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Progressing backwards

If the ones who are meant to represent us refuse to call out such behaviour, then it is our duty to take on that job. The reason we are in this situation is because we have ignored too much.

gender equality

It is worrying that the Education Commissioner within the Office of the Ombudsman, Charles Caruana Carabez, chose to write such a blatantly sexist and condescending article entitled ‘The Foibles of Women‘ published in The Times of Malta last Friday.

Only four months into his job, the man should be focused on more important things. Instead, he spent his time writing an article that is about as useless as a tick; no backbone, yet it annoyingly sticks with you after you read it.

On any given day, Caruana Carabez’s article would have been ridiculed, but more so today in the heat of the anger from recent events. Only a couple of months ago, a group of female activists were called “prostitutes” by government consultant Tony Zarb, who retains his position.

Caruana Carabez’s article was written only two days after Home Affairs Minister Michael Farrugia defended Assistant Police Commissioner Mario Tonna who had head-butted his partner.

It was quite surreal to have to go through insults by the Education Commissioner aimed at some homogeneous group of women that exists only in his head. Do we really need to point out that women are not the same? Are we justified in saying all men are sexist, simply because he is?

He asked for a “cudgelling” reply from a woman, “a female wag” as he put it. Is he in such desperate need of attention? Does he not realise that any normal man on the street would ridicule him?

At school, I was taught to respect others and to treat others as equals. Thankfully, I was also taught (not at school) how to stand up to such people. While some may think they are best ignored and not worth the time, I beg to differ. He must be called out, not because Caruana Carabez is craving attention but because he is an example of what could happen if we tolerate the unacceptable.

This article is dedicated to women, who continue to be victims of this misogyny in this day and age. It is primitive thinking that belongs to a different time.

In an ideal world, this would have been a great opportunity for President Marie Lousie Coleiro Preca to step up and give the man the “cudgelling” he deserves. But let’s face it, she has missed that boat several times.

Prime Minister Joseph Muscat retained those around him responsible for the misogynistic language that has increasingly made headlines. Equality Minister Helena Dalli has on more than one occasion stopped short of condemning such language used by her colleagues in Parliament.

If the ones who are meant to represent us refuse to call out such behaviour, then it is our duty to take on that job. The reason we are in this situation is because we have ignored too much.

 

 

 

 

 

joseph-muscat

Credit where credit is due

Azzopardi Fisheries' tuna pens in St Paul's Bay

Azzopardi Fisheries does not want to pay €30,000 for the location of its tuna cages