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Wednesday, April 26, 2006 

A Woman's World

For centuries, women lived in a world where men make the laws. A world where women were (and in some places, are) treated like chattel. Owned and subjugated by men as slaves, we had no voice, no rights, no freedoms until the last century. In children's literature we've been portrayed as the wicked witches or evil stepmothers. In mythology we've been blamed for men's weaknesses and bad fate. (look no further than the Greeks whose sailors were led to their death by the Sirens or Odysseus who "succumbed" to the enchantress, Circe) Even the decline of society has been attributed to us when we started to trade in our aprons for office jobs.

It’s now 2006, and even though we’ve won some major victories during the last century…the right to vote, to work and on paper, we’re equal in the eyes of the law, we are still reading stories of women being beaten, burned, raped, and traded as slaves by men.

In China and India, female fetuses are being aborted because a male child is still perceived as more valuable. In Western societies, working mothers are often castigated for not forsaking an education and career to stay at home to become domestic servants for their families.

But all is not doom and gloom for the modern woman. A recent study in the Economist magazine has discovered that women are the most underused asset in society. The report in the April 15 issue made some very interesting observations and conclusions:

Females consistently outperform boys in school.

Half of all university degrees in most developed countries are being awarded to women.

Financial investments made by women consistently earn higher returns than their male counterparts.

Countries with high female labour participation rates, such as Sweden, tend to have higher fertility rates than Germany, Italy and Japan where fewer women work.

Not only are educated women more productive, they raise healthier and better educated children.

Women make perhaps 80% of consumers buying decisions.*

Considering these positive trends, hopefully, the corporate and political landscape, presently underrepresented by women, will reflect these statistics. With more women in positions of power, then, we could be seeing increased wages and better working conditions for working women. Women’s issues could receive more attention resulting in better enforcement of laws protecting the rights of women around the globe and stricter penalties for those who break them.

Can we do a better job at running this planet? Or will we also succumb to the same vices of greed, corruption and self-interest of our male predecessors? Only time will tell but we won’t know until we try and a lot more of us need to try. For the sake of our children and their future.

*Excerpts from The Economist, April 15-21, 2006 pp. 73-74

Woemns is not smater then men. we still be supereor to yu wumens.

Please don't delete the first comment, it is so amusing! And proves your point really!

This is still a male dominated society and whatever they try to do to portray equal gender and equal this and equal that in the politically correct media (esp. in the UK), the fact of the matter is bias towards men, from men, is overwhelming. You should see how women are treated in the London City (financial sector, in this example). At some point I worked in a company that most of their female staff were way above the average in the looks department. It had become a joke amongst some that the first criteria for hiring females in roles was how beautiful the woman was. I highly doubt that this was a 'coincidence'.

K.

Giano, what can I say. You've totally let the side down because a woman will come along now and correct all the mistakes you made in that sentence.

I think you make valid points although do not forget it was a woman who made poor Hansel & Gretals father leave them in the middle of the woods. The happy ending only came at the end where the father had gotten rid of her!

Getting serious for a minute, the situation of women varies from country to country. There are still places where the wife is considered the rightful property of the husband. There are advanced countries out there where women are still not allowed to vote or even drive.

But I mean things are obviously looking up for women! I mean we've got Condie Rice in one of the most powerful jobs in the world and she's doing 1000 times better than any man could(!)

That first comment HAS to be a joke. It's just too funny. If it's meant to be serious, then it's just sad.

I think its obvious that Giano was making a point.
Perhaps I am bringing up an old argument, but women raise future men and while observations of the world around them does contribute to their formation, from personal experience, the mother can make a world of difference in a future man's attitude and treatment of women.

ZARDOZ SAYS :

GIVE ME AN APRON..WOMAN (meaning mrs zardoz)

ILL STAY HOME.........
.....and do the chores etc.

( i wish )

==z==

On a less serious note, we gals would kick ass in a spelling bee!
;-)

On an even less serious note, have you ever noticed how women dominate all the action in fairy tale kingdom? You got your Cinderella, Snow White, Little Red Riding Hood, Beauty, Sleeping Beauty, evil stepmothers/queens, good fairy godmothers. Whether good or evil the ladies are the protagonists.
Then you have a Prince (yawn) who holds (smelly?) glass slipper, another Prince (yawn) who happens on a corpse in the woods and plants a kiss on it(!), a wolf (male gender cause he talks gruffy-like), a Beast (who was cursed by a WOMAN and only a love of a WOMAN can unbreak the curse!), and yet another Prince who FINALLY does something (battles the evil queen/dragon).
I mean, if you think about it, Bothers Grimm and Hans Christian Andersen must have had some serious mom-complex issues.
:-)

Not a change tha subject but black women get even more of a raw deal. How come black jelly bean is nastiest tasting candy in the bag. And, why in billiards, to win, you need to knock the BIG OLE white ball into the poor little black ball. Why they call it a blackout when the lights go out?Why the baddest kid in the family got to be the "black sheep"? Women rule, but sistah rocks!

kostas...Yes, women are still subjected to bias in the workplace but hopefully, that too will change where we will be evaluated on our skills and not so much our physical attributes.

ellas...I didn't really forget Hansel & Gretel ... I knew that if i started listing off all the fairy tales where women are vilified, I would have veered so far off the subject that the National Organization of Women would have made me their poster child!LOL As for Ms Rice, was your remark tongue-in-cheek? I can't tell sometimes online.

diva..I think it is a joke because it's not a matter of typos or not knowing how to spell...the author of that comment given two misspellings of women. Makes me believe he/she purposely misspelled it. And misspelling YOU?

avid...I am 100% in agreement with you...a mother IS a huge influence on her children. I would never advocate that women should neglect their children in order to advance their careers. Thanks to our ability to educate ourselves, we can raise healthier and better educated children.

zardoz...I've done both...worked and been a stay at home mom...working outside the house is definitely easier...AND you get paid for your efforts. Many men and women don't realize just how important recognition is when women choose to make family and housework a full time job. I admire those who have several kids and manage to keep them fed, healthy, clean, clothed and well-behaved while running the household chores as well.

flubber...Since those fairy tales were written by men who most likely did have some issues with women themselves, it's no wonder that the women in their stories poisoned their stepdaughters, abandoned their children and cursed their relatives.

sistah...If indeed you are a black woman living in Greece as your ISP shows and not an imposter then I might consider responding to your comment.

Seawitch,

Regarding your comment to avid. Fathers shouldn't neglect their children in order to advance their career either. It's one thing to put food on the table, it's another pursue that bigger house, bigger car ....

Kosta

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