Friday, May 15, 2009

Majority Rule?

According to all statistics women outnumber men in the world. So how come it's a man's world?

Admittedly in countries that are considered democratically run there is a majority rule mentality so why aren't those countries being run by women? For one reason those in power are loathe to relinquish it and for so many years the glass ceiling has been in place.

Our own history shows that minority groups were held out of power by false impressions being quietly propagated by innuendo and derisive jokes aimed at keeping those groups down. That worked for so many years that even after the Civil War it took almost 2 decades for the 15th amendment to the Constitution to be ratified and for Black Americans to get the right to vote! Unfortunately even with the law in place there are some communities run by small minded leaders who attempt to block the black vote.

Women had no such obvious war to help them become first class citizens and had to wait until the 19th amendment in 1920 to receive the same right as Black Americans. The phrase, "Behind every great man is a great woman" has been around for ages. Abigail Adams famously told her husband, I think his name was John, that he should not forget the women that helped this country become independent from Great Britain. She said that if women were not represented by the laws then they would not follow them and could even foment rebellion. (sic)

We have always been afraid of that which we don't understand. Anything alien is by definition unknown to us and therefore to be feared. But there are different levels of fear. There is the fear that totally stops rational thought and tends to leave us as deer in the headlights but there is also the fear that makes us want to understand.

It is this rational thought process that brings about understanding and moves us ahead as a species. The longer we fear the unknown without actively seeking to make it known the longer we will remain a small minded planet. The current juxtaposition between our astronauts fixing the Hubble telescope while 'space walking' and terrorists hiding in the caves of Pakistan and Afghanistan shows a remarkably wide range of intelligence vs. stupidity in this world.

The other side of the coin is that those we fear due to a lack of understanding become more and more frustrated by their exclusion and turn to violence as an outlet. Right now in Afghanistan, naturally not the best example of a well run modern nation, there are vicious attacks on women who have the nerve to desire an education. These attacks on so-called girl schools are being perpetrated by cowardly militants who must fear that women with an education will see them for what they really are, useless; worthless; scared morons. They are using poison gas to scare away students and so far are responsible for physically sickening almost 100 females.

It is never easy for a minority to move forward but when a majority is held back it's news. Apartheid was overturned in South Africa and the few no longer rule the many.

When will the women of the world start working together and demand an end to this irrational discrimination that keeps them from fully realizing their potential? And when will men stop fearing that eventuality?

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