A modest solution to the pay gap between men and women

by Fabius Maximus

Summary: The pay gap between men and women is the biggest barrier to gender equality in America. I propose a modest solution, one that is both simple and fast.

Choosing A Solution - Dreamstime-108441292
ID 108441292 © Leowolfert | Dreamstime.

I am watching a roofing crew on my neighbor’s house. They are booked solid doing roof repairs between Iowa thunderstorms. Working 12 hour days on a dangerous job in the heat and high humidity, no shade on rooftops. This reminds me of the summer I worked as a lumberjack (very apprentice, very stupid) for a small outfit in Indianapolis. Suddenly the solution to a major social problem came to me! Feminists say that only quotes for leadership positions will achieve equality between the genders (the many genders). Bloomberg gives a glowing review to California’s new law, a bold first step.

“A new California law requires most companies in the state to have at least one woman on their boards of directors by the end of this year. By the end of 2021, they’ll need three. According to a new Bloomberg analysis, this sea change could offer women 692 seats at the table, enough to cause a measurable shift in the gender balance of U.S. company boards overall. But what if it doesn’t stop there?”

Why should it stop there? Even bolder laws can close the pay gap. Starting with these occupations, now unjustly dominated by men (click to enlarge). Three of the top four dangerous occupations involve strenuous physical labor, outside in often brutal weather, with a high rate of physical injury (and death). Pilots of private aircraft and feeder (aka commuter) airlines have high fatality rates, but in comfort. From the Department of Labor; click to enlarge.

Work Fatality Rates by Occupation - 2017

We will not have equality until these two graphs are the same, with equal fatality rates per hour for all genders! From the Department of Labor; click to enlarge.

Work Fatality Rates by Gender - 2017

Loggers, fisherpeople, bush pilots, farmers, refuse collectors, electrical line workers – all can be gender-integrated to help close the pay gap! Due to legacy internalized patriarchial oppression, enough women will not heed this call to action. As with Corporate Directors, mandates will be needed to force compliance with this next step to a better society. Fortunately, feminists have blazed a path we can follow.

In the same spirit, America can draft young women into these occupations. Perhaps by lottery, using computer algorithms to select for physical suitability. Some of these women will be unhappy (during the 20th century, many draftees were unhappy). Some will be injured, or crippled, or die – collateral damage on the way to a better world.


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