Oh, geez. I just got to the article written by Steve Burgess for the Tyee on women politicians ( 8/11/14). In “Women Leaders Behaving Badly” Steve Burgess flies high, soaring way, way above the scorn he heaps on certain right wing women politicians in Canada. Burgess is terribly disappointed with these politicians (Cindy Clark, Allison Redford) for not bringing a higher standard of behaviour to political office. My goodness, he says in effect, if women are supposed to be more moral than men, what happened to these two? And won’t all female politicians, when and if more get into public office, act in a like manner? That is, no different from men?
My answer to Burgess is probably not. That is, women cannot act very differently from the men who have allowed them to come forward in any political party, and for a very simple reason. For a female politician to rise to the top in a corporate driven capitalist world like ours, she to a large extent, must begin to think like a male politician. That is, the emphasis must be on winning at all costs. To do this there must be obfuscation of the facts, out- right lying, and always looking for campaign funds.
Money, money, money. Power and influence. That’s where it’s at for female politicians as well as male politicians under our present system. Women and men alike must adhere to these rules of conduct. “If you can’t take the heat get out of the kitchen,” as Harry S. Truman (33rd president of the US) was fond of saying.
So women who enter the political arena in the western world must forget all about the stuff that was wired into the formation of our brains in utero. Stuff like wanting to see that all children in a community are cared for, not just a few chosen ones, or a certain class of children whose parents can afford private schools and enriched experiences. Stuff like caring for the elderly and handicapped. Making the environment a priority. Acting on female inherited knowledge that the community, the commons, is crucial for a good civilization and that the scramble for individual wealth and individual advancement at the expense of the commons will eventually make for a lethal outcome. Even an Armageddon, such as fundamentalist Christians like our Prime Minister long for. Still, globally, ordinary women keep the world spinning by their tireless efforts to try to protect loved ones and vulnerable others. Women try to protect the defenseless whether it is in Africa; South America, Europe, Asia or North America, women seek to hide children from pitiless wars, the drug trade, domestic violence, and sexual exploitation for men’s pleasure.
In my opinion, with few exceptions, because our political and financial system is so at odds with most women’s basic sensibilities that the women who do make it to the top in our present system are, it seems to me, parade in a kind of drag. Even Elizabeth May, a woman politician I esteem, bowed under the pressure of the Jewish lobby concerning the ongoing struggle in Gaza. How?
By endorsing the “engaged neutrality” concept as the Green Party position toward the slaughter of civilians in Gaza by Israel. But how can one (or a party) be neutral if one is truly cognizant of the slaughter of innocents? Does Elizabeth May even know about the seven year blockade and siege of Gaza by Israel? The slow seven year strangulation death of the people there? If she does, does she consider it a neutral thing? I don’t know. But at least Paul Epstein, Green Party President, had the grace to resign after his burst of blogged hatred for the Palestinians. But I do know the Jewish lobby is as powerful in Canada as it is in the US. And wealthy. Must be, because most North American politicians cravenly stand in line to suck up. Our Prime Minister can’t bend over backward far enough to please the Jewish lobby. In his last trip to fawn at Israel’s feel and declare that Canada is solidly behind their slaughter of Palestinians he became so bent out of shape from the kneeling even before the trip he had to take 21 Jewish rabbis with him to help him stand up. And holding up the rear guard in case of need where 10 fundamentalist Evangelical preachers.
Stephen Harper’s slavishness to Israel no matter what they do is a religious thing. In his fundamentalist Evangelical religion with its literal interpretation of the Bible, the Biblical prophecy says that Israel must be in wars with its neighbours before the Armageddon and the Rapture can happen, that is, the return of Jesus descending from the sky. Hot wars, not cold wars. Our Prime Minister is all for keeping the war against the people of Gaza hot no matter what he says about hoping for peace there. Look at his voting record in the UN.
While Women have been intellectually stunted in the last five thousand years under patriarchy and male religions, our brains still work much the same, just as men’s do. Women as a rule are not attracted to physical violence. We don’t have the same kind of blood lust that men can get into. We like to negotiate. We know that when people, or a nation of people, are humiliated they will try to get even. We know that things run better when people feel good about themselves and others. The individualistic one up- man- ship that men like to practice is tearing the world apart. Without the checks and balances of the female brain life has become hell in capitalist corporate worlds for most people, even the winners. What we really need is a women’s revolution. One that will overthrow the absolute domination of the one sided male brain we are all living under and seek a balance of both male and female brains.
I believe that all people everywhere, whether they realize it or not, are searching for this balance. And I believe this time will come when the balance seekers will prevail because without this balance the human race with not survive. And when this balance does come, misogynist males like Steve Burgess will just have to adjust or shut up.
Betty Krawczyk email@example.com