Girls And Women Need Our Support: Part 1
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Girls And Women Need Our Support: Part 1

Does the USA really still need special programming to lift up girls and women?

Girls And Women Need Our Support: Part 1
Wikipedia, CC 2.0

Many people believe that we don't need special programming to support girls and women because "here in America" we are "past that". I have two issues with this statement: the first is that "here in America" we are past misogyny and the gender gap in careers and life; the second is that there is so much more to the world than American. I am a big picture person so I see the issues of gender inequality globally, including the US but also the rest of North America, Europe, Africa, Asia, and South/Central America. I'm going to tackle the issues separately as they are both huge and encompassing topics.

When arguing that in America "we" meaning society and the American people are "past it" many people use personal experiences. I love it. I am so incredibly happy that misogyny is not directly and overtly affecting you. Maybe it's because you're a man. If you are a woman using this type of reasoning, it doesn't mean it isn't affecting you. There are discreet and covert or systematic ways that misogyny is affecting your life. I'm also not trying to say that every person you meet is a misogynist. That being said, most people (myself included) have been taught misogynistic things throughout our lives and internalized them. And while you may not have been overtly affected, many many people are and statistics will account for that.

The most obvious aspect that gets brought all the time is the wage gap. On average, women make less than men doing the same work. There are a handful of jobs in which women make more. On average women make 20 cents per dollar less than men. That may not seem like much. But let's use some real numbers. In the state of Michigan the average salary of a lawyer is $130K a year. If a male lawyer is making that amount a female lawyer is making $104K a year. Then when a 2.9% raise (yearly) comes the man is making $133,770 a year and the female is making $107,016 a year. Ten years after that first raise (assuming the raise rate remains 2.9%) the man is making about $178,037 a year. The female (over the same time and rate) is making about $142,430. That means that after 10 years, a woman is making less than the man at 3 years. And this is assuming they stay at the same position. Men often get promotions higher and faster than women. I don't know about you but I want my $30,000 a year.

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