Modia Minotaur

Trawling the airwaves to spare you the agony!

Friday, January 19, 2007

Mother = Politician?

Arguably, the coverage of Julia Gillard's comments that it would be difficult for a mother to become Prime Minister is another case of `Labor Chaos' journalism. Then again, Gillard was a sitting duck for this sort of coverage - famously childless, with a famously empty fruit bowl ... there must be something a little strange about her, right? I mean - no kids, not married ... red hair, of course ... it's just creepy, isn't it?

It's a terrible shame that this sort of sentiment still exists today, nearly four decades after feminism became mainstream. Childless people - and childless women in particular - are viewed with an extraordinary amount of suspicion. More power to them, I say. Not because I don't like children - but because I know too many people who should never have become parents.

In any case, it's another case of distortion to make a more sensational story. Gillard's comment was not that it would be somehow wrong for a mother to be Prime Minister. Her point was that it is so hard nowadays to balance work and family that it would be extremely difficult (nevertheless, The Australian still insisted on calling its article `Gillard Defends Childlessness'). Female politicians still do face an uphill battle compared to men, there's no question about it. I know several and, without exception, they wouldn't be able to do their jobs without extraordinarily supportive partners - some of whom have had to abandon some of their own ambitions - equally supportive extended families, and a great deal of childcare. The amount of time female politicians need to spend away from their children would alone make the job of Prime Minister emotionally difficult. Do male politicians still feel this anxiety in separation from their children? Of course they do. Morris Iemma is one politician who proclaimed his commitment to his young family would always come ahead of his job (I'm not sure to what extent he's kept this pledge, but it's an honourable one). Yet the direct burden of care - of keeping house and keeping children - still unarguably falls by default to the woman, in most cases.

Would it be possible for a woman with a young family to attain high office? There are some positive examples, such as newly enstated Democrats Majority Leader Nancy Pelosi. There is the extraordinary example of Enid Lyons, the wife of former Prime Minister Joe Lyons, who reportedly personally answered all mail sent to her husband whilst bringing up eleven (!) children, and later becoming not only the first woman elected to the Federal House of Representatives in 1943, but the first female Cabinet Minister. Nevertheless, many female leaders, such as former WA Premier Carmen Lawrence and Meg Lees, admit to putting their careers on hold for their children. I can think of few male politicians - or high executives in business, for that matter - who would say the same thing.

But beyond all of this is a thread of misogyny that is genuinely disturbing. Recent reports from the US suggest that more people would prefer a black president to a woman president. I'm very heartened indeed to hear that America might finally accept a black president - it would truly be a realisation of one of the greatest struggles for human rights of the 20th century, and a wonderful thing. But the fact remains that so many people are nervous of naming a woman the leader of the free world, nearly a century since the world's first unrestricted female suffrage (in New Zealand in 1893 - a generation before America, in 1920) women are still so frequently viewed not as a person, first and foremeost, but in terms of being a mother or not being a mother; and also as people somehow overstepping their natural boundaries in seeking positions of real power.

6 Comments:

At 4:55 pm, Blogger oakleyses said...

longchamp outlet, cheap oakley sunglasses, ugg boots clearance, michael kors outlet, prada handbags, uggs outlet, christian louboutin, louboutin shoes, louis vuitton, louis vuitton outlet, michael kors outlet, cheap uggs, chanel handbags, rolex watches, nike free, oakley sunglasses, ugg outlet, louis vuitton handbags, kate spade outlet, longchamp handbags, polo ralph lauren, ray ban sunglasses, nike shoes, longchamp handbags, tory burch outlet, oakley sunglasses, gucci outlet, tiffany and co, oakley sunglasses cheap, michael kors outlet, replica watches, prada outlet, michael kors outlet, michael kors outlet, burberry outlet, uggs, oakley sunglasses, louis vuitton outlet stores, polo ralph lauren outlet, louis vuitton outlet, ray ban sunglasses, louboutin outlet, michael kors outlet online sale, burberry outlet, louboutin, air max, tiffany and co, ray ban sunglasses

 
At 4:58 pm, Blogger oakleyses said...

abercrombie and fitch, nike free pas cher, polo ralph lauren, lululemon outlet online, kate spade handbags, nike tn, michael kors uk, coach outlet store online, hollister, air max pas cher, vans pas cher, nike air force, polo lacoste, sac hermes, hollister, louboutin, sac burberry, true religion outlet, oakley pas cher, mulberry, longchamp, ray ban sunglasses, nike blazer, coach outlet, air max, nike roshe, sac longchamp pas cher, nike air max, air jordan, coach purses, coach factory outlet, air max, north face, nike free, converse pas cher, michael kors outlet, ray ban pas cher, true religion outlet, true religion jeans, new balance pas cher, north face, michael kors, true religion jeans, sac guess, nike roshe run pas cher, ralph lauren, vanessa bruno, michael kors pas cher, timberland, hogan outlet

 
At 5:01 pm, Blogger oakleyses said...

chi flat iron, iphone cases, air max, converse, new balance shoes, nfl jerseys, ferragamo shoes, herve leger, nike roshe run, converse shoes, oakley, hollister clothing store, hollister, north face outlet, beats by dre, wedding dresses, nike huaraches, abercrombie, north face jackets, vans, celine handbags, birkin bag, babyliss pro, timberland boots, reebok outlet, abercrombie and fitch, mont blanc, instyler, ghd, jimmy choo outlet, mcm handbags, asics running shoes, soccer jerseys, giuseppe zanotti, ralph lauren, air max, soccer shoes, lululemon outlet, valentino shoes, baseball bats, vans shoes, gucci, insanity workout, louboutin, nike trainers, longchamp, ray ban, p90x, bottega veneta, mac cosmetics

 
At 5:06 pm, Blogger oakleyses said...

links of london, moncler, ugg, thomas sabo, pandora jewelry, ugg, sac louis vuitton, michael kors outlet online, moncler, moncler, hollister, moncler, montre homme, doke gabbana, louis vuitton, sac lancel, canada goose, ugg boots, moncler outlet, wedding dresses, ugg pas cher, sac louis vuitton, canada goose, coach outlet store online, ugg, michael kors handbags, louis vuitton, pandora jewelry, rolex watches, barbour, pandora charms, canada goose uk, louis vuitton uk, marc jacobs, toms shoes, canada goose, moncler, michael kors outlet, supra shoes, canada goose, moncler, barbour, canada goose outlet, swarovski crystal, juicy couture outlet, moncler, canada goose, juicy couture, karen millen, canada goose jackets, swarovski, pandora charms

 
At 3:07 pm, Blogger Minko Chen said...

michael kors handbags sale
ferragamo outlet
tiffany and co
michael kors handbags
north face outlet
ugg boots
rolex watches
ralph lauren outlet
marc jacobs
coach outlet online
abercrombie and fitch
gucci,borse gucci,gucci sito ufficiale,gucci outlet
michael kors outlet
cyber monday 2015
michael kors handbags clearance
cheap jordans
swarovski crystal
uggs outlet
swarovski outlet
cheap ray ban sunglasses

 
At 2:25 pm, Blogger roba gad said...


Great article! We are linking to this great article on our site. Keep up the good writing.

https://3kary.com/property-status/building-for-sale/
https://3kary.com/property-status/building-for-rent/
https://3kary.com/property-type/buildings/

 

Post a Comment

<< Home