Happy International Women’s Day my loves. I wanted to contribute this post by talking about a few topics that affect women of all backgrounds, ethnicities and ages.
Before I do, this post is in all aspects generalised and I want to make it clear that I’m not a man – bashing or hating woman as that’s what feministic women are stereotypically portrayed as by the media. This is such a shame. No, by definition, feminism is “The advocacy of women's rights on the ground of the equality of the sexes” .
I support all human equality and rights; be it what gender, race and / or sexual preference you have. This month, especially today, happens to be one that celebrates and highlights the importance of female equality, just like how June celebrates and highlights the importance of the LGBT community.
Whether you agree or disagree with any of the statements made, we all have our freedom of thought, so I would love to have an open, civilised and constructive discussion as I can seriously talk about these things for days on end, just like politics, cultural diversity and basically anything to do with how we as a society work. I will of course, try to keep this post as short as I possibly can but still highlighting vital issues.
"On average, women MUST earn less because they are smaller, weaker and less intelligent than men."
A statement made last year during a debate about the gender pay gap in the EU by Janusz Korwin – Mikke, a controversial Polish politician, who was heavily criticised and penalised because of this statement. This statement seriously got my blood boiling.
However, I am someone that has to know where people are coming from, so I dived a little deeper to see if he could explain his statements further. I can conclude from a bit of research that, there was a study done in the Netherlands showing a significant difference between the IQ of men and women. On average, more men are more intelligent than the female population, however the gap between men whose IQ is lower and higher is much more substantial than that of women. In simple terms, the study proved there are more men with higher IQ levels but also more men with lower IQ levels than women.
He also stated that despite the IQ levels being lower, women are wiser than men and they have more compassion; He states the reason women are smaller, weaker and less intelligent than men is because on average women want men that are taller, stronger and smarter than them (besides the biological aspect of it).
I'm trying to get his point, I do, but do I think he could have formulated it better? Absolutely. Must women must earn less because of that? No.
First off, being paid has nothing to do with gender but with performance.
If a woman and man hold the exact same position in a company and equally perform as well, they should be paid the same. If a woman does not perform as well as a man, they should not hold the same job position, but a title that is more suitable for them; and get paid according to that title and their performance, just like if the roles were reversed. That is what equal pay means to me.
Women can’t demand equal pay if they do not bring similar value to a company, just like men can’t demand a pay raise purely because they are men. Should companies only do performance reviews based on IQ? No. I think great traits women bring to companies are their compassion, their ability to bring teams together, loosen the tension and think outside the box, all factors which play important roles in companies and making deals. This, I believe, should also be evaluated in performance reviews where pay should be based on. At the end of the day, all of this IQ talk boils down to education and the accessibility women have to it.
Women have more liabilities in the workplace
A statement that I do find becoming more obsolete but not irrelevant. Typically, a woman has the liability to become pregnant and to quit or become a part – time employee after she starts a family (I’m generalising as this topic can easily be talked about in whole another post as today millennials start having families later in life). But think about it, a woman gets pregnant and gets 10 weeks paid maternity leave (as per HK labour regulations). And then? And what about men that want to be there for their child? I find it heartening to know that a few companies are starting to pick up on this and grant maternity leave as well to men.
Men and Women Are Different | Janusz Korwin-Mikke and Stefan Molyneux
Sex differences on the Dutch WAIS-III
Evolving Knowledge of Sex Differences in Brain Structure, Function and Chemistry
Erasmus University Study Claiming Men Are More Intelligent Than Women Lambasted By Science Journalist
There's a 'looming healthcare crisis for the millennial generation' - and it's just getting started
Millennials Increasingly Putting Baby Carriage Before Marriage
Let’s talk about “White Feminism”
I’ve first heard this term when Emma Watson was accused of it. So what is it? Paraphrased, it is a feministic stand that does not address the issue of female equality in all races, and in a way, the oppression women face not only in their ethnic background but also religious background. So let’s talk about that.
“The advocacy of women's rights on the ground of the equality of the sexes” is predominantly portrayed in the media by western women, be it of descent or upbringing. Why? Because western media has a bigger influence on the world and because western women are already far ahead in gender equality than those in other regions. Again the following is generalised, but African women still get denied basic education and are faced with poverty; rape against women is still the most common crime in India; and women in the Middle East still get denied or need a man’s permission to do many basic things that we in the western society easily get to do; like swim, wear makeup or hold hands with partner that we are not married to.
Saudi Arabia removed the 35 year cinema ban against women only a few months ago, allegedly because they want to rely on other income sources than just oil (if so, removing the ban is definitely done because of the wrong reason, but it’s a step forward).
One country that still fascinates me on the rights of female equality is Afghanistan (there are probably others that I’m not aware of). Before 1992 when the “Islamic State of Afghanistan” was known as the “Democratic Republic of Afghanistan”, both male and female influencers and leaders advocated for female rights and, though slowly and not in all regions, still successfully to the point where women were seen in fashionable clothes including shorter skirts and held decent jobs. It wasn’t until the Islamic State transition in the 90s that women were practically stripped from their freedom with a reign of terror. Their ability to get somewhat of this previous independence back has been a slow process until this day.
So what does this all mean? While we fight in west to get equal pay, perhaps with our western influence, we should also shed some light on the issues faced by those women that do not even have the ability to voice an opinion, let alone fight against equal pay.
Emma Watson Addresses Her White Privilege and 'White Feminism' in Letter to Her Book Club
African women battle for equality
Rape and murder in Delhi
What You Should Know About Women's Rights in Afghanistan
After 35 years, Saudi Arabia celebrates end of cinema ban with The Emoji Movie
9 Things Women Can't Do in Saudi Arabia
Universal Declaration of Human Rights
Does Feminism Have Room For Zionists
Double standards and Offensive Comments
Often when I talk to women about feminism, I find that we easily have double standards, and I too, am guilty of doing that at times. But let's give the men a break on this point and realise our faults as well.
We demand everything men can do, we want the ability of having options and doing things without being judged; but men can’t do what women do
for example showing an emotional or self-loving side, having the option to go to war and join the army instead of being forced to, being laughed at when they’re sexually abused, having a dedicated men’s night in bars instead of ladies night etc. We demand equality, yet a man should still hold a door open for a lady and is the one that has to propose in a relationship. Yes, I am well – aware of this. But here’s the thing, it’s unfair, thus it’s unequal. To all ladies out there who claim they do not have double standards, I can guarantee that you have at least once in your life done this.
Personally, I am filled with friends and family that can find humour in satirical and sarcastic comments, so do not read this paragraph if you’re easily offended. Often men make fun of me that I should be in the kitchen, I often make similar remarks that women should actually be in the kitchen. Yet, I mean and take no offense to those comments purely because the people I surround myself with, of course, know better than that and understand the value and differences between men and women. I also make those remarks because I know that I tell men it’s their job to, for example, take the trash out or for not being a gentlemen by not holding the door open for me. Little things like these when discussed or argued about in a group of my close friends, I do not take seriously and neither do they take my remarks seriously; but of course saying this in public where people don’t always catch up on your sarcasm can hurt others and for that I do think we should be more careful in what we say and to who we say it to.
21 Brilliant Illustrations That Expose The Double Standards In Our Society
34 Men Discuss Society's Insane Double Standards That Favor Women And Hurt Men
10 Crappy Double Standards That Men Perpetuate & Women Can't Stand
Emma Watson on Vanity Fair cover: 'Feminism is about giving women choice'
Let’s face it, at the end of the day women and men are biologically different, and that is completely fine. A woman has strengths that can be a man’s weakness and vice versa. Women and Men complement each other and need each other.
So instead of having the discussion (and in a way competition) that women should be equal to men, let’s have the discussion how can we live in a society that equally values the different attributes of both women and men and celebrate these differences.
Happy International Women’s Day!