A previous post discussed the misuse of a publicly funded swimming pool by banning males and allowing only females at the complex for several prime hours each week. Now we read that a girls’ school netball tournament has been banning men from any presence or role, including the girls’ fathers.
In both cases this gender discrimination involved religion. The swimming pool people made it clear that any woman could attend during the female-only periods but it’s not clear whether this school netball tournament would allow non-Muslim women to be present in any role.
This is an interesting situation. Feminists generally criticize Muslim practices as discriminating against women but in this case the feminists will probably support their Muslim sisters in banning men even though they probably have not asked the girls if they want their fathers to support them from the sidelines. Any man present will only be looking for opportunities to rape, after all.
But isn’t discrimination on the grounds of gender illegal? Why is it seen as acceptable to discriminate against men in so many spheres where similar exclusion of women would simply not be tolerated. Is the problem that men are too stupid to protect their own interests or too complacent to speak up?
We encourage any men living nearby these places and brave enough to test these bans by a bit of bothering. Men could turn up at the swimming pool and demand their rights to use the amenity they pay for and not to be discriminated against on the basis of their gender. And men could attend the netball tournament similarly, although if it’s a private school it may only be possible to protest outside. It would be good tv to see men being manhandled by security staff or police as this gender discrimination is enforced.