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Women, tend to your children, leave politics to the men

GDPR

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The recent general election here saw gender quotas being introduced with a minimum 30% of candidates for political parties required to be women (or indeed men) in order to continue to be in receipt of public funding. Indeed this was the subject of much debate on here and elsewhere in the run up to the election. Former Australian Prime Minister John Howard has suggested that women have less "capacity" to enter politics because they are too busy caring for children and will always be outnumbered by male MPs. He elaborates that the caring role in communities, whatever about the rights or wrongs about that, fall to women which limits their capacity in politics. He defends the comment by saying that it's just the truth and mainstream should not be too timid to say things occasionally. Critics dismissed his claims as being out of date and misogynistic.

Currently the Dail has 35 women TD's or 22% of the total. The strive presumably would be to achieve 50%. Is Howard right that it is too much to expect that there would be equal representation for the sexes in parliament, given that women play a predominant role in caring in the community, which would go beyond the rearing/minding of children, are such gender quotas going to fail and are they worth it? Do you feel the current Dail or indeed future Dail's would be better served by having more women elected, or is this just the latest PC distraction or fad, which takes away from the most important consideration for voters, voting and electing the most suitable candidates regardless of what sex they are? Thoughts?

Australia's former PM says women 'have less capacity for politics' - Independent.ie
'Gender quotas won't substantially alter the outcome of the next Dáil'
 


ruserious

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I for one always assumed and believe that representative democracy means a democracy that is representative of ideology and not physical characteristics.
 

stopdoingstuff

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I for one always assumed and believe that representative democracy means a democracy that is representative of ideology and not physical characteristics.
And since most TDs follow the whip, what difference does it make?
 

ruserious

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And since most TDs follow the whip, what difference does it make?
Exactly.

If you follow the debate closely, you will see a trend developing; female politicians who fail time and time again to get elected tend to support this nonsense. Enter Ivana Bacik stage left.
 

GDPR

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I for one always assumed and believe that representative democracy means a democracy that is representative of ideology and not physical characteristics.
Indeed. I'm assuming that women and men vote in pretty equal numbers, so why not more women elected? I would support gender quotas as a temporary measure, as an attempt to effect change, but if there is no appetite for such change then it should be dropped. If if effects change and a healthy percentage of are selected and elected per gender quota, and this continues, then why keep it anymore?
 

Cruimh

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Indeed. I'm assuming that women and men vote in pretty equal numbers, so why not more women elected?
Lag effect of conditioning that Politics is men's work? There was a time, for example, when it was thought a good idea that the franchise should only be given to the head of Families.

I'm agin' gender quotas but hope to see more women in Parliaments and Councils.
 

GDPR

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Lag effect of conditioning that Politics is men's work? There was a time, for example, when it was thought a good idea that the franchise should only be given to the head of Families.

I'm agin' gender quotas but hope to see more women in Parliaments and Councils.
I think it's part of managing the whole work/family thing, and juggling the various priorities that features in modern life with two jobs, whether politics or any other area.
 

eoghanacht

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Not this "lady brain" nonsense, again?
 

Calculusmadeeasy

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Ladies with brains = nonsense
 

Mercurial

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I for one always assumed and believe that representative democracy means a democracy that is representative of ideology and not physical characteristics.
You could have that if you banned women from running entirely.
 

Mercurial

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I think it's part of managing the whole work/family thing, and juggling the various priorities that features in modern life with two jobs, whether politics or any other area.
Rates of female participation vary considerably from country to country, which suggests that it's a result of environmental, not biological, factors.
 

Erudite Caveman

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The recent general election here saw gender quotas being introduced with a minimum 30% of candidates for political parties required to be women (or indeed men) in order to continue to be in receipt of public funding. Indeed this was the subject of much debate on here and elsewhere in the run up to the election. Former Australian Prime Minister John Howard has suggested that women have less "capacity" to enter politics because they are too busy caring for children and will always be outnumbered by male MPs. He elaborates that the caring role in communities, whatever about the rights or wrongs about that, fall to women which limits their capacity in politics. He defends the comment by saying that it's just the truth and mainstream should not be too timid to say things occasionally. Critics dismissed his claims as being out of date and misogynistic.

Currently the Dail has 35 women TD's or 22% of the total. The strive presumably would be to achieve 50%. Is Howard right that it is too much to expect that there would be equal representation for the sexes in parliament, given that women play a predominant role in caring in the community, which would go beyond the rearing/minding of children, are such gender quotas going to fail and are they worth it? Do you feel the current Dail or indeed future Dail's would be better served by having more women elected, or is this just the latest PC distraction or fad, which takes away from the most important consideration for voters, voting and electing the most suitable candidates regardless of what sex they are? Thoughts?

Australia's former PM says women 'have less capacity for politics' - Independent.ie
'Gender quotas won't substantially alter the outcome of the next Dáil'

Howard is stating the obvious when hes says that many more women are in a family role that is not well suited to the life of a politician. But there are a couple of points worth making:

1) The male/female axis is not the only one that merits scrutiny. There are plenty of other ways of slicing and dicing the population which show one group with an over representation. Occupation prior to becoming a politician being an obvious one. Equality isn't just about men and women.

2) I wouldn't discount the possibility of women reaching parity, as Howard does. If women are favoured over men over time, then fewer female candidates won't necessarily translate into male dominated representation.

We are in relatively early days of female politicians, and if a different set of female characteristics - such as being less combative, or more co-operative become prevalent, and people figure that the average women candidate would be a better representative than the average male candidate, then women canditates, while still a minority could translate into a majority of seats. Could we need a gender quota's to ensure that men need some electoral supports to ensure that they can overcome the disadvantages that their sex has to face?
 

GDPR

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Rates of female participation vary considerably from country to country, which suggests that it's a result of environmental, not biological, factors.
The journal article I linked, mentioned Norway bringing in quotas in the 80's for public office, and this followed through in 2003 with quotas required for corporate boards. This would suggest a societal acceptance there of the merits of quotas, transcending in later years to other areas of life/society.
 

GDPR

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Howard is stating the obvious when hes says that many more women are in a family role that is not well suited to the life of a politician. But there are a couple of points worth making:

1) The male/female axis is not the only one that merits scrutiny. There are plenty of other ways of slicing and dicing the population which show one group with an over representation. Occupation prior to becoming a politician being an obvious one. Equality isn't just about men and women.

2) I wouldn't discount the possibility of women reaching parity, as Howard does. If women are favoured over men over time, then fewer female candidates won't necessarily translate into male dominated representation.

We are in relatively early days of female politicians, and if a different set of female characteristics - such as being less combative, or more co-operative become prevalent, and people figure that the average women candidate would be a better representative than the average male candidate, then women canditates, while still a minority could translate into a majority of seats. Could we need a gender quota's to ensure that men need some electoral supports to ensure that they can overcome the disadvantages that their sex has to face?
The current Irish quota for public office is a minimum 30% of candidates for both women and men. I guess over the coming years, this could play out in unanticipated ways.
 

silverharp

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Rates of female participation vary considerably from country to country, which suggests that it's a result of environmental, not biological, factors.
here is a young female commentator (Laura Southern) and wannabe politician's opinion on it. nature and nurture

My father used to listen to political radio when I was a kid and he would drive me to elementary school. I don’t think he realized I was listening in, but I really enjoyed it and found it absolutely fascinating. I was a big reader and nerd growing up so I didn’t have the personality to need to be accepted or fit in. Not requiring that acceptance or social validation all the time really gave me the ability to look into contrarian opinions on issues and I began to enjoy disagreement and debate. I’m also a high testosterone female with a lower voice,
square jaw line, big hands. I think I have the same size hands as most of my male friends. To think this wouldn’t affect my thinking would be a little strange in my opinion. This is obviously speculation, but you look at individuals like Marion La Pen, Ann Coulter or even Karen Straughan and they seem to have more masculine features, lower voices and are more in tune with politics. It’s very rare that you see a serious female commentator or politician with a high pitched voice and very dainty way of holding herself. Women in general typically aren’t designed or even interested in politics, you probably know from looking at your own viewer stats that it’s mostly men. This goes for most political or gender issue related channels. It’s just biological, women have different interests, and I understand myself and other females in politics are not representative of the majority. Anyways a bit off topic there, but to answer her question I would argue a bit of nature and nurture. I was lucky enough to have a great father who questioned and challenged me and exposed me to political radio - but I also would speculate that there may be a biological factor as well.
 

Mercurial

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The journal article I linked, mentioned Norway bringing in quotas in the 80's for public office, and this followed through in 2003 with quotas required for corporate boards. This would suggest a societal acceptance there of the merits of quotas, transcending in later years to other areas of life/society.
There's considerable variation even in countries that don't have quotas.
 

farnaby

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Rates of female participation vary considerably from country to country, which suggests that it's a result of environmental, not biological, factors.
The OP is about the roles of women in a particular society, so we're already talking about environmental factors. The questions are: whether or not those roles are in some way imposed or freely chosen; and whether or not they prevent women who want to be in politics from participating.

If imposed and restrictive, then obviously this requires reform of social norms and possibly affirmative action.

But in Ireland, are there really any women with political ambitions who believe their role of caring for their children is imposed on them; and/or that caring for children precludes a career in politics?

If the former, who is imposing childcare on them? If the male partner, then there is a fundamental problem in the relationship.
If the latter, again the question should be, why doesn't the partner take care of the kids while the woman pursues her political career? If he will not, again this is a problem of expectations within the relationship.

Could the root of this be that it is women who decide who will take care of their children and in the vast majority of cases they do not even consider the male to be the solution?!

For myself and most men with kids I know, we were never asked by our wives if we should be the child carer. It wasn't even considered by our wives as an option. Whereas the wives made decisions about whether or not to go back to work - some did, out of necessity; some did out of personal preference; many didn't go back, wanting to be there for the kids. None questioned the husband's role to go get a good job and provide the income. And the group of families I'm talking about differ in class, income levels and nationality, with the same result.

Perhaps this debate says just as much about the perceived roles of men in society as women.
 

Mr Aphorisms

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here is a young female commentator (Laura Southern) and wannabe politician's opinion on it. nature and nurture
Lauren Southern works with men and goes on one of their shows in particular where he states women should stay at home and not work and just raise children.

She's also a libertarian who believes Trump is for 'limited government' when he wants to increase spending, violate the NAP with deportation squads, create a federal wall, discard free trade, regulate the banking sector and so much more.

Why would anyone on earth take heed of what she says?

Have you any proper people to cite or is it just these YouTubers masquerading as journalists?

Did you also ever get back to me about how SJW are everywhere in Ireland with that Irish YouTuber you cited, whose only evidence was a guy who passed a social justice course by disagreeing with everything that was in it and ergo, somehow proving the tyranny of the left exists?
 

Mercurial

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The OP is about the roles of women in a particular society, so we're already talking about environmental factors. The questions are: whether or not those roles are in some way imposed or freely chosen; and whether or not they prevent women who want to be in politics from participating.

If imposed and restrictive, then obviously this requires reform of social norms and possibly affirmative action.

But in Ireland, are there really any women with political ambitions who believe their role of caring for their children is imposed on them; and/or that caring for children precludes a career in politics?

If the former, who is imposing childcare on them? If the male partner, then there is a fundamental problem in the relationship.
If the latter, again the question should be, why doesn't the partner take care of the kids while the woman pursues her political career? If he will not, again this is a problem of expectations within the relationship.

Could the root of this be that it is women who decide who will take care of their children and in the vast majority of cases they do not even consider the male to be the solution?!

For myself and most men with kids I know, we were never asked by our wives if we should be the child carer. It wasn't even considered by our wives as an option. Whereas the wives made decisions about whether or not to go back to work - some did, out of necessity; some did out of personal preference; many didn't go back, wanting to be there for the kids. None questioned the husband's role to go get a good job and provide the income. And the group of families I'm talking about differ in class, income levels and nationality, with the same result.

Perhaps this debate says just as much about the perceived roles of men in society as women.
It should be obvious, given the differences in different countries, that the choices women make are shaped by the societies in which they live, and that some societies apparently provide women with more opportunities to go into politics than others.
 

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