Do We Weaken Our Society by Opposing Gender Equality?

by Uche Onegeria 19 Jun , 2017  

Do we?

Do we ever question the effects of suppressing 1 gender in our society? Does it weaken or strengthen us? Do we shoot ourselves in the foot out of ignorance when we oppose gender equality?

When we oppose gender equality, what we fail to see is that we are trying to:

  1. Tell 1 gender what they can or cannot do.
  2. Limit the reach or ability of 1 gender to attain their maximum potential.
  3. Put 1 particular gender in a box.
  4. Discourage 1 gender from living the lives they were born to live.
  5. Assume we know all that a stranger is capable of doing and advising them based on that.

All these mean the same thing. We usually cannot see the underlying effects of stopping people in their tracks with:

  • You can’t do that, you are a woman/man.
  • No! That’s not possible. A woman/man cannot do that.
  • Don’t waste your time doing that. It’s a man/woman’s job.
  • Men and women are not biologically the same. Accept that and understand you cannot excel in this field.

I wrote more about gender equality in a previous article Here.

However, if you wish to see the harm or good caused by enforcing these ideals on others, you should see its effect on the world’s gender vs. poverty index map. You see, gender inequality harms us all.

Sources: Wikipedia

Do these maps look similar? This comparison shows a strong relationship between gender (in)equality and Human Development Index (HDI). Countries with minimal gender equality gaps like the countries in North America, Europe etc. have better standard of living than countries with huge gender equality margin like many countries in Africa.

So next time, when we want to discourage someone from doing what they want just because our brains are already wired to think their gender should stick to X or Y, let’s sit back and think again. Let’s ask ourselves if we are certain or if we are just following societal expectations like zombies.

When we silence someone for good, we probably kill the voice that could fight for our children and many members of our society.

When we tell a woman or man that they are not good enough for a particular field, we forget they might actually be more than good enough. They might even be better but if our stereotypical nature (victimization or bullying) suppresses them, the society loses from the gifts of that individual.

So what if they lose, at least they know they tried. We do not have to hand them the guilty verdict before the trial.

Let us empower everyone to achieve their maximum potentials, whatever that might be and in whatever field that might be in. Let’s encourage gender equality. Only when we do this, do we actually begin to grow and develop.


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