The gender pay gap: easily the most misunderstood social issue of our time

Over the last few years, the debate over the pay gap between men and women has become increasingly ferocious to touch. Why has it become such a dead bounce issue and how can we agree on a solution?

One camp seeks uphold that women are being paid less than men and the other camp generally leans towards that being total shit.

You may already be asking yourselves – don’t we have equal pay laws?

Well, to put it simply, yes.

Since 1970 It has been illegal to unfavourably treat men and women differently in respect to pay and conditions in the workplace.

So why all the fuss now?

The fuss is because researchers and statisticians have rather haphazardly thrown heaps off data into one big pot and come up with the highly inflammatory “79 pence to the pound” figure which at first creates this misleading picture of women being paid less than men for the same job.

That is complete bullshit.

Don’t confuse equal pay and a gender pay gap, this always tends to be the case amongst a group discussing the matter.

The real focus should lie on first understanding why this statistic exists;

Straight off the bat, women simply undertake more care-based jobs such as teaching, nursing customer service led careers, whereas men seem to opt (largely) for higher rewarding careers, namely project management, engineering or medical professions.

It is also no secret that most CEO’s happen to be men – and it’s a zero-sum game to assume nepotism keeps this modus operandi alive and slightly vilifying of men, how and who are we to discern a decision from afar?

Relax your cancel culture fingers please.

Another reason could be that It is impossible to gather data for such a statistic; I mean, how in gods name would someone be able to compile data from every profession, institution, organisation and entity. In actual fact, we never needed a statistic to prove this.

The way that men and women operate in society can be understood by a simple walk round Wall street, followed by a tour of the hotelier industry. Men and women undertake different jobs.

As such, a graph can be viewed as fact, but we must look beyond the X & Y axis and realise that women are also childbearing individuals and several years out the workplace can impede climbing that ladder. This is also a conscious choice and is often cited as a reason towards many women’s aversion to modern feminism, carrying a child is surely the world’s most demanding job.

Interestingly, more companies are allowing women to freeze their eggs, but this is very much isolated to Silicon Valley-esque companies right now.

The simplicity of this issue is reduced to something of major concern and plays on our extremely polarised minds. Surely efforts should be focused on promoting women into these high earning sectors where men are dominant and vice versa. Yet we should encourage and not artificially enforce this to disincentive anyone no matter your gender.

A very important point with our ‘pay gap’ is that gender is real and comes with some very real complexities rooted in our biology and capabilities as men and women, to disregard these would be to create a society devoid of sex & gender. I am not saying an overall societal wealth divide is good or bad, I am saying a traditional gender structure may not be devil many assume it now to be. Men & women can cross the hunter-gatherer-home keeper divide but there must be a reason why this has been a dominant societal structure for the past few thousand years.

And god almighty, I know times are different now and gender can be blurred. We are synthesising as a human race but now is not the time to disregard sex & gender completely.

However, the time Is now for women to elevate and reach a new equilibrium with men, but we are not at that “perfect” moment yet where we can ignore differences. As it goes you just must choose whether those differences impede or inspire you.

I am talking to you women of the world.

Moreover, the working world in our society is rightfully a meritocracy – we all have advantages and disadvantages, to delve into these sorts of arguments would be and have been volatile and endless. Many claim the BBC’s alleged gender pay gap is unfair but at the end of the day it is about viewership and popularity with television presenters. That is how pay in a capitalist world works out and If it seems unfair, you create change but don’t create an enemy if there is not one. Men aren’t the problem, things are changing as we speak on the pay disparity thanks to a combination of law, mutual understanding on gender, technology and heaps of inspiring women around the world. However, if you want complete equality of pay, socialism is your answer.

I know this pay swamp has yet to be drained; many corners of the world still do not recognise women as equals but recognise the systems, especially here in the UK are not as patriarchal as they seem. The pay gap is most certainly real but as we approach a more gender-neutral society, don’t expect those disparities to ever completely disappear.

Published by Harry Allen

Freelance journalist & Marketing Afficionado

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