It’s time to end gender conflict

The June 1 local elections showed a greater bias between male and female voters in their thirties and younger than the March presidential election. According to joint exit polls from three terrestrial broadcasters, 65.1% of male voters aged 20 and under voted for the conservative People Power Party (PPP) candidates, while 66.8% of female voters in the same age group voted for the Liberal Democratic Party candidates. Party (DP). The same bias was found among men and women in their thirties. The gap was not so evident among older voters.

Yet politicians continued to ride on gender bias. PPP leader Lee Jun-seok acted as if he was representing the young men. During the campaign, President Yoon Suk-yeol promised to shut down the Ministry of Gender Equality and Family Affairs and allow the introduction of slander into sex crimes cases. Former DP presidential candidate Lee Jae-myung has called himself the “father of assertive women”. The simmering gender conflict in the Moon Jae-in administration that defends women’s rights has only worsened.

To ease the conflict, the older generation needs to be more aware of the thoughts of the young. According to a survey last year, only around 20% of men in their 20s and 30s thought the responsibility for childcare fell primarily to mothers. About the same proportion of women in the same age group felt that men should be breadwinners. This means that young people are more accustomed to equal gender rights than their older counterparts.

What they cannot accept is discrimination. Over 80% of women in their 20s and 30s felt discrimination against their gender was serious. But only about 40% of men in the same age group agreed with them. Women still found a glass ceiling in society while men instead felt discriminated against in college and admission to employment due to affirmative action.

Young women fear gender-related crimes, while young men resent being denied the presumption of innocence in sex crimes. Young men or women are not particularly biased towards certain ideologies, but simply favor political parties that sympathize more with them.

If this conflict is not resolved, Korea will not be able to resolve the aversion to marriage or the low birth rate of the younger generation. Young people in their 20s and 30s approve of preferential scores for military service and the rehiring of women after the birth or custody of a child, regardless of gender, according to a survey. Politicians must develop measures for real gender equality. The Yoon Suk-yeol administration hastily included women in the Cabinet after being criticized for its male-focused appointments by the foreign press. Politicians must stop capitalizing on the suffering of young people.

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