While I have always acknowledged the statistics that women are the recipients of more physical abuse than men, and that men are the deliverers of that violence, I have never, and never will, accept the larger and more important natural and undisputable reality that women are physically, emotionally, spiritually, fiscally, psychologically or even potentially politically inferior to men.
There is clearly much data that demonstrates that women do not hold as many positions of leadership in too many organizations, and that women continue to make $.77 for every dollar a man make in North America, and that young girls are prevented culturally, politically religiously and violently, from securing a legitimate education in too many parts of the world, none of it proving that women are inferior to men.
It was Pierre Trudeau who wailed and gnashed his teeth against nationalism as a protection for the Quebecois, and he resisted with his whole being any attempt by others to shield Quebecois from the ravages of English domination and American absorption. Quebecois, he believed, were up to the challenge of demonstrating their equality, if not their superiority, and special protections would only inhibit such a demonstration.
So equally, do I, have I, and will I continue to, wail and gnash my teeth against any who perceive, and who generate policies and practices that are based on the false assumption that women need special protection from anyone, including men. And then, for those people, no matter their status in politics, government, the church, education, or the corporation to justify those policies and practices as ethical, moral, spiritual, religious dogma or even economic "necessity" is to send their flag flying in order for it to be shot down by the truth.
As the father of three daughters, I have never considered it essential to picture or to characterize those now young women as "second class" especially in comparison to men of their generation.
I was raised in a home where there was no disputing that the female gender, the mother, acted, and expected everyone else to act and to demonstrate, at least her equality, and in most cases her superiority to her male partner. She lived by the Charlotte Whitten axiom, "Women have to be twice as good as men, in order to prove their equal, and fortunately, men did not make that task very difficult.
It is a travesty today to listen and to read of the continuing arguments that women are not equal to men, not fit for combat, not up to the challenge of military action, not open to the hundreds of thousands of positions in all organizations including the military, for which men are eligible to apply and to compete.
I have suffered, by the assumed authority of too many men, who took the "protective" and patronizing stance "on behalf of women" to punish men who, in many cases were victimized by those same women, without even having the courtesy to ask the men for their "side" of the story, thereby precluding even the bare essentials of "due process" in their decision-making.
I remain pessimistic that this patronizing, condescending and unjust attitude/ approach and the policies and practices that sustain such attitudes, beliefs and dogma will change in the next century, given the blindness, the hubris and the insecurity of the male gender to see the tragic error of their ways.