Don’t blame the U.S. — we’re the problem
Vitriol against female politicians worse here: PM at T.O. conference
Two of the most recognizable people in the world put a face to key gender issues during a global conference on women: Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Angelina Jolie, the actress and human rights activist.
Trudeau has positioned himself as a champion of gender equality since taking office when he explained his decision to appoint a half-female cabinet with the headlinegrabbing quip “because it’s 2015.”
But he told the Toronto edition of the Women in the World conference on Monday that despite his government’s efforts to bolster the ranks of women in politics retention has proven a challenge in large part because vitriol aimed at female politicians.
Even the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement isn’t immune to backlash against issues like gender equality. Yet, Trudeau said, the strongest opposition to such discussions over NAFTA hasn’t come from the United States but from within Canada.
“The pushback we’re getting is actually not from south of the border, the pushback we’re getting is from Canadian Conservatives who said, ‘Oh no this is about economics, it’s about jobs ... it’s not about rhetorical flourishes of being good on environment or being good on gender,’” Trudeau said.
The Conservative party said it had no comment.
For her part, Jolie said that with so many humanitarian crises in the world, it’s everyone’s responsibility to educate themselves and continue pushing for democracy and human rights. “We have to just get the best education,” Jolie said. “We all need to do, I think, even more than we’ve ever done because we’re at a very dark time.”
The pushback we’re getting is from Conservatives. Justin Trudeau