#329 Because of President Erdogan.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan isn’t exactly known to be a fighter for gender equality, but do we really need world leaders who believe that women and men cannot be treated equally “because it is against human nature”?
On Monday, at the Women and Justice Summit, Erdogan addressed an audience of Turkish women (including his own daughter) with these statements:
"Our religion (Islam) has defined a position for women (in society): motherhood."
"Some people can understand this, while others can’t. You cannot explain this to feminists because they do not accept the concept of motherhood."
"Motherhood is something else."
"Their characters, habits and physiques are different…. You cannot place a mother breastfeeding her baby on an equal footing with men."
"You cannot get women to do every kind of work men can do, as in Communist regimes.
You cannot tell them to go out and dig the soil. This is against their delicate nature.”
Essentially, what he’s saying is that women aren’t people. Or kind of like people, but not people-people, not like men-people, since women only have one purpose.
According to The Guardian:
"The Islamic-rooted government of Erdoğan has long been accused by critics of seeking to erode the country’s secular principles and limiting the civil liberties of women.
Erdoğan has drawn the ire of feminist groups for declaring that every woman in Turkey should have three children and with proposals to limit abortion rights, the morning-after pill and caesarean sections.”
Turkey ranked 120th of 136 nations in the World Economic Forum’s 2013 Gender Gap Index, down 15 places since 2006. A third of Turkish women have suffered sexual and physical violence at some point in their lives. Five women are killed in Turkey every day and according to Human Rights Watch, violence against women is on the rise. Erdoğan claims this rise in numbers is caused by more murders being reported rather than more murders being committed.