what i really want to see is a complete equality in rights and a freedom from stereotyped gender roles. 10 years hasn't been quite enough time for that to happen, but the tide keeps building.
most of the laws that been preventing women from voting, owning land, running businesses and other fundamental rights have been repealed. in the countries where women have been especially targeted and repressed, laws have been put into place both to protect women and to punish misogynist criminals.
now free to pursue their dreams in whatever way they wish, the business-minded women have taken the corporate world by storm. a few have decided to focus on products that are truly intended for women, as well as gender-neutral products. some of the worst chauvinistic companies still have their glass ceilings; however, there has been a mass exodus of female talent away from them, and now these bigoted companies are lagging further and further behind in all industries.
ads that are demeaning to women are beginning to really vanish as well; people refuse to take that anymore. the image of the super-thin unhealthy model has been destroyed; newer ads are not afraid to showcase the beauty that comes from living a peaceful, intelligent and selfless life.
laws are not enough, however. there are still deeply rooted beliefs that are still a part of some cultures and factions of religions. cultural change is a long and arduous, but entirely necessary process.
a new generation of people are growing up with a different set of values which include equal rights for all people. social activism has moved to the mainstream; it is seen as increasingly less as the realm of fringe groups and more as a requirement for society to improve. reformist religious movements, with gender equality as one of the elements, have really started to gain traction all over the world.
not to say that the backlash hasn't been harsh. women, as well as the men who fight for gender equality, are continually targeted for retaliation by extremist groups and deeply entrenched community figures. the worst of the politicians around the world have been revealed; they are truly afraid of women and their underhanded and unethical tactics have been brought to light by whistleblowers and ethical journalists. women and activists in the worst places still fear for their lives, but now have far greater protections.
ten years has seen a lot of change, though the battle is far from over. the seeds of change are growing and thriving, even as new ones are sown. let's see where the next decade takes gender equality.