As a feminist, would I have known it was International Women’s Day had I not read it on other blogs? Why not? Because it’s hardly a cause for celebration is it?
Apart from the fact that nearly 50% of the population gets a whole 24 hours to celebrate its achievements and then we return to the status quo where men rule the roost and women once again retreat quietly back to their corners, read on:
• Women have not achieved equality with men in any country.
• Of the world’s 1.3 billion poor people, it is estimated that nearly 70 per cent are women.
• Between 75 and 80 per cent of the world’s 27 million refugees are women and children.
• Only 28 women have been elected heads of state or government in this century. (ie 20th century)
• Women hold 11.7 per cent of the seats in the world’s parliaments.
• Of the 185 highest-ranking diplomats to the United Nations, seven are women.
• The percentage of female cabinet ministers worldwide has risen from 3.4 in 1987 to 6.8 per cent in 1996.
• Of the world’s nearly one billion illiterate adults, two-thirds are women.
• Two-thirds of the 130 million children worldwide who are not in school are girls.
• The majority of women earn on average about three-fourths of the pay of males for the same work, outside of the agricultural sector, in both developed and developing countries.
• In most countries, women work approximately twice the unpaid time men do.
• An estimated 20 million unsafe abortions are performed worldwide every year, resulting in the deaths of 70,000 women.
• Globally, 43 per cent of all women and 51 per cent of pregnant women suffer from iron-deficiency anemia.
Women and Violence
• Each year an estimated two million girls suffer the practice of female genital mutilation.
• Worldwide, 20 to 50 per cent of women experience some degree of domestic violence during marriage.
• The primary victims of today’s wars are civilian women and their children, not soldiers.
• The use of rape as a weapon of war has become more evident. In Rwanda from April 1994 to April 1995, estimates of the number of women and girls raped range from 15,700 to over 250,000.
• Rapes in the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda are being investigated with a view to prosecution by International Tribunals established by the United Nations.
It’s an old list from the United Nations. Full list here. I could look for a more up-to-date one that would no doubt portray a much rosier picture. Yeah. Sure.
Let’s look at something more local and today’s news. Six new Queen’s Counsel were admitted to the Gibraltar Bar today, of whom one, yes, just ONE, was a woman. But wait, this is surely cause for celebration? Because, Gillian Guzman QC is our first woman silk.
The first woman to be called to the Bar in Gib was Pamela Benady in 1955. That makes a mere 57 years before a woman actually takes silk here. (Source for this info – Gib Chron)
If anyone wonders why I occasionally post the odd hesitant little feminist perspective about the total lack of equality…. Oh. Silly me. Wrong blog. I am not ranting away on Clouds now, this is my nice face.
Moving swiftly on. To some good equality news. I called in the decorators’ merchants to buy some new overalls, bib and brace actually.
I was chatting to the two sales people, who are really nice and friendly, and discussing the sizes.
‘I think you probably need the size I am wearing because you are tall like me,’ said one. ‘It’s large.’
‘Yes,’ said the other one, ‘You don’t need the size I am wearing, it is small and the legs are still too long for me.’
This is pretty good dontcha think? A woman walks into the shop to buy overalls and they do NOT assume they are for her partner. Good one boys!
Trouble was, they were for my partner so I came clean after some more banter. Not that it matters, they know I work with him. Of course, if they didn’t know me through him, I’m sure it would have been a whole different story.
Meanwhile, on International Women’s Day, this woman with a first degree and a master’s who can’t get a job in Gib, is dutifully patching another pair of overalls. (For the sewers out there, rips and holes sealed with fusible interfacing on both sides, and then patches made from a pair of shrunken overalls to go over the top).
After all, that’s what women are for isn’t it?
For which, see this great link here. (Click the google link under the ‘cartoon’)
And a few other takes below on IWD. They are all totally different and well worth a read.
Now as a super housewife, I have some top news about baked beans – but it will have to wait.
Normal newsy and pretty posts will return soon.