CAIRO: Presidents are meant to improve the general picture of their country. If women were given that power, they will take that away. This is what an ordinary man had to say when asked whether or not he was for women holding a position of power.
Comparing this currently-prevalent opinion to Egypt 7,000 years ago, when women like Hatshepsut, Nefertiti and Cleopatra ruled the country and were given the necessary respect, was a reality to the participants of the One World Foundation recent conference.
The July 9 conference that took place at the Mubarak Public Library was held to reclaim this respect.
Judge Tahany El Gabaly considers Hatshepsut an idol in Egyptian history because she ruled Egypt and made the world bow before her in respect for her country. Look at what Hatshepsut did and act accordingly . It proves that women are equal to men when it comes to ruling a country.
She described what happened at the time of the selection of women judges as “a civil war . where no decision could be reached. The chaos that occurred proves that Egypt is going backward instead of moving forward.
Enas Abou Yousef, media professor at Cairo University, said changes are due in the educational methods and materials. Religious leaders need to help as well, she added.
“We are not a mere uterus, she said.
Women are only looked at as wives, mothers, daughters and sisters but not as citizens, noted Azza Soliman, director of the Egyptian Woman Center.
“This is where we go wrong, Soliman added. “As citizens we have rights and needs that must be taken into consideration.
Work and effort aren t divided according to gender, said Nevein Mosaad, political science professor. Giving the American Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice as an example, Mossad explained that when a man works for his country, it’s the same as when a woman works for her country.
“Illiteracy, poverty, and other things endangering Egypt s future aren t split according to gender either, added. Mosaad.
Abou Yousef also noted the media role. The problem with the media, she explained, is that it doesn’t have a long term plan for dealing with this issue. She fears that today is just an event that will be covered and that’s it.