Women’s Inequality in Politics

 

It is not an unknown fact that women have been fighting for equal rights dating back to as early as the eighteenth century when the first women’s empowerment movements were set in motion. Two centuries later exceptional progress has been made yet there is still a stigma, inequality in pay, and more lingering issues within a women’s everyday life.

 

In some countries there are worse conditions than others; arranged marriages, women not being able to go to school, women not being able to show skin and speak freely, and so on. This research is specifically going to focus on women in the political community and their treatment in different countries.

 

According to a 2016 worldwide research, eighty-one point, eight percent of female politicians have been mentally assaulted, and forty-four point four percent had been threatened with death, rape, beatings, or kidnapping. This happens solely because these women are in politics. There are only three countries in the entire world that have more women in power than men; Rwanda, Cuba, and Bolivia. Is it because they are unworthy of the position, or is it because there are more men than women? Or is it because women are constantly harassed for their appearance instead of their minds?

 

In a US-written article, a study was taken from five different countries asking if they believed in women’s rights and the US ranked second with a high of ninety-four point six percent believing that women should have equal rights the same as a man. Yet the US has a two-party majoritarian system and experts within the article have said a two-party system is: “a system that doesn’t help minorities gain access to political power.”

 

Whereas a proportional electoral system is where: “political groups receive seats in proportion to their electoral strength,” according to the study. It also discovered that none of the countries with 30 percent or more women in parliament worked under a majoritarian system; therefore deeming the majoritarian system the US uses unbeneficial for women in the political field. The field also has a very sexist side to things in terms of sexualizing women in politics for appearance instead of talking about a woman’s role within politics. For example, The New York Times wrote about the threats and remarks female candidates receive when running for office.

 

In 2016 in a Northern California district, Erin Schrode woke up to messages on all platforms of social media. Messages such as: “All would laugh with glee as they gang raped her and then bashed her bagel-eating brains in.” Others such as Brianna Wu a democratic congressional candidate in Massachusetts received messages such as: “your body is worthless and decaying”, “when your camera is on you should turn around so everybody can see all of you,” and “I just don’t know if she can give enough blow jobs to win the race.”

 

These women shouldn’t be harassed and threatened in the comfort of their own homes just because of their appearance which frankly has nothing to do with politics. So yes the polls might say ninety-four point six percent of Americans believe in women’s equality but it doesn’t show in the world of politics.

 

A woman should never be victimized or threatened repeatedly based on her appearance or gender. A woman should not fear for her safety based on what job she decides to pursue yet in today’s society all over the world women in politics are fearful to pursue their dream of bettering the community around them.

 

Today there has been exceptional progress and yet there are still astigmatisms, inequality in pay, and more lingering issues within a women’s everyday life. The problem with sexism is that women can try and change the standard all they want, but it is men who have to want to change and actions speak louder than words.

 

As a society, we should be calling on our government officials, legislatures, policy parties, and social media to play their part in ending the harassment against women in politics. We should be revisiting our laws and legislature and reforming our laws so the outcomes are beneficial to victims everywhere.

 

It was even proven in an SSM Population Health journal that proves having more women in government increases the advanced population health. It was also proven through research that women in government tend to work in a more collaborative and bipartisan way. They tend to employ a better leadership style than a man’s more autocratic style.

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