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Women’s Fight for Equal Rights

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: History
Wordcount: 2295 words Published: 19th Oct 2021

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The gender wage gap has been an issue throughout history, and men are usually the ones that represent the workplace. Since women entered the labor market, they tried to be equal in all senses to men, not to be over anyone, but to have equal rights. Women have been fighting for equal rights way before 1850 and are still fighting today for equal pay as men. For example, one of the greatest players in the NBA is LeBron James, and he signed a new four year deal with the Los Angeles Lakers for 153.3 million dollars. On the other hand, one the of greatest female basketball player Diana Taurasi signed a new two-year contract with Phoenix Mercury for only $236.99k. That is a vast difference not by a couple of thousand dollars, not by a hundred thousand dollars; buy by millions. That shows the people that make millions of dollars, but if a middle-class woman is working full time, she earns about 80.7 cents for every dollar a man working full time makes. A women’s median annual earnings are $9,909 less than men. The wage gap affects women in a lot of different situations, like emotionally and mentally. Some women might think they are not good enough by getting paid less, but that is not the case. They could be the best person in their field of job and get paid less than men just because they are female, and it might be worse for women of color. It can take up to years before women of color get equal pay as men It. The change should not take this long that women have a fighting way before the 1850s. There has been little improvement in this wage gap, but it is still not enough, and women are fighting every day for a change. Women are not only paid less for the same work but also suffered emotional and physical trauma at home, discrimination in the workplace therefore there needs to be a change for women to have equal opportunity.

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In today’s world, women are taking over and showing that they can do anything they want to do, but in some cultures or even in some society women are being taught only to do the housework and how to raise kids. Some people in the workplace see a woman as a wasted investment because they think that women cannot work extended hours as men do or women might take maternity leave. The business owners might think that affect their business, and that is why sometimes business owners do not hire women. There should not be any difference between gender, but there are still many people that think men are superior to women, and that is not true at all. Men and Women should be treated equally, but there is certain religion were all women supposed to do make food for their husbands and take care of the kids, and family or women are just being treated like she has been hired to do a certain job after she gets married. People must fix their mentality towards women, because women do so much, from bringing a new life in this world, taking care of the whole family, and working. After all that, some people still consider that women are less than men, which is not true at all. They are equal or maybe in some cases, better than men.

When people hear about the gender wage gap issue, they only think that women are getting paid less, and that is it. There is more to it than just getting paid less when women get paid less, they must think about how they are going to pay their bills? Feed her kids? Furthermore, stuff like that and thinking about that stuff cause them to have severe depression and anxiety. In the article “Gender Pay Gap Contributes to Increased Rates of Depression and Anxiety Among Women” by Emily A. Kuhl, she says “when women earned, a lower-income compared with their male counterparts, the odds of depression were 2.43 times higher. It also talks about the disadvantage of specific groups of individuals. Women earning less money than their male counterparts reported more than four times the rate of the anxiety of men, whereas women earning incomes equivalent to or higher than those of their male counterparts reported much lower odds of exhibiting anxiety” (Kuhl). This shows that it brutally affects women, and they did not ask for this. They are mistreated just because they are women and having mental issues. In some cases, a woman might have anxiety or depression, but it is not always because of the wage gap.

Some people might say that if a woman is going through depression or have any anxiety, she should get some help and get some medication. A woman not only goes through those things, but a woman also gets abuse at home because they are not making enough money to support the family. In the article “The Gender Wage Gap and Domestic Violence” by Anna Aizer, she says, “women face much higher risks of abuse. Women with annual income below $10,000 report rates of domestic violence is five times greater than those with annual income above $30,000” (Aizer par. 5). So, now women must make sure they make over a certain amount of money so that they do not get abused by their significant other. That is crazy to think that woman are getting abuse over the things that they have no control over, no women should get abused for any reason, but some people do abuse women just because they are making less money. Yet, some people still blame the woman for making less money saying stuff like “well you should work hard” even though that woman is the best at her job, she still gets paid less just because she is a woman.

Women making less money does not only affect them; it has a global effect. There are almost forty-four million people who have student loans, which is equal to 1.46 Trillion dollars, and out of 1.46 trillion dollars, a woman holds nearly two- thirds of that student debt, which almost adds up to 929 billion dollars. If this debt is keep growing it will affect men too because the government is going to tax more so it is not just the problem for woman it is a problem for men too. When women graduate from universities, they go into the workforce, and they all have student loans to pay off, but they cannot pay them off at the same pace as men because of the wage gap. In the article “Women's Student Debt Crisis in the United States,” it talks about “Women college graduates working full-time are paid 18 percent less than their male peers one year after graduation. By four years after graduation, that gap widens to 20 percent. Overall, women with bachelor’s degrees working full-time make 26 percent less than their male peers” (par. 7). It shows us that if women get paid less, it is less money to pay back towards her debt. Men usually pay off their student loans because they get paid more than women; men pay off their student loans 38% faster than a woman.    

If a woman is making less money and it is hard for them to provide for their family and less money saved for them when they retire. If the wage gap starts to close, there would be a massive change in the poverty rate for woman and their families. In the article “Women, Poverty, and the Gender Wage Gap” by Wendy Pollack, she states in the report that “women are 38% more likely to live in poverty than men. That’s 16.3 million women in the United States or more than one in eight. And women of color experience poverty at much higher rates than White women” (Pollack par. 1). There are a lot of women that go through the same thing, and they have been dealing with it for decades. There has not been an enormous change because so many women live under poverty; they are not able to save up enough money for their retirement. They have to work way past their average retirement age, which is around 60; they have to keep working past 60 because they are barely making their ends meet. In the article “The Pay Gap's Connected To The Retirement Gap” it talks about “ today's older women do not have much income from either pensions or savings, and while women have increasingly entered the workforce over the last twenty-five years, their lower earnings leave them with few resources to invest” (par. 3).  So, for women to enjoy their retirement, they must start saving up way before a man ever needs to save up, and men are enjoying their retirement and while most women are still working because they cannot make their ends meet.

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The woman not only gets paid less just because they are female and some business owners may seem like a wasted investment, which is not true at all, but most women are mistreated and being discriminated at their workplace, especially if they are women of color. In the article “Pay Equity & Discrimination” by Cynthia Hess, et al. they state in this article that “ if change continues at the same slow pace as it has done for the past fifty years, it will take 40 years or until 2059 for women to finally reach pay parity. For women of color, the rate of change is even slower Hispanic women will have to wait until 2224, and Black women will wait until 2130 for equal pay” (Hess et al.). This shows that it is hard for a woman of color to get equal pay even if they are the best at what they do, they still do not get the compensation they deserve just because they are a different color. Discrimination not only happen to those of color it also occurs to woman of varying religion or if they are disable and which is not fair toward those woman, because this country is known for giving everyone an equal opportunity to grow and be successful but because of their color of their skin or their religion they cannot succeed. Discrimination of color and religion does not only affect women. It also affects men even in most parts, men are being paid more, but when it comes to color and religion, some of the men go through the same things as women. This is going on for way too long, and it is time for everyone to come together and help make a change, help those women, help the economy.

It is time for the government to step in and take some significant steps toward gender wage issue that has been going on for the longest time. Even people in the government believe it is time for some change. In the article “Wide Partisan Gaps in the U.S. Over How Far the Country Has Come on Gender Equality” by Juliana Menasce Horowitz, et al. They state the following in the article “69% of Democrats say the country hasn’t gone far enough when it comes to giving women equal rights with men. Among Republicans, more than half (54%) say things are about right, while only 26% say the country has more work to do” (Horowitz, et al. par. 2). It shows that more than half of people from democrats want to change, and 26% of Republicans also believe there needs to be a change, and now it is time for both of those parties to come together and do what is right for the women and the country. Also, in the article “Lovewell’s Logic: Is There a Solution to Gender Pay Inequality?” by Debbie Tuck-Lovewell she suggest a fantastic idea that is being used by the British government which is “British government's launch of a consultation aimed at establishing the details of its plans to make it compulsory for employers with 250 or above staff to publish the average salaries for both male and female employees” (Lovewell par. 8). It gives everyone equals a fair chance, and also government should raise the minimum wages because all the stuff is getting expensive and the wages have not gone up, and women should get paid sick leaves or paid paternity leave. The government needs to start this process because they do not do anything about it and leave it as it is, it can take over 200 years for the gender wage gap to close because the process is prolonged. Everyone knows things like these takes time, but woman has been fighting for equal right as men way before 1850. Sooner there is a change in the gender wage gap, sooner there will be less emotional and physical trauma for women, and they will suffer less depression and anxiety. They can focus on their work and their family and, most importantly, take care of themselves.

Works Cited

  • Aizer, Anna. “The Gender Wage Gap and Domestic Violence.” American Economic Review, vol. 100, no. 4, Sept. 2010, pp. 1847–1859. EBSCOhost, doi:10.1257/aer.100.4.1847.
  • Hess, Cynthia, et al. “Pay Equity & Discrimination.” Institute for Women's Policy Research, 11 September 2019, iwpr.org/issue/employment-education-economic-change/pay-equity-discrimination/.
  • Horowitz, Juliana Menasce, et al. “Wide Partisan Gaps in the U.S. Over How Far the Country Has Come on Gender Equality” Pew Research Center's Social & Demographic Trends Project, 22 Jan. 2019, www.pewsocialtrends.org/2017/10/18/wide-partisan-gaps-in-u-s-over-how-far-the-country-has-come-on-gender-equality/.
  • Kuhl Emily A. “Gender Pay Gap Contributes to Increased Rates of Depression and Anxiety Among Women.” Partnership For Workplace Mental Health, www.workplacementalhealth.org/Mental-Health-Topics/Depression/gender-pay-gap-depression-rates.
  • Lovewell-Tuck, Debbie. “Lovewell’s Logic: Is There a Solution to Gender Pay Inequality?” Employee Benefits, July 2015, p. 1. EBSCOhost, search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?Direct=true&db=f6h&AN=108690971&site=ehost-live&scope=site.
  • Pollack, Wendy. “Women, Poverty, and the Gender Wage Gap.” Medium, Shriver Center on Poverty Law, 25 Sept. 2018, theshriverbrief.org/women-poverty-and-the-gender-wage-gap-960863d8ba8b.
  • “The Pay Gap's Connected To The Retirement Gap” Women's Institute For A Secure Retirement.  www.wiserwomen.org/index.php?id=266&page=pay-gap-retirement-gap.
  • “Women's Student Debt Crisis in the United States.” AAUW, May 2019, www.aauw.org/research/deeper-in-debt/.


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