Appreciating why “gender equality” is important on International Women’s Day

It’s “International Women’s Day” today. As expected, there are a lot of messages being shouted out about how far women have come and, of course, how much more needs to be done to achieve “gender parity” in the workplace and in society. As such, adding more verbage to all that well-established collective wisdom does not really contribute much additional insight to the subject of women’s issues as, quite evidently, we have enough Netizens already exchanging enough of the familiar ideas on the matter amongst themselves within their little cliques of pals.

There is no disputing the importance of women’s rights — because women are people too, just people who happen to be equipped differently owing to their having a different biological purpose in the all-important effort to further our specie’s genetic code. Women’s rights are also important because we now possess the social, cultural, and technological infrastucture to support women’s aspirations to take on bigger roles in deciding and driving how things are done in this world. We see this in how businesses are implementing initiatives to boost women’s presence in senior management and even executive positions to at least 50-50 ratios. Many men have come to happily welcome these corporate initiatives.

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Most important of all, businesses love women. Before women joined the workforce in droves, their contribution to the economy was largely non-tangible. Though economists tried to put a dollar value to the unremunerated housework and child-rearing that they did at home, there was no real significant cash exchanging hands as a result of the housework performed by women and so their contribution to national economies was largely “theoretical”. Initiatives to get women out of the house, into the workforce, and salaried therefore made sense to capitalists who are always on the look out for new untapped markets for the products being churned out by their factories. Women in the workforce meant a new set of consumers with cash to spend. And that was a good thing for business.

Women were also long seen by marketers to be the primary purchasing decision makers of most households. Being so, marketing and advertising campaigns since time immemorial were subtly aimed at women even in the early days when men brought home most of the bacon. That was likely fine by the average ad man who just thought with regard to households’ disposal income, “Men makes ’em, women spends ’em.” Just the same, women taking a bigger share of the income making activities of households are even better for business.

And so these are likely some of the real reasons why the business world got behind and remains strongly behind “gender equality”. Women doing more roles traditionally performed by men means bigger markets and more cash sloshing around those markets to harvest. The enlarged labour supply resulting from larger numbers of women joining the workforce also puts downward pressure on labour costs — the same way immigration does as most business owners and executives will have happily learned by now.

Gender equality is, in principle, win-win. Women gain personal careers, greater personal freedoms, and feel more fulfilled. Businesses get more and more of the other half of humanity cashed up and directly participating in the consumer market. Business is happy, women are happy, and, when women are happy, the men are happy. Thus, everybody is happy.

Happy International Women’s Day! 🙂

5 Replies to “Appreciating why “gender equality” is important on International Women’s Day”

  1. Gender inequality is mostly caused by: culture, religion, “macho man” thinking, tribal laws, etc..actually we are all equal.

    However, in the workforce, there are men , who are not comfortable with women, who are their superiors. So, men, put this “mirror ceiling” on the corporate ladder; designed to prevent women from climbing the corporate ladder.

    In the nursing profession; it was mostly dominated by women. Male nurses, were thought to be gay, or somewhat feminine men. Now, there are many male nurse.

    If there were no women, there would be no children. Women are the stabilizer of the family. I praise women for their good works in child bearing and child rearing. Those working women, who juggle: career, family and motherhood are the heroes of today. I salute them,

    1. If there were no men, there would be no children.

      To make kids, there is a need for (male) sperm cells and (female) egg cells. In the future, there will be the option for artifical wombs. Then no woman needs to carry a baby anymore.

      And for many decades, both men and women raise kids together. Women do not have the monopoly to raise kids.

      1. @Robert Haighton:

        Even if we have in the future, artificial wombs and artificial pregnancies. There is no substitute for an actual mother’s love.

        The care , the love and the emotional attachment of a child to his mother, cannot be duplicated by artificial entities. We have Robots, but robots have no emotions. They are machines.

        1. There is only an emotional attachment bec a female carries a child inside her body. What I do hear around me, is that females dont want those 9 months inside their bodies anymore. Such a ‘protest’ is worth listening to and looking/searching for other ways. And hence, an artificial womb is born (pun intended). An artificial womb in a fully controlled ‘laboratory’ environment can be controlled and checked much better than nature can. And as a result of that, (artifical) abortions are even less emotional to do then it is now. In short, a win-win situation for everybody.

          You really overrate the input of a mother.

  2. Both men and women should feel free to be sensitive. Both men and women should feel free to be strong…it is time that we all perceive gender on a spectrum not as two opposing sets of ideas.

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