In a world where the male folk dominate in education, business, government, engineering and religion, losing sight of the indispensability of women is almost instinctive. Many forget, perhaps deliberately, that the progressive changes in different facets of humanity may not have been without women. No wonder the Good Book typically views a woman as a “helper.” If men could do it all single-handedly, why did our All-Wise and All-Knowing God create woman? It’s not rocket science, women are the matchstick which lights up humanity.
Repeatedly, we have this influential potential of women play out both in our personal and societal lives. Do you still recall? First, the average human is born and nurtured by a female, who may either be the mother or not. Biology says men can neither conceive nor give birth, thereby leaving that prerogative with a woman. Thus, women mediate between nature and a new life. What a privilege! Suffice it to say that without women, our specie (homo-sapiens) could have careened towards extinction. The natural ability of women to care for new lives makes their involvement key. How often is a male nanny, if there is, sought?
Second, some indigenous cultures were advanced by women. Mary Slessor comes to mind. The killing of twins persisted in most known parts of Nigeria until this woman intervened. It is on record that she led the re-enlightenment of indigenes who incorrectly saw birth of twins or more as redolent of animals and an abomination. Just probably, there may not have been a P-Square whose music many Nigerians revel in to date, if a woman had not challenged the status-quo.
Again, a woman enhanced humanity by reinvigorating a governmental agency that saved millions of lives. Prof. Dora Akunyili, of blessed memory, freed the National Agency for Food, Drug, Administration, and Control (NAFDAC) from obscurity, arming it with sharp teeth that can bite. Her rigidity in character led to discoveries of fake drugs in large quantities, popularized inclusion of NAFDAC numbers, checked usage of harmful chemical substances as ingredients in fast moving consumer goods, prosecution of offenders, and decreased the nation’s fatal rate.
Furthermore, the proneness of most women to be empathetic singles them out. Often, this has been mistaken for weakness and ignites their underestimation. But it is indeed strength. Their tears show genuine fears that things may go wrong. In every person is a natural tilt towards themselves, the precursor of selfish actions. Resisting this pull almost frequently is not easy. This is seen in the concern of women for family and society.
From the above, it is evident that women are distinct and have proved to be the paste on the tooth brush of our race at different times, in different endeavours. Let us evade any movement’s gimmick to pit women against men, for nature has made us collaborators. We are two sides of same coin, a reminder that imagining humanity without women is unimaginable.
By Kaycee Naze