Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Cats to bark, dogs to purr

Under a new "gender equality duty" that compels all companies and public bodies to promote equal opportunity policies, British schools have been advised to correct a "gender imbalance" in elective course selection by encouraging more boys to take subjects like netball, drama and dance. But what does Britain want with more mincing and preening sissy-boys unless the government is anticipating an upcoming shortage of politicians and bureaucrats?

[Link via Moonbattery]

Also on the gender duty front, legislators in Norway have decided that if equality of outcome cannot precede equality of opportunity, they'd rather do away with opportunity and outcome altogether. Norway's gender-equality minister — could there have been any other? — has warned that the government will fulfil its obligation to shut down as many as 111 companies — many in the financial, IT and oil and gas sectors — for not complying with a 2003 law requiring 40 per cent female representation on their boards of directors.

The move should hardly be necessary since Norway's companies have already been so emasculated that they are no longer campaigning against the law but instead are pleading to be punished with just fines.

[Link via Alice the Camel]

6 comments:

Elaine said...

I don't think it is a good idea to tell any gender what they should or should not be interested in. Every kid should have an opportunity to pick up their own interests, but that seldom happens.

People trying to prove that males and females brains are wired the same, tend to need their wiring checked.

Males and females are sometimes the products of their social scripts, and I think opening up all learning opportunities creates a better balanced human being.

Both males and females bring something to the table. Their differences should be celebrated and not condemned.

Rikki said...

Describing any boy who does decide to take dance, drama or netball at school as a "mincing and preening sissy-boy" is certainly not going to help. It is comments like that which created the gender divide in the first place. I strongly support allowing everyone to follow their own path - My daughter has now qualified as a painter and decorator - but cannot get a job because employers are not prepared to employ girls - and have openly said so. Without legislation that is actually applied to enforce gender neutrality in employment, male dominated power structures will continue to discriminate based on stereotypical gender differences.

In Britain we have had equal pay legislation for over 35 years yet today men earn on average 80% more than women because no-one has been prepared to bite the bullet and enforce the legislation. Norway has one of the the most gender balanced societies in Europe because they enforce anti discrimination legislation - they also I believe have one of the highest overall standards of living - rather than a society of clearly divided rich and poor.

Rikki
GenderShift Blog

Elaine said...

Riki, I skimmed over your site. Will read more later, when I have time. It looks like there is some interesting stuff to absorb, coming from a unique perspective.

NIAC said...

Although I agree with equality, I also, being a bit of a purist, believe that those covered by 'equality' are required to be equal.

No legislation regarding hiring anyone who is not qualified for a position is sensible...however, denying someone who IS qualified, simply because of some ridiculous bias, should be a capital offence.

JMHO

Elaine said...

Niac, I agree with you on that. If you can't physically or mentally handle it, you shouldn't be doing it, no matter what your gender.

It is just that I know females that have shown remarkable talent with firearms at a young age, who were made set on the sidelines because it was thought they would show the boys up in competitions. For some reason it was thought if the girls were better shots, it was somehow taking away from the boys right of passage to manhood.

It had one of the girls having to dress and act like a boy to compete. They just liked guns.... and violins. That is what they were exposed to as small children.

Both girls went on to be good soldiers for the Canadian Armed Forces. I know both girls will also make good mothers, because that is important to them also.

MapMaster said...

Sorry, Rikki, but I'm a blogger and I'm not here to help. And that is true even if I could be sure what I was supposed to be helping.

But, as a matter of fact, I am quite prepared to admit that there are boys taking dance, drama or netball who are not "mincing and preening sissy-boys" … perhaps almost as many as there are women who are denied employment simply on the basis of unsubstantiable gender stereotypes. In other words, not quite enough for me to embrace legislation expropriating people's own business practises and creating artificial divides among people.