I’m a man and as a man, it is basically impossible to ever know what it is really like to be a woman. Surely, it can’t be that different, you may think. Nowadays a woman has the same rights as a man. Saying that, we have to be aware that it is not that long ago, when women weren’t allowed to vote. Or that a woman might have to give up her job, once married. Or that not so long ago, as a married woman, you needed the permission of your husband to take up a loan or sign any kind of binding contract. I’m not talking about centuries, I’m talking about a few decades.
For many years I couldn’t understand why we needed an International Women’s Day. I just didn’t understand what women go through in every day life. As a woman, so I’m told, you’re still today treated like a second class citizen. As a woman you still have to watch your back wherever you go and whatever you do. For a lot of men, you as a woman portray a prey. 20% of all women have at least once in their lifetime experienced a serious sexual assault. Even if not too serious, a woman is often busy with avoiding male advancements and has to worry about consequences in society or in the workplace for “upsetting” the wrong person by rejecting him.
A woman is born into a role of playing the second fiddle. Some women tell me that they feel like they were born as a peasant, whereas their masters are the men around them. The film “Suffragettes Forever!” tells the story very well.
Already as a young girl you’re trained to keep yourself tidy and clean. You’re most likely the centre of attention, because you’re a beautiful little girl and you will be subject to be shown off. You are a little trophy. You learn to be admired. You will get dolls and kitchens to play with and learn how to recognise the needs around you and how to meet them. Your task will be to help Mum in the kitchen. You see how your Mum is looking after Dad.
Now that woman is allowed to go out and work (without equal pay), she most likely will be looking after the household and children as well. This means at least 150% input and if she is late to pick up the kids or the clothes are not ready for the morning, she is a bad mother and someone is most likely making sure that she is aware of it.
Recently I did a major road trip through the USA. A woman said to me that it would surely not be unthinkable for her to do the same, but she would risk much more than what I risked. As a woman, she’ll always be the target of sexual desire. Also, for a woman, it is still today unacceptable to be travelling on your own. You’re basically asking for trouble.
So, today is International Women’s Day. What does this day really mean? Nothing really, unless we start tackling the root of the problem of inequality, we will be “celebrating” this day until the cows come home. Unless we start with educating our girls and boys and get rid of this woman/man role in society, our daughters will remain being victim of being a woman and so will their daughters and grand-daughters.
The P0lish MEP for the European Parlament, Janusz Korwin-Mikke, recently emphasised why women should still earn less than men. We’re talking about the European Parlament in 2017. What do you say to this?