Friday, August 28, 2009

"Whenever the topics "gender," "women," or even "health" come up in development aid council discussions in Brussels, the session inevitably turns into a fight about abortion."

The above quote actually isn't very representative of what is covered in the rest of the article, which is interesting but mostly concerned with the need for the EU to stop quibbling buck it's ideas up with regards to providing healthcare and education on such matters. Not that I disagree with the need for this AT ALL, but I can't help feeling that there is some merit in considering the quote in another light - why, when it comes to topics as broad as gender, women and health, should all roads lead back to abortion? It's an issue that's incredibly divisive and, yes, incredibly important, but I can't help but feel that an incredible number of other equally important issues equally worthy of discussion are pushed off the gender in favour of this one on which, we can comfortably assume, there isn't going to be any consensus reached any time soon. What about wage gaps, female subordination, female circumcision, rape laws, suffocating beauty standards, the burkha, any other number of gender related issues that haven't immediately sprung to mind in 30 seconds?