Sunday, November 13, 2011

Danish Week - Gender Inequality

I thought the presentation was very interesting and engaging. Wenche shed light on many issues that are frequently ignored in American society. The one I was most interested in was her discussion of gender inequality. White American women working full time make, on average, 77 cents to a white males dollar. African American women and Latinas make 68 to 58 cents to the dollar. These figures, probably much lower when part-time employment/illegal employment is accounted for, are completely unacceptable. However, it is difficult for women to advocate for better salaries. Given the current economic state and the fact that many states are at-will states of employment, women often consider themselves lucky to be employed at all. Long-unchallenged traditions of unequal pay and preferential treatment towards men in many fields allow this trend to continue. I think politicians need to become better advocates for their female constituents in order for this pattern to change. Women working for minimum wage, multiple jobs, and many hours do not have the time to advocate on their own behalf and would likely be ignored, or at risk of losing their jobs if they did.

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