Tuesday, 26 April 2011

Gender Equality - Yes or No?

This coming Friday, Catherine marries William in what is being described as the wedding of the century.

Who is planning their day and evening around following this event and watching it on television? Do you prefer the serious and traditional take on the wedding on offer at ABC 1 or is the offering of the Chaser’s commentary on ABC 2 more appealing?

I vividly recall watching the wedding of William’s parents at a party at my Sister and Brother in Laws house. All the guests at the party were required to wear the same clothes as they wore on their wedding day. It was a fun night of celebration for the future King and Queen of England (and Australia) and a couple who were destined to set the standards for the next 30 years.

Sadly, in many ways they probably have. Arguably, the interviews they gave to the press as their relationship deteriorated represented our first exposure to the reality TV revolution that seems to dominate so many peoples’ lives today.

The wedding of Charles and Dianna was to be the start of an optimistic future at a time when the world was rapidly changing and values were under attack. It was misplaced optimism.

Unfortunately, the Royal wedding of 2011 represents a massive lost opportunity.

In my opinion, this week’s Royal wedding should have provided the motivation for some significant and tangible leadership in gender equality.

The current succession line to the Throne is in order, Charles, William, Harry and Andrew.

As the Law stands, the eldest male child of the monarch is the next in line to the throne. As both of Charles children are males, there is no controversy about who is next in line.

The lost opportunity however is that there may be no better time than now, and before William and Catherine marry and have Children, to finally acknowledge that males and females are equals.

There should be a Law introduced into the British Parliament with effect from the date of the wedding of William for the future line of succession to the Throne to be the eldest Child of the King or Queen irrespective of gender.

As I wrote in April 2009 (http://philosophyfunandfantasy.blogspot.com/2009/04/monarchy-gender-and-religion.html) there was a Bill introduced into the British Parliament to do just this but it was voted down by the major Parties.

Now is the time to introduce such a Bill again and to have it passed unanimously. To not do so, relegates Women to an unequal position in society, and a society that believes itself to be tolerant and fair. It is not. What possible better example could there be of leadership of gender equalisation of opportunity?

And while we are at it, let us also rid ourselves of the religious discrimination that applies to the British Monarchy.

I for one will not be watching or following the Royal Wedding on Friday.

Instead of watching the wedding on Friday night, does anyone want to join me for wine and dinner to celebrate the concept of hope for gender equality? I am sure the restaurants will be empty.

No comments: