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Women's history month

The Snark Serial: Feminism & Women’s History Month

by Alexandria Mansfield

“The Snark Serial” is a snark-filled take on life from one of the team’s bitterest writers. Alexandria Mansfield will offer sarcastic remarks, seething reviews and snide satire to more digest life’s bumps and hiccups – and the occasional win. She will also suggest a weekly snack pairing to munch on while reading. (Warning:  Not all snack recommendations may be edible.)

If I see one more company advertising for me to buy lipstick for the strong women in my life, I swear I’m – going to do it because I’m a sucker for consumerism.

Doesn’t it feel like the ads for Women’s History Month are somehow more about product-pushing this year than ever before? I know all of these national days and months are about as real as the latest Hallmark movie. It’s just meant to sell you love or puppies or chocolate chip cookies on a day when business might typically be slow. Why couldn’t we, after such a difficult year, just have one thing that means something?

Would it have been so terrible if not every company needed to make a statement about why they are women-friendly this year? Wouldn’t it have been better to see how companies strived to make safer work environments? To designate more management opportunities or offer better pay and benefits for their female employees since last March?  Instead, we see the same Rosie the Riveter cartoon advocating for the latest eyebrow-shaping phenomenon?

Gender Pay Gap

Even Burger King (BK) – an unhealthy, gluttonous monster of a food chain that can always be counted on for comfort food – couldn’t let us have a moment of peace with its misguided attempt at humor in the form of a not-so-hot-take tweet on International Women’s Day, which was March 8.

This so-called “joke” wouldn’t have been taken so poorly if women weren’t making an average of $0.67 to every white man’s $1 earned. That’s according to the most recent data from National Women’s Law Center in 2019. 

The smallest gap in pay between women and white men comes for Asian women, who make about $0.87 for every $1, while the largest gap is held by Latina women, who make nearly half of what their white male counterparts make for the same job at approximately $0.55 to every $1. For context, for a Latina woman to make the same as a white man in the same job, she would need to work almost 73 hours a week compared to his 40.

This doesn’t even account for the continued disparities preventing women from being considered for positions that aren’t entry-level. Typically in a traditionally low-paying industry – like fast food or restaurant service. The sad reality is that’s where women are often relegated. Even when they do get promotions within those fields, the pay is often lower than that of other industries. (Call us when you raise your pay to a living wage, BK.)

More Inequity

Between period taxes that make feminine hygiene products a “luxury item” instead of a basic human necessity for people who menstruate and the unpaid labor women take upon themselves in the home that equated to about $1.5 trillion last year, according to the New York Times, it’s no wonder women are so damn tired of having lipstick, diet shakes, boob creams – yes, a real thing, Google it – and pink pepper spray shoved down our throats by an economic system that can’t afford to pay us but is more than eager to take our money and exploit our work ethics.

So yeah, maybe I’ll buy more lipstick this month. I’ll be adding to the approximately $145-billion industry that surely doesn’t need my hard-earned cash to keep its gears turning. Or maybe I’ll save it up and, in a few years, be able to afford my own private island. Its slogan will be “Girls rule, boys drool.” A woman can dream, can’t she?

Suggested snack pairing: Patriarchal leftovers – The sandwich you made your husband before murdering him with the butcher’s knife. Roasted and fileted limbs of every man who spread his knees into your space on public transportation. A protein shake filled with enough nutrients to get you swole enough to dismantle an archaic system all by yourself.

For more complaints, observations and general raging, follow me on Twitter @Alexandriammans.

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