Sat | Dec 15, 2018

Pipe down with feminist talk

Published:Saturday | November 17, 2018 | 12:00 AM

THE EDITOR, Sir:

Prescient observers are realising that feminists are becoming quite popular in the Jamaican media. This is not problematic because all views must contend in the public domain.

However, the issue is that their views on a range of topics have been debunked. For example, the gender pay gap they enjoy complaining about is not caused by discrimination. It exists because men are more likely to be employed in lucrative fields than women and work for longer hours.

Additionally, the gap represents the average difference of aggregate salaries by gender. It is not implying that women are being paid less for doing the same work. Similarly, men prefer to study the hard sciences, so they make more money.

Women usually choose to work in fields like education and healthcare, which pay less. If women study less competitive fields, feminists should not expect them to be compensated like men. Even more disturbing is their vilification of the 'patriarchy'.

According to the feminist's world view, this is a male- dominated political system that seeks to oppress women.

But what feminists do not tell their naive followers is that the 'patriarchy' has provided women with some benefits. There are two types of patriarchy - 'equitable' and 'inequitable'. Under the former, women have autonomy and can make their own choices without the input of men, but men are still expected to provide for them are essentially, property. This type of patriarchy was evident in ancient societies.

 

Equitable patriarchy

 

Modern societies have equitable patriarchy that benefits women, but it is burdensome for men. A classic case is family law, which is usually framed to advance the interests of women.

When a man and a woman dissolve their marriage and the woman acquires a percentage of his assets or alimony, patriarchy is at work. Patriarchy, in several regards, privileges women by treating them as the more important and as the weaker sex.

Without patriarchal tendencies, no state in America would refuse to tax feminine products. Patriarchy is as simple as a taxi man choosing to transport a woman over a man when it rains. Feminists say they want equality, but they actually yearn for superior treatment on the basis of womanhood. Yet sensible men have no interest in maintaining patriarchy because we do not want to oppress women. Furthermore, women have the intellectual capacity to fend for themselves. Therefore, we would prefer for them to do so without the support of the State or other men.

If men and women are truly equal, feminists must acknowledge that there is not anything special about their sex and refrain from expecting favours from State.

LIPTON MATTHEWS

lo_matthews@yahoo.com