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[Opinion] Woman, Football and Politics

Posted May. 29, 2002 09:03,   


Story that women dislikes to hear the most is men talking about their times in army.

And more disliked story is the story when men talk about playing football in army.

Likewise football was far away sport for women.

On last Sunday, when I went to football stadium for the first time to feel heat of World cup, it was full of women football fans.

It was surprising and good to hear that numerous members of our cheer group `red devil` are women.

Nowadays, football and women became similar, as there are 50 women football teams in the nation.

It is said that human history has developed from minor privilege class to major public one.

Development of football follows the same vein with such development of history.

The reason how football, which started as sport of elite has received full consent of love from people including labours is not only due to its being middle class sports which people can enjoy anywhere, if there is a ball but also due to it being a masculine sport.

Therefore the fact that woman who was extremely isolated from power started to enjoy football is significant.

However, there is problem that expansion of Korean women football population has nothing to do with growing Gender Equality.

Korea ranks 61 grade among total 64 nations in Gender Equality Measurement (GEM), which United Nations Development Plan (UNDP) announced in year 2001 and it showed we still aren`t free from backward nation level.

However in Human Development Index (HDI) that shows level of development of Woman resource, we recorded 27th among 162 nations.

It means that woman`s resource who are well trained do not get fair treatment in our society.

One of the reasons why GEM is low is because of woman`s joining of politics.

There are various factors which blocks woman`s participation in politics.

However most of instances are just like mythology, which is not supported by experimental data.

The most representative mythology is the insistence that woman doesn`t vote for woman.

Of course, if women that are half of population vote for woman, the woman candidate will be selected easily.

However, insistence that every woman should vote for woman is irrational like every man voting for only man.

Indeed, as the result of Korean woman politics research shows, woman support woman candidate more than man voters.

The next mythology is that female can`t be recommended as she has less rate for winning.

However, Prof. In Yonsei University, Shin Myoung-soon discovered that winning rate of woman is little higher than man.

Woman is hard to be recommended in public, however, if she receives public recommendation, as female is more capable than man, it is likely to show higher rate for winning.

And in recent survey, 78 percent of respondents answered that they will vote for female as Governor if it is same condition, therefore we can know that voters are ready to vote for female candidates.

The problem is political party.

It became worsen in the past at this time when it expelled female candidates through excuse of public recommendation.

Then I would like to ask why it didn`t recommend females in downward public recommendation when leaders and Chairmen of district were despotic.

Such excuse is too straightened as compared to European nations as well as even Taiwan in which political party secures woman`s political participation directly.

Finally isn`t it evident that there is something which political party doesn`t want to share with females, by not opening politics to females?

If it were so, it might not be easy to break free from stigma of Republic of corruption without increase of female politicians.

The research that, if woman`s participation in politics increases 10 percent in National Assembly and in government of a nation, national probity index and corruption index by World Bank and World Organization of transparency improves 0.25 percent and 1.2 percent respectively, shows why females should take part in politics.

When French players handled the ball after the third goal by France at the end of the match and it was likely to be given penalty kick by which we could draw, but referee overlooked it, and pet bottles of beverage flied into the playground from cheer groups.

French goalkeeper was busy in throwing away bottles out of playground.

At this moment, shout of “don`t throw bottles!” and “stop it” burst out from one corner.

It was voice of female football fans.

As female football fans corrected disordered atmosphere in stadium, female politician will highly contribute to correct Korean politics, which is full of corruption and fouls.

I hope that 2002 Korea Japan World cup, in which global village becomes one, would be held successfully and female candidates would advance in local elections, which will be held in the same period.

Cho Gi-suk ( Prof. of international post graduation school in Ehwa Women`s university, faculty of politics)