Sunday, June 20, 2010

On being Feminist - Part Two

This is the continuation of my previous post - On being Feminist... EnjoY!

Perhaps masculine conceit leads men to believe, when women ask for equal rights and freedoms, that women want to be equal to them. I believe, correct me if I am wrong, that all the fighting for equal rights, really, is to enable us be the best we can be. Perhaps, men are scared about us obtaining this because they fear (again, correct me if I am wrong) that if the grounds were leveled, we would prove better than them in so many ways. Well, let me assure you guys, your fears are completely founded! (Hey, I’m feminist I’m allowed.)

That said, I just have to say here that I did not agree with the rationale behind asking for a 50-50 representation in parliament. Margaret Thatcher and Sir Ellen Johnson Sirleaf did not need legislation to make it. I don’t believe incompetent women should be put in parliament because they are women. That would seriously backfire. Let the women be given the level ground upon which they would stand against their male counterparts. And if she proves more competent or worthy than the guy, let her not be put aside because she is a woman.

Putting an incompetent woman in power will only ensure we revert back to the time where there were no women in parliament. Hawa Yakubu did not need legislation to make it and she made us all proud. Granted, if more women were given the chance, they would shine like her. However, let them get that chance because they have both proven and potential competence and not because their gender and legislation gave them an upper hand. Obaa Hemaa got to be SRC president of the University of Ghana, to an extent, through sympathy votes. Sure, she had a message, the requisite charisma, etc. but she was not hired on level ground as her male counterparts. She put in some effort and people probably thought – awww, that is so cute. A woman who wants to be SRC president and she can talk too. Let’s give the women a chance and let’s see. It’s about time. And she won! Women were happy. Some men were happy. Feminists and Gender advocates in Ghana lauded what a great victory for women it was.

We all hoped and prayed she would prove that what a man could do, a woman could do as well, or even better. Well, she did prove that, but only not in the positive ways we expected. Now she has ensured that no woman will have the chance to be SRC president for a long time. For a lady to achieve this within ten years of her tenure of office, (it’s already been four, right?) that lady would have to prove herself at least three times as much as her male counterparts. And this is me being optimistic. If we put incompetent women in parliament just because they are women, I see a similar situation arising. I think you’ve had more than the daily recommended dose of feminism for now.

DISCLAIMER: I do not hate men. I find them rather useful around the house – for fetching stuff, carrying heavy stuff, massaging you when you are tired or pregnant or have a back ache, keeping you warm, providing warm sperms for baby making, etc. etc. Gotcha! Just kidding!!!

But I seriously don’t hate men. I realized early on that I don’t have to hate men to be pro women. My point? We are not equal. We will probably never be. But we can complement each other. Why should you stand on me when we can stand side by side? When I am willing to reduce my swag and stand with you? Lol. Sorry, I just HAD to chip that one in. Hehehe!

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