Ook in Suriname wordt steeds vaker aangehaald dat mannen zo achtergesteld raken in de maatschappij. Een slippery slope, als we niet goed kijken naar de achterliggende gedachten van die uitspraken. Want zoals enkele commentaren aangeven: enkele uitspraken gedaan tijdens de opening van het MAB lijken aan te geven dat de bezorgdheid over de positie van mannen weleens gebaseerd zou kunnen zijn op een angst voor homoseksualiteit, en op een verlangen naar terugkeer van de dominante positie van mannen.
Hieronder een van de commentaren, en onderaan links naar nog 2 andere artikelen.
|Pres. B. Jagdeo bij de opening van het MAB|
Moreover, insofar as this new bureau has among its objectives that of addressing the tensions between men and women, reducing and ultimately eliminating gender-based violence, and promoting a sense of purposefulness among men, the question becomes, why would its
Third, the concern that men are lagging behind women in society, and that girls are outperforming boys at school, begs the question, is it that men need help in coping with the challenges of the present society, or that men need to get back to a stage of dominance over girls and women in most spheres of life? There was no outpouring of concerns when boys were outperforming girls in school, or when women’s advancement seemed blocked by the glass ceiling. It would have been useful therefore from the very outset, for MAB to set the tone of discussion around its intervention by indicating that it was not interested in restoring a gender order that has clearly outlived its usefulness, or is hung up on an antiquated set of values about men’s ordained and unquestioned right of leadership in the society and in the household.
Quite apart from distancing themselves from such backward thinking, regrettably speakers at the launch of MAB seemed to embrace the idea of restoring a particular kind of gender order. One speaker talked about honouring men and giving them their place in society. These are not words of reassurance of gender collaboration. Rather the expression of such an intent is more in sync with the notion of returning men to a place of dominance. Furthermore, the remarks about some unspecified pr
ocess that leads to effeminacy could only be regarded as ill informed and unhelpful. These remarks are also at odds with the expressed idea of respecting people’s sexual orientation and not persecuting them for the same. The goal then is not necessarily one of finding a community where men can get together to discuss the problems they face in some presumed strong masculine environment.
There is no doubt that there are perhaps some good intentions and good will associated with the establishment of the Men’s Affairs Bureau, however if one is to be optimistic about its objectives in the Guyanese society, then one has to conclude that it has not yet found an appropriate vocabulary for articulating its purpose. At some level one has to believe that this is the reason for some of the misstatements at the recent launch of this new government department. If on the other hand, we accept some of these remarks as true and accurate, then this men’s bureau is nothing more than sounding brass and tinkling cymbals, which would indeed be unfortunate in perpetuating a problem it was intended to resolve. Let us hope then that the thinking behind this men’s bureau becomes clearer, and that its language of outreach becomes more precise.
artikel in stabroek news
artikel in guyana chronicle, met quotes van Pres. jagdeo
commentaar/analyse in kaieteur.
(met dank aan Judith Brielle en Maggie Schmeitz voor t doorsturen)