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Married men are biggest earners. What’s new?

January 21, 2010 4 comments

A new study by Pew Research Center has come out, saying that the “biggest gainers were married college-educated men” in terms of income. Was that supposed to surprise me? Married college-educated men have generally always been the highest earners.

However, the study is saying that the reason these men are the biggest earners is because more women are receiving higher earnings. The study did a comparison with earnings in 1970, and said this:

“In the past, when relatively few wives worked, marriage enhanced the economic status of women more than that of men. In recent decades, however, the economic gains associated with marriage have been greater for men.”

Call me crazy, but I think marriage has always been good for economic status for men. For some reason, employers really love it when men settle down, buy a house, start a family, etc. These men work up the company ladder. They get the promotions. They receive more income.

However, it’s opposite for women. Once women are married, employers will automatically go into this “Oh crap, she’s going to have all these responsibilities now and maybe have kids! Ack!” mode. Married women somehow become unreliable and the expectation is that they’ll be spending more time in the home, and maybe care less about work. It’s ridiculous.

Just another double standard in our oh-so-wonderful society.

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Sexism in South Africa

January 12, 2010 3 comments

A recent study in South Africa shows that sexism is alive and well, and very pervasive. And this is among men and women. Remember, we usually see things through the dominant groups lens. This is one reason why women and girls do get sucked into agreeing with some sexist things and whatnot. Here’s the breakdown:

It is acceptable for a man to beat his wife – 6% of men think yes/5% of women think yes
A boy has more right to an education than a girl – 11% of men think yes/8% of women think yes
A woman’s place is in the house – 20% of men think yes/14% of women think yes
When jobs are scarce, men should have more right to jobs than women – 38% of men think yes/22% of women think yes
Men make better political leaders than women do – 41% of men think yes/25% of women think yes

The article also mentions that 1 out of 4 men in South Africa have admitted to committing rape; some admitted to doing it multiple times. Wow. And that’s just the amount that has admitted to it. Of course, we do know that South Africa has the highest amount of rapes per capita, but even knowing that doesn’t lend itself to the rape stats being less shocking.

What do you think about these stats? Do you think that there would be some similarities if we did the same questions in North America?

Mother sterilized against will

January 5, 2010 1 comment

Not cool. Tessa Savicki, a mother of nine, is saying that she was sterilized against her will, when all she wanted was a IUD to be inserted, obviously making a birth control choice. But of course, doctors, with all their enlightened knowledge, power and authority (because you know, doctors are the be all and end all, right?), decided that it would be better to permanently sterilize her. Why? Well, as the Boston Herald puts it:

Savicki has nine children from several men, is unemployed and relies on public assistance for two of the four children who live with her. She receives supplemental security income, or SSI, for a disability, non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, she said. Her mother has custody of three of her children. Two of her children are no longer minors.

Um, so? Since when does that give anyone else the right to decide for another person whether or not they should be permanently sterilized? An article over at Jezebel about this brings up the age old support for eugenics in the United States, and Savicki would definitely be deemed one of those “unfit” parents who would be sterilized.

Despite all of this, Savicki knows that she was “not ready to make that kind of decision”, and in fact, was hoping to have one more with her fiance. She’s suing the hospital, and rightfully so. We’ll have to see how this case goes. Either way, no woman should have to participate in forced, or unwilling sterilization. These doctors should seriously be ashamed of themselves.

The Broadsheet gives their top 5 sexist iPhone apps!

December 21, 2009 1 comment

The Broadsheet has graciously taken a gander at all the sexist iPhone apps and have got it down to the top 5! Here’s the list:

PMSTracker:

It “allows you to quickly track the approximate time each woman in your life has PMS” using a color-coded method that functions much like the U.S. government’s terror alert system.

Shake That Booty:

This app allows you to manipulate an image of a woman’s butt — or, as the official app description calls it, “BOOTY!” — by physically shaking your phone.

Pole Dancing

“Get these hot girls to spin around a stripper pole by shaking your iPhone/iPod touch from side to side! Even better, clap, yell, make some noise and they will spin around at your command.”

Michelle:

She’s your brand “new virtual girlfriend” and “can be who you want her to be.” You can take Michelle “to the beach or pool and choose which bikini or bathing suit she should wear.”

iControl Her:

iControl Her is an actual remote that appears on the iPhone screen, with such clever buttons as “Stop Whining,” “Clean” and “Give Me Beer.”

Do you agree with these? Are there even more sexist iPhone apps?


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An abortion compromise made for health care reform

December 21, 2009 Leave a comment

I have neglected to post anything about the abortion debates/Stupak-Pitts/health care reform before this, because I just felt that others could explain things much better than myself, as I’m Canadian and don’t completely understand all the ins and outs of the American political system. However, I can’t neglect this anymore. As most of you may know by now, there is now an abortion compromise being proposed for the hopeful passing of the health care reform, just for that one damn vote from Sen. Ben Nelson, D-Neb.. Pretty much, most women are still getting screwed out of abortion coverage. Shit. Here’s how it goes:

No health plan would be required to offer coverage for the procedure. In plans that do cover abortion, beneficiaries would have to pay for it separately, and those funds would have to be kept in a separate account from taxpayer money.

Moreover, individual states would be able to prohibit abortion coverage in plans offered through the exchange, after but passing specific legislation to that effect. The only exceptions would be those allowed under current federal law.

So, what I’m hearing from this is that women are still getting screwed. Women should not have to pay a separate check for abortion coverage. That’s the most ridiculous thing ever. Seriously. Abortions should be considered a medically necessary procedure for those who need or want them (similar to how they are labeled in Canada), and there should be equal access across the board, for all women. The access thing is absolutely more difficult, but the first step is to allow abortions into the health care reform without any separation. This seriously just boils my blood. It’s ridiculous.

So how are other people responding to this? NARAL gives their take and states,

“At every turn, our standard has been consistent and clear: Women should not lose ground in the new health-care system…the language regarding abortion coverage comes at too high a price for reproductive health. Thus, we must oppose this new Nelson language.”

Rep. Lois Capps, D-Calif., says that she’s “disappointed that women’s access to full reproductive health care is again paying the price.

Planned Parenthood gives their thoughts:

There is no sound policy reason to require women to pay separately for their abortion coverage other than to try to shame them and draw attention to the abortion coverage. Moreover, it is highly unlikely that insurance companies will be willing to follow such an administratively cumbersome system, leaving tens of millions of women without abortion coverage.

No doubt, there will be more news about this and more to say about it in the coming days and weeks. Right now, I have to say that this is not good enough, and some fighting still needs to be done, especially since people who support Stupak-Pitts aren’t going to go down without a fight.

Update: After I wrote this post, we now have found out that the Senate has voted yes (60-40) on the first health care reform vote.


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Being male in the writing realm equates to more success

December 16, 2009 Leave a comment

James Chartrand, of Copyblogger and Mens with Pens, is coming out. As the true woman that she is. James Chartrand, which is a pen name, explains the struggle she was having before she got into the online writing biz. She tells of how she is a single mother, who was on the brink of having to go on welfare and not being able to feed her two daughters. She decided to look online for writing jobs, as she knew she could write well and do it from home. She did this for a good while, under her real name, but it just wasn’t cutting it. She explains that before she took up a male’s pen name, that she would be struggling to get jobs, as well as not receiving the pay she knew some other people were getting. She then decided that she was going to make a pen name for herself, something that would “command respect”. She chose James Chartrand.

Once she did this, she got more jobs. She got more pay. She got compliments. She didn’t have to do many revisions. She states,

Understand, I hadn’t advertised more effectively or used social media — I hadn’t figured that part out yet. I was applying in the same places. I was using the same methods. Even the work was the same.

The exact same work. It was equal by all means, yet, because she now had James as a pen name, everything was better and easier. She explains the positives here:

Taking a man’s name opened up a new world. It helped me earn double and triple the income of my true name, with the same work and service.

No hassles. Higher acceptance. And gratifying respect for my talents and round-the-clock work ethic.

Business opportunities fell into my lap. People asked for my advice, and they thanked me for it, too.

Astounding. If that’s not a slap in the face for women writers, and women in general, I don’t know what is. Most professional women just want to work. They want respect for what they do, because they love what they do and they work hard at it. But still, just because we have vagina’s, we apparently aren’t as good as men. We aren’t as respected. We’re ignored. We’re sexually harassed. We’re discriminated against. Just because we have vagina’s. Really? Does a difference in genitals really make a difference? The clear answer is no, but still today, it is an issue. James talks about this, as she mentions that women writers have been doing this for ages, however, she states that,

Since then, we’ve had feminism. We have the right to vote, to own property, to be members of Parliament and Congress, to get a job, and to be the main breadwinner of the family. And yet apparently we haven’t gotten past those 19th century stigmas.

No, we haven’t gotten past the 19th century stigmas. That’s why feminism still exists today. We need it, and James Chartrand has once again proved that.

Click here to read her post called Why James Chartrand Wears Women’s Underpants, which tells her whole story.


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Sexism in America: Too normal?

December 14, 2009 Leave a comment

So, yes, of course…sexism in America/North America is definitely normal, and feminists see this and that’s why feminism remains as a movement. However, according to Barbara Berg, a historian and new author of Sexism in America: Alive, Well, and Ruining our Future, says that it’s becoming too normal and that the condition that America is in right now in terms of women’s rights could very well be worse than ever before. Berg surveyed over 200 women, and interviewed 200 more for her recent findings.

The Toronto Star was able to have an interview with her, and I just wanted to point out a few excerpts:

Many of the ways that women go about their lives and men go about their lives are based on premises such as we had seen in the 1950s. A sense of difference over who had power.

Numerous women told me that would not challenge the authority of a male boss, that they were happy to have their jobs, that they felt that they had to accept – and this is very disturbing – a certain amount of sexual harassment, that they did not expect the same kind of promotions, that they were accepting the 70 cents to the dollar gender wage gap. (emphasis mine)

This information is quite disturbing, but not necessarily surprising to someone who really knows what’s happening within the realm of gender relations and gender inequality. Berg goes onto state that this has happened because “there has been a tremendous sense of acceptance of a hierarchical and patriarchal society again” (emphasis mine). And of course, this is utterly disappointing. Because we live in an apparent “post-feminist” society, people are so damn blinded to what is really going on.

Berg ends off the interview with some positivity, by saying that there are so many things that women can do to change this kind of attitude. She states,

Women also have tremendous power as consumers. Don’t buy Bratz Dolls. Don’t buy hypersexualized Halloween costumes. Don’t go to movies that brutalize or demean women. Choose women authors. Make sure that women’s history in the curriculum of your daughter’s school. Lobby your government. Run for office.

It’s a great, great interview. I didn’t even really cover even just a bit of it, so please head on over to the Toronto Star and read this amazing interview! She talks about everything from pop culture, to reproductive rights. Berg really has some great insights on what’s going on in our culture today and why it’s going on.


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