Feminist. Over the past several years, this term has become akin to a curse word (taboo if you will) among many on the political Right, and a badge of honor for those on the Left. Regardless of your personal feelings about it, most of us would be hard-pressed to deny the fact that third-wave feminism has been dominating the spotlight in politics of late, particularly in response to many of President Trump’s actions since his election back in November.
According to www.feminist.org, the Feminist movement supposedly fights for “political, economic, and social equality for women.” In many countries across the globe, primarily Middle Eastern countries such as Mauritania, Saudi Arabia, Iran, and Sudan, where Sharia law advocates the horrific treatment of women for the most trivial of things, such a crusade is undeniably necessary. Yet there are very few (if any) Women’s Marches taking place in these countries. Curiously, or…perhaps not, the place where this “equality” crusade is being fought in full force is, you guessed it: The United States.
One of the biggest conversations on social media last month blossomed on Tuesday, April 4, 2017. Equal Pay Day. The day that symbolically marks how much longer a woman would allegedly have to work to “catch up” to what her male counterpart earned during the previous year. Odds are, by now, most of you are probably aware of the gender pay gap statistics being promoted by women’s groups, the former Obama Administration, and former Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton. Just in case you aren’t aware, here are a few of them:
“On average, full-time working women earn just 78 cents for every dollar a man earns.”
“Did you know that in 2014, women working full time in the United States were paid only 79% of what men were paid? That’s a gap of 21%!”
“Full-time year-round women workers are paid on average only 77% of what men are paid.”
“You can be paid far less than the minimum wage if you’re a waitress, a bartender, you work in a hair salon – you can be paid as little as $2 an hour. That puts so many women in a powerless position; they can’t stand up for themselves, they can’t speak out, because they’re dependent on the goodwill of their customers and managers.”
With the Left pushing this narrative for the past eight years (and continuing to do so unabashedly), more and more American women are graduating college with the mindset that they will face an eternity of gender-based discrimination in the workforce, simply because they are female, even more so if they are African American or Latina.
This belief is unfounded, and statistically false.
For some reason, Americans seem to be under the impression that statistics are infallible, that they cannot be doctored, that they cannot be misstated, that they cannot be manipulated the same way any other piece of propaganda is to promote a political agenda. The simple fact of the matter is statistics are capable of being used by politicians and the media as a tool, a mechanism for perpetuating a misleading narrative that suits their personal and corporate interests.
So, without further ado…let’s debunk some statistics, shall we?
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median earnings of full-time female workers is 77% of the median earnings of their male counterparts. That is very different than saying women are being paid 77 cents on the dollar for doing the same work as men. So, let’s break this down a bit.
The Left’s perversion of this statistic gives the impression that a man and woman doing the same job in the same place for the same number of hours get paid different salaries. There is not an industry in the United States where such a discriminatory practice is even legal anymore (unless, of course, you happen to work for the Clinton Foundation), but that’s beside the point.
Now, “full-time” employment begins at 35 hours worked per week, and goes as high as 45 hours. That’s a ten-hour gap within which hours can fluctuate, but you would still be considered as working “full-time.” Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics show that men on average work more hours per week than women (with both still qualifying as “full-time” employees).
Men also tend to gravitate toward college majors with greater market value (e.g. engineering). This is not to say that women don’t choose to major in these fields, but rather that men do so much more often. Women, on the other hand, make up 66.7% of liberal arts, drama, dance, education, and fine arts majors. Most careers that women pursue upon graduation in majors like this have very low economic value, and thus their median earnings are far lower than their male counterparts in engineering, science, and technology. These personal choices in college have consequences. If you major in a field that has low economic value, you bring down the average median earnings of the female population. That seems to be a common behavior among Leftists, though, refusing to be accountable for their own choices and actions.
The National Organization for Women argues that as women, our education and career choices are not truly free. Powerful sexist stereotypes are to blame, because they somehow coerce us into choosing lower paying professions or leaving the workplace entirely. Such an outlook is antithesis to NOW’s mission of empowering women. It demeans us, makes us feel as though we are being manipulated by forces out of our control when instead we are free, well-informed, self-determined, and most importantly have equal opportunity to men in every respect. We choose our majors just as they do. We are not being coerced by sexist stereotypes. If anything, women are allowing themselves to be manipulated by believing this victimhood mentality nurtured by third-wave feminism.
Here’s the bottom line: the 23-cent “pay gap” is the difference between the median earnings of all men and all women working full-time. That’s it. This number fails to consider several other variables that influence potential earnings, including, but not limited to, differences in occupations, level of education, nature of position, years of prior experience, hours worked per week, and job tenure.
While men and women certainly play distinct roles in the economy and in the family, they are far from being unequal. At one time, they were. But not anymore. The gender pay gap is nothing but a myth, a lie perpetrated by the Left to create oppression where it no longer exists.