Different roles

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Some will doubtless hail an increasing presence of women on municipal councils and in politics generally as a great step forwards for persons previously “dominated” by the “patriarchy.”

Some will doubtless hail an increasing presence of women on municipal councils and in politics generally as a great step forwards for persons previously “dominated” by the “patriarchy.”

But stop a moment and consider: when patriarchy reigned, politics was mostly a matter of inflicting penalties for injustices done by independent adults; today, government is far more concerned with public safety and serving the public as if the public were still children. Protecting, cherishing and serving children and incapable adults used to be the duty to which women were “relegated” by the patriarchy.

This monumental advance from traditional oppression appears to have come about after women got the vote, which at the time was supposed to suffice for all kinds of improvement in public life. An advance more or less parallel seems to have occurred somehow in the noble function, increasingly commercial instead of proceeding by direct production, of providing men with useful occupation.

Colin Burke

Port au Port

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  • Doug Smith
    October 16, 2013 - 19:33

    Mr. Burke, I would like to correct you on one important point. You said that women escaped traditional oppression after they got the vote. That’s wrong. Women escaped traditional oppression because of Adolf Hitler and the Second World War. With the men in the military women left their homes and filled in at the factories making money and experiencing freedom. This was the beginning of women’s road to equality. Doug Smith, Grand Falls-Windsor