Wednesday Rants

Here is my daily rant. I don't usually blog my rants otherwise they'd take over this blog...but here's what's on my mind today.
I am sure some people would call me a feminist. I wouldn't agree with them, completely. Feminists wouldn't call me a feminist, but I do feel strongly about equality.
Here's where my rant comes in. I guess March is Women's History Month, never knew. My first thought is why is their a month for women's history month? Why not have it all year mixed in with all the other history? Like Black History month, I think history should be history...teach it all year round, have a section on it in school, don't single it out otherwise we'll run out of months. It should be a regular part of school's curriculum.
OK, I am going off my train of thought here.
There were some quiz questions on one of the morning shows about women and their history (first woman to be a Democratic presidential candidate, etc.), one of the questions was "For every dollar a man earns, how much does a woman earn?" The answer was less, my brain has gone blank...I think it was like 70 odd cents per dollar a man earns. To me there should be no pay difference for men and women who do the same job and have the same job experience. Obviously there will be differences if a man is a doctor and a woman is a teacher...that happens, but if they are both teachers, teaching in the same school, with the same experience, they should be paid the same. One other point the show brought up was that less than 7% of the Fortune 500 earners were women. Sure that seems low, but in the workforce what is the percent of working men vs. working women? If only 3 out of 10 workers are women then of course there will be more men earning the bigger pay checks. Did they stop to think that women are more likely to work part time or to leave the workforce if they have children? I get frustrated when columnists, journalists, celebs, whoever start talking about how there needs to be more women in politics, more blacks in CEO level jobs, more Asians in movies, more Canadians in the MLB...whatever. Here's my thing with it all - if people aren't applying for these jobs how can we hire them? Maybe a woman doesn't want to run for office, do we pick an unqualified woman just to have better diversity? What if a Black man doesn't want to be the head of a company... if people do not enter these fields they can't be hired! It's not brain surgery folks. If an employer had two resumes in front of them and one was a man and one a woman and the woman had a better record, more experience, etc., I would think she would be hired (maybe that's the feminist, commie liberal in me, right Mark?), not because they need a woman to look diverse but because she is the best candidate. I don't know what the big fuss is...even if you don't agree with Obama, he is a Black man and the US President. Do you really think he was elected just because he is Black and the US had yet to have a Black president? I sure hope not because that would be stupid and dangerous. May be I am a little too believing in people, and give too many people the benefit of the doubt, but in this day and age I just don't think people base their hiring decisions on race, gender....it's about experience and qualifications. I'm just tired of this "we need more Asians in DC, we need more Women in science, we need..." Well if you need them, start making the rounds at schools and get these kids interested. I guarantee you that if Women, Blacks, Asians, Koreans, Brazilians...whoever, get involved more, you will see more minorities in all of these arenas.
In the end, it comes down to this, you can't hire those who aren't applying. And if you do the same job you should definitely get the same pay.
And those are my two cents. Hopefully it made some sense because it did in my head!


Dolphinsbarn said...

I think we can all agree that there should be fewer Canadians in every sport.


Mark said...

What Melanie is forgetting is the risk premium that employers must have when hiring a woman. If you have two banks where you can invest your money and both have a 5% yield on your savings, then you will pick whichever bank has less risk of default. The same goes with hiring a women. If I am choosing to hire between a man and a woman, and I think there is a 10% chance the woman will get pregnant and miss work then she must be more qualified than the man for me to justify hiring her. It is all about return on your investment and women with a uterus must be priced at a discount to men. This is basic economics. (I'm ready for the hate mail).

Ming said...

Although I agree with a lot of this I have to debunk this statement, "but in this day and age I just don't think people base their hiring decisions on race, gender....it's about experience and qualifications."

Ummm, I used to work for Citi as an MBA Graduate Recruiter and I hate to say we definitely based many decisions on race/gender & were even asked to look at sexuality! Did you know GayLesbianBiTransgenders are considered a minority group that actually add to your diversity in the company! I thought it was wrong to discuss ones sexuality in an interview...apparently only if they're straight. Anyway, I'm not saying it's right, but I am saying it is part of corporate America. We had to have a certain number of diversity in our hiring process even if that meant hiring a somewhat qualified woman vs. a more qualified man.

Side note: did you also know that Indians are no longer considered a minority group? Apparently there are plenty of them working here already that they don't count for diversity in the company. If you speak with any IT group in any major company you'll see this to be true! :)