Gender equality should benefit men as well
By Rose ariane S. Roxas, Gender equality advocate
Discrimination is man-made. One of the reasons why this exist is because of the culture and tradition that separate men and women in the way they are raised and taught, even in what occupations they take on.
This has produced rigid gender boundaries that disadvantage women. That is why they are often
excluded from development opportunities.
Fortunately, because of the people who worked hard to fight for women’s right, it has been established over time that gender equality is a basic human right. it is also recognized by giving everyone equal opportunities to achieve their full potential as it is critical not only for attaining gender equality, but also for meeting personal goals while contributing to their family and communities, as well as to society at .
If in the past, women were regarded as properties or objects, nowadays, you would hardly hear anyone challenging women’s capabilities and aspiration. They can be airline pilots, engineers, doctors, or whatever it is they want to become.
On the flip side, despite efforts to promote gender equality, some are still confounded when men engage in traditional task associated with wome. Unknown to many, men also suffer from expectations to conform to masculine roles and attitudes of competitiveness and aggresiveness.
These expectations deprive them of the fulfillment that they could get from parenting and having intimate respectful relationships. Gender stereotypes greatly affect development and indeed, human rights are denied. Hence, we tend to violate men’s rights simply because of our expectations of them.
We hardly talk about men being captives of gender stereotyping but it is very apparent that they are.
Gender equality is a big “men issue.” In fact, some men would feel little about themselves, castigated, or easily judged when gender equality is mixed in any topic of discussion.
Emma Watson or “Hermione Granger” in the box-office hit “Harry Potter” series, who is also an ambassadress of UN Women and advocate of HeforShe campaign, said that sometimes, fighting for women’s rights has become “synonymous with man-hating.” Little did we realize that gender equality should benefit men as well. Everyone has to benefit.
(First published in the Ang Bagong Komunidad (January-February 2019 Issue), the Newsletter of the Social Housing Finance Corporation (SHFC).