Over the last day or so (Australian time) I have watched clips of the Women’s March in Washington as well as a number of people discussing it on TV. And evidently, the phrase Women’s March is trending on social media.
My question is, Was it needed? People like Pauline Hanson say no. Here are my views on the Women’s March and similar such events.
I strongly believe in equality and always have. To me, it doesn’t matter what gender you are, what racial heritage you have or what sexual orientation you have etc. When I interact with people I don’t see colour, or gender or colourful rainbows stamped their on the forehead. I just see the person – be it a friend, a potential friend, a boss etc.
Again, I was having a coffee (actually hot chocolate) with a new friend and she was talking about her friend who saw people the way I do. They referred to it as “colour blindness”.
What struck me was that she saw this sort of colour blindness as potentially dangerous. I found this intriguing, so I probed a little more.
She said it was easy for her friend who was a white middle-class male to view the world that way. However, the reality is that many people still don’t. She believed that as a white middle-class male it was possible for him to see the world as colourless, genderless etc., but as a woman with Fijian heritage, she noticed and suffered some of the inequalities that he was blind to. When you fail to notice something that is wrong, you don’t take any action to make things better. This is why “colour blindness” is dangerous.
I found this insightful because I am a white middle-class male who has always had a “colour-blind” view of the world. I don’t want to change this view because I think it is how everyone should be. Yet, it made me very conscious of the need to be aware of any inequalities around me and to do something about them.
Back To The Women’s March
Now, back to the Women’s March. Previously, I would have believed that such actions were unnecessary. Not that they were wrong – but more that they shouldn’t be needed in this day and age.
It is a sad reality that they are. Take the degrading comments made by Donald Trump. At the time I just thought he’s a sexist pig, and thought no more about it. But his comments are just an example of what some women put up with every day. The fact that someone like that could be elected President of the United States is a wake-up call to the challenge women face.
So, I proudly support the Women’s March in Washington and what it is trying to achieve. I also support similar actions from other minority groups. I hope your voice is heard by more and more people each day, and I dream of the day that such actions are not needed.