Recently, while speaking at a private event held in Singapore, former US President Barack Obama stated ‘I’m absolutely confident that for two years if every nation on earth was run by women, you would see significant improvement across the board on just about everything… living standards and outcomes.’ On the face of it, this sounds like a fairly decent compliment for the female gender, especially when coming from a man who has over the years meticulously crafted a wholesome image of a charming, supportive husband and an ally of women as a whole. The timing of the statement is also highly relevant considering Finland’s newly elected Prime Minister Sanna Marin also happens to be the world’s youngest Prime Minister. Earlier this year, the world witnessed impeccable leadership skills from New Zealand’s Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, post the devastating mosque attack in the country. Both these countries also happen to feature on the United Nations list of the 10 Happiest Countries in 2019. Despite these facts, Obama’s statement is problematic. It is also the oldest trick in the book to score some brownie points from the female audience – make fleeting statements that would never translate into any real change in any segment of a predominantly male society. Moreover – and one could argue that perhaps too much is being read in this possibly well-intentioned statement – this also quite conveniently absolves male leaders from responsibility or even accountability for their wrong-doings, while inviting women to essentially clean up the mess created by men.Let’s get one thing straight – women are not the better gender, they are the oppressed gender. Feminists are not fighting to establish superiority over men; they are asking for equality socially, economically and politically. What differentiates the latter from the former is the fact that equality also extends to mistakes and failures. And this is absolutely fine. How can we expect 49.6% of the world’s population to be righteous beings, whereas the rest of the 50.4% are deemed incapable of being able to hold power anymore? What Obama’s viewpoint essentially implies is that women are not susceptible to the same wrongdoings we are currently suffering from, due to men holding offices. To reiterate this, he further said ‘most of the problems in the world came from old people, mostly men, holding onto positions of power.’ Is this true? Of course, it is. But it is so because women lack fair representation in the global political landscape. We are yet to experience what an equal opportunity created world politics arena is going to look like. From whatever standing women leaders have managed to achieve in modern history, we have had our fair share of bad leaders such as Theresa May or even (ironically) Obama’s own former political rival Hillary Clinton. And make no mistake. There will be more such female figures that will emerge as women continue expanding their fair claim to share in the political sphere. Good leadership is not in any way related to chromosomes, and neither are qualities such as integrity, compassion or dignity.However, what is unfair is when we elevate the entire gender to attain expectations of fixing all of the world’s problems by waving a magic wand. Furthermore, it also strips women off their individuality and forces on them the burden to represent their entire gender. We have observed this countless times, most prominently with the recent #MeToo movement. While a large number of men who have been proven predators have not cast any shadow on their gender as a whole, the comparatively one-off cases where a woman’s claims have been questioned (case in point, Asia Argento) are enough to start questioning the credibility of not just the overdue movement but women overall. As we gear up to enter into a new decade, one would like to see such shallow statements being left behind and men with influence actually stepping up to assist women in bringing about real change that both genders benefit from. I, for one, would like to see future Presidents voice less flowery fantasies of a female-led world, and rather focus more on ensuring their cabinets have an adequate number of women.