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A story to tell

May 11, 2017


There are so many things happening in our daily life that most of them will have been forgotten before long. If you ask me what I did or spoke about a week ago I may not be able to recall it at all. This may be because there exists a memory filter within our brain in which something will always be remembered against the timely tide.

Anyway, what I intend to tell is something that occurred about seven years ago. In the summer of 2010, I went to an international conference with my husband in Barcelona, Spain, as a guest companion. At the conference dinner an American couple sat by my side, and we chatted about the current events when Obama was just elected as the first black president of the US. On the phenomenon of women being under-represented for this top position, the lady blurted out that America would rather elect a black male, a white male of any age and quality than a female of high calibre as president. She sighed, in a half-complaining way. I nodded thoughtfully, without commenting much. The rest of evening went well, and we met many other people and had plenty of conversations which I had forgotten soon, but I was impressed by that brief encounter.

Later on, I seem to realise that while women are already in a weak position in the job market, the sad thing to say is that they often don’t support each other, sometimes even vilify each other. But men often support men. That’s the difference. Sigh. However, the consequence is, you’d never know how much better/worse women could do to the world because they have never been given the chance (while men have evidently been doing the whole lot anyway). I have no problem with admitting the importance of men’s roles, but since women take half of the human population the imbalance in the decisive roles should not be overly ignored.

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