Thursday, April 26, 2007

Another encore I could do without

I am beginning to wonder if every single bad idea that was promoted to my generation when we were college students is going to resurface this decade.

Take, for instance, the "equal pay" idea. I know why I fell for this when I was an adolescent and early twenty-something (miseducation matched with inexperience, boosted by the insane, fact-free, unrooted idealism of the '60s and '70s; flavored with a Marxism I didn't realize was there, not to mention just plain ignorance about how the economy functions in general and how businesses survive in particular, not to mention just plain naivete about human nature, etc.). I can see why this sort of thing can be attractive to a well-meaning but misguided kid. But how can any actual adult with real-world experience think this is something the government ought to pursue? It's crazy.

Like the Equal Rights Amendment, which I hear has also been dusted off, I find the 'equal pay/ comparable worth' idea patronizing. I'm one of those women who currently earns less than most men with a comparable education because once I got old enough to take a more mature look at my options, I opted out of the career culture. Plain and simple. I chose a life that gave me more time with my husband, more time for myself, more freedom, more autonomy, more control. Within certain boundaries, money is far easier to give up than time. Loss of income you can offset to a large degree with frugality. Lost time? Lost independence? What can you do to make up for days when you find yourself forced to wave hello-and-goodbye at loved ones as your paths cross, with no time to sit down and chat because the clock is ticking and you've promised to be elsewhere in exchange for a paycheck?

If I decide to go get a job working for someone else, I'll weigh the possibilities based on several factors. And, if you can imagine this, I can probably manage to find out if one job pays less than another, and can actually factor that into my choice of which jobs to go after, which training to pursue. No, really, I can. I'm female but I think I can do that. I am woman, hear me roar watch me make a rational choice.

1 comment:

Bookworm said...

To which I say "You go, girl!"