Contemporary American culture has heavily invested in the concept of living "happily ever after." Finding "the One" is a quest many pursue, clinging to the assumption that once you put a ring on it, then you finally become a whole person.
We do not live in a meritocracy, not even in the most privileged corners of the country where diverse, academically driven kids enjoy access to what might legitimately be seen as unlimited opportunities. This idea deeply disturbs people.
It's been a rough couple of weeks for women in STEM. Most shockingly, Adria Richards, former developer evangelist at SendGrid, was fired after she publicly reported two men (one of whom was also fired) for making lewd jokes in earshot at a PyCon Conference.
"Queen bees" in the office are making the lives of other women a living hell. We've heard this before. Powerful women are just grown up high school "mean girls" chipping away at the self-confidence of the women who work with and for them.
Sheryl Sandberg's views have been heavily contrasted to Anne-Marie Slaughter, author of the viral Atlantic article "Why Women Still Can't Have It All," so much so that a New York Times journalist argued that their distinctions amounted to a Freidan-Steinem row.
Since the idea of the Stella Prize was first suggested, Australian women's writing has attracted a great deal of attention, attention which led a blogger for the literary journal Overland to declare 2012 "The Year of Australian Women Writers."
I consider myself well-educated and self-aware. I wrote a Master's thesis on issues in Women's Studies and kept my maiden name. I assumed I was one of the last people who would unconsciously work harder for a man than a woman.
I chose, after a long, deliberate and painstaking process, to give my ex-husband essentially full custody of one of my children. It was the most wrenching decision of my life, but one that I felt I had to make.
In the modern corporation there is no place for racial or gender discrimination. This is an absolute. Any CEO, manager, or team leader who tolerates this abuse, or encourages a culture that fosters it, should be removed.
Growing up, we loved science class. We brewed steaming potions by mixing chemicals; created ice cream by shaking salt, ice and sugar; and crafted volcanoes made out of clay. Somewhere along the line, however, our interest in pursuing the sciences disappeared.
Two recent studies shed important empirical light on gender bias in the sciences and should be cause for great scrutiny and reflection by America's universities and colleges. If we are to continue to be preeminent in science and technology, we must engage women fully in that challenge.
Does race or gender influence decision-making among members of the most respected professions? Several recent, high-profile studies conclude that, yes, even scientists, doctors, and judges are vulnerable to such unconscious bias.
According to the scientists behind the study, the result is due not to intentional marginalization, but to "subconscious cultural influences." Are we supposed to be relieved that this discrimination isn't deliberate?
Walk through any hospital, and in all probability, the majority of physicians honored on wooden panels will be men. When we think of scientists or physicians, we do not picture in our minds a woman, but instead the stereotypical white male.
We need to stop blaming, hating and discriminating against obese people, but equally important, we need to use what we know to solve obesity and the obesity epidemic. That is the real solution to the evil of obesity bias.