With civil war and catastrophe competing for attention, dramatizing the 100th International Women’s Day was challenging: getting attention required something remarkable to say. Five Montreal business economists/communicators rose to the task with a starkly myopic message:
“What we want is simple. It has been proven over and over that what it takes to improve anyone’s lot on this earth are economic and legal freedoms enabling us to fulfill ourselves to the best of our abilities — nothing more and nothing less.”
Click on: http://opinion.financialpost.com/2011/03/15/women%E2%80%99s-choices-not-the-same-as-men%E2%80%99s/
The only gap theses five women see between men and women is biological; women tend to have babies. Today, they note that women can envision the highest level of accomplishment. Consequently, they regret:
“In the midst of this evolution and the accompanying successes, it is sad to note that what we hear most often about women is that they need help, they are fragile and poor, they can’t help themselves and are discriminated against. And this comes from feminist groups!”
All this may be true in downtown Montreal and a few dozen other cosmopolitan centers in North America and Western Europe. In highly secular service economies the enforcement of existing laws and social norms essentially may be the remaining domestic work of feminists. However, what happened to “international” in their post-feminist consciences? Do they really think tossing in sexual rights in national constitutions secures the rights of women and other traditionally oppressed groups in society?
The law needn’t come last but it can’t change chauvinist societies and family values by itself. Feminist or, if you wish, female humanists still have much to offer politics because women are still discriminated against by the hundreds of millions. Furthermore, that discrimination is based on reproachable ideas not merely the absence of modern technology and service economies.
The power of traditional Muslim teachings amongst 1.2 million people depreciates the equality of Muslim women, whatever the per capita wealth of the individual Muslim country. The legacy of other religious orthodoxies in many other countries persistently discourages the full participation of women despite aging and soon declining labor forces.
The Pakistan constitution explicitly disallows “discrimination on the basis of sex alone.” Nevertheless, according to The Economist, Pocket World in Figures nearly 80 per cent of Pakistan’s labour force is still made up of men. Honor killing of wives is widely practiced and supported across the country-side. Russia and China have been furiously anti-religious for generations. Emperors and Tsars are out. But strength is still the first imperative of leadership and the brutes are still all men.