The United Nations has created a monstrous, half-billion dollar agency to promote gender equality. Merging four existing offices into the new United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women, or UN Women, the international body hopes to create, in UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon’s words, “a stronger voice for women for gender equality at the global level.” Feminists dutifully cheered.
It is folly to think the UN does not already highlight these issues, but if the concern among women is that it hasn’t amounted to much, they are right. But the lack of progress on women’s issues is not due to a lack of funding or centralized control, but the misplaced priorities of Western feminists at the UN. Instead of focusing on educational and employment opportunities, and equality under the law (especially to protect girls and women from violence), feminists and their allies in the European and North American delegations, have pushed identity politics, fashionable political causes, and “sexual and reproductive rights” which is code for lesbian rights, contraception and, of course, abortion.
By placing the politically correct priorities of their own feminist ideology ahead of the real needs of women in the developing world – witness the Canadian debate over maternal health – those in the West are guilty of colonialism, exporting their progressive and secularist causes that will do nothing to improve the lives of the world’s most vulnerable women.