I am not sure whether enough people will register, soon enough, that this government is not supporting a democracy!
At present, we are having fights in the political arena over an increasing number of issues which ought, rightly, to be divorced from politics.
Sexism is a national issue.
It pervades society at all levels, irrespective of the political views of those who are either keeping it alive and kicking, or those trying to drag the others into the 21st century.
I was an adult when I migrated here from the UK, and, because I was well educated and had an honours maths degree, I had never been aware of sexism in my years in the UK.
Coming straight to Darwin, in the NT, at the start of 1971, and remaining in the education arena, I did not experience any discrimination here, either – but I was horrified to hear stories from females who had, for example, studied engineering down south and who had been – in my opinion – incredibly badly treated.
Previously, because I was teaching mathematics up to university entrance level, all the schools I had taught at in the UK had been all-girls schools, and all – or almost all – of the teaching staff were female. And, I hasten to add – all, bar physical education teachers, were properly qualified, with appropriate tertiary qualification plus a Graduate Diploma in Education.
My teaching positions here in Oz have been in comprehensive schools, yet – over all my time of teaching maths at secondary level – the best maths student was always a girl and I never experienced any discrimination!
But looking back over Australia’s history, it seems to me that sexism has been generally entrenched here – along with a great deal of corruption – and getting rid of it is very much a work in progress.
I have now clocked up 50 years in Australia, and I am extremely grateful that it has all been in Darwin, as we probably have the most peacefully cosmopolitan population in Australia.
We still, however, have more than enough people who express their views with scant regard for politeness – many of my letters, which are all published in the local (Murdoch) paper (almost all of which would relate to the need for action on global warming) – seem to elicit a regular whinge, but I guess, for many people, they see that learning ends when they leave school.
I had an appointment today with a neurologist as a follow up from my (mild) stroke in mid-January. I was advised that I might have another stroke, and I should arrange, as I live alone, to have a daily phone call to check that I had made it through the night!
Not really reassuring!
Since 5/02/20, I have only missed one Wednesday, when I spend 2 hours in the afternoon, sitting in front of Parliament House, protesting government failure – whether the government be the NT or the National one – to take urgently needed action on global warming.
That one day was the day after I was discharged from hospital following my stroke!
The following week I celebrated a year of activism.
Today I could not stay for the full 2 hours because of the hospital appointment.
I am not a hero and I may not be having a very noticeable effect, but I believe in persevering!
(Just as an aside – my brother won a State Scholarship to Cambridge and went on to design aero-engines for Rolls Royce, while my sister studied medicine and became a surgeon, yet neither of my parents had tertiary education, and the UK government grants covered all our education expenses!)
Current news in Australia actually makes me wonder whether Australia deserves to survive!
We have a national Attorney General who is not fit for the position.
If he really did not commit rape, he should have welcomed an inquiry, to show a real understanding of the limitations of the law and of people’s understanding of how it works.
We have a Prime Minister who blindly follows a plan to gain and retain power, while not having any real understanding of how bad his policies – such as they are! – really are!
We have an Opposition Leader who cannot control those in his party who want to be in power, but have no real idea of how to use it.
We treat refugees abominably, ignoring our obligations under the treaties which former leaders have accepted should apply.
The total lack of empathy – in fact the actual opposition to empathy – demonstrated by senior government ministers is breathtakingly awful!
As noted earlier – sexism is rampant – particularly among people who ought to be setting an example.
Yes – there are both obvious and more subtle differences between males and females – but that does not mean that either sex is better than the other.
I was an adult before many architects worked out that the bench height in the kitchen needed to be a little lower, because women are generally shorter than men!
We still have much medical research conducted exclusively on the male of the species, despite the fact that the males represent slightly less that 50% of the population.
We have far less rigorous investigation of many strictly female afflictions like endometriosis, which I understand can be excruciatingly painful.
Strokes can exhibit quite differently in females than in males, yet this is not well known
A random search on Google tells us that:
Stroke tended to be more severe in women, with a 1-month case fatality of 24.7% compared with 19.7% for men. Conclusions—Worldwide, stroke is more common among men, but women are more severely ill. The mismatch between the sexes is larger than previously described.
Which makes me feel – simultaneously – both better and worse!
There are so many areas of knowledge which need exploring, yet we are stuck in a merry-go-round of assertions and misinformation, while our politicians make hay while they can, and to hell with the rest of us!
Earlier on, as I was writing this, there was a quite violent thunderstorm carrying on – showing a fact about the force of nature which we ignore at our peril.
Please can we work together more effectively.
Forget about being ‘better’ than others.
Concentrate on being better than we have been!
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