Feminists make men worse

No feminism despite women in leadership positions

Austria made it into the international equality index! According to a study by the World Economic Forum, Austria climbed to 21st place out of 156 countries in terms of equality. We owe this success to the higher representation of women in parliament, there are now more women ministers and there are more women managers to be found in business.

Good representation, sad reality

That sounds like progress at first. But is that really he? Since the beginning of the corona pandemic, the unequal distribution between care and wage work, the poor pay for physically demanding jobs in medicine, nursing and retail have increased. The Weltwirtschaftsform (WEF) also comes to the conclusion: In the last year there has been a significant deterioration for women. While the WEF calculated in 2019 that "only" 95 years would pass before equality between the sexes was achieved, the gap has increased dramatically since Corona. Now, according to the WEF, it could take 135 years.

So the situation is getting worse - even though the female part of the population is represented by more women in politics and business than ever. How can that be?

Perhaps it is because of how that representation is construed. Can women's minister Susanne Raab (ÖVP), who rejects the label "feminist" for herself, credibly advocate comprehensive equality? Let's take stock of the past year: She did not emphasize the difficult situation of women in the Corona crisis enough, and insisted too cautiously on rapid relief measures especially for women. Relief for low-income women, single parents or women affected by poverty? No audible demands from the Minister for Women. Instead, last year, together with former Labor Minister Christine Aschbacher, she spoke out in favor of introducing abortion statistics, which should include the reasons for this step. Critics are concerned that the reasons mentioned could then be interpreted as not valid and that abortions could be made more difficult. Real commitment to women's politics looks different.

Feminism is not a concept

Just last month, Susanne Raab spoke about women's politics in an interview with the "Kurier". What happened in a pandemic year? The Minister for Women still does not want to position herself in a feminist way. After all, the question of terminology is currently not the most important thing. Instead, one should concentrate on giving women the best possible support in the Corona crisis. Every woman should be able to choose the model of life that is best for her.

But in the next breath she speaks out against compulsory paternity leave. For years, studies have shown that women bear the brunt of unpaid care work. This makes it harder to get a full-time job. The result: part-time trap, little income. The consequences: dependency on partner, low pension, old-age poverty. All of this is being taken to extremes by the pandemic. These are real pressures women have to manage their lives under. Choosing the ideal life model yourself is almost impossible under these circumstances.

The Minister for Women is wrong: Feminism is not a concept. Feminism is a political stance. The attitude and conviction to improve structures for women of all origins and social class. A women's minister without a clear feminist position may look good on rankings in theory, but in practice she will not achieve much for the women of the population. (Vanja Nikolić, April 2nd, 2021)