Tuesday, 23 January 2018

Women’s rights!

I didn’t join any women’s marches at the weekend.  I would have if I could. Women are entitled to be angry about things that have served to belittle us over the years, to make us lesser citizens than our male counterparts.
It’s not the fault of individual men. The rules that governed our lives were written long ago and as an eighty year old I can recall some of the ways we were made to feel inferior.
I went to college in 1956. My grant was based on the joint income of my parents.
We were not badly off on paper. But my dad drank all the money he made every weekend. We existed on mums wages from a dirty, hot job in the cotton mill.
Going to college was my way out of poverty. I became a teacher and I earned money but not as much as the man in the next classroom...we did not have equal pay. As he had no control over his classes and I was frequently called in to bring them to order it was especially galling to find his pay was about fifty percent more than mine.
I got married to a fellow teacher . He got paid a lot more too.
When I wanted to buy a type writer in our first year I wasn’t allowed to take out hire purchase because I was a woman. "Bring your husband in dear" was what they said in the shop.
Lots of small things reinforced the notion that women were inferior beings. I could protest all I liked but the fact remained...we were not to be trusted to buy sensibly. Similar problems existed over buying a television and other things like vacuum cleaners and washing machines.
Lots of things like this caused resentment. Other women felt much the same...
That’s why the movement for Women’s lib started...I didn’t join it...I was much too busy bringing up my children by that time but I applauded it....I was glad that finally the female sex was fighting back. We needed to.
Ok...in some instances it probably went too far but we were freed from being second class human beings.
Young people now have no idea how the world has changed.... from me becoming a woman priest at last to being able to travel the world, making friends and writing as I go...it was worth the wait. I am too old to go on marches. But I do applaud those who do.
Alleluia Lord.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

1 comment:

UKViewer said...

I can recall when the services introduced Equal pay for men and women, doing the same job. But they paid women 1p less per day than men?

This went on for over 20 years, until the Equal Pay act made them change. My spouse got back in bulk all of the 1p's that she had missed out on in that 20 years. It amounted to several hundred pounds - than she actually felt equal.

Only now, years after my retirement are women in the services permitted to serve in Submarines, the Parachute Regiment and the SAS. But they have to meet male standards, adjusted to take account of women, allegedly being weaker and lighter than men?

I knew some service women, including my spouse, who were stronger and fitter than the men, but were still regarded as inferior in some way.

I was and continue to be angry about this - but it's to late for me and my spouse. I hope that today's servicewomen are getting a better deal than she did.