Recently, March 8th, 2021, was International Women’s Day, a day dedicated particularly to advancing gender equality and human rights of women all over the world.
"The story of women's struggle for equality belongs to no single feminist nor to any one organization but to the collective efforts of all who care about human rights." - Gloria Steinem
Sadly, straddling this International Women’s Day was the angst filled interview of Meghan and Harry with Oprah Winfrey, where Meghan outlined the sense of isolation, discrimination, and suppression she felt from the Royal Family and its support structures - and by the heinous murder of 33-year-old marketing executive, Sarah Everard, simply walking home after work on the ‘good side of town’, by a 48-year-old, White Policeman (!), in London England.
These two stories graphically illustrate the vulnerability of all women, even though compared to the hundreds of millions of women, globally, who are under-privileged, or from cultures where girls and women are considered sub-human when compared to males, these two, Meghan and Sarah, were from ‘advanced countries and cultures’. Yet they were not safe from racial bias, or worse, from being stalked and lethally assaulted, for being a woman.
Even though it is the 21st Century, and the struggle of women to be recognized and treated as equal human beings with men has been ongoing forever, we find even today, the plight of most women, globally, is an eternal struggle for mere survival, sheer need for physical security, gender equality, and just basic fairness.
The greatest discriminators, persecutors, and at times enemies that present mortal dangers to women are of course men. While it is the greater natural physical strength of men that pose a threat to women, yet that danger is greatly exacerbated by men’s uncontrolled lust, and the fantasies propagated by male dominated cultures of their God-given moral and spiritual superiority, in almost all cultures, even the so-called ‘advanced Christian countries’ of the United States, and the United Kingdom - where the examples of the extreme natures of biases and physical lethal attack took place, to hurt the two women mentioned above.
These incidents took place in England, but they are distressingly daily, common attacks on women everywhere – and in some countries they would barely raise an eyebrow, as these would be considered culturally normal and acceptable behaviors, of the Class and Caste social structures, as in Meghan’s case, and even more awfully, the killings, as in Sarah Everard’s case.
Ever since the beginning of humanity, except for rare instances, women have been considered and treated as the ‘property’ of men, to be owned, bought, sold, traded for other essentials, raided, abducted, raped and pillaged, and considered part of ‘bounty’ of conquering armies. The concept of women as ‘property’ is prevalent in many societies even today; and that ‘property concept’ allows all manner of outrage to be inflicted on women from confinement, to severe curtailment of rights and freedoms, withholding of all manner of privileges and activities, from education, to socializing, to singing, to working outside the house, to getting paid, to being forced into wedlock at very young age, to being forced to do whatever men desire, to outright enslavement and to severe punishments.
In some countries, even to being subjected to honor-killings to preserve ‘family honor’, which is really just the excuse for men feeling outraged at any show of independence, or of exercising of free will by a girl or woman in toxically male dominated societies. The idea of women as ‘less’ than men has prevailed in spite of all ‘advancements’ of global societies in all cultures, in every way (except for a very few exceptions).
In advanced countries, the trials of women are almost as prevalent, if not quite that severe, in that they are matter-of-factly denied equal status with men, and discriminated against in a thousand ways, daily. Their battles are in their everyday life, at home and at work. In the extreme cases, but it being far from uncommon, they are beaten, abducted, enslaved, raped, and killed by family members and strangers in distressingly large numbers regularly, in all countries. For most, their non-stop activities at home are dismissed as their duty, while men get credit for everything they do at work and home; and specifically, outside the home, in offices and factories, or other work environments, generally, they have to settle for materially lesser compensation for equal or more work than the men. These inequalities have persisted forever.
Considering that without women there would not be a human race, in spite of the Biblical version of the start of humanity in the Garden of Eden, where God only created Adam - and Eve was an afterthought only ‘as a companion to man’, from his rib - when God found Adam to be despondent in spite of his direct communication with God himself. Though the early Biblical story of ‘Man’, puts woman in second place and then blames her for the first sin, yet it’s difficult to see how humanity was supposed to ‘grow and prosper’ without any woman, if Adam had not been lonely? These kinds of religious versions of the story of humanity are in large part to blame for the persistent abuse of women through history, and the idiotic labelling of them as ‘unclean’ for the very aspect of their anatomy that allows humanity to procreate and ‘fill the earth’.
Without girls and women, the world would be an unbearably dreary, infertile, untidy, and dull place indeed, supposedly populated with only men, made repeatedly from ‘clay’, as there would not be any women to give birth to any of them. Thankfully, that’s not how it went, and we have almost half the population of humanity as the ‘better gender’ as they bring life to our lives in more ways than one, and without them we simply would not be here. If men are truly strong then they do not need to wilfully inflict pain on women, they need to protect them and further their cause. Because… its way past time to change attitudes towards women and give them their just dues, as the more critical and valuable part of humanity, and stop persecuting them endlessly for being women.