By Patricia Wilson | Palm Coast
Real women know there is no rescue by a woodsman. It’s time for women in power, from queens to political figures, to put an end to inequality and all forms of discrimination against women.
For centuries, the line of succession in the 16 countries that comprise the British Commonwealth have had a male-preference succession policy. They are set to celebrate Queen Elizabeth’s Diamond Jubilee with all of the pomp and circumstance that has only been accorded one other time to one other monarch, Queen Victoria.
The Brit’s seem truly appreciative of a queen that has served long and diligently without scandal. Yet no serious thought has been given to changing the rules of succession. What happens to kings and queens is not really relevant in most countries today, but female subrogation is something that needs the scrutiny of the world, because the future of the human race depends on equality. Today, it is easily seen that women are the second place citizens of the planet, still earning less for equal work, in many cases working longer and harder, having fewer rights in many countries, and fewer paths to success in most. And perhaps most outrageously, not being equal to men in the practice of most world religions. Is it all about power? Of course.
Over the past two months in Afghanistan, hundreds of little girls and teachers have been poisoned for the crime of going to school. Women in many countries are still being circumcised. The World Health Organization reports that 100-140 million females have been genitally mutilated for non-medical reasons. China is finding that with the ‘one child’ population control policy in effect now for many years, there is a shortage of females of child bearing age. The cultural bias against valuing female babies has had two huge and unforeseen effects. Enough women do not exist to give birth to the next generation of males to staff their armies, and there are insufficient numbers of daughters to care for the elderly as the population lives longer. To the chagrin of many men, maybe those roles will have to be reversed.
A report in the Canadian Medical Association Journal points to how sex selection is spreading beyond India and China to wealthy western countries with the advent of in vitro fertilization and sex identification tests. Levels now approach 100 females for 136 males born, when the natural average is 100 females to 105 males. Mrs. Merkel’s Germany, with already a large disparity in male/female pay and employment rates, behind Finland, France, Sweden, Japan and South Korea, is trying to institute a policy to keep women out of the workplace by providing a bonus to stay home and follow the traditional route of childbearing/rearing. So much for staying on a career path.
Fairy tales have long had male characters coming to the rescue of females who are being molested in some way by other males, (or terrifying females.) Little Red Riding Hood should never have ventured from her village because to do so invited the ‘big bad wolf’ to eat her for being out on her own. The strong male woodsman needed to rescue her from the wolf’s belly, and she probably learned her lesson not to strike out independently again.
Maybe the Queen and Mrs. Merkel don’t need rescuing, but women in power surely need to wake up and look around at how few other women are as successful or are their peers. Men in power almost always make things better for their ‘club.’ Why don’t powerful women do the same? Most females have to struggle against great odds, and the few women who have made it to the top need to speak out and entrench that trend and give voice to efforts for equality. There will be no handsome prince coming to the rescue. We need to stop punishing people for being female and embrace the fact that if we all move forward together, we move forward powerfully. Otherwise what a waste of half the brain power in the world.
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