Today is Equal Pay Day y’all. Yes, unfortunately in 2015, we still have to deal with bullshit like the wage gap and workplace discrimination. Women still earn, on average, 77% of what a man earns. Le sigh.
There are a myriad of rumors swirling around about the wage gap. Proponents of the gap, or those who deny its existence, love to throw these ridiculous myths out as evidentiary support, but let’s be honest, when you say these things you just sound stupid. Allow me to set the record straight and debunk some popular myths about the wage gap.
It doesn’t exist.
Yes it does. Boom. Mic drop.
Comparing Apples to Oranges?
The gap refers to pay disparity between men and women in the SAME job, doing the SAME work, under the SAME conditions, with the SAME qualifications. We are not comparing the salaries of a mom who works part time in retail to a male Google CEO.
Somewhere along the line, people got it in their heads that feminism is about destroying the male race. STOP IT. Feminism is not about toppling the male gender and taking all of the spoils. Feminism is about, say it with me now, equality. Equal pay for equal work, kids. Simple as that.
The Wage Gap Is A Legal Side Effect of a Competitive Job Market
Nope, sorry, wrong. There has been legislature passed to protect minorities, including women, from discriminatory practices. And when the primary reason for pay discrepancies is gender, then yes, that qualifies as discrimination.
Take, for example, the Equal Pay Act of 1963. This act prohibits sex-based wage discrimination between men and women in the same establishment who perform jobs that require substantially equal skill, effort, and responsibility under similar working conditions.
The Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act was also designed to protect against wage discrimination. This act restored protection against pay discrimination that was stripped by the Supreme Court’s decision in Ledbetter v. Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co., stating that pay discrimination claims on the basis of sex, race, national origin, age, religion, and disability accrue each time an employee has received discriminatory pay.
When you consider these legislative acts, any and all discriminatory practices, such as the wage gap, are illegitimate and illegal.
It’s Just Going To Go Away
No, it won’t. Simply acknowledging that the wage gap exists is not enough; words only do so much. We need take steps towards closing the gap and truly establishing equality. How can we do this? That is for a future post. Be sure to check in for the steps we can take to close the gap.