Equal Rights and Wrongs

If it’s Wednesday it must be social and political comment, and the topic for today is ‘Equal rights and after – where are we and where do we go next?’

In the last 30 years things have changed from a position where able-bodied white males were in power virtually everywhere, to a society which is relatively far more equal.  There may not be many black or Asian MP’s, but there are some: there may not yet be 50% of women in Parliament but there is a significant slice.

Thirty years ago women were generally in ancillary posts – secretaries, nurses, teachers, cooks and cleaners – or else in the most menial of factory jobs: unskilled and low paid.  Many women worked only in the home, a place of long hours, scant recognition and no pay at all.  All that has changed: it is now out of proportion easier for a mother with small children to work outside the home: to establish a career before marriage and continue it after giving birth.

But there’s a problem.  Since women did nearly all of the caring – not only for young children but also for old people – there is a crisis in caring.  Barely a day goes by without some story in the media about neglect or abuse of the elderly.  Not only that, but we have travelled so far down the line that it is now difficult for women NOT to go back to work after having children, even if they want to stay at home a bit longer.  Hence the Facebook group Mothers at Home Matter Too: Home Educating parents are particularly concerned in this debate.

What is the solution?  We’re not going back to how things were, but how do we move forward?  And what is to blame?  Is it the equality agenda or the relentless push for everyone to make money?

Kirk out

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2 Comments

Filed under friends and family, Home Education, philosophy, politics

2 responses to “Equal Rights and Wrongs

  1. I think there is a language problem here: equal sometimes means ‘the same as’ and sometimes ‘of comparable merit’. As men cannot bear children or undertake all the work that that entails, such as breast feeding, we should concentrate on the latter definition – and all that entails! 🙂

    Spock out

    • lizardyoga

      Good point. Sometimes we don’t define our terms but just make assumptions. Clearly there are differences between men and women and it is around these that the rest needs to be negotiated. Are you familiar with the ‘difference feminism’ vs. ‘sameness feminism’ arguments? I mentioned them last week I think – Gilligan’s Ethics of care etc

      ________________________________

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