Gender InequalityWho's guilty of Gender Inequality?
Recently there have many articles about women rebelling in the mosques. Some are fighting for equality in the space while some want to get rid of segregation altogether. MWU is hilighting the case of Asra Nomani who's famed for her rebellion against the mosque in Morgontown, WVa. Everyone without exception points to the lack of women in leadership roles or participation in mosque affairs as an example of repression against women. And "gender inequality" accusations are hurled at muslim men and islam (the usual culprits). There is no doubt that problems exist and in the absence of a central authority each mosque will have to resolve the issues it faces.
There is no magic solution that will apply to all.
Anyway, my intent here is not to solve the problems in the various mosque, but state some of my observations with regards to gender.
A few facts first.
- In the United States with a population of 270 million, a shade more than 50% of them women, the number of women senators currently in office are 14 out of 100. To date only 33 women have served in the Senate.
[Source: www.senate.gov/artandhistory/history/common/briefing/women_senators.htm ]
- In its 103 year Nobel history until 2004, only 12 women were awarded prizes in Sciences, 11 were award the peace prize and 9 won the award in litrature. I initially suspected that this may be due to the lack of women empowerment in the last century, so I checked the stats for the 21st century. In the 5 years from 2000-2004, there were only 3 women(Shirin Ebadi, Linda Buck and Wangari Maathai) among 64 total nobel laureates.
- While women currently make up half the workforce, only two Fortune 500 companies have women CEO. [Source: http://www.infoplease.com/spot/womenceo1.html]
- Only 5 percent of the jailbirds in the US are women. Although from a personal perspective 100% of the scumbags were men.
[Source : http://www.prisonactivist.org/]
By now, most of you may be ready to wallop me, so I will state my point here.
My point is that most statistics clearly show that women average better than men in every field. But in any arena, the top cream and the bottom scum is composed of disproportionately more men than women.
This fact raises a question. Why is this so? Is this really due to machinations of devious men in powerful places, or is this how Allah (swt) intended it?
In the animal kingdom we see the male species and the female species have different, but distinct division of functions. A lioness hunts and provides while the lion is the guardian. The ants have a heirarchical society which is led by a female. Among certain spiders, the females do everything to sustain and propagate their kinds while the males exist only to impregnate the females.
So are humans in their quest to create equality of functions going against nature? Did Allah(swt) intend men and women to be equal OR did he intend men and women to complement and complete one another? He made one more stronger and the other more compassionate. This is not to say that man cannot raise kids or the woman cannot go to war. Its my belief that Allah(swt) made them different to fulfill different roles. My wife concurs with me, so this validates my opinion. Atleast for me it does.
PS- Another notable fact is that 100 percent of the beauty pageant winners were women. Go figure!