Paris, the City of Lights, is apparently too woke for its own good. The city has been fined 90,000 euros because they over-diversified. The mayor, Anne Hidalgo, went a little overboard in this gender equality thing and hired a staff composed of 69 percent women.
Unfortunately for her, there’s a law that says she can only have 60 percent of one gender in management positions. By “gender” we assume it still means either a man or a woman, so with fewer men serving in her office than required by law, she got slapped with a fine.
A 2012 national decree designed to force local governments to hire more women actually does work as intended, but the female mayor of Paris still gets punished.
You’d think Hidalgo would be celebrating the fine as a sign of how wokeness really pays off. That’s not exactly her reaction.
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Addressing a council meeting on Tuesday, the Socialist Party mayor called the fine “absurd,” “unfair” and “dangerous,” and quipped “the management of the City Hall has, all of a sudden, become far too feminist.” Hidalgo will take a check paying the fine to the Minister of Public Service, at the start of 2021, surrounded by her deputies, her service directors and all the women of the general office of the town hall.
What is she protesting? She got everything she could possibly want and is dissatisfied that a law designed to give women a leg up in hiring actually worked?
According to local daily Le Monde, the Ministry of Public Service made the calculation and decided that, despite “this very high figure strongly contribut(ing) to the feminization of senior management and management jobs” in the city, it results in a non-compliance with the legal objective of “at least 40% of people of each sex,” according to the decree.
So now, the feminists in Paris can relax a little and congratulate themselves on a job well done, right? Not exactly.
Yet, the councilor of Paris, Nelly Garnier, said that the 69% of female appointments is not enough. Despite the increase of roles for women at the Paris council, there remains a lack of diversity, she said.
“On the matters of children, it’s going to be women. On solidarity, it’s going to be women,” while finance, housing or transports are still positions mostly filled by men, she said. “We all still have a long way to go,” Garnier added.
The first rule of activism is that the problem can never be solved or the discrimination alleviated. Think of how many activists will be out of a job if women in Paris declared “victory.” Contributions to their organizations would dry up. They’d lose power and influence.
The second rule of activism is that if a problem doesn’t exist, create one. And so, the fight goes on, the battle is joined, the dream will never die.
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