Gender Equality: The Wage Gap



The Problem

For hundreds of years, women have been treated as inferior to men. This hasn’t always been the case though. In the times of hunter-gathers, all people were valued, integral parts of the community. In ancient Egypt, gender didn’t dictate any social status. (O’Brien) In modern times, however, women have been mistreated, disadvantaged, and abused, and had little to no consequences for doing so. Women are seen by some as having less inherent value than men. That mentality justifies a difference in pay between them. Instead, some believe every person, whether woman, man, or enby, should be valued equally, and should be paid equally for equivalent labor. Today, all around the world systemic problems face women, for example, for every eighty-nine cents made by a woman, one dollar is made by a man doing the same labor. (O’Brien)

Not only are women paid less, but they are sometimes unable to work high-paying jobs because societal norms force them to spend their time and energy running their households. They are expected to care for children, do cleaning and cook meals. This labor is unpaid, which means they often become financially dependent on their partner. Men in power have disenfranchised women for centuries, restricting them from owning land, voting, writing, being educated, or having high-ranking positions in society. (O’Brien)

Restricting women’s ability to earn their own money reduces the agency they have. If people are worried about earning enough to eat, they won’t take a day off work to march in a rally. Religious institutions have sought to sequester women, and force rigid, obedient, roles onto them, all done in the name of a higher power. These pretenses are used to justify cruel and unjust actions taken against women.

Governments use laws and policing to withhold self-agency from women, LGBTQIA+ people, and people of color, including indigenous people. Without the right to vote, their voices on political leaders are silenced, and they aren’t taken into account. Issues they value, like equal pay for all, aren’t addressed. People have taken stands against the system, but in trying to bring awareness to these issues plaguing women around the world, and speaking out against them, and the people responsible for their proliferation, many throughout history have suffered and been killed. (O’Brien)

Women endure hate-filled, ignorant, sexist, bigoted, crude, and dehumanizing remarks regularly. (O’Brien) One of the most common places for these interactions is in workplace settings. This awful treatment drives women out of the workforce, or into worse, lower-paying positions to get away from the people who mistreat them.


How do we reduce the impacts of issues like pay inequality?


One way to reduce these issues' impacts is by speaking out against inequality and raising awareness about the systemic issues women face simply for existing as they are. By addressing problems such as the wage gap, and calling on leaders to change policies. (O’Brien) Social media has become a home for discourse surrounding these topics. It is important to recognize the part we play within the system, and the power we hold to shape it.

Throughout the years, thousands of civil activists and feminists have rallied and written for their cause. They confront firmly instantiated institutions and beliefs. We can follow in their footsteps and march, picket truths clenched high. (O’Brien) Going on strike from businesses with unfair and unequal hiring, firing, or payment practices. By celebrating the achievements and lives of women, and voting for female leaders. (O’Brien) As a society, we should value everyone regardless of their gender, race, or other attributes. Everyone should respect, and be respected. It is irrational and unfair to pay someone less just for having a different body when it has no bearing on the work they do. It is selfish and cruel to force women to participate in unpaid domestic service, or to restrict their access to voting, ownership, and education. As a connected and intelligent culture, we should be able to solve these humanitarian issues. Regardless of who we are, these issues are our issues, for we are engaged in the anthropocene.

Do you think women should be paid the same?

Should women and men be paid equally?





Works Cited

O'Brien, Cynthia. Working toward Gaining Equality for Women. Crabtree Publishing

Company, 2021.

Imani, Blair, and Monique Le. Modern Herstory: Stories of Women and Nonbinary People

Rewriting History. Ten Speed Press, 2018.

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  • Great topic choice and great job overall Danny! I do think you could have gone in later yesterday to reply. It's also a week late. +5 for new topic

  • I think you should be payed based on the quality and the amount of work that you put in no matter your gender. I think the reason there is a pay gap is because they aren't working as hard or just giving good enough quality to be paid the same amount.

  • I think that women should be paid the same as men for the same job. A lot of commenters seem to assume that women can't do as good of a job as men, which is obviously untrue. There are plenty of jobs that women do just as well or even better than men yet still get paid less for.

  • In my personally opinion the amount you are payed should be based on the quality of work you produce, regardless of your gender, age, etc. Obviously harder jobs, both mentally and physically should be payed higher than easier ones, but it shouldn't matter who is doing to job as long as they are doing it properly and effectively.

  • I think that people getting paid should depend on how hard of a worker they are. Are they productive? Do they provide the services they are being paid to do? In my opinion it shouldn't matter the gender or race, everyone should be paid based on other factors like productivity and work-ethic.

  • I think that women should get paid the same, it doesn't make sense that they don't because if they are working the same job and doing the same amount of effort then pay them equally. Gender shouldn't have to do anything with how much you pay someone. It should depend on how well they are doing at their job and if they deserve it.

  • In my oppinion i think yes, woman should get paid equally because theres many womens around the word who work like men and sometimes even better, there many woman around the world doing mens job and they do it just fine and it woulndt be fair for woman to get paid less than men.

    I think they both should get paid equall if they are both working the same 

  • I think that if the women is doing the same job as the male she should be paid the same depending on if shes puting in the same amount of effort as him. I do not think the gender has anything to do with the rate of money they make it just depends.

  • I think that if they work the same job and put out the same effort, then they should be paid the same. I believe that the reasoning behind unequal pay is that they aren't working as hard, so they won't be getting paid as much. I believe it has nothing to do with gender.

  • I think that they should get paid the same for the same job. However, if the women don't work as hard/as much as the men do, then why should they be paid the same for not doing as much work? The same goes for men, but what I'm getting at is that the reason that women don't get paid as much is usually because they aren't as hard of a worker, it has nothing to do with sexism, it is just the fact that some women don't work as hard as most men.

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