Often times we’ve heard the saying, ‘What a man can do, a woman can do better’. As much as the female folks agree, the masculine world says it is awkward and not a fact. I believe this statement is to create equality in a male-dominated world but does it really stand is a question we need to answer.
From the creation story, the woman is a helpmate while the man is the head. Women are to support the men who are supposed to be in control of their environment. Men’s dominance has been from the beginning and has stayed that way until the recent clamor for gender equality.
Gender roles in Africa
In Africa, men are the head of the house. They are saddled with the responsibility of working and toiling so as to provide for their families. They are to make available everything needed for the family to grow while the women are confined to the kitchen and also to take care of the family.
Men have to be in charge and if the reverse is the case, they are considered weak and labeled women. The African belief is that the man is stronger and the woman is far behind him. No wonder the Nigerian President, Muhammadu Buhari, stated in this age that women “belong to the other room.”
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Things have really changed in recent times, not only in the western world but also in Africa. Women are no longer confined to the kitchen or made to sit at home but now help to make things happen by living their dreams.
Nowadays, women are seen in top positions all over the world calling shots. They have stepped up from just grooming and babysitting. Women also now work to cater for themselves and their homes. They are more independent ladies than what it used to be. Women have picked up roles that were once seen as masculine roles. This has led to the saying, ‘What a man can do, a woman can do better’, – which is for me a way of creating gender equality.
What does this mean for some women?
Some people were interviewed on the meaning of the statement, “What a man can do, a woman can do better”. The following are their opinions.
Yes, I believe what a man can do, a woman can do better.Kiki, Lokoja
Woman can’t do everything a man can do. Maybe we can actually do some, but not all. For instance, I personally can’t carry a 50 liter keg of water while 99% of men will do that.Happiness Fyneface, Port Harcourt
Women can’t do better; the world isn’t made for competition in this aspect. Women trying to do all men do have adversely contributed to the main problems our homes have today and why our society is depleted. Men are created to be hard and women to be soft except otherwise which are in few cases. If God made us differently with our strong points, then why do we want to remake things we didn’t make?Alunsi Ndu, Lagos
For the fact that the ladies lose blood (menstruation) monthly and still make it to do many things that the man can do make us better. I so much believe in the saying that a woman can do better than a man.Kufre-Abasi, Calabar
Females must have ventured into one or two things that men do, yet I think they are really trying to cope since we have more men doing that. For this reason, I don’t see a woman doing better than a man. Men are created to be better.Emmanuel Odogwu, Jos
Feminists propagate their gospel by using the line the statement when highlighting the value of womanhood. It is important to note that men are created differently with certain things that are exclusively reserved for them, just as there are certain things that women naturally have an exclusive monopoly over. Despite this, from the beginning of the world, men are meant to be the head. There have been few cases of women taking over the homes from their weak or lazy husbands, yet this shouldn’t lead to a gender war of who is superior or inferior.
A new crop of all-round women
As stated earlier, women have evolved from being ‘housewives’ to ‘all-round-women’. Many no longer depend on their husbands even though they still submit to them as well as live their own dreams.
Many women have held top leadership positions all over the world. There have been female Presidents not only in the western world but also in Africa. Helen Johnson-Sirleaf, the ex-President of Liberia is a good example.
There are female lawmakers in the Nigerian red and green chambers (Senate & House of Representatives) doing quite well. There are female bosses of top world organizations such as the World Bank’s Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala and several other women.
Women have also been part of the military set up in many countries worldwide. It’s not a big deal again to see a woman as a bricklayer, barber, commercial bus driver, mechanic and what have you. Women are also not left out in male-dominated sporting activities such as football. In fact, the last female FIFA world cup held in France is one of a kind. This and several achievements really show that women are doing better.
The 2 out of 10 ratio
Looking at the fact that probably 2 out of 10 women are really doing what men do shows that the men are still doing better. A survey of a construction site has 90% of men involved. It can, therefore, be said that women are really trying to cope with the men and that they are really doing well.
The standpoint of the saying ‘What a man can do, a woman can do better’ is this: man has been created to be the head and do better even though the woman is needed to make it possible.
Just as Martin Luther King said, “A man with dreams needs a woman with a vision.” God created a man for a purpose and has a different purpose for creating a woman. There may be certain things common to both sexes, but there will always be a difference. That means they still need one another to be better.