Women of Merit

Last week, Australian media was saturated with discussion of Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s new cabinet.

Statistical comparisons with cabinets from New Zealand to Africa to Afghanistan were a plenty.

Discussions centring around how poorly Australia sits from a representation of women in politics, point of view.

While the Iraqi and Afghani comparison’s were a stretch at best.

In Australia, post Federal Election, it was as though the Australian media commentators had only just realised there was a dirth of qualified women in senior positions within the Liberal and National Parties.

Which is strange, because even casual observers wouldn’t have expected anything less, whether it be observing men:women ratios within Government, Automotive, Finance, Education and Sport or any other industry.

Is this appalling? Not in the face of the amount of time dedicated to evolving an informed change about it.

Why? Ours is a patriarchal society. And numerically, men lead.

The business environment sees men progressing to positions of power. Which is possibly more a reflection (outside of social influences) there are more of them to choose from.

And quite frankly, if the best person for the job is a man, then I’m fine with that.

But as Sue Boyce, Liberal Senator for Queensland pointed out on morning television last week, where in the
discourse of representation within cabinet do you hear discussion of ‘Men of Merit’?

What is disappointing is the fact we (Gen Next) make no effort to raise and engage in a sustained and new discussion about a number of things:
– failure of the Major Party Leadership to nurture promising young female party members (aka 1990s)
– how to raise and engage the interest of boys and girls in pursuing studies across the traditionally ‘male’ dominated professions of public service, finance, commerce and engineering.

Women are not escalated to senior positions in the interests of equity, but appointed on occasion.

So how are we intending on evolving it?

Or couldn’t we be bothered…

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