Who’s afraid of a woman with a fishing rod?

3 Sep

Picture this. You want to go fishing in wonderful Woudrichem. Turns out you can only cast your fishing rod if you are a member of the local fishing club. Fine, no problem. So you sign up as a candidate member at Woudrichem’s Cooperative Fisheries Association De Hoop (The Hope), only to be told that membership is exclusively reserved for men. In fact, you cannot even see the Association’s statutes because … you happen to be female.
It happened to Nanka van der Meer. She is not taking it lightly and will submit an official complaint to the Dutch Institute for Human Rights. She already announced to take it to the highest court, if needed. Go Nanka!
However, the men of De Hoop don’t understand what all the fuss is about. Things have been like this for over a hundred years. And, said the president, ‘history is more important to us than discrimination.’ Guys, are you really that afraid of a woman with a fishing rod? No, they ‘have nothing against women.’And besides, ‘there are more clubs for only men or only women, aren’t there?’
There was indeed another men’s club. Dutch political party SGP, where, as a woman, you were allowed membership but was not allowed to be politically active. Because God had created man first, and only then (from his rib), woman. And thus SGP believed women do not belong in politics. But all that has changed: less than six months after the party’s regulations were changed, the first female SGP candidate made headlines last week.
They did need a little help, those SGP men. There was a small nudge by the Dutch Supreme Court, but then, a majority of the members agreed that ‘gender may not be decisive in the selection process.’ All I want to say is: there’s still hope. Even for De Hoop.

One Response to “Who’s afraid of a woman with a fishing rod?”

  1. willem schild October 22, 2013 at 3:09 pm #

    Misschien moeten de vrouwen, al die zaken waar bloed en geweld (lees: mannenzaken) aan te pas komt, ook maar niet gaan nadoen. Laat het lekker een mannendingetje blijven om visjes aan haakjes te slaan. Blijven er nog zat leuke en stoere zaken over voor de meiden.

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