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Opinion: The Gender Balance Debate Let Nature Take Course



Women can be as determined and ambitious and career driven as their male counterparts, but it is their different perspective on life that’s been the detriment to their success.

“I am a woman, a mother, and a wife.” Women will-will blubber in almost all conversations revolving around the debate for equality and gender balance.

This morning, compelled by the raging debate in parts of social media and our very own National Parliament, I “googled” what Gender Equality means:

“Gender equality, also known as sex equality, gender egalitarianism, sexual equality or equality of the sexes, is the view that both men and women should receive equal treatment and not be discriminated against based on their gender.”

I again inferred from my good friends, GOOGLE, what they would mean by “equal”:

  <- >Being the same in quantity, size, degree, or value.
  <- >(Of people) having the same status, rights, or opportunities.
  <- >Uniform in application or effect; without discrimination on any grounds.
  <- >Evenly or relatively balanced.

Whether the 2/3 gender rule is legally binding for us as a people and a country whose Constitution in Article 27 (3) states that women and men have the right to equal treatment, including the right to equal opportunities in political, economic, cultural and social spheres I cannot tell.

Of course, the society we live in hasn’t demonstrated this.

Take for instance a case of a seven-year-old boy falling and he’s reprimanded not to shed a tear. Why? Because he’s male. That man is not supposed to cry! And they grow up believing so. A child (male) brought up with such a notion till adulthood will walk away from a marriage that makes him cry like he’s got onion on his face.

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Such a child will cringe at the idea of sharing his pains with anyone, especially female, and would rather resort to drinking his ass off in a bar than entertain the notion of talking it out!

If only the society will change the very fabric it has used overtime to nurture the boy child, and create the same atmosphere as early as possible, we can dream of achieving this elusive gender balance.

Having the ability or resources to meet (a challenge).
It has gone without question that what a man can do a woman can do even better. Still University Placement for our women folk, here in Kenya and all over Africa, is pegged lower compared to the male fork. This happens with a backdrop of similar curricula, like teachers and similar examinations.

Our women must, then wake up and challenge this act of mistreatment against them since it authoritatively implies their weak gender. As Plato said, “If women are expected to do the same work as men, we must teach them the same things.”

The “ladies first” fuss, as people get into queues is another balderdash that our women must first fight off. Let us be candid and openly compete; it is the only way! And women are better placed to deal with it.

The tag, in its entirety, clearly outlines woman’s inability to compete favourably in a competitive environment and if not checked would delineate them from whatever it is the rest of humanity is scavenging for.

Of a person or thing considered being the same as another in status or quality.
We got to treat each other as equals. If it comes to rent and family issues, we are to pretend that men are to be breadwinners? Seriously?

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I was hoping that our women folk would demand as well to contribute equally to rent and everything else that appertains to bringing up a family.

I was praying that our mothers would break the ceilings and go into jobs traditionally left for the male folk.

I was hoping, beyond hope, that women would as well offer to pay the dowry for this gender balance issue.

Because humanity is carved the same way and men and women, have to balance.

I’ll be very honest with you: the cultural transformation that we are wading into is not easy. If it must be a success, it will require rigour and determination from both governments and those traditional barazas you ignore in the village.
To the proponents of gender balance, there are underlying issues that need to be addressed before this becomes a national debate.

We must go back to the very smallest unit of our lives, family, and have a very honest discussion about balancing the gender sheet off.

Myths such as boys are preferred to girls as families talk about children liking must be done away with. (Some my girlfriends prefer to give birth to males)

Mary Wollstonecraft said, “I do not wish them [women] to have power over men; but over themselves.” It is in so doing that they will compete astutely for the scarce resources that the men hold dear, and we men will support them.

After meeting with Sheryl Sandberg (current Facebook COO), Cisco’s John Chambers admitted that he hadn’t quite “gotten it,” and communicated this admission widely to his employees. He said, “While I have always considered myself sensitive to and effective on gender issues in the workplace, my eyes were opened in new ways and I feel a renewed sense of urgency to make the progress we haven’t made in the last decade… while I believe I am relatively enlightened, I have not consistently walked the talk … What we have been doing hasn’t worked, and it is time to adjust.

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“To call the woman the weaker sex is a libel; it is man’s injustice to woman. If by strength is meant brute strength, then, indeed, is woman less brute than man. If by strength is meant moral power, then a woman is immeasurably man’s superior. Has she not greater intuition, is she not more self-sacrificing, has she not greater powers of endurance, has she, not greater courage? Without her, the man could not be. If nonviolence is the law of our being, the future is with a woman. Who can make a more effective appeal to the heart than woman?” Mahatma Gandhi

In a nutshell, to achieve the balance, we ought to dedicate more time to understanding our cultural, social and right now technological challenges than just writing pieces of legislation. We must rethink, as remotely as possible why God intended man to dominate woman!

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Kenya West is a trained investigative independent journalist and a socio-political commentator on matters Kenya and Africa. Do you have a story, Scandal you want me to write on? Send me tips to []


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