Today it was revealed by the Herald Sun that the Committee of Melbourne in conjunction with VicRoads are installing 10 female pedestrian figures at the intersection of Swanston and Flinders streets as part of a 12-month trial.
The Committee of Melbourne, the lobby group behind the change are pushing to achieve 1:1 male and female representation at pedestrian crossings across the state.
Seven members out of their 11-person board are women. It seems passing strange their main focus is on equalising pedestrian lights when they aren’t gender equal themselves.
Using pedestrian signals to virtue signal is utter nonsense.
This is politically correct gesturing by policy makers that want to feel good about themselves. Ordinary Victorians are concerned about job security, energy prices, rising crime and better transport infrastructure.
The Committee for Melbourne and the Victorian Government said it is a useful way of stamping out unconscious bias in gender. Really? Do they really think that men look up at that little green man and think about how they are going to be more oppressive to women? Your average men and women would think that this initiative is ridiculous gesturing.
Victorian are by and large pretty decent people. The term unconscious bias assumes the worst in people rather than the best. No ordinary Victorian is crossing the road looking up and thinking “gee-whiz how am I going to be biased to women today?”
This type of policy assumes there are hidden power structures in society, and that these structures are hidden even from those in a position of power, a simpler explanation is that they don’t exist. It is actually a very divisive policy because it is designed to divide people by gender.
Strangely for a proposal at the cutting edge of gender politics, it also assumes that all women wear dresses, which they certainly do not. What is next? Are we going to change baby change rooms from a woman to a man for half of them because of unconscious bias against stay at home dads?
What we are seeing with the traffic lights is actually exactly how a left-wing government like we have in Victoria goes about public policy.
They don’t see people as people, but as identities that are assumed to be victims (or oppressors) until proven otherwise. And view social and economic interactions as motivated by power, rather than being mutually beneficial transactions or relationships.
In short, the pedestrian signs are based on a radical Marxist interpretation of the world. The lights themselves don’t really matter. But the insidious ideology which underpins them does.
This is a clear example political correctness gone mad, surely policy makers should be putting their time and energy into fixing congestion on our roads.
If this is what our politicians, bureaucrats and policy makers think is the biggest issue facing road users then perhaps it goes a long way to understanding why Victorians are stuck in traffic every day.
The Victorian Government should retreat from this politically correct trial and get on with practical solutions to deal with traffic congestion.
Evan Mulholland is media and communications manager at the Institute of Public Affairs.
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