Do you feel the hate, ladies? There is plenty of it going on in this country. Lately, it seems like women are the target of much hate in this country. Recently, Congressional Republicans voted against Obama's Paycheck Fairness Act for women -- an equal pay bill. Oddly enough, Republican women led that fight saying there already is equal pay for women, and it is condescending to think that women are not paid equally compared to their male counterparts -- despite the fact that currently women only make 77 percent of what men make for the same job and same hours. Yes, they really did say this.
Then, there is the Affordable Care Act and birth control. The argument around birth control has always been a way to shame and control women, and now the ACA birth control coverage is here and the objections to it have taken on epic proportions. Conservatives don't want women to have access to this medication that they don't agree with. Hobby Lobby objected to it, and the company cites religious reasons for not wanting to pay for insurance policies that cover birth control, despite the fact the Supreme Court has ruled in United States vs. Lee that employers cannot force their beliefs on those who work for them. And isn't it just interesting to know that Hobby Lobby invests in a 401K plan that includes the very birth control they object to -- like IUDs and emergency contraception pills? So, in their mind, it is apparently OK to profit off of these products, according to their religion, but not allow their female employees have them.
As a woman, I see what is going on here, and it is nothing more than misogyny. This is an attack on women, their bodies and their civil rights, plain and simple.
In addition to these political issues, we also have a dialogue going on in this nation that is extremely sexist and undervalues women and their capabilities. This gender bias is fairly evident. It is not unusual to turn on the television and hear a comment that is anti-women. For instance, last week on Bloomberg News, a hedge fund manager said live on air to a female anchor, "You are giving me that look I get when I talk to women about quant stuff." Very obviously meaning that women are not smart enough to understand these topics. I don't know how anyone can say these things in this day and age, but here we are ladies. And, this is not the only example. Think back to Sandra Fluke and the insults she took on national radio for defending birth control. I believe the words were more than hateful.
I could go on and on with the examples, but this misogyny is real. It is there, and it is coming from all directions, even in our daily lives. I am sure you can think of examples of when it has happened to you. I think we have all experienced sexist statements. I know that it has happened to me.
Raising awareness and not keeping quiet about it is the way to fight this. We do have laws that protect against these actions in a work setting, and you do have the right to fight back if you are a victim of it. Let's hope that these laws that protect us are upheld in the highest court in our land.
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