I’m not big on feminism, because much of what we see today has broken away from logical rhetoric and gone to the extreme. The absurd.
But I have always been about equality. And I don’t mean pithy nonsense where double standards are frowned upon except when beneficial to a certain group.
The #BlackWomenEqualPay thing is one of those things. It is a nuanced and multi-layered issue that cannot be addressed in superficial, black and white terms. If your IQ is lower than your heartbeats per minute, you should not wade into the discussion at all, as there are a multitude of social, economic, cultural and institutional factors that have to be addressed in order to bring this to fruition (not that this deters the many morons on Twitter and other outlets).
The disparities in pay between men and women in general have been an issue for as long as all of us who live and breathe today have been alive. There’s no denying that. It is a problem that should have never been.
We can’t go back and undo the past where women were barred from the general workplace, and then only (begrudgingly) allowed in due to the expansion of Civil Rights and Equal Opportunity.
Side Note: I have always said, if you must enact legislation to get an employer to act a certain way that they would erstwhile NOT, you are almost going to see just as much inequality in its enactment, and still put those who you supposedly seek to “aid” at a competitive disadvantage. And we still see this today in 2017.
White women, on the whole, have experienced some gains in the workplace, and increases in pay. It’s still not even 80 cents on the dollar for their (White, and sometimes Asian) male counterparts, but it is a long way from what it was in 1970.
Black women, the group with the greatest increases of the college-educated and gainfully employed, don’t even earn the 80 cents on the dollar of White (and again, sometimes Asian) male counterparts. For years, Black men (in the same occupations) made more than Black women. Black men — those who haven’t been systematically barred from anything non entry-level — still earn more for the same jobs that Black women do. This is an obvious problem. The rectification isn’t so simple, because it involves a group surrendering or forfeiting the gobs of income they receive (often on the backs of those who do real work for substandard pay) in order to make the pay floor equal.
Moreover, since the immediately aforementioned ain’t happening anytime soon, another dynamic has emerged: Black men — particularly those who possess a wealth of professional experience and academic superiority — are viewed as “threatening” and are constantly phased out of the marketplace. Masters, Doctorates, top certifications, you name it. Outside of government agencies, you are seeing fewer Black men in roles that aren’t fully subordinate in every facet. Instead of paying Black women more, Black men just get relegated to substandard occupations — often far below what is commensurate with both their previous occupations, and what their professional and academic portfolio would dictate — or not be hired at all.
Those who earn more than their counterparts who only earn 80 cents (or less) on the dollar for the same work are least affected, but in exchange for Black men being marginalized, more Black women have been hired in more prominent roles in the past 15 years. It is congruent, because more Black women have completed Bachelors and Masters degrees in that timeframe than at any other time prior.
What this produces is another spur dynamic that creates tension among Black men (who still support equal pay for Black women) and some Black women (not all) who use the aforementioned dynamic to assert certain attitudes (we’re not delving into this too deeply here, because this is an entirely different subject altogether) when they are in positions where they serve as gatekeepers of sorts when Black men are seeking to reenter the workplace. Excluding the incarcerated, no-good types with no education or ambition and solely focusing on the group of Black men who have been sacrificed so that Black women could be fairly treated in the workplace (instead of others giving up their already undeserved and exorbitant compensation to make equal pay for White women, Black women AND Black men), you now have a dynamic where there are people who are sidelined, who can do most people’s jobs in their sleep under the influence of quaaludes, while those who have the jobs either door mediocre work in them, take them for granted, complain incessantly about the job (while doing nothing to deserve promotion), get compensated out of balance compared to those who do the job at a superior rate — aided by a sure belief that they must work 10 times as hard to get just as far (i.e. Black women, and the few Black men that are “tolerated” and not relegated to the sidelines) — and it just begets a vicious cycle.
Another Side Note:
Black women need to realize that with all the feminist propaganda you see and hear, your concerns are not included. They may be incidentally addressed, but if you think for one minute that the unique concerns of Black women are addressed in mainstream feminism, there is a light at the end of the tunnel, and it’s more likely to be one of them Metro-North trains that derails once every six months and not the promised oasis that you’ve been sold on for so long.
Don’t really want to hear about people’s outlier and small-frame anecdotal situations which MIGHT be contrary to this, these are merely generalities; meaning they are more often true than not.