Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Danny and the Women

Warning: Long rant but I am ticked.

A newly formed Newfoundland and Labrador feminist organization (NL Feminist Coalition) has been created. Someone, on their behalf, put an ad in a local paper, telling Danny Williams that the women of the province will not be silenced. This comes about after a speech Danny Williams made, defending himself against the opposition and the “Joyce Hancocks” of the world. For those of you who don’t know, Joyce Hancock is a prominent feminist in our province and Premier Williams was responding to an assertion by her that he does not listen to women and is treating them unfairly. This, in response to the non-renewal of the contract of the former head of the College of the North Atlantic, who is a woman.

There, that was nice, wasn’t it? I was polite in explaining the situation. Now, let me have at it because I am sick to death of all this. Yes, I like Danny Williams and no, I don’t think he is on a mission to decimate the role of women in any high-up positions. You only need look at his record for that. I am sick of so-called-feminists taking the time and energy to get all riled up about things like this, or that Mayor Andy Wells had his picture on the front of a paper with a gag in his mouth (the feminists felt this was demeaning to women—yes, dear reader, Andy Well is a man), or that we say as “loved our fathers” in our Ode to Newfoundland. See, the thing is that I don’t see these people taking out ads when some d#*khead beats his wife half to death and gets a slap on the wrist, I don’t hear an outcry and the creation of yet another coalition to help the single mother whose husband won’t pony up the child support or a woman fired from a convenience store after she got pregnant. Oh, I know that the Status of Women Council is aware of these things and they do pipe up from time to time on such issues but not enough and not angrily enough. Their anger tends to come from the kinds of matters that make people scratch their heads and wonder how this is a “woman’s issue”.

As a woman, I have a problem with people stretching for something to fight for when there are still battered women and men who get away with beating them. I have a problem when a woman (or women) being dismissed from some high-paying position (or any position) is always because she is a woman. If the head of the College of the North Atlantic was a man and his contract was not renewed, no one would have said it was because he was a man. The idea is ludicrous, as ludicrous as the idea that the Premier of our province is picking on women in order to remove them from the upper echelons of the government hierarchy. As long as we want to be treated equally, we need to stop saying that everything that happens to us as women, is simply because we are female. Sure b’y, that’ s cracked.


At 6:00 PM, Blogger Tom said...

Good rant - well written, well thought out. I will keep my eyes open for more!

At 11:16 AM, Blogger Sure b'y said...

Well, thanks, Tom. I keep my eyes on In My Humble Opinion as well.

At 10:23 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi. I am sorry, but I can't help ut object to this rant. Various women's organizations are hard at work in the province, and because of backlash like this silly blog, we must choose our battles. I am sorry that you think we choose the wrong battles, but I must insist that these activitists spend countless hours fighting spousal abuse, violence against women more generally, and other causes that you deem worthy of a feminist voice. That said, the structural implications of women being fired by high-status positions are far-reaching. I feel that this 'rant' as you called it places the onus on the individual and fails to identity wider structural limitations channeling women overall into lower paying, less secure occupations. I wonder who else objected to your misinformed and misdirected 'rant'. Only 1 comment? Right, only one comment of support. Go on, post this, and present a balanced view.


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