Why do we need to say girls can do anything?

It’s a curious saying yet it was one I grew up with and always remember wondering ‘but what do you mean?’ I can’t remember where I saw it (most likely facebook) but someone pointed out the problem with saying this implants the idea for girls that they couldn’t do anything in the first place.

I wonder if there are more examples of these slogans and statements that whilst trying to develop a positive sense of identity have an unintended effect of casting doubt or implying some deficit for being female. Of course history tells us there have been significant barriers and some very interesting ideas about what women and men can/can’t do.

I’m grateful for all those who broke moulds on both sides of the gender divide. I know our reproductive systems are different and body hair tends to distribute itself differently but how on earth did that translate into dividing almost everything in life by gender? 

Those fighting to break down those walls over the last 50 years might look at the current situation and go WTF – or Why The Fear? My observation is we have moved to more subtle ways to segregate and re-frame gender differences. Rather being more comfortable with girls and boys looking the same we have gone to extremes to market and create gender identity from a younger age!

Personally I would love to be one of the Na’vi from Avatar – very cool hair, epic tree climbing skills and it really is hard to tell the girls from the guys.

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