‘Election according to gender’


Sir, – Yet another call for “gender quotas” to be introduced, this time by Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Josepha Madigan (“Minister urges higher gender quotas”, August 13th).

Ms Madigan asserts, “It is not that women are any better or worse than men but we bring a different perspective . . .”

When I see/hear a TD speaking in the Dáil I do not see a male or female – I see a person. I do not want to see a person (particularly a female) who has been selected, and subsequently elected, because of his/her gender. I want to believe that he/ she is there on merit, according to his/her perceived ability by the electorate.

The logical outcome, if indeed there was a 50-50 “split” by regulation, would be for every party to have to put up two candidates: one for each gender, in every constituency. The average male would, in all probability vote for the male and the female likewise for the female.

We are all “people”, irrespective of gender. The ancient Greeks, who introduced the concept to democracy as we know it, would surely raise their eyebrows in wonder at “election according to gender”. – Yours, etc,


Bantry, Co Cork.