Fairness is often overthrown by money, possessions and social class. Individuals are not being treated for who they are. Everywhere, especially in developing countries, people are used as mere objects. Women are often in the firing line for suffering in extreme poverty.
These inspirational characters are subjected to the hardest of lifestyles: a lack of education, healthcare and power. Usually in male-dominated societies, women are limited to having a public opinion, victimised for pleasure or entertainment and have to abide by the constructed social norms, which deprive them of any sense of freedom. What we need to achieve globally to tackle inequality is a sense of gratitude for everyone. Whether this be simply accepting everyone as they are, without prejudging them, or acknowledging each person as a human being who contributes to the world with worth, dignity and respect.
For many Less Economically Developed Countries, women are simply not educated and often fear their lives. This allows this vicious circle to persist, restricting women from ever breaking this indisputable negligence of rights or being in a position of power or change. Is it in any way just to allow women to be raped in gangs, demoralising themselves, yet for the men to never be punished for their wrongdoings? Justice and equality are both intertwined and essential. Having recognised that each society varies from continent to continent, a pivotal point to consider is how we accept responsibility for our actions. These attitudes are often based culturally and are normally influenced by religion. The UN Women concluded that inequality cannot be eliminated by just educating women or changing a law to make both genders equal. It is a cultural change which is needed dramatically. For instance, to rebuild peace in war torn countries, the crucial factor to tackling equality is by getting women at the table and feeling valued whilst being involved in decision-making for lasting peace.
An example of social difference is found within India, where despite the Caste System being outlawed, it is one of the world’s oldest forms of surviving omnipresent social hierarchy, paved by Hinduism. This divided from the top of the Brahmin, the intellectual and spiritual leaders, to the Kshatriyas, often the protectors of society, then the Vaishyas, the skilful producers of material things, followed by the Shudras, the followers or maintenance people and finally the Dalits, the outcasts. This clear categorisation advocates isolation between the richest and the poorest as one can only marry between their own caste, share water and live in segregated colonies. Another example is dowry, which has been outlawed for nearly sixty years, but today it is still a primary driving force behind vast amounts of violence and deaths. Law and grandiose statements from the top of society are not enough to effect equality. Social integration and change are crucial to eradicating attitudes which harbour separation and inequality, for individuals to understand a true sense of empathy and understand the true sense of multiculturalism.
The failure of humanity is extreme poverty, which has left more than one billion people behind. In the world, we are able to feed everyone. However, due to our capitalist approach, we choose to leave more than 870 million people facing the problem of hunger. Many women, who work tirelessly, are forced to starve to feed their own children. To make a change, we need to appreciate what we have and not have a materialistic focus on life. The cost of rice may be important for a family in poverty; however, the worth of love, happiness and joy is incomparable. Unsurprisingly, this demonstrates the clear contrast between first-world countries and developing countries as we seem to be stuck on loop with how we appear to be and what we have. The fight of consumerism is taking a stand, whereas what we should be doing is battling this with altruism and charity. We can stand up for those individuals who have nothing and provide them with resources, which lay the foundations for future generations. By doing this, we would make a public protest in supporting how significant women are and prevent the vast amounts of deaths from occurring, with approximately 22,000 children dying each day from hunger. It is plausible to argue that by neglecting this issue, we are denying our neighbours respect and contributing to the problem of inequality until we start to face this problem.
Females are underestimated in their role of being one of the most important members of the family, particularly as child bearers. Because of high fatality rates in childbirth, women regularly lose their own lives because of the lack of healthcare provisions. This is an area in which we can improve upon, by raising funds and lobbying government support. Many professionals argue that instead of focusing on the top 1% of the world’s richest people who own 50% of the planet’s wealth, we should help those in unfortunate situations. Leading Princeton philosopher Harry G Frankfurt argues that the moral commitment should not be achieving equality, but rather removing poverty. Through vast amounts of research, Dorling poses an alternative argument suggesting that Beveridge’s social evils of ignorance, want, idleness, squalor and disease are being substituted by new precepts, such as: despair is inevitable; prejudice is natural; exclusion is necessary; greed is good. By tackling these core roots which produce unhealthy attitudes, one would begin to challenge the reality of inequality and everyone feel appreciated.
On 14 February 2017, the Malawi Parliament adopted a constitutional amendment to end child marriage, by raising the minimum age of marriage to 18 years, removing the legal ambiguity which was permitted children from 15 to 18 to marry previously with parental consent. This became viable through engaging tribal leaders and other key stakeholders who would make this law a reality for women. This example conveys the importance of respect for the individual as it shows the productive outcome of listening to what other people are contributing and understanding their perspectives on the matter.
As well as this, a global problem is that women are vastly underrepresented. For instance, from the 2017 General Election, there were 208 women MPs elected, setting a record high with women taking up a proportion of 23%. Preceding 1987, women MPs had never exceeded 5%. It could be argued that there has been quite a drastic change to the political landscape as since 1918, a total of 489 women have been elected to the House of Commons. Is this showing a sign of hope for what is to come next? Across the world, if individuals are respected, each person should be able to strive to be the best that they can be and have inspiration which is not bounded by gender or class.
At present, injustice and inequality are all too prevalent in our world and we should be the individuals combatting against the matter. Through a range of illustrations, this piece displays that each person is vital to how the world is run and how their views should be treasured. The only solution is gratitude for everyone because at the heart of inequality lies an unnecessary lack of respect. Malala Yousafzai once said: “We realise the importance of the voice when we are silenced”, no one’s voice should ever be muted, but encouraged to add to life’s conversations.