“The Cave you fear to enter contains the jewels you seek!”
On Thursday, October 13th, 2018 an article titled Let us do away with the fallacy of female domination by Daphne Ewing-Chow was published in the Barbados TODAY e-paper. That article seemed on the surface to be reasonable and correct. Unfortunately, this reasonableness was marred.
First by its placement on a female page – The day of the Girl – with pictures of only females, lots of them – even the “angel”. Is there “The day of the boy”? If not, why not? The message that “males do not exist”, comes through loud and clear, especially as the topic is supposed to be “gender equity”. Thanks to the Editors for contributing in such a spectacular way!
The article by Daphne Ewing-Chow also wrongfully accuses me of comparing feminism to Nazism. My article titled Has the pendulum swung too far? only alluded to the repetitive tool the Nazis used to convert fiction to fact. The same tool – Men are bad! Men are bad! Men are bad! – that has been used extensively by women to create that fiction. The conclusion that feminism may be compared to Nazism is entirely Daphne Ewing-Chow’s. Remember what the Prince said to Cinderella – “If the shoe fits wear it”!
This type of fallacious conclusion is again reached in the accusation that my article “argues that the glass ceiling is a thing of the past and that women are the new rulers, much to the detriment of men who have subsequently become marginalized”. My article made no such argument. Has the pendulum swung too far? merely posed a question that deserves an answer. The fact is that the glass ceilings have been smashed. Women’s lot has been improved beyond recognition in Barbados and Daphne Ewing-Chow’s blaming the “sociological challenges affecting Barbadian men” on the men is the identical, obnoxious argument -“it is their fault” – that men previously used to justify discrimination against women.
In the same way they are blaming the poor, academic performance of the boys relative to the girls, on the boys. Just as obnoxious is the suggestion that it is women’s turn for the next 200 years!
The Daphne Ewing-Chow article is also marred by its reliance on statistics. “Lies, damned lies, and statistics” describes the persuasive power of numbers, particularly the use of statistics to bolster weak arguments. Why, for example, did the author selectively ignore the intelligence quotient (IQ) statistics for males and females? Could it be because the distribution levels of IQ for males and females happen to be identical? That key statistic undermines the argument that females are smarter than men – one of those oft repeated fictions used to justify the relative academic performance of our boys.
This IQ statistic also highlights the issue that the Barbadian education system (primary, secondary and tertiary) has failed our boys and young men. The schools around the world with the best male academic performances are single-sex schools. The current leaders/rulers in Barbados seem to have no intention of addressing this failure. Why? Is this not a resource that we are failing to develop?
The fact is that, despite the UNDP Gender Inequality Index, which was probably derived from an all-female gender equity conference, Barbados is the only country in the world with a Governor General, Prime Minister and leaders of its main political parties all being female. The fact is that our bright young men are leaving because our system has failed them.
Thanks to the many women who have expressed their agreement that:
– we need to reverse the unjust brain washing that has taken place;
– our gender equity issues are not going away until they are adequately addressed;
– our boys and young men have been disadvantaged by our education system which urgently needs addressing;
– future conferences on gender equity in Barbados and elsewhere need to involve as many males as females to have any credibility; and
– the question “has the pendulum swung too far?” still needs to be answered.
May my saviour and great God above forbid that there be any more violence against women in Barbados for any reason! Round and round we go…
Peter Webster is a retired Portfolio Manager of the Caribbean Development Bank and a former Senior Agricultural Officer in the Ministry of Agriculture.