It's 4/20... puff, puff, give (equal pay and opportunity to women)

You know what that means, right?

It's Equal Pay Day. (Please, you know I didn't mean that that 4/20)

Today is the day - we're told - that "symbolizes how far into 2010
women must work to earn what men earned in 2009"

Akin to "Tax Day" (the day you supposedly have to work until you make enough
to pay all your taxes) - this figure is a bit misconstrued.

It certainly doesn't take into account a number of figures: For instance,
according to many naysayers, single women between 27 and 33 make only 2%
less than men in the same category. Certainly, these women wouldn't fit
the "4/20" figure on Equal Pay day.

Other naysayers claim this is merely a result of women's "life

Wow. We're really saying this in 2010? Did I miss a Back-To-The-Future ride to 1950?

The American article cites Labor department official Charles James who says:

"This study leads to the unambiguous conclusion that the differences in
the compensation of men and women are the result of a multitude of
factors and that the raw wage gap should not be used as the basis to
justify corrective action. Indeed, there may be nothing to correct. The
differences in raw wages may be almost entirely the result of the
individual choices being made by both male and female workers."

I about spit up my soda because of the absolute stupidity of that
comment. Let's look at some other REAL facts (not hypotheses):

  1. Only 3% of CEOs at Fortune 500 companies are female.
  2. More than 50% of our workforce is female.
  3. In order to have the court enforce equal pay law, a woman or minority must prove they have been discriminated against within 180 days
    of their last paycheck. Considering many employees must not discuss
    their pay - this is a difficult thing to prove in the alloted time.

While equal pay can be enforced, and companies are doing a better job of paying women equal wages (this should be celebrated) - there is
still work to do. Hiring managers must continue to promote female
employees to power positions. Clearly, given the numbers, there is still overt
discrimination.(come on... 50% of the work-force... and only 3% of the CEOs?!?)

So, while naysayers have a point that there has been improvement, there is a long way to go. But to say no corrective
action is needed, all I ask is: What are you smoking?

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Views: 535

Comment by bill josephson on April 21, 2010 at 4:40pm
I'm not at all concerned about women's percentage of CEO's. Are you aware that almost 2/3 of all college graduates are now women? Do you, thus realize that men's days in charge are numbered? It's already becoming a women's world and CEO numbers will continue to rise as men keep falling further behind educationally and professionally.

So in 5-10 years the question you'll start to ask, Sean, is "what happened to men? They used to be prevalent as CEO's and now you can barely find one graduating college? Shouldn't something be done to encourage their remaining in school? How is our educational environemnt failing them?"

And if I can survive this economic Depression I'll, again, reply.

Comment by Sean Ryan on April 21, 2010 at 7:03pm

It appears that you are pretty upset over my concern over female and minority representation in the workforce. It also appears you are concerned about a female "take-over" of the workforce.

I have two responses:

1. You say that in 5-10 years we're going to be asking "what happened to men?" - Well, in the 47 years since the original equal pay law went into effect... women are making (a conservatively estimated) 20% less on the dollar than men. I wouldn't call that a sea-change. In fact, I'd call that a lack of progress.

2. As to your being concerned that this influx of women college grads is going to overrun the system of male dominated business... get real. As a white male, I can clearly see the run the 'white male' has had in society... I don't think it's going to hurt if maybe someone else drives... or at least is paid an equal wage.

There is clearly an issue with where women are being hired and what positions they are hired (or not hired) for. And the facts clearly show, they are not being promoted to the top spots - and pay scales - at a representative percentage. And despite your concerns... that's not going to A. change itself, or B. see a rapid overturn in the next 5-10 years because of equal pay legislation.
Comment by bill josephson on April 21, 2010 at 7:45pm
I'm giving you the facts as I see them. Check out college graduation rates for men and women. Check out academic statistics in K-12 education. The girls are absolutely smoking the boys in both. Men's days in charge are numbered--those are the facts. So as people demand more be done to boost girls in Math and Science boys are falling further behind. The real question should be how can we get boys jump started academically and what will be the consequences societally/professionally if we don't?

As for women earning less, regardless of the reasons (and there are several) the bottom line is this recession has been a killer for men as Construction/Manufacturing/High wage earners have been crushed in this 'He-cession' with 70% laid off being men.

Being paid less seems to have been an advantage for women in these economic times, unless you also believe they should be equally represented in lay off numbers as well?

Wait 5-10 years and this discussion will be moot. Things are changing regardless of your views or what you motives you're trying to apply to me.

Finally, I don't believe a woman CEO will necessarily be superior because she's a woman having inherent advantages by not being a man. If you believe men, generally, have their genetic male flaws, you can bet women, generally, have their genetic female flaws as both genders can be sterotyped for strengths and weaknesses.

The market is the great equalizer--not "equal pay" legislation.

Comment by Sean Ryan on April 21, 2010 at 10:56pm
"I'm giving you the facts as I see them" - what on earth does that mean?

Facts are facts - not opinion based on viewpoint. FACT: Women make less money then men in similar positions: That is a fact, and that is wrong.

"Check out academic statistics in K-12 education. The girls are absolutely smoking the boys in both." -
Well, not really. You're looking at about a .2 difference GPA. That's from the NYT article I'm sure you salivated over by Nicolas Kristof.

And you're really going to call the recession a "He"cession? Really? On what planet do you spend most of your time? To suggest that the recession is male oriented (EVERYONE is affected) is plain ignorant, naive, stupid - or all of the above.

And absolutely I think the lay-offs should be representative of the workforce. (By the way, of course "High Wage earners" are going to be mostly male... it's something I've pointed out already. That's not discrimination against males - rather, it's a product of males dominating the high end salary range).

"I don't believe a woman CEO will necessarily be superior because she's a woman having inherent advantages by not being a man." - No one is arguing that. Where are you reading that in what I'm writing? I'm saying equality - not superiority.

Bill, with all due respect, I hope you have job in 5-10 years working under a man. I'm sure you'll be happy that the female take-over has come completely out of control.

Finally - the point of my post was simple: Hey recruiters and HR folks... beware of the all boys club. The upper echelon of the work force needs to be better represented by the demographics of the populous. It's not a bad thing to diversify... it's what this country was founded on. After all - we are the melting pot.


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