POLLING isn’t what it used to be. Hillary Clinton was a 99 per cent cert to beat Donald Trump, until she lost. The 2015 general election was one of the industry’s worst performances, and even the esteemed John Curtice failed to call Brexit the following year.
One reason for the dip in form is that supposedly neutral institutions have become less coy in revealing their innate political views. Of course we all expect the excessive Left-wing stance of Google et al, but to see it infect the entire narrative is disheartening.
When the American Psychological Association released its new ‘guidelines for psychological practice with boys and men’ last year, declaring traditional masculinity ‘harmful’, it was little more than a Gillette advert with a PhD.
So it was with some trepidation that I picked up the latest research from Ipsos MORI, Global attitudes towards gender equality. The ‘study’, written in collaboration with the Global Institute for Women’s Leadership at King’s College London and International Women’s Day, is likely to keep feminism in business for the next millennium at the very least.
- The headline is reassuringly alarmist: ‘Half of Brits think there are more advantages to being a man than a woman’. The report itself is a tad depressing, so here is the ultra-condensed version:
- 60 per cent of British men agree women won’t achieve equality unless they take action to support them.
- 59 per cent of Brits do not think equality has gone far enough.
- Equal pay is the most important issue facing women in Britain, with 29 per cent of people citing it as an issue.
- 47 per cent of people are confident that discrimination against women in education will have ended in 20 years.
- Sexual harassment, sexual violence, physical violence, equal pay and domestic abuse are still seen as the top issues facing women across the globe.
Forgive my toxic masculinity, but there are more than a few reasonable criticisms we could levy at these findings. Firstly, there appears to be a fair amount of massaging the question involved. If half the population think something, it doesn’t make it true. Nor does it mean that inequality is the cause of such a bias. Neither still does it invalidate the views of the other half! Secondly, not only have the researchers nailed their colours to the mast in their choice of collaborators, but having exclusively female authors and expert witnesses is hardly inclusive. Thirdly, our experts appear to take little away from the data other than confirmation bias, as witnessed by their statements:
Kelly Beaver (MORI’s research director): The study shows there is still a long road ahead to achieving gender equality globally. What’s more, we know from previous work that people underestimate the scale of the task in hand.
Glenda Slingsby (International Women’s Day): A balanced world is a better world. The findings of the study highlight that everyone can play a role in forging gender parity.
Julia Gillard (Former Australian PM): The study shows that around the world people rightly believe gender equality has not gone far enough.
What this study really indicates is that feminists are unwilling to relinquish the victim narrative, irrespective of what the data says. Reading between the lines, the reality of male privilege is frighteningly rare.
The gender pay gap has long since been debunked for anyone who cares to examine the data. The idea that education favours men meanwhile, is a bad joke. And as deplorable as abuse is, the fairer sex certainly holds her own. Women assault their husbands as much as the reverse is true; sexually abuse children to the same degree as men, and in female prisons, inmates are more likely to be sexually abused by fellow inmates or female staff than male staff.
You’ll never hear #MeToo complain that the divorce courts or the judiciary are overly lenient on women, because it just doesn’t sell. The moment #MeToo stood up for all victims, it would start to be a worthwhile cause.
Ask feminists about alimony rates, the gender tax gap, investment in prostate vs breast cancer, longevity, suicide rates, homelessness, getting the sack, or being favoured 2:1 in STEM fields. You’ll be waiting a while.
I’d love to know exactly when enough will be enough. Fifty/fifty quotas on every senior-level position in the world perhaps, provided the patriarchy continues to sweep up after the next Women’s March?
The short answer is it will never be enough; the feminists don’t want a resolution. Nor do they wish to do battle with genuine misogyny, of which there is plenty to go around. The real issue is that equality is something which cannot be given, no matter how much you legislate. And all the misandry in the world repackaged as activism cannot change that.
Wouldn’t it be nice just for once, to step back from all this nonsense? Instead of the relentless war on men, how about embracing the differences between the sexes as complementary, inevitable and wholly admirable? My wife takes care of our two-year-old 24/7 with more patience than I can muster for ten minutes. I don’t blame or hate her because I cannot do it. I marvel at her.