How feminists misrepresent the gender ‘wage gap’

Some people call the notion of a gender pay gap a ‘myth’, but it does in fact exist. A certain mythical element arises however in the way that feminists blatantly misrepresent the pay gap to support and advance their peculiarly jaundiced view of the world. You see, feminists would have us believe that women earn substantially less than men for doing the same work, and that this is primarily the result of sexist bias by employers. Such a position is equal parts over-simplification and outright falsehood, yet it forms a key prop in the gender feminists’ claim of perennial victimhood at the hands of a cruel and unyielding patriarchy.

Indeed, all manner of people – even ex-President Obama – keep spouting this bunkum, and the mainstream media laps it up and repeats it ad nauseam. (Oh, and by the way, Politi-Fact rated the President’s statement as ‘mostly false’, with further comments here).

Feminists conveniently neglect to tell everyone that:

  • as you drill down into the data looking at particular segments of the workforce, one is increasingly likely to find that the wage gap favours women – not men
  • pay disparity is the outcome of many different variables, of which sexist discrimination by employers is just one – and a relatively minor one at that

Indeed the most significant variables affecting pay rates relate to personal choices made by individual employees, choices such as type of job, amount of overtime worked, etc.

Feminists also avoid mentioning those variations of pay gap other than gender, such as the ‘gaps’ based on race or sexual orientation. Take a look, for example, at ‘Lesbians earn more than straight women – but gay men are penalised‘ (18 December 2014):

“In Britain, lesbians are paid an average of eight per cent more than straight women, with the trend even more extreme in other western countries. In the US, the difference is 20 per cent …

Dr Nick Drydakis, senior lecturer in economics at Anglia Ruskin University in the UK who authored the World Bank report, said pay differentials were explained by the career and lifestyle choices that gay women were more likely make.

“Lesbians may realise early in life that they will not marry into a traditional household,” he said.”

So, does this mean that employers actively discriminate against straight women?

As a poster on a related reddit discussion thread so aptly stated:

“Love the way it’s so obviously special pleading.
Gay men earn less? Must be discrimination!
Lesbians earn more? Must be lifestyle choices.
Women earn less? Must be sexism.
Men earn less? Must be lifestyle choices.”

wage gap

Please take a moment to review some or all of the following sources:

The Factual Feminist‘ (Christina Hoff Sommers) looks at the wage gap issue Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3

Summary points from the book ‘Why Men Earn More‘ by Warren Farrell

Though Outnumbered, Female CEOs Earn More Than Male Chiefs (31 May 2017)

The £625 acting classes teaching young women how to beat men to City jobs (17 May 2017) Simplistic and false notions re: the pay gap lead to simplistic and ineffective ‘solutions’

The Gender Pay Gap Is Largely Because of Motherhood (13 May 2017)

“What’s Your Major”: Another Blow to the So-Called Gender Pay Gap (20 April 2017)

The gender income gap in more than 1000 occupations, in one chart (20 April 2017) See related Reddit discussion thread here.

Millennial women are ‘worried,’ ‘ashamed’ of out-earning boyfriends and husbands (19 April 2017) A different perspective on the wage gap. Now men get to be shamed for earning more – and less – than women, at the same time.

How Jessica Chastain Negotiates for Equal Pay (17 April 2017) See comment by reader ‘Godzilla502’

The truth about the gender wage gap (8 March 2017)

Teacher advises student to “look for feminist sources” regarding wage gap (7 March 2017)

Revealed: The Gender Pay Gap Feminists don’t want to talk about, by Martin Daubney (17 January 2017) UK

Earnings inequality among men soars (13 January 2017) UK. There are many significant pay gaps other than all men v all women, but any gaps that don’t support the feminist narrative tend to be ignored. This study is just one of many examples.

Men still paid vastly more than women on average in UK – study (28 November 2016)

“blah, blah, blah Where men and women are doing the same job, they are usually paid almost the same – although men still have a slight advantage, earning an average of 1.6% more blah blah blah”

The Global Gender Paygap report – Or how to fit statistics to narrative (23 November 2016) Reddit mensrights discussion thread

Four ways the gender pay gap isn’t all it seems (29 August 2016) Even the normally pro-feminist BBC doesn’t back the feminist archetype re: this issue

Gender pay gap: Trend shows women in NI earn more than men (23 August 2016) Ireland. “Defying the gender pay gap” or simply disproving it?

The Pay Gap myth and other lies that won’t die (9 August 2016) with related Reddit discussion thread here.

Desperately holding on to the debunked idea of gender wage gap by Ashe Schow (30 June 2016)

Do women really want equality? by Nikita Coulombe (12 May 2016) USA

And now some cuck blames ambitious men for making the pay gap larger in ‘Too Many Elite American Men Are Obsessed With Work and Wealth‘ (28 April 2016)

Daniel Radcliffe: How can this still be happening? (25 April 2016) Harry Potter actor talks about how much more male Hollywood actors are paid. Neglects to mention factors inconsistent with feminist narrative – like the pay differential for fashion models for e.g.

Gender Pay Gap Solution: Ban Stay-at-Home Moms (13 April 2016) USA

Young women are asking for (and getting) more pay than men (12 April 2016) USA

Don’t Buy Into The Gender Pay Gap Myth (12 April 2016) USA

The gender pay gap (March 2016) A major study by Korn Ferry/Hay Group, including data from 33 countries

The ‘gender pay gap’ is mostly garbage (8 March 2016) Australia

Daily Reminder That the Wage Gap Isn’t Real (5 March 2016) A list of links to articles and videos debunking the gender pay gap, some of which will already be included in my post, others not.

Belinda Brown: Gender pay gap explained. Men work longer hours in tough jobs (15 February 2016) UK How many more articles like this need to be published before feminists finally retire this ridiculous icon of victimhood.

The Gender Pay Gap is Dead (15 February 2016)

Harvard prof. takes down gender wage gap myth (13 January 2016)

Opinion: Hillary Clinton is wrong on the so-called war against women (7 January 2016)

Why politicians are asking the wrong questions about gender inequality (5 November 2015)

Women in their 20s earn more than men of same age, study finds  (29 August 2015)

Gender Pay Gap Conspiracy Theorists #WomensEqualityDay (26 August 2015) A video by Sargon of Akkad

Intrinsic Value Gap – Tim Goldich – Man Against the Wall (31 May 2015) Recommended viewing!

There’s No ‘Gender Pay Gap’, But Here Are 11 Reasons Why There Should Be (1 June 2015)

The “wage gap” is evidence that Western women are pampered, coddled and spoiled (4 May 2015)

Surprise! Women trump men on CEO pay (30 April 2015) USA

Student’s account of biased presentation by professor at American university (29 April 2015)

‘Equal pay day’ this year is April 14; the next ‘equal occupational fatality day’ will be on July 29, 2027, by Mark J. Perry (13 April 2015)

The Gender Pay Gap is a myth – So why do so many buy it? (9 March 2015)

What Matt Yglesias Got Wrong on the Gender Pay Gap (25 February 2015)

No, women don’t make less money than men by Christina Hoff Sommers (1 February 2015)

The pay gap is caused by personality not gender, so what personality will earn you more money? (3 December 2014)

The Gender Pay Gap Revealed in Tech; Glassdoor Report (17 November 2014)

Are women CEO’s also sexist? (18 November 2014)

A modest proposal for closing the gender wage gap by Ashe Schow (13 November 2014)

Gender income propaganda (3 November 2014) UK

Global gender gap: Equality is overrated (31 October 2014)

CNN reporting feelings on pay gap as fact, despite the actual facts reporting it doesn’t exist (1 November 2014)

Debunking the myth of the mythical gender pay gap (8 April 2014)

The g Economist takes on your attacks over the (lack of a) gender gap in tech salaries (10 March 2014)

If you’re under 40, the biggest gender pay gap is experienced by men (11 August 2014)

No, women don’t make less money than men by Christina Hoff Sommers (1 February 2014)

“Here is a list of the ten most remunerative majors compiled by the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce. Men overwhelmingly outnumber women in all but one of them:

1.   Petroleum Engineering: 87% male
2.   Pharmacy Pharmaceutical Sciences and Administration: 48% male
3.   Mathematics and Computer Science: 67% male
4.   Aerospace Engineering: 88% male
5.   Chemical Engineering: 72% male
6.   Electrical Engineering: 89% male
7.   Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering: 97% male
8.   Mechanical Engineering: 90% male
9.   Metallurgical Engineering: 83% male
10. Mining and Mineral Engineering: 90% male

And here are the 10 least remunerative majors—where women prevail in nine out of ten:

1.  Counseling Psychology: 74% female
2.  Early Childhood Education: 97% female
3.  Theology and Religious Vocations: 34% female
4.  Human Services and Community Organization: 81% female
5.  Social Work: 88% female
6.  Drama and Theater Arts: 60% female
7.   Studio Arts: 66% female
8.   Communication Disorders Sciences and Services: 94% female
9.   Visual and Performing Arts: 77% female
10. Health and Medical Preparatory Programs: 55% female”

Dondi’s clock and the paradox of the wage gap (19 July 2014)

The ’77 cents on the dollar’ myth about women’s pay (The Wall Street Journal, 7 April 2014)

Fair Pay isn’t always equal pay‘ (New York Times)

Women’s pay to overtake men’s by 2020 (23 November 2011)

The 15 jobs where women earn more than men (14 March 2011)

http://www.aei-ideas.org/2013/09/ceteris-paribus-once-you-start-controlling-for-important-factors-the-17-8-gender-wage-gap-starts-to-disappear/

http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Government/2014/03/17/77-Cents-Worth-of-Lies

‘There is no male-female wage gap’, Wall Street Journal, 12 April 2011

Young women are now earning more than men – that’s not sexist, just fair (27 November 2011)

http://washingtonexaminer.com/obama-to-push-myths-about-working-women-in-florida/article/2545982

http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2014/03/how-male-jobs-hurt-female-paychecks/284495/#comments

The Pay Gap Myth that won’t die (a Youtube video by Warren Farrell)

http://shriverreport.org/gender-equality-is-a-myth-beyonce (Read the comments, the article itself offers no worthwhile insights)

http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2014/jan/29/barack-obama/barack-obama-state-union-says-women-make-77-cents-/

http://www.avoiceformen.com/feminism/feminist-lies-feminism/gaps-damned-gaps-and-statistics/

http://www.avoiceformen.com/feminism/feminist-lies-feminism/what-pay-gap/

http://healthland.time.com/2013/11/11/ten-things-you-didnt-know-about-the-gender-gap/

http://www.learnliberty.org/content/do-women-earn-less-men

http://www.deseretnews.com/article/865581083/Do-women-earn-less-then-men-Not-necessarily-study-says.html

http://edition.cnn.com/2014/04/16/opinion/drexler-equal-pay/index.html?hpt=hp_c3

http://www.cbsnews.com/news/the-gender-pay-gap-is-a-complete-myth/

http://anti-feminism-pro-equality.tumblr.com/wagegap and http://anti-feminism-pro-equality.tumblr.com/wagegap2

http://c4mb.wordpress.com/2012/07/19/dr-catherine-hakims-preference-theory/

http://www.slate.com/articles/double_x/doublex/2013/08/gender_pay_gap_the_familiar_line_that_women_make_77_cents_to_every_man_s.html

http://www.forbes.com/2006/03/07/glass-ceiling-opportunities–cx_hc_0308glass.html 

http://www.vancouversun.com/touch/story.html?id=9646807 (“Is gender balance in university programs worth pursuing?”)

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/wp/2014/04/09/the-paycheck-fairness-bill-failed-in-the-senate-today-it-wouldnt-have-eliminated-the-wage-gap-anyway/

This 2011 article in the New York Times, ‘They call it the reverse gender gap‘, discusses the woes of women earning more than many men (yes, even back in 2011!)

This paper deals with the effect of feminist lobbying on employment opportunities for men:
http://www.weeklystandard.com/Content/Public/Articles/000/000/016/659dkrod.asp

I came across this interesting post whilst reading an article about comparative health expenditure for men and women:

Re: “But they make less money no matter what the job”

Wrong. “In 2011, 22% of male physicians and 44% of female physicians worked less than full time, up from 7% of men and 29% of women from Cejka’s 2005 survey.” (See ama-assn.org/amednews/2012/03/26/bil10326.htm)

That’s just one of countless examples showing that some of the most sophisticated women in the country choose to earn less while getting paid at the same rate as their male counterparts.

A thousand laws won’t close that gap.

In fact, no law yet has closed the gender wage gap — not the 1963 Equal Pay for Equal Work Act, not Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, not the 1978 Pregnancy Discrimination Act, not affirmative action (which has benefited mostly white women, the group most vocal about the wage gap – tinyurl.com/74cooen), not the 1991 amendments to Title VII, not the 1991 Glass Ceiling Commission created by the Civil Rights Act, not the 1993 Family and Medical Leave Act, not diversity, not the countless state and local laws and regulations, not the thousands of company mentors for women, not the horde of overseers at the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and not the Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, which is another feel-good bill that turned into another do-nothing law (good intentions do not necessarily make things better; sometimes, the path to a worse condition is paved with good intentions)…. Nor will a “paycheck fairness” law work.

That’s because women’s pay-equity advocates, who always insist one more law is needed, continue to overlook the effects of female AND male behavior:

Despite the 40-year-old demand for women’s equal pay, millions of wives still choose to have no pay at all. In fact, according to Dr. Scott Haltzman, author of “The Secrets of Happily Married Women,” stay-at-home wives, including the childless who represent an estimated 10 percent, constitute a growing niche. “In the past few years,” he says in a CNN report at tinyurl.com/6reowj, “many women who are well educated and trained for career tracks have decided instead to stay at home.” (“Census Bureau data show that 5.6 million mothers stayed home with their children in 2005, about 1.2 million more than did so a decade earlier….” at tinyurl.com/qqkaka. If indeed a higher percentage of women is staying at home, perhaps it’s because feminists and the media have told women for years that female workers are paid less than men in the same jobs — so why bother working if they’re going to be penalized and humiliated for being a woman.)

As full-time mothers or homemakers, stay-at-home wives earn zero. How can they afford to do this while in many cases living in luxury? Answer: Because they’re supported by their husband, an “employer” who pays them to stay at home. (Far more wives are supported by a spouse than are husbands.)

The implication of this is probably obvious to most 12-year-olds but seems incomprehensible to, or is wrongly dismissed as irrelevant by, feminists and the liberal media: If millions of wives are able to accept NO wages, millions of other wives, whose husbands’ incomes vary, are more often able than husbands to:

-accept low wages
-refuse overtime and promotions
-choose jobs based on interest first, wages second — the reverse of what men tend to do (The most popular job for American women as of 2010 is still secretary/administrative assistant, which has been a top ten job for women for the last 50 years. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/06/11/gender-wage-gap_n_3424084.html)
-take more unpaid days off
-avoid uncomfortable wage-bargaining (tinyurl.com/3a5nlay)
-work fewer hours than their male counterparts, or work less than full-time instead of full-time (as in the above example regarding physicians)

Any one of these job choices lowers women’s median pay relative to men’s. And when a wife makes one of the choices, her husband often must take up the slack, thereby increasing HIS pay.

Women who make these choices are generally able to do so because they are supported — or, if unmarried, anticipate being supported — by a husband who feels pressured to earn more than if he’d chosen never to marry. (Married men earn more than single men, but even many men who shun marriage, unlike their female counterparts, feel their self worth is tied to their net worth.) This is how MEN help create the wage gap: as a group they tend more than women to pass up jobs that interest them for ones that pay well.

More in “Will the Ledbetter Act Help Women?” at http://malemattersusa.wordpress.com/2011/12/03/will-the-ledbetter-fair-pay-act-help-women/

The Biggest Myth About the Gender Wage Gap (30 May 2013)

A Comprehensive Look at Gender Equality: Taking On The Institute For Women’s Policy Research (16 February 2012) USA. A very comprehensive paper. Updated November 2016

Wage discrimination: The evidence (10 March 2010)

This last reference is also quite dated, and is not about feminist misrepresentation per se, but just shows how easily incorrect statistics can be created (in this case by Australian politician Joe Hockey) and then go into circulation:

FactCheck Q&A: do women under 50 make up just 2% of people on $100,000 a year? (22 August 2013) The correct answer is “around 24%”

Occupational Segregation and the Gender Wage Gap in Private- and Public-Sector Employment: A Distributional Analysis (11 November 2009) Australia

“Gender differences in employment across occupations advantage (rather than disadvantage) all women except those in high-paid jobs”

Gender pay gap: nonpecuniary benefits edition (17 August 2009) NZ

fewer_carrots

See also my blog posts entitled:

We’ve all heard of the gender ‘income gap’, but what about the ‘expense gap’?

That tired old feminist chestnut that is the ‘gender wage gap’ resurrected in Australia

3 thoughts on “How feminists misrepresent the gender ‘wage gap’”

  1. Are you seriously trying to say that ‘Prawn of the Patriarchy’ – the propagandist blog that you cited – is the only research you have done on what you call the myth of gender pay inequality? LOL!! I’m doing a PhD in a gender related area and can give you some real research to look at if it would help. Sadly, I think that many on this post are ideologically driven and use the ‘merit’ chestnut as though we all live in a level playing field. I agree that it is not just gender that affects your experiences – class, ethnicity, race, sexuality, (dis)ability etc are all identity markers that impact on the way others view you and indeed on the way we view ourselves. However, to suggest that all women have the same opportunities to achieve and that gender has no role to play is simply to ignore the facts, ignore history and ignore the structures of power (call it patriarchy if you wish) that impose and maintain gender hegemonies.

    1. I hope Donna doesn’t mind, but I have taken the liberty of cutting and pasting her comment from Julie Bishop’s Facebook page (31 October 2014) to here for further comment and consideration.
      In fact I have never stated either “that all women have the same opportunities to achieve” or “that gender has no role to play“. That is clearly not the case, just as not all men have the same opportunities to achieve. It never ceases to amaze how many times I read responses to statements questioning some aspect of feminism, and how they relate to what the feminist assumed a non-feminist would say rather than relating to what was actually said.

    2. Maybe you should have chosen a STEM field instead of a gender studies field. That would have paid better in the long run.

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