For thousands of years, the leadership of almost every organized hierarchy in civilization, including government, commerce and religion, has been almost exclusively male. There’s no way to determine precisely how men came to rule the world, but they did and they do.
Female divinity was driven from shared eminence in the Western world by around 500 A.D. How did this happen? The likeliest explanation is brute force. Consider that male domination of civilization may be a direct result of larger body size and physical strength. According to a U.N. report on the status of women in 2000, one in three females is beaten or sexually abused in her lifetime. Does this fact offer a fundamental clue about the source of earthly power?
Good News for Modern Man
Here’s the good news. Slowly but surely, women are gaining a fairer share of power in civilization. Many tribes and nations are moving closer to accepting the principle that the genders are entitled to equal rights and privileges before the law. Women are gaining ground in the leadership of government commerce and even religion. Consider the following list of currently serving elected national leaders:
Angela Merkel, chancellor of Germany
Portia Simpson, prime minister of Jamaica
Julia Gillard, prime minister of Australia
Johanna Sigurdardottir, prime minister of Iceland
Christina Fernandez de Kirchner, president of Argentina
Yingluck Shinawatra, prime minister of Thailand
Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, president of Liberia
Laura Chinchilla, president of Costa Rica
Sheikh Hasina, prime minister of Bangladesh
Dalia Grybauskaite, president of Lithuania
Kamala Persad-Bissessar, prime minister of Trinidad and Tobago
Iveta Radicova, prime minister of Slovakia
Atifete Jahjaga, president of Kosovo
Helle Thorning-Schmidt, prime minister of Denmark
Add to this list millions of hired and appointed women who lead globally and locally in every kind of human endeavor, famously including Aung San Suu Kyi, Myanmar’s democracy leader; Sonia Gandhi, leading India’s Congress Party; and Christine Lagarde, managing director of the International Monetary Fund, who we hope is helping to shepherd us into a global economic recovery.
In the past, Iceland, Ireland, Malta, Philippines, Nicaragua, Sri Lanka, Guyana, Latvia, Panama, Finland, Indonesia, Serbia, Liberia, Chile, Bosnia and Herzegovina, India, Lithuania and Kirgizstan have all elected female heads of state. Five of the world’s most populated nations, China, Russian, Nigeria, the United States, and Japan, have so far not elected a woman president or prime minister.
Vote. Vote. Vote.
The world population of men and women is currently almost equal. How will humanity be affected as more women gain and exercise their right to vote? American women gained the right to vote less than 100 years ago. More women voted than men in the U.S. 2010 congressional elections (46.2 percent compared with 45 percent of eligible male counterparts).
Celebrating Gender Alliance
Human gender alliance is naturally grounded and barely subject to the shifting tides of cultural history. Two-gender strategy has provided millions of life forms with survival solutions for more than 100 million years. Gender alliance might be described as life’s most successful strategy in nature. Surely human conversation about gender is informed by the fact that more than a million versions of gender alliance exist in the world today. Gender equality is one of civilization’s revolutionary developments.