Remember how we were brought up as kids, the birthday gifts we received and common phrases our parents or guardians would say to us. Do you remember being told as a male child to “look after your sister or sisters”, “be the man of the house”, or to say “ladies first”. The young girls were usually told, “Act like a lady”, “be kind” and so on. We have faced expectations, norms and standards that have been tailored into the society. Males and females always experienced double standards for the most part of their everyday life. And this has created expectations and social standards for adults. These expectations have led to double standards and gender inequality today.
Imagine the feeling that comes with being treated differently because of your gender, not given the same freedom or opportunities as the opposite sex. Have you ever felt cheated because of your gender? Have you ever faced gendered criticism? Or have you ever faced any type of criticism and just assumed that it was because of your gender and then used that gender as a weapon to play the victim?
Donna Kennedy-Glans highlights the double standards that exists in politics today and how some female politicians use their gender as a weapon to play victim whenever they face criticism for their style. She says, “it is nearly impossible to criticize a female politician’s style today”. Donna acknowledges that women have faced a lot of gendered criticism but she believes that the male counterparts have it worse.
We have seen many politicians have their style criticized because of their gender. I agree with Donna because, so often we hear things like “of course he would not understand since he does not have children” or “what does a single man know about raising a family anyway?”. These are common but think about the backlash a man would face if he says a female politician is “too emotional” or “barren”. Just thinking about what that man would go through from the moment he says those words sends chills down my spine.
You are about to learn how it got to this point and what was the driving catalyst?. Does history show that it is just mere karma? Stay tuned to find out the surprising way this has shaped modern politics.