.73c to the $1 - the wage gap and how blatantly obvious it is.
This post is in regard to the wage gap, and the supposed ‘mythical’ status of it (i.e., it’s a cover story for feminists in order to justify their cries of ‘patriarchy’). Specifically it refers to how the truth is blatantly obvious, and yet covered up.
Unless you’ve been living in a cave on Mars, you’d know about the wage gap. Where women on average earn 73 cents to a dollar earned by men. There’s a lot of articles out there that state ‘the pay gap is a myth!’ (Especially ‘forbes.com’ - the embodiment of capitalism). Although, all articles accept the 73 cents statistics.
For this short article, I shall refer to the 2012 ABS (Australian Bureau of Statistics) report of gender wage gap number, of 17.5%, ~85 cents to every dollar. I refer to this conservative statistic, not in an act of submission, rather to defend against opposition stating it isn’t as low as 73 cents, and to show that it does not matter if it’s 73 cents or 93 cents, there’s still discrimination.
People who claim that the wage gap is a myth usually (if not always, after reading many articles, they all adopt this same approach) take upon the notion that once you cancel out all differences between men, i.e. men are usually in higher positions/more skilled – e.g. comparing two genders in the same position, the wage gap essentially disappears. Although this is partially true (refer to female and male doctors), all this does is side step the blame and say “there’s no problem”.
There is a problem, and the problem is ‘why aren’t women in higher better paying positions?’
The short answer; patriarchal design, jobs created for everybody by men.
The long answer; (I provide no explanation on reasoning behind subjugation, I merely explain the undeniable situation of inequality) – the employers aren’t sexist, nor are the job positions, they are by all means open to everyone, essentially inequality has been cancelled right? Wrong. The problem is that the ‘job requirements for the jobs are initially designed by men, on the assumption that men will fill the job.’ [Kymlicka, W, 2012]. To provide such example, I use the example used by Will Kymlicka in his book Contemporary Political Philosophy: An Introduction
“The first [example] concerns the use of minimum height and weight rules for access to certain jobs, such as firefighters, police, and the army. These rules are officially gender neutral, but since men are on average taller and heavier than women, these rules operate to screen out most women from being able to apply for the positions. The use of these rules is typically justified on the grounds that the equipment used in the job requires a certain height or strength, and hence these are valid requirements for the job. But we need to ask why the equipment was designed for people who are, say, 5’ 9”, rather than 5’ 5”. The answer, of course, was that the people designing the equipment assumed that it would be used by men, and so they designed it for the average male height and build. This was not inevitable. It is quite possible to make the same equipment for smaller and lighter people. For example, in Japan, where men have traditionally shorter than in the West, military and firefighting equipment have been designed for shorter and lighter people. And no one familiar with the Second World War could argue that this undermined the efficiency of the Japanese military.”
Essentially, women are discriminated in terms of job requirements. And this isn’t limited to the use of equipment – a much more serious issue in terms of job requirements is the care of a child and the requirement that the person (gender neutral stance, bypassing anti-discrimination laws) be required to not care for a child. If this requirement isn’t explicitly stated, it’s implicitly stated, i.e. be available from 9-5, without option to work around hours (for children). And there should be little argument that women are still the expected in society to take care of the children.
“There is gender-neutrality, in that employers do not attend to the gender of the applicants, but there is no sexual equality, for the job was defined under the assumption that it would be filled by men who had wives at home taking care of the children” [ibid]
Once you come to accept this fact, you realise the problem isn’t in terms of do they earn the same if they fill the same occupancy, rather the problem is, as stated before, why don’t women fill the higher paying occupancy that men fill? Simply, the jobs were designed by men, under the assumption they would be filled by men.
Call that patriarchal if you like.