Why women?

July 30, 2007 at 8:34 am (feminism, women of the year award, women's day)

Dilemma: is it a good thing to have awards for women?
This is something I struggle with. After attending the Shoprite/Checkers/SABC2 Women of the Year awards I once again grappled with this issue.
The women there were amazing and I was completely blown away by what some of them were doing. It really is astonishing what people can do when they put their mind to it.
So on the one hand, yes, it’s a good thing to highlight when women do something well. But on the other hand, do we need to have a special ceremony to praise them?
Would we do the same for men? And if not, does this not mean we still think women should be given an extra push to do well or be noticed?
Are we not still regarding women as second-class citizens if we make special awards and public holidays for them? Why the special status if are supposedly equal to men?
I’m not dumb enough to think that women have broken all barriers. Really, I know we still have a very long way to go.
But have we not gone far enough to now start levelling the playing fields? We’re not as hapless as we were 70 or so years ago, surely?
By this, I exclude all the downtrodden, poor, abused women in our world. And this is fine because no amount of special awards or public holidays is going to help them anyway.


  1. madamm said,

    I think you make a valid point here Toby.
    I have often wondered why there are special days/ceremonies, etc for women myself. OF course it is wonderful and recognises people who work hard, but I can’t help but think these days/awards will see to it that we remain there. You know, not exactly second class, but…people who need special ceremonies to celebrate their special work, because they are…well…special.
    I have no answers. Special days and awards will pave the way, but must NOT stay that way forever. Eventually we’d need a Men’s day, I think. Or NO days.

  2. Toby Hanks said,

    I totally agree Mrs M – it’s for both or nothing. I just wonder how many other women feel this way. We are special but we don’t need special days to prove our worth.

  3. madamm said,

    ja, rather give us presents

  4. tbhanks said,

    Like holiday presents?

  5. madamm said,

    ja. Or a holiday. AND a Chevrolet SUV.

  6. tbhanks said,

    Naaah, I’m not really a SUV kinda girl.

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