… got me riled up.
This is what it’s all about:
“The revelation in the news yesterday of an IMF proposal to lower the income tax rate of Irish women returning to the workforce by five percentage points, was greeted with bemusement swiftly followed by derision.
A number of angry men were quick to cry foul, branding the initiative “sexist”. One popular daytime radio presenter described it as a “tax cut for the girls” and went so far as to speculate that any additional take-home pay resulting from what he branded a “sexist law” would be spent on “shopping and hair”.”
Here goes: why does any measure that might benefit women be systematically have to also benefit everybody else in order to be seen as legitimate? Why isn’t it enough that it benefits women? How many pages have we read stating that educating girls in the periphery would is great because it benefits society as a whole? Isn’t educating girls a good in and of itself? Do we ever ask these questions for policies that mostly benefit men?
I mean, look at the article above: an inequality exists that benefits men, then a measure is proposed to correct it and it’s called “sexist”, then a columnist has then to justify it as “no, really, it’s ok, it won’t just benefit women, it will benefit everybody.” Because benefiting women is considered just not enough, not legitimate.
When Tenured Radical discussed the importance of women’s colleges, commenter flooded the comment section arguing that these womanly concerns were elitist and that class / race issues needed to be resolved FIRST, then, only then, would tackling gender issues be a legitimate concern.
Screw it, I say:
Educating girls everywhere in the world is a good thing in itself.
Reducing all kinds of gender inequalities is a good thing in itself.
Empowering women with their bodies through reproductive freedom is a good thing in itself.
These things do benefit society as a whole. But they would be no less good and legitimate if they benefited women and girls exclusively.
The flip side of this, of course, is that women-only suffering and exploitation and exclusion tend to be ignored and not dealt with as seriously.
And that’s on top of the mass rapes that these women have to endure.
Example the second:
“An Indian village has banned unmarried women from using mobile phones for fear they will arrange forbidden marriages that are often punished by death, a local official said today.
The Lank village council decided unmarried boys could use mobile phones, but only under parental supervision, said one council member, Satish Tyagi. Local women’s rights group criticised the measure as backward and unfair.
Marriages between members of the same clan are forbidden under Hindu custom in some parts of northern India, where unions are traditionally arranged by families. In conservative rural areas, families sometimes mete out extreme punishments, including “honour killings”, for those who violate marriage taboos. In some cases, village councils themselves have ordered the punishments, though police often intervene to stop them.
The Lank village council feared young men and women were secretly calling one another to arrange to elope.
Last month, 34 couples eloped in Muzaffarnagar district, where Lank is located, in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh, police said. Among the couples who did so, eight “honour killings” have been reported in the past month, police said.
“Three girls were beheaded by the male members of their family after they eloped,” said the police assistant director general, Brij Lal, in the state capital of Lucknow.”
So, angry dudes in Ireland: THIS (above) is sexist. Reducing gender inequalities is not. And until I hear you guys complain about all the large and small forms of sexism that women endure around the world, day in and day out, F!@# Off!