EYEWITNESS: Shared responsibility…


…for family

The hoopla over International Women’s Day is over, and maybe we can continue to look back at some proposals put forward to ensure women don’t revert to the same ole, same ole. We Guyanese, after all, are very advanced on advancing women’s rights – at least on paper. In the slew of amendments to our Constitution at the beginning of the millennium, we even mandated a “Women and Gender Equality Commission.” (WGEC).

Your Eyewitness wonders if they issue annual reports on what they’ve accomplished for women in the years they’ve been around. One Commissioner on the WGEC, a Ms Nicole Cole, acknowledged the theme for the day: “Time is now, rural and urban activists transforming women’s lives,” but chose to wade in on a topic that’s been hot ever since cavemen started bopping women on their heads with their clubs and hauling them in their caves – family planning.

According to one report, she told her audience of Demerara Harbour Bridge female workers, “We must not tell women alone that they are not to become pregnant, we need to also tell our men…tell them to stop demanding sex so often, stop fighting us down for the vagina, and killing us too.” Your Eyewitness thinks Ms Cole, who also sits on the Child Rights Commission and on the Committee that’s organizing the big event on International Decade of People of African Descent, is a tad sexist. To women.

Is she claiming women don’t desire sex as much as men? And if they don’t necessarily demand it, it’s because they’ve been socialized by our patriarchal society to repress their desires and play the “submissive” role so as not to “threaten” that fragile male ego?

This being so close to IWD and all that, your Eyewitness isn’t going to get into the corollary that men have also been socialized (brutalised during slavery) into the notion that they have to be “studs” – and if they aren’t, folks feel something’s “wrong” with them.

Naah…what your Eyewitness wants to do is to bring to Ms Cole and the WGEC’s attention the strategy launched by women since the sixties, declaring women shouldn’t hide their sexuality and their sexual needs. The movement succeeded so well that, by 1983, Cyndi Lauper could have her declaration “Girls just wanna have fun!” reach #1 on all the charts!!

Shouldn’t this progressive message reach Guyana three decades later? “I come home in the morning light/My mother says, ‘when you gonna live your life right?’/ Oh mother dear we’re not the fortunate ones/ And girls they wanna have fun!!”
That’s equality; right, Ms Commissioner?

…for Armageddon

Well, what’d you know!! Trump’s agreed to meet Kim Jong-Un of North Korea!! Now, while N. Korea has bombastically rattled its nuclear threat for decades to get a raise out of the US – which divided the Korean nation — previous US presidents have usually just stressed the dangers of such a volatile nation having nuclear bombs. Trump, of course, couldn’t have any other leader sound more bombastic that him!!

So, ever since he entered the Oval Office, he’s conducted a non-stop campaign of trading invectives with Kim Jong-Un. He boasted his nuclear button is “bigger & more powerful than Jong’s”, and “my Button works!” He’s also mocked the strength of Kim’s military, and derisively referred to him as “little Rocket Man.” So what will happen if these two mega-egos get into the same room? A nuclear explosion?

Your Eyewitness doesn’t think the meeting will come off. Trump wouldn’t want to give that much credence to North Korea’s claim to be a “nuclear power”.
Frankly, it was probably done to take the spotlight from his tariff fiasco!!

…for Guyana’s history

Wilson Harris might’ve lived outside of Guyana for almost sixty years, but Guyana lived inside him far more intensely than most who’re here.

His work wasn’t “dense” – it merely reflected the complexity of reality. Like Guyana’s. RIP.



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