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Women Don't Need a Fair Pay Act

by Jenny Erikson on June 9, 2012 at 1:17 PM

businesswomanLast week, Republican Senators, along with a handful of their Democratic counterparts, rejected the Paycheck Fairness Act. Supporters of the bill claim that this measure would bring pay equality to women and minorities in the workforce. Whatever that means.

Despite the whining from the media and Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid, there is no need for another bill demanding equal pay for women. Overall, the average man in the workforce makes more than the average woman, but when you take everything into consideration, it’s actually women that make more.

Statistics show that when all factors are considered -- experience, education, time on the job, etc. -- women make more money than their male counterparts. So why are women as a whole earning about 80% of what men are making?

Many factors go into determining the wage of an employee, and thanks to the Civil Rights Act, the Equal Pay Act, and Lily Ledbetter, gender is not one of those factors. Women are more typically the primary caregivers, and many choose to take time out of the workforce to stay home with the children. It’s an admirable choice, and one that definitely qualifies as work, but expertly changing diapers with one hand or making the perfect playdate snack from a recipe you found on Pinterest isn’t exactly something you’ll put on your resume.

Even moms that work outside the home are usually the go-to person when the kids are sick, daycare is closed, or the nanny calls in sick. On average among fulltime workers (those working 35+ hours a week), men worked 8.2 hours while women only worked 7.8. Funny thing about employers – they like to pay people more when they work more.

Women are also more likely to pursue ‘fulfilling’ career paths, rather than one that will land them in a high-paying job. Women dominate the interior design field, and the average pay is less than $40,000 a year. Compare that to electrical engineering, where nine out of ten people with a degree in the field are male, and the average salary jumps to almost $80,000.

It’s a great time to be a woman. We have so many options available to us; no one can keep us from getting an education, casting a vote, or choosing our own career paths. It’s preciously that freedom that leads to the supposed wage gap. We are free to work flexible schedules without sacrificing motherhood, or to forgo the workforce entirely to stay home with the kids.

We don’t need more legislation to combat paycheck unfairness, because the only thing ‘unfair’ about our paychecks is how much the government withholds for taxes.

 

Image via Victor1558/Flickr

Filed Under: corporations, discrimination, economy, feminism

Comments

63
  • t0vanal
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    t0vanal

    June 9, 2012 at 1:35 PM

    This might be the only time I have ever agreed with you. This article was insightful. 


  • AI
    -- Nonmember comment from

    AI

    June 9, 2012 at 1:36 PM
    Your points would be relevant if there weren't a gender gap within industries. A female engineer will usually make less than her male counterpart, so saying it's about choice in career path is moot. A married couple taught at my HS. I took both of their classes (both taught honors/AP level, and she had a few years experience on him), but she made about $7K a year less than he did.
  • Tara
    -- Nonmember comment from

    Tara

    June 9, 2012 at 1:44 PM
    completely agree...good article!
  • kevobx
    -- Nonmember comment from

    kevobx

    June 9, 2012 at 1:53 PM
    *Jeremiah 31:22 How long wilt thou go about, O thou backsliding daughter? for the Lord hath created a new thing in the earth, A woman shall compass a man. *Ezekiel 33:17 Yet the children of thy people say, The way of the Lord is not equal: but as for them, their way is not equal. (Matthew 15:11)
  • bills...
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    billsfan1104

    June 9, 2012 at 1:57 PM
    AI, i didnt know teachers had a conversation with their students about what their pay is
  • Desir...
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    Desireesmom2011

    June 9, 2012 at 2:04 PM

    billsfan1104 it depends on the teacher and how close you are to them. I have had many teachers that share More information about their personal lives than they really should.


  • HS
    -- Nonmember comment from

    HS

    June 9, 2012 at 2:26 PM
    The argument isn't abt paying female graphic designers the same as male engineers. The argument is abt female engineers with the same qualifications as a male engineer making less than her male counterpart. Nice try though. Ignorant women writing ignorant blogs is why we can't get ahead.
  • Guest
    -- Nonmember comment from

    Guest

    June 9, 2012 at 2:31 PM
    @ Al "A married couple taught at my HS." Normally those jobs are paid by a defined pay scale, based on qualifications (such as type of degree) and years of experience. Are you suggesting that that school district has a differential they employ to set women's pay lower? Or do you have any idea what the real reason was for the difference in pay?
    "A female engineer will usually make less than her male counterpart" Really? Do you have any data to back that up, or shall we just take you word for it?
  • Autum...
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    Autumnleaves87

    June 9, 2012 at 2:35 PM
    "Thanks to the... Lily Ledbetter..."

    Holy cow. Did Jenny just approve of AND thank Obama for an accomplishment he made??? MARK THIS DOWN!!

    I really don't agree with her point of view though. I am completely FOR more litigation that would help women receive equal pay, for equal work. That's the bottom line.
  • bills...
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    billsfan1104

    June 9, 2012 at 2:36 PM
    Desiree i get that. ButI do not see the teacher telling how much they get paid. Besides, I thought teachers had unions to stop things like that?
1-10 of 63 comments

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