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Women prefer Bears

American Black Bear

Women, when walking in the woods, are asked, 'If you were walking alone in the woods, which would you prefer to encounter, a man or a bear?'

The overwhelming answer? 'A bear.' 'Why so?' Because a bear is more predictable!'

The pressing problem for women candidates canvassing for the June 2024 local and European elections, is their personal safety. Do not canvas alone alone with so many caveats, Is it worth it? Politicians are being targeted and challenged with protests by far right agitators at their homes. Being prominent has its drawbacks.

Politicians in Ireland must take note of the Electoral Commission's exit survey of the recent March 2024 referendum. Two thirds of SinnFein/Independent voters voted No to both referenda with FF at a 53% No. This was not a protest vote, no more than 7%. The number who saw 'No need for a change' or 'do not agree with the proposals' was substantial at 17%. 33% of No voters believed the (false) claim that any change would erase women from the constitution. Questions about the Commission drew together questions about women's work and men's domestic responsibilities, more than one third of No voters felt 'family life suffers when the woman has a full time job. 90% of those who voted Yes and No together agreed that men should take as much responsibility as women for home and children. The Commission's open question about immigrants- are they good for Ireland's economy, 58% of the No side agreed yet they were 20% behind the Yes side with our poorly staffed hospitals, care homes, retail and hospitality sectors a major concern. Vast numbers relied on social media - (50%) and online video sites (41%) for information. This implies for one third of respondents that a small secret sect was making all major decisions in world politics. Campaigning groups may disseminate falsehoods and must be deterred.

This survey is clear, Leinster House is in one of many bubbles. The No voters unexpected victory was not predicted the No vote people refused to take part in the survey more than the Yes side with the No side greater in proportion of the votes and attitudes cited previously. The political parties, TD committees, NGOs and political advisers cannot predict the outcome of the next election. No one can, it is 4 years since an election in Ireland, anything can happen, particularly a rise in Independents.

Source: Irish Times, Kathy Sheridan, May 15, 2024


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