Jul 2017
Christina McIntosh
'dusty wombs' seems to think that women produce babies and raise them all by themselves. It takes two to tango, however. Not every woman who is childless is so because she 'murdered her babies'. What if a woman marries a man - a good, decent, honest man - and then they discover that, together, they are barren? What if it is discovered that HE is the infertile one? Should she divorce him and marry someone else, so as to perform what dusty wombs seems to think is the sole function of a woman, the be-all and end-all? (What does 'dusty wombs' think of nuns? Horrors! They don't breed!). And why does 'dusty wombs' seem to think that a woman doing anything else other than breed, is unconscionable? Or that if she has a vocation - musical, scientific, educational, whatever - she must suppress it, and ... breed, breed, breed? Men seem to be able to both breed AND, say, farm, or write books, or make music. Why should not women do both, also? For example: practise medicine, *and* marry and raise a family? I know plenty of women who are doing just that. If gifted, say, to sing, or play, or dance, or write, or garden, or farm, why should not a woman develop those skills in a wider sphere than the four walls of the home? There is another consideration. Even at the most piously conservative periods of western Christian history, two things could happen 1/ a woman might never meet a man that she felt happy about marrying. 2/ a woman might marry - might have a child or children - and then.. her husband DIES leaving her a widow with children to support. So a girl having, so to speak, a good trade; having an education, having resources, meant that she brought something to the match, if she married (with greater security should her husband die before the children were raised) and, if she NEVER met a man she wanted to marry (why should anyone, male or female, be *obliged* to marry? ) then she would be able to support herself, help provide for her aged parents, and indeed, provide for herself in her own old age (I have a friend in precisely those circumstances; she is a deeply Christian, chaste woman who would have loved to marry, who would have been a fantastic mum, but... she never met the right man and now she is past childbearing. But she is educated, and hardworking, and is supporting herself by honest work. What's wrong with that?)

5 Jul 2017
Dusty Wombs
Nothings wrong with many things Western Woman does in this brave new world, except: 1. It is her sole decision, no one else's, and she's murdered tens of millions of her children in the womb. That's savagery. If zoo animals did that, there'd be veterinarian psychologists called on an emergency basis. It's against nature and the whole Western concept of the Right to Life.. 2. Western Woman is allowing the race to die out. Demographic suicide is not to be applauded claiming a woman had to write a book, or pay for the second car, get a promotion or any other shallow excuse. Arguing that men have some advantages is no reason to abandon the natural laws that apply on Earth and have a horror Holocaust or eviscerate Western society under some dystopic feminist construct. All it proves is the poor judgment of so many women who have their "rights" these days, including preferential treatment, and ignore their ancient societal obligations.All the children who will never be will be replaced by Muslims, animists, atheists and fools. There'll be even more savagery, you know. The greatest destroyer of peace is abortion because if a mother can kill her own child, what is left for me to kill you and you to kill me? There is nothing between. - Mother Teresa

6 Jul 2017
Send an emailDiiana Grigg
Humans usually function at a level concurrent with their needs and abilities. Women, who bear children (men can't) usually try to find a man to help support the family. If a man can pay all the bills, and the family is comfortable, women often decide to give up all or part of their hours previously spent honing a career. Fathers do too, but to a lesser degree. When he has a child, a father will typically begin to think of ways he can earn more income - better job, more hours at work. The direction of the mother's and father's career changes. She must devote more time to the home, and he must contribute more at home and possibly also more at work. Men in the workplace with at-home wives, have an advantage over other men and women colleagues. They are more motivated, have a family to return home to at the end of the day, and possibly a healthy meal prepared when they return. Single women with few personal obligations and women with a good support system at home can also succeed more. Janet Reno lived with her mother, who took care of their apartment, fixed Janet's meals and in every way supported her career. Before I married, I was forced to work full time, and my career was leading somewhere. After marriage, I worked part-time or at times, stayed home. Why? Because, I could. Marriage made that possible. My husband's hours at work increased, and his career grew rapidly. Women still cook and clean, and we are the ones who have to have the babies if babies are to be born! If Western society is to survive, we better start asking the question - How can society learn to appreciate and honor women who give up everything to create the next generation? Is that not also success?

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