Monday, July 06, 2009

No quotas, thanks.

The Irish Times reported recently that women politicians want a quota system to ensure that a minimum number of Dáil deputies are women. Former Progressive Democrat TD Liz O'Donnell said that "without women in politics, our democracy was unfinished." Well, if women should be guaranteed a certain percentage of seats, what about other underrepresented sections of the population: people under 30; immigrants; people who haven't finished their Leaving Cert; people who are not teachers, lawyers, publicans; etc.

And, the truth is, our democracy will surely be finished if we start adopting quotas in a bid to deny the electorate their democratic rights to vote for whomever they want. Just as many women as men are eligible to vote. Why don't these women ask why this fact alone doesn't guarantee 50% of the Dáil deputies are women?